Strange Bedfellows ran commercially for the first time in the autumn of 2011, employing a unique approach to creative writing that utilises randomly selected ephemera taken from a huge selection of reference books, almanacs, encyclopaedias materials and stimuli. This is what last year’s (2011) participants had to say about the course:

“Creative, eclectic and immensely inspiring.”

“A real inspiration to my creativity.”

“Genuinely creative and not at all restrictive.”

“Sets the pen racing.”

“Strange Bedfellows appeals to people who enjoy workshops but have got a little tired of the standard format.”

“Combines fun with sparks for the imagination.”

“I found Strange Bedfellows stimulating and I came up with things I wouldn’t have by myself.”

“Superbly delivered by someone with a passion for their art.”

“The prompts, particularly the more obscure ones, made me re-evaluate how I approach my writing.”

“Fired parts of my imagination I didn’t even realise I had.”

“Original and thought-provoking.”

“Strange Bedfellows was inexpensive and provided a huge range of resources to work from. The course tutor was seriously well prepared.”

“You’ll never look at the world in the same way again and writer’s block will be a thing of the past.”

“A unique course that is incredibly inspiring delivered by an excellent teacher.”

“Great value for money – I would definitely consider doing another Poetry/Fold course.”

“Strange Bedfellows took my writing to a different level.”

“The pitch and speed of Strange Bedfellows made the group write a lot without too much internal ‘editing’ – so producing a lot of original work.”

“The course was absolutely value for money – not a moment of a session was wasted.”

“Like training for the Great North Run but much more creative!”


Stemistry is a public engagement project that took a group of non-expert writers and challenged them to explore the technology and science of stem cell research.

“Stemistry has provided an invaluable source of inspiration, knowledge and creative techniques for my writing over the past five years. This is due in no small part to Lisa Matthews’ professional, original, inclusive and thoughtful approaches to the creative workshops over the course of the project.”  Stevie Ronnie, poet

“Lisa’s energy and enthusiasm coupled with her engaging style encourages participants to relax and focus. Its always a thought-provoking journey.” Beverley Addy, writer and filmmaker

“By being a Stemistry participant I feel more confident in my writing. I am now willing to tackle difficult, even obscure subject matter, to venture into unknown zones and to be excited by the results of my efforts and the efforts of others.” Barbara Gordon, fiction writer

“The science was a steep learning curve and Lisa’s writing workshops have been dynamic and unpredictable. I’ve produced a mountain of writing which couldn’t have happened without it.” Christopher Barnes, poet

“Lisa’s writing workshops have always pushed me into new corners and allowed me to explore subjects it would have been very difficult to approach otherwise. She is the sort of teacher who can unlock your thoughts about something and ease the expression and formulation of those thoughts poetically.” Sophie Baker, poet

“The workshops are always extremely well prepared, thought provoking and imaginative both in subject content and style, with lots of time for actual writing. [Lisa Matthews, The Poetry Fold] has helped me to take my work into new territories.” Marilyn Longstaff, poet