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Mario is a qualified teacher, lecturer and educationalist with a wealth of experience working with children and adults.   He is a specialist visiting speaker and classroom facilitator in secondary schools for War and Poetry and the new Creative Writing A-level.   In 2013, he was elected a Fellow of the English Association.

"Inspiring... Feedback afterwards was the most positive we've ever had for an outside tutor."  A.C. Clarke

"Packed with exercises that expanded the mind! Constant surprise. Inspiration from new directions.
Expanding sensory input. Brilliant facilitator."
 Participant feedback: Making Poetry Workshops, Birmingham (2008)

"Helped me to see creative writing in a different light..."    "Plenty of ideas, especially to cater for the less able students
who dread creative writing..."    "This is writing poetry by 'stealth'!"
   Teacher feedback:  Dickens Museum CPD (2011)

"I have worked with a lot of writers in my time, and I have never encountered anyone who is as professional, as reliable, as dedicated and, most importantly of all,
as inspirational as you are as a teacher of writing. It’s very clear from the feedback I’ve had from both adult and school students that that’s the view of everyone
who’s been fortunate enough to have been taught by you."
    Head of English, The Godolphin and Latymer School (2014)

"I found Mario's course fantastic.   He is an amazing teacher... it wasn't until now that I understood the difference between a good and a great poem.   Mario's class shed
new light on my work and writing process, and not only helped me improve the poems I brought to the workshops, but helped me improve my writing.
    Poetry School survey (2016)

"I’ve been working with adult writers who use the services at MIND in Tower Hamlets and Newham for about ten years...  
the sessions I deliver using your very generous free resources online are always the very best, most energised, most creative ones I do."
    Professional user: feedback (2020)


**  NOW LAUNCHED  **      Writing Into Freedom: a stylishly varied FREE WEBSITE offering comprehensive audio-visual writing exercises, guidance & encouragement for all writerly types

**  NOW LAUNCHED  **    Click here for   Writing Into Freedom - YOUTUBE CHANNEL - a stunning smorgasbord of top-class writing-related videos for reflection & learning

**  NEW  **    Click here for   Writing & Science: The Poetry Box, an innovative schools resource (The Royal Society/ Southbank Centre)    [view the booklet HERE]

**  NEW  **    Click here for   Creative Writing <-> Science, a unique cross-disciplinary writing resource for schools and adults

**  NEW  **    Click here for   Visual Analogy/ Visualizations - an inventive and entirely original project linking science with literary studies

Click here for   The Ecopoetry Study Packs, a remarkable compilation of poems & writing ideas centred on key environmental issues

**  NEW  **    Students! - the Dos and Don'ts of written work...   Click here for Essays and Reports


PLUS...    Essay writing & study...   Mission Possible: The Study Skills Pack

"High quality, authoritative... a useful website for lecturers who wish to add a strong 'writing and study skills' Web link
to their reading-lists or electronic course module pages."
 Intute (Arts & Humanities) [on Mission Possible]

The full 'Mission Possible' resource was commissioned and formerly hosted by the Royal Literary Fund, but you can still access the core notes and pdfs HERE, or go direct to the Student version or Tutor version.

Poetry Day at Buckingham Palace (October 2007)

Buckingham Palace opens its doors each year for school children to experience a themed day, including a reception with the Queen.

The idea for 2007 was a “Poetry Day at the Palace”. This involved 200 secondary school children from the London boroughs of Barking & Dagenham, Brent, Hackney, Lambeth, Newham and Westminster. Pupils were sent images of five objects from the Royal Collection and used them as inspiration for an original poem which they brought with them to the Palace. There, they were able to see the objects in situ and were given the opportunity of redrafting and performing their piece with the help of a professional poet.

Mario Petrucci was one of the 14 poets asked to lead a group that year.

To watch the poetry film, shot on the day, click here...

A sample of Mario's Masterclasses and Creative Writing workshops (adults/ university students)...

Beginners. 'Surprise, Surprise!'
“No surprise for the writer, no surprise for the reader” (Robert Frost). Our notion of 'surprise' as that sudden event outside our control isn’t entirely accurate. Indeed, we writers often yearn for our creations to leap beyond our diligently constructed fences, to bound off into terrain we could never imagine ours. Mario accesses those deeper strata of writing process that launch the imagination into fresh realms on the back of an invigorating, incisive language.

Beginners & Intermediate. 'Capturing the Moment'.
How can ordinary experience be made extraordinary? In those gaps and cracks of the everyday, countless opportunities arise for creativity. Mario concentrates on process, offering a unique workshop approach that leads to new work and fresh ways of thinking your way into a poem. "Inspiring... Feedback was the most positive we've ever had for an outside tutor" (A.C. Clarke). "Constant surprise... expanding sensory input - brilliant facilitator" (Making Poetry Workshops).

Beginners, Intermediate & Advanced. '16 Ways of Writing a Poem'.
This fascinating, hands-on trawl of all the major pathways into new poems is as comprehensive as it is unique. Includes observation, the senses, personal memory, reflection, imagination, other people’s work – indeed, everything from the 'found poem' to Larkin's pickles. Mario’s wide-ranging experience in the field fuels a groundbreaking masterclass on compositional process, generating a workshop experience of immense variety and enduring value.

Manuscript Masterclass.
As a long-term editor of anthologies, magazines and first collections, and with numerous poetry projects behind and before him, Mario Petrucci has direct experience of virtually the entire gamut of publishing possibilities for poetry. Whether it's a book or a pamphlet, an eclectic or subject-driven collection, a single-poem or illustrated piece, a translation, commission or online publication, or a first attempt to transfer your performances effectively to the page, Petrucci can help you to get it done. The course begins with the more general issues surrounding a manuscript's progression, continues with Q-A sessions on how to maximise your impact on publisher and reader alike, and culminates with private 1-to-1s that more firmly address those problems and opportunities particular to your project. Whether your publication is almost ready to go or only just emerging, there are always questions and uncertainties you wish you could explore in a supportive context with an experienced writer and publisher. This is an opportunity to do just that.

"Thank you so much for a terrific workshop and your reading and interview... can't stop writing! We have had nothing but positive comments about the workshop - nothing short of life-changing."    '16 Ways' Masterclass, Segora weekend (France, 2018)

"Thank you so much, Mario, for loosening my grip on the pen, encouraging me to harness energies I hadn't thought about consciously. It was a masterclass like no other - and great good fun. A workout for mind and spirit."     '16 Ways' Masterclass, Chipping Campden Literature Festival 2012

"Extremely interesting and useful - packed with things to question and think over, a good balance of input and exercises with no wasted time. Brilliant."     '16 Ways' participant, all-night poetry workshop, Norwich Writers' Centre 2013

"Having personally been to quite a few creative writing courses in my time, I can honestly say that these are a breath of fresh air... So many creative writing courses are product led and quite frankly encourage the internal self-critic (or the one we imagine to be looking over our shoulder!). Mario uses all kinds of wonderful mindfulness (even meditation techniques) to unlock the sub-conscious and all that is surprising and inspirational beneath the straight-jacket of our busy minds. This is done in a fun, gentle, non-judgemental way... it has been truly wonderful."     '16 Ways' participant, Godolphin & Latymer School (adult courses) 2013

"Mario’s leadership when faced with a table of writers is legendary: those who have taken part in his workshops always report the same sense of insight, energy and innovation. Not only will you surprise yourself, but Mario's unique approach will enrich and transform your inner writer, bringing lasting benefits."     Teignmouth Poetry Festival 2017

Mario is now a tutor for the Poetry School. He also leads the Poetry by Heart workshops at the National Portrait Gallery [2013].

Feedback from Schools & Educational Residencies

Click for: Testimonial - St Edmund's College        Click for: Testimonial - Whitgift School        Click for: Testimonial - Walcot Hall        Click for: Testimonial - Sherborne School

"A brilliant stimulus for students' own writing."    "When is he coming back?" - New Hall School

"His commitment to discovering new ways to reach and enthuse audiences has been proven... genuinely dynamic and approachable.
A writer of stature, yet more than that he is a writer of the greatest generosity who can ignite the interest of others."
- Martyn Crucefix

"Extremely impressed... I have no hesitation in recommending him to any school or college... always focused, purposeful and stimulating."
- Julian Bell, Head of English [The Godolphin and Latymer School]

"Mario was an inspiration for the pupils, all of whom left with poems of their own creation. The workshops were pitched perfectly -
the activities were accessible for pupils of all abilities, and I was amazed by the way in which he steered the pupils to think
about really profound questions! ... I'm sure it won't be long before I'm in touch to invite Mario back for another session!"

- Faye Caldwell [The Reach Free School] 2017

"A poet who would explore sensitive issues and give the students the opportunity to express some of their most intense emotions."
- Jackie Edelman (RN Submarine Museum)

"Powerful Poetry." - GEM Case Studies

"A clear understanding of young people and ways to stretch and challenge their imagination..."
"Brilliant, subtle and sympathetic... His activities, thoughts and ideas have clearly been developed out of his experience of working with pupils.
Just loved coming to these workshops, it felt like a treat."   "Pacing, structure, support all unsurpassable."

- Southbank Centre (workshop participants)

"Mario really went out of his way to adapt to the needs of a random group, on the spot. That isn't easy to do and showed that he has a great
empathy and experience of writing. I have come away with so many ideas and starting points. I was thrilled."
- Workshop feedback (2010)

"Good feedback from both the students involved and the staff members supporting... a really engaging - and creative - experience for them,
and great to see how excited and involved they got with words. I'd happily recommend him to other schools!"
- Preston Manor

"We were surprised by the amount of ideas we'd generated (or rather, ideas which had generated themselves!) almost without us noticing...
Lots of words, phrases, images, thoughts to follow up."
- Participant feedback (Birmingham 2010)

"Meaningful and insightful... wonderfully articulate and captivating."   "With Mario in the room my mind starts streaming word waterfalls..."
"An amazing teacher... What a superb amount of information in one workshop! I have never known three and a half hours go by so quickly."
"So fortunate to have been able to attend your workshops, Mario. Each one is different and challenging and yet throughout every workshop
there runs a rich seam of wisdom, humanity and humility: a skilled tuning in to diverse people's needs, on the run."

- Participant feedback (Birmingham 2011)

"I would just like to extend my deep gratitude to Mr Mario Petrucci for enlightening my students on the art of writing poetry on a chilly Sunday morning.
He was so patient in letting them go inward into themselves... He provided a meaningful closure to our fascinating and enriching trip to the UK."

- Poetry School workshop for overseas students (2013)

The Royal Society/ Southbank Centre workshops for teachers: click here for the Testimonial - Poetry and Science

War Poetry/ Schools...
    click here for more on Mario's work with schools & War...

"Feedback from teachers was extremely good, especially as they felt the interactive, workshop-style session was perfect for their students,
who are perhaps less used to formal lectures... you certainly seemed to have good contact with the audience, and the students found your talk
perfectly-pitched, thought-provoking and highly relevant."
    The Training Partnership (re: A level WW1 Literature day, 2013)

Mario is ...

  • Creator of a stunning poetry-science school writing resource, The Poetry Box: everything from Random Numbers to science-inspired Metaphors & Mini-Worlds... Available via the Southbank Library (Click here) [The Royal Society/ Southbank Centre: ‘See Further’ Poetry & Science Project; Festival of Science and Arts].

  • Author of a substantial creative writing resource for schools and adults, The Ecopoetry Study Packs, free from the Poetry Society's website.  (Click here)

  • Originator of a unique and accessible creative writing pack utilising science as a spur for fresh work... no scientific expertise required! Free for schools, colleges and individuals. (click here)

  • Co-creator of potent lesson plans/ classroom resources on the poetry of Chernobyl, hosted by Scottish CND. (Click here)

  • Fellow of the Royal Literary Fund, creator of innovative projects for adult & student literacy and a key Study Skills module at Oxford Brookes University encompassing a range of study issues, including a superb set of essay-writing tips for students & tutors (formerly hosted by the RLF website). (Click here)

  • A member of the Poetry Society/DfEE 'PoetryClass' scheme, tailoring strategies for class creativity and delivering INSET/CPD to schools nationwide (including, formerly, for Edexcel). Also a poet highlighted by the Poetry Society for his wider presence and work [ click here ].

  • Contributor of popular downloadable resources for the classroom, such as Telegrams [available free via the Poetry Society website here , also featured by the TES here ].

  • A visiting/resident writer in the classroom (Whitgift School, Latymer school, Tilbury schools, Walcot Hall, etc.), able to deliver creative writing across the curriculum: eg poetry and war.

  • The Imperial War Museum's first poet in residence, running creative literacy programmes for London schools. Now the Museum's official Literacy Consultant, dealing with applied, adult and family literacy.

  • Co-Founder of ShadoWork (click here for free teaching materials) - collaborative writing, voice training and performance technique.

  • An Arvon tutor.

  • A qualified teacher of physics (Secondary level).

  • An innovator in place-inspired as well as free-standing educational resources for the classroom (e.g. at Havering).

  • Active in educational residencies of all kinds.



    Girls at Brentwood Ursuline Convent High School                                Moniack Mhor, Arvon Course 2009
    discover there's more to writing than meets the eye.

    (Photograph by Rosemary Downey)                                                                                               


    "A basic rule of teaching - as in computer programming - is that you should always know (at the very least) a little more about what
    you're doing than what you happen to be doing.   [Except when not knowing is what it's all about.]
    "       Mario Petrucci


    click here for a sample of Mario's writing exercises

    WHAT A PERFORMANCE - Linking Drama and Poetry

    click here for Mario's article on writing haiku for the World Haiku Festival at the Barbican

    Click here for Mario's AGENDA article on writing workshops



    copyright mario petrucci 2001