Nigerian student Remi Oyedele studied Accounting at university in New York, USA, before deciding to pursue a career writing stories for children.
“I’ve always been an avid reader and a good writer but I saw this as a hobby as opposed to a ‘real job.’ I worked in accounting for 10 years before deciding to try and make something of my writing ability. I enrolled in a creative writing diploma course in the USA before deciding to undertake a Masters degree.
“The MA Writing for Children at Winchester is very different to the course programmes I reviewed both in the US and elsewhere in the UK; it’s the only course I found that was dedicated to writing for children, as opposed to the wider study of creative writing.
“There is a very supportive culture here at Winchester and there are many creative opportunities. I was encouraged by my tutor to develop a module assignment that I wrote last semester into a novel. I then entered it in the 2010 WordHustlerInk novel contest and gained an honourable mention.”
“But the highlight of my writing experience so far is being shortlisted for the Frances Lincoln 2010 Diverse Voices Children’s Book Award with that same manuscript. The novel, titled Goal Dreams, is a coming-of-age story about a 12-year-old aspiring footballer from south-west Nigeria.
“My aim is to get Goal Dreams published, with many more after that. After the MA I will keep writing and building my links within the industry. The degree has certainly boosted my writing career and given me the confidence and determination to pursue it.”