Two poetry books on a table with a cup and saucer of coffee

MA Creative Writing portfolio guide

How to put together a creative portfolio for your course application.

What to include in your portfolio

We don’t prescribe an ideal portfolio – as applicants are from many different backgrounds – but some examples of completed work could be poetry, short stories, short articles, screenplays or a mixture of mediums.

Aim for no more than 3 pieces of writing (e.g. 3 poems, 2–3 short stories, or a mixture of mediums) demonstrating your best work. This should total 4,000 words max. Poetry submissions have a lower word count, and we recommend about 5 poems.

Include a short description with each piece of work. If produced in response to a brief, include this.

You’ll also need to complete a personal statement. Indicate in your statement what you’ve been writing, and your ambitions in studying with us.

What we're looking for

We want your portfolio to demonstrate your:

  • understanding of creative writing as a subject area and its application in a wider social and global context
  • ability to express your creative process, decision making and realisation of a complete piece of work
  • ability to reflect on what is, and is not, successful about your work
  • creativity and communication skills

Your portfolio should show:

  • enquiry, research and observations of the discipline of creative writing
  • original idea generation
  • conceptual development
  • a very good level of technical ability
  • an ability to select, present and communicate a range of work to a high professional standard

Contact us

Any questions? Contact the Faculty Student Recruitment Team.

Phone: +44 (0)23 9284 2990

Email: cci-enquiries@port.ac.uk

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