“Best creative writing teacher in Dublin” -Dubliner Magazine 25 years guiding writers in Ireland & 25th anniversary celebration discounts all round! SEE BELOW FOR EARLY BIRD FEES and discounts on ‘bundled’ bookings and Writing Train vouchers. To book, email or phone 0861701418.


FREE TASTER CLASSES IN DUBLIN’S SOUTH CITY CENTRE Sat 29/9, 10.30 a.m. & 1 p.m., Tues night 2/10 and Weds night 3/10, 6.30 p.m., DUNLAOGHAIRE Fri night 5/10. Please email me at for a free spot in one of these short classes/ info sessions. Bring a page or two of your writing, if you have it, and expect feedback, lively creative chat and insights plus a chance to do a little brand new writing in the room!


Saturday Start to Write / Developing Writer blended classes, (a.m. and p.m.): suitable for you if you’re starting to write, returning to writing or if you’re interested in a kickstart   and a range of fresh approaches. 

7 wks x 3 hr meets, from 20/10, €210 (15% discount if paid by 5/10, 25% if 2 blocks paid at once). (Details of timeslots below).


Developing Writers’ Workshop, (week-night evenings, city-centre and Dunlaoghaire venues, morning option from Jan 2019!) If you’ve work-in-progress needing mentoring, feedback or support, or if, while you have experience as a writer, you want to get going on specific projects from a cold start. 8 and 16 weeks options from either of Friday 19/10 or Tuesday 23/10. €430 full 16 week term or €230 for 8 weeks only. Course is broken as follows: 8 weeks till December; 8 weeks from 15 Jan.

Buy 8-week block, 15% discount EARLY BIRD offer by deadline 5/10. Buy the 16 weeks by early bird deadline, for discount of €100, or by 13 October for discount 15%.

Also available as 8-16 weeks course FROM 15 January/2019, at same rates.


Advanced Writers’ Workshop (evenings, day option will be available from Jan 2019!): IF YOU’VE WORK-IN -PROGRESS AND ARE LOOKING TO BE CHALLENGED BY A GROUP OF TOP-FLIGHT, AWARD-WINNING PEERS AND A SUPPORTIVE, HIGHLY EXPERIENCED FACILITATOR, this course may suit you! This weekly meeting is a long-term, “step on, step off” workshop environment and writing community whose members have won prizes from Francis McManus to the Irish Writers’ Centre Novel Fair. 10% tuition and peer tuition, 90% workshop. Option to read work in advance to boost our effectiveness). Wednesday nights, city centre, 16 meetings from 24/10: 7 meets before and 9 after Christmas. 3.5 hour meetings. Standard fee €450. (For continuity, this course is only available as a 16-week unit. But do please see special 25th anniversary discounts for early payment: 25% discount by 5/10 and 15% by Oct 13. (In re running times, Week 2 meeting will run on Thurs 1/Nov., N.B. to avoid Hallowe’en!) Resumption date for part two of course in New Year: Weds., January 9th.


TIMINGS OF EVENING WORKSHOPS: start time, by agreement with participants, will be set between 6.30 and 7.00 p.m. for evening classes, depending on group’s preferences. Expect 3.25-3.5 hours of contact time per week depending on the work we have to get through.

TIMINGS OF MORNING WORKSHOPS: 10.30 a.m. – 10.30 p.m. including a lunchbreak. VENUES and facilities: Autumn 2018 venues will be mainly hotel and cafe settings for maximum comfort and facilities including wheelchair access. This means you are free to take part in class and drink coffee all morning/ evening, not to mention to snack if hungry! Lunch together is a convivial element of our Saturday workshops as well!

SATURDAY START TO WRITE CLASS TIMESLOTS & FURTHER DETAILS: Morning and afternoon slots are offered for these events. 10.30 a.m. – 1.30 p.m. or 2.30-5.00 p.m. Lively, instructive, challenging, helpful and a heap of fun (so I’m told!) A mix of: tailored advice and support for each participant, with inputs from me on specific skill areas each week, chosen by participants from a range on offer (plus short inputs from participants on getting through their own writing impasses). All partnered with 50% workshopping time and tailored take-home writing challenges each week. AFter the upcoming intake in OCTOBER, the next block of 7 classes begins mid-January, accepting both new and returning students in a blended STEP UP Start to Write / Developing Writer class: ideal — as are all WRITING TRAIN classes–if you want to get going and learn from your classmates at the same time.


WRITE IN THE CITY: Fifth outing for this City Centre Friday morning class. Suitable for absolute beginners or writers looking for a fresh start. Write about (and in) the city. South City Centre Cafe venue, with scope for city rambles for inspiration during class. Begins Friday 26 October, running time: 10-30 – 1.30 p.m, south City Centre, block of 7 weeks till December, €210, second 7-week block from midJanuary. Phase one fee: €210, 15% early bird discount for bookings paid by 5/10. 25% discount “Bundle deal” for phase one and two together.

GIFT VOUCHERS: Buy someone you love (or want to nag towards their creative side 🙂 a voucher for YVONNE CULLEN’s WRITING TRAIN this Christmas. 15% discount on €100 vouchers till 5/10, 25% discount on vouchers valued at €200 and upwards. 10% discount on vouchers until 15 DECEMBER! Voucher will be sent to you as a nicely -designed PDF with a voucher number and the January Schedule at Writing Train will be sent to you in the same email, including details of FREE TASTER meetings in January to which your dear one can repair to find out which class, when and where will work for them!

The Inishbofin Jaunt New Year Island Writing Retreat

Write, learn, meet like minds and blow the cobwebs away at New Year, on the western edge of Europe and in the company of a tutor who has been visiting Bofin for 20 years (and guiding writers for 25 years, too!) Friday, December 28 – Friday January 4th will see us holding the 38th Inishbofin Jaunt. €725 full price fee is inclusive of comfortable single room accommodation, daily tailored classes, group activities, 1-1 time with tutor and welcome hamper of breakfast food at your self-catering house. Super Early Bird deal: 25% discount for bookings paid by 5 October. 15% discount by standard early bird discount deadline of November 12th. “Exactly what I needed in terms of rest, renewal, and a confidence boost for my writing. It’s given me fresh heart and determination to continue. It was also a great group to be sharing the week with.” Writer Kathleen Rogers on the Inishbofin Jaunt, September, 2018.


Thursday evening DEVELOPING WRITER’s WORKSHOP and Friday morning START TO WRITE, both in Dublin City Centre.

SPRING 2019 ONE-DAY COURSES: “ON FOR SIZE – try all sorts of short-form writing in one day!”

“MOVED INTO WRITING: the art and craft of growing poems”

“POWER ON: A developing poets’ workshop

“LOVE AND DARING: Start your novel!” “VISION EDIT” -a day for an overview of your novel in-the-works.

“FROM HISTORY TO STORY -short memoir and non-fiction one-day course. Also planned, an expanded list of regular classes & a new and cosy venue in Dublin 8!

To book, email or phone 0861701418.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

NEW TERM, NEW DISCOUNTS! Up to 25% for Early Birds!



Sat 29/9, 10.30 a.m. & 1 p.m., Tues night 2/10 and Weds night 3/10, 6.30 p.m.,
DUNLAOGHAIRE Fri night 5/10.
Please email me at for a free spot in one of these short classes/ info sessions. Bring a page or two of your writing, if you have it, and expect feedback, lively creative chat and insights plus a chance to do a little brand new writing in the room!


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

August and September Bofin Jaunts, just to make it a bit more visual…!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Jaunt to Bofin, 2 x week-long trips and great anniversary discounts!

BOFIN JAUNT POSTER2 SUMMER 201825 years leading writing courses is what’s on my mind today! And the late-August -early September Bofin Jaunts coming up shortly. 25% discount on all-in residential & tuition fees for first 4 bookings on 25?8 and 1/9 events. 10% discount for 4 further places on each trip. DISCOUNT DEADLINE August 6. First come first served till that point!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

25 years= 25% discount on 2018 fees, if booked by 31/12. Sound about right?



SPRING-SUMMER 2018 at Writing Train

25 years guiding writers in Ireland! 25th anniversary celebration discounts all round!


25% discount for all non-residential 2018 courses booked and paid for by 31 December! (7 JANUARY deadline for this offer applies to current students with WRITING TRAIN).

12.5% EARLY BIRD discount applies generally till 14 January. 


25% discount for all non-residential 2018 courses booked and paid for by 31 December! (7 JANUARY deadline for this offer applies to current students with WRITING TRAIN).

12.5% EARLY BIRD discount applies generally till 14 January. 

                              FREE INTRO CLASSES:

1.5 hour TASTER WRITING CLASS SESSIONS free of charge on the following dates:


Saturday 6, 13, 20 and 27 January, 2.30 P.M. Buswells’ Hotel, D2.


Sunday 18/3.  2.30 p.m., city centre hotel venue TBC.


                                  ONE-DAY COURSES

JANUARY 28:KICK-START YOUR WRITING ( START TO WRITE COURSE). Glasthule. 10.30 – 4.45 with lunch break at Peoples’ park Market.8 places max. €100.

FEBRUARY 11: SUNDAY ONE-DAY POETRY workshop: will suit you if you have work-in-progress to workshop. €100. 10.30 – 5.00 p.m.

MARCH 25: 25 SUNDAY ONE-DAY Start your non-fiction project day. €100

APRIL 15: SUNDAY ONE-DAY course: VISION-EDIT YOUR NOVEL with advance reading of 10,000 words €150.

APRIL 29:  SUNDAY ONE-DAY Writers’ think-tank: approach new projects & goals, pick up new habits €100

MAY 27: SUNDAY ONE-DAY Beginners’ and Developing Writers’ short story and flash fiction course.

                                       START TO WRITE COURSES

(Max tuition, minimal workshopping).

JANUARY WEDNESDAY MORNING CLASSES From 31/1: Kick start your writing 5-week course, Dunlaoghaire, 11.00- 1.30. €140 Ends 28 Feb.

NB: Please also email me ASAP if interested in an Irish Writers’ Centre  ‘START TO WRITE/ KEEP WRITING,’  MONDAY NIGHT class beginning late January subject to demand.

MARCH WEDNESDAY MORNING CLASSES: From 14/3 Wednesday a.m., 7-week kick starter Start To Write course, Dunlaoghaire venue TBC. Ends May 30.

NB: Please also see Irish Writers’ Centre timetable for a new START TO WRITE class with me beginning in April.

JUNE: WEDNESDAY MORNINGS From 13/ 6: Wednesday morning kick-starter Start to Write 4-week city centre café class, venue TBC, End Date July 11. €120 (3 hour sessions with comprehensive materials).

JUNE FRIDAY NIGHTS: From 15/6: Friday night Start to Write / continuation course with room for joiners. 5 weeks €150. End-date 15 July.

                                    NICHE CLASSES:

FEBRUARY FROM 9/2:  8-week Write In the City morning class at NLI café, D.2.10.30 – 2.00 p.m. combining a START TO WRITE class with Dublin-focused and cultural inspiration. 4th outing for this popular course. (Follow on possible subject to interest, this to be delivered in 2 x blocks of 4 weeks, March and April/May). Further outing of this course from September 2018!

                          START TO WRITE/ DEVELOPING WRITERS’ WORKSHOP                (Half and half, tuition and workshopping).

JANUARY: SATURDAY MORNINGS FROM 27/1: 10 x 3.25 hour meetings. Buswells’ Hotel, D.2. Hours: 11.00 a.m. – 2.15. Small group for max time for each participant. 8 places max. First come first served here! €280. End –date, 21/4.

POSSIBLE FURTHER JANUARY NIGHT CLASS, DEPENDING ON DEMAND at Irish Writers’ Centre 01-8721302,MONDAY NIGHTS,from late January, date TBC. 10 week course, expected fee €280. If you are a Monday Night IRISH WRITERS’ CENTRE veteran or interested newcomer for whom IWC in Parnell Square D.1.,  is the handiest venue,  and want to continue/ start class there with me, please do email both myself AND, i.e the  I.W.C) early in New Year in re., and let us all know you are interested in a Monday night class mixed level Monday Night class with me from late Jan., and we will do our best to make that happen!

FEBRUARY: FRIDAY NIGHTS, FROM  2/2. Glasthule/ Dunlaoghaire venue TBC. 7.00 – 10.00 p.m., 12 weeks, €320. End-date 27 April. (Switch into other Developing Writers’ Workshops, Tues night, Sat p.m. or Weds night workshop possible from here, if you want to continue with me at this point!)

FEBRUARY; SATURDAY AFTERNOONS: FROM 3/3.  Saturday P.M: Start to Write / Developing writers’ workshop hybrid class, brand new slot – 9 weeks, south City Centre hotel venue. 2.30p.m. – 5.15 p.m. €265. End date: 21 April. ( short follow on into early summer will also be possible, subject to demand).

                              DEVELOPING WRITERS’ WORKSHOP

(Max workshopping, small tuition element when needed. Natural follow-on if you have attended several Start to Write Courses with me or elsewhere):

JANUARY: TUESDAY NIGHTS FROM 23/1. Westin Hotel, Westmoreland Street, D2. 6.45 p.m.-10.00 p.m. (earlier departures facilitated). 12 weeks. €330. End-date April 24.


MAY: from 15/5: Continuation course for the above Developing Writers’ workshop, accepting joiners: 7 weeks. €200. End-date: 27 June

                           ADVANCED WORKSHOPS

JANUARY, WEDNESDAY NIGHTS FROM 10/1. Wednesday night Advanced Workshop Ongoing, accepts new members each term.

Start date: 10 January to attend 7 consecutive sessions with this group; End date: Feb 28. A great way to try out this advanced workshop. 3.5 hour meets, fantastic talent around the table and superb peer-support. Westin Hotel D.2 6.45-10.15.

MARCH, WEDNESDAY NIGHTS FROM 21/3. Wednesday Night Advanced Writing workshop – New term starts. (See January slot, above, for course description, timings and venue). End-date 4 July. €390.

                              ISLAND JAUNT WRITING HOLIDAYS:

Retreats will kick off at the May Bank Holiday ROSSBEIGH in KERRY, followed by Bofin in June, Turk and Kerry in July, Kerry and Bofin in August and Bofin early Sept.

MAY 4-8 ROSSBEIGH JAUNT  START TO WRITE holiday. €525 half board

JUNE: 1 INISHBOFIN JAUNT including prelim. 3-day Weekend at INISH culture festival, followed by 7-day writing course. 1-10 June €875. (4-10 June option also available €675). Details and fees to follow.

JULY 7 & 14 Inishturk Jaunt writing holidays 2 x Developing Writers course and Guided Retreat €675 half board.

AUGUST 18-23- Rossbeigh Kerry Jaunt for beginner writers €625

AUGUST 25 & SEPTEMBER 1: Inishbofin Jaunt (Start to write 25/8 – 31/8, Developing writer and Guided Retreat 1-8 Sept.)  €675 Half Board.


If you like the sound of any of this, email for more info or text 083 8333574. Alternatively, phone hours for this number will be 3-6 p.m. till and including 22nd Dec and from 5 January. Emails and texts will also all reach me and be responded to within 24 hours re special offers and in general within 48 during that time.

A warm and happy Christmas and start to the New Year, everyone! And don’t forget to use or pass on your voucher!

Xxx Yvonne

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Breathe out the old year, breathe in the new… Inishbofin Writing Jaunt, Dec. 27-Jan. 3! Come winter jaunt with me!



Click the link for the full brochure, folks! And contact me at and 0833888574 to discuss a booking.

I can do a beaauuutiful voucher for the trip, as a brilliant Christmas present…

xx Y

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment


dreamstime_694613 copySTART TO WRITE FRIDAY NIGHTS at Writing Train

12 week term starts on 3 March in Royal Marine Hotel, Dunlaoghaire, 7.15 – 10.15 p.m.

Workshop, support, specific skill inputs on request, weekly, and we’ll finish this course on June 16 with a Bloom’s Night reading in Glasthule, to which you’ll each be welcome to invite pals.
MARCH 3, 10, 24, 31
APRIL 7, 21.
MAY 5,12,19,26
JUNE 9,16

Fee is €340, 12 meetings over a good stretched-out timeframe
Returners/ Facebook pals’/ twitter fee, if booked and paid by 10 FEB is €315. Fee after this point is €340. One DROP IN space at €30 per meet also available. and 086 1701418 to book or discuss!

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

STARTING Saturday 4th February, National LIbrary Cafe, Dublin 2.

Dubliner Magazine’s “Best Creative Writing Teacher in Dublin”

Spring into Spring with a

VENUE:  Cafe Joli, National Library, Dublin
START DATE:  4/2, for 11 wks for fee of 10.

FEE: €265

Further classes & workshops from 1-day to 15 weeks, in Dublin city centre and Dunlaoghaire, county Dublin.


Vouchers and one-to-one editing and mentoring available too!
TO BOOK, email 0861701418

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

New Classes… Which to choose?


If you’d like to take a set of classes with me this season, here are some I would recommend:


Writing Train Beginners’ Classes – These courses will work best for people who want to start from scratch identifying their material and the forms they like by writing under direction and ‘reading as writers’ in class and at home, as well as touring through elements of the craft of all the short forms of writing under my guidance. These classes work equally well for complete beginners and people starting to write again after a break.



next course is starting Sat 28 Jan, 10.45 a.m., NLI CAFE, 10 weeks over 14, with time off for Bank Holiday weekends and a further week off for your tutor (that’s me: ), during Feb.


Next course is starting: Mon 30 Jan 7.00 p.m. Dunlaoghaire – This course will work best for people who want to start from scratch identifying their material and the forms they like by writing under direction and ‘reading as writers’ in class and at home, as well as touring through elements of the craft of all the short forms of writing under my guidance. 10 weeks. Further details and fee are in the linked document attached.


ONE space in Friday night meeting in Glasthule at the moment. 3 TRY-OUT weeks available for €90 in this 3 hour class/ workshop combo session by the fireside in my Glasthule home. Each week, I teach on a requested skill area. The rest of session is given to workshopping, discussion and occasional brief guided readings of established writers’ work. Each week you get homework…

NEW TERM OF FRIDAY NIGHTS will start in FEBRUARY – taking bookings now!

These meetings are a notch above START TO WRITE, in pace, and in place of the taught aspect they contain more workshop and more discussion.

One space in MONTHLY SATURDAY session in Dublin 2: contact me immediately if interested! 6 x 3 hour intensive and supportive group meets over 7 months, €200.

DEVELOPING WRITER/ FROM HISTORY TO STORY sessions: daytlme meetings in the National Library Cafe Joly.
For writers working from research, developing fiction or non-fiction, memoir or poetry. 10.45 a.m. on Fridays in the library. Workshop, discussion and tips on craft, research and technique, plus a deadline for production and a small group of supportive and friendly peers. DETAILS ON START DATE AND FEE AT


are aimed at Advanced writers who want feedback and support while they continue work-in-progress, or writers looking for deadlines and feedback while they challenge themselves to write a certain amount every week. Discussion and technical help will be tailored to each project, and the feedback of a group of experienced and supportive peers will be a great bonus in your Advanced Writing Train workshop.



Join an established group for the remainder of its current season as a way of deciding if you like my style:

AVAILABLE: Tuesday nights in WESTIN HOTEL IMMEDIATE availability (9 meets, €270, 3 hours plus each week)

AVAILABLE: Weds nights in same venue and ditto re availability, timeframe and fee.

AVAILABLE: Thursday nights in Dunlaoghaire. 4 meetings, €120 3 hours plus each week. (often 3.5!)

Looking forward to seeing you in one of these settings, soon! and 086 1701418 will reach me re!

x Y

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Jaunt to Bofin at New Year and Vouchers for the season of (yes, I’m saying it), ‘Ho ho ho’!

Inline image 1Inline image 2

Hi all!
What’s on my mind, here on the Writing Train,in pictures…(and in one attachment: a sample Writing Train VOUCHER you might leave lying around for loved ones re the unmentionable season that’s on the way….(Okay, as that is not the best marketing sentence I ever wrote: Christmas, I DO mean you…!)
START TO WRITE or KEEP WRITING, plus a Guided Writing Retreat for writers with projects well in hand, will run with me, Yvonne Cullen, on stunning Inishbofin, from 29 Dec.this year, to 5 Jan next year. 4 places left on this 8-person trip, fees set at LAST year’s Winter retreat level of €650, for bookings by November 18th. (€75 surcharge after this point).
Skies full of stars and rainbows, a writing course as outlined above plus all manner of laughs, walks, pints, creative explorations and link-ins with the wonderful locals in Bofin at a very special time in their year when everyone is home and together: this is what the New Year Bofin Jaunt will take in, this year.
I have 4 places left, at last year’s new Year fee of €650 for lovely, cosy single room accommodation in houses with knock-out views and woodstoves, covering accommodation and a week’s tuition and creative support (and the above “all kinds of fun”). You’re brought right in to Bofin on my trips, with the 16 years I’ve spent visiting and bringing writers there. Guided walks, meetings with local artists and photographers, boat builders, farmers and fishermen and musicians, and the island to yourself to explore at this still time of year, are just some of what the trip offers. Breakfast and  lunch foods are supplied and we pool resources and ideas re 3 dinners. The rest of our evening meals are at the BEACH bar where top quality food at the end of the world waits for you!
And as for the help with your writing, or ambition to write: “Life changing!” is what one participant called the New Year trip in 2014.
To book or enquire, ring the number below or email.
OTHER CLASSES and WORKSHOPS COMING UP, and which vouchers might go towards…
January START TO WRITE Cafe classes at the NLI will begin 14 January,
JUMP ON THE TRAIN places in Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday night Writing workshops in the city and Glasthule for Mid-January commencement date are also bookable now. Options from 6 to 11 week tickets, course-depending. Fantastic workshops with dedicated and generous participants, in nicely off-beat locations, if I do say so, like the WESTIN hotel bar, NLI CAFE, Central Hotel LIbrary bar, and the Royal Marine Hotel Dunlaoghaire. We also occasionally meet in participants’ houses in the DLR area. (And if you are interested in hosting our sessions in return for a free place in a class, let me know!)
I’ll be adding One-day events to the Blog and facebook notifications soon. Rough SPRING into SUMMER start again point is St Patrick’s weekend. Summer and autumn JAUNTS this year will include EASTER on Inishturk and in ROSSBEIGH in Kerry, (just after Easter), MAY BH on Bofin, June BH for INISH ARTS Festival and a 10-day Jaunt around that – JULY (3 weeks to choose from) on Turk, late August to Mid-September on Bofin, and others to follow.
In other news
I’m starting to look seriously into creating a permanent venue for the Jaunts in Bofin. I may be doing a small Fundit next year for a small distinct aspect of that process. I will, once it gets off the ground, be looking for willing helpers to dig with me, plaster and paint with me and all manner of other fun, for a couple of years, in return for credit towards retreats and time in the retreat venue. Do let me know if you’d be interested in being involved in helping build Writing Train’s Inishbofin Jaunts a home at the end of the world: ) And if you need to check it all out with a trip to Bofin at new year, you know who to talk to; ).
Warmest wishes for now, everyone!
Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment