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Dr Heather Richardson

Profile summary

Professional biography

After completing my degree in English Literature at the University of Leicester my career took a fifteen-year detour away from the subject. During this period I had a range of jobs, including time as a bus driver, medical representative, healthcare marketer and company director. It wasn’t until I had children that I finally came to my senses and started doing what I really wanted to do: writing and teaching. I studied an MA in Creative Writing at Lancaster University and in 2014 I completed a PhD with the OU. At the moment I'm working on a creative nonfiction project called A dress for Kathleen which combines text and textiles. I am charting to progress of the project on Instagram @a_dress_for_kathleen

Research interests

Creative Writing



Doubting Thomas, Vagabond Voices, 2017

Magdeburg, Lagan Press, 2010

Short stories (anthologies)

The Doll Factory, published in Brace: a new generation in short fiction, Comma Press, 2008

Seven stories included in Short Story Introductions 1, Lagan Press, 2007

Short stories (magazines)

Legs, published in The Stinging Fly, Summer 2009

[Beat], published in Verbal Magazine, September 2008

Chilled, published in Midnight Street, January 2008

The Second Coming published in In the Red, May 2007

Liberation published on, September 2006

Rhubarb Rock published in Black Mountain Review 12, February 2006

Pain Control published in QWF Issue 46, April 2005

The Walled-In Room published in Fusing Horizons Issue 3, May 2004

Extract from The Amateur Adulteress published in Black Mountain Review 5, Spring 2002

Grants and awards 

2012 – OU-EPSRC Commercial Challenge Competition for research students and researchers – winner of £2000 funding to carry out proof of principle work on my business idea for a creative writing course delivered via Smartphone app

2009 - Open University Associate Lecturer Development Fund – travel grant to give a paper at the University of Bedfordshire Creative Writing conference, The Playful Paradox: Creative Writing on campus

2007 - Arts Council of Northern Ireland – Travel grant to attend awards ceremony for the Academi Cardiff International Poetry Competition

2004 - Arts Council of Northern Ireland - £2000 grant from SIAP

2004 - Ernest Anderson Bursary (awarded by Castlereagh Council) – two-week residency at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre

2002 – BBC NI Tony Doyle Bursary - finalist


2008 - Legs – finalist in the Michael McLaverty Short Story Competition

2007 - Wedding at Sea - runner up in the Academi Cardiff International Poetry Competition

2007 - Southport - winner of the Edmund Cusick Poetry Prize

2005 - The Walled-In Room nominated for the British Fantasy Awards (Short Story Category)

2004 - The Second Time - shortlisted for the QWF Phillip Good Short Story Competition

2003 – The Acoustic Version – shortlisted for the Asham Award

2003 – The Walled-In Room (screenplay) – 2nd round qualifier - Kaos Films Short Film Screenplay Prize

2003 – The Key to the Story - first shortlist for the Fish Short Story Award

2002 – Circling – finalist in the Molly Keane Creative Writing Award (Waterford County Council)

2000 – The Walled-In Room – winner of the Brian Moore Short Story Award

1993 – The Green-Eyed Monster – winner of the David Thomas Charitable Trust Award

Teaching interests

In addition to teaching Creative Writing at undergraduate level I have delivered workshops and short courses in a number of community settings. I am particularly interested in site-specific teaching, using archive resources such as census returns and newspaper stories as prompts for stories and poems.


Stitching a Divided City (2023)
Richardson, Heather
TEXTILE: Cloth and Culture, 21(1) (pp. 90-95)

'The Mermaid's Curse': Case Study of a Multimodal Work-in-Progress (2022)
Richardson, Heather
Writing in Practice, 7, Article 3 (pp. 18-29)

The Creative Interactions Project (2021-09)
Taylor, Clare and Richardson, Heather
Writing in Education, 84 (pp. 58-62)

A dress for Kathleen (2018-03-19)
Richardson, Heather
Review of Irish Studies in Europe, 2(1) (pp. 279-294)

This is not a memoir: case study of a memoir-in-progress (2017)
Richardson, Heather
New Writing: The International Journal For the Practice and Theory of Creative Writing, 14(2) (pp. 160-166)

Waving at soldiers (2015-07-19)
Richardson, Heather
European Journal of Life Writing, 4 (C7-C18)

Sparta (2014-12)
Richardson, Heather
Incubator Journal(3) (pp. 18-25)

Articulating the Other (2014)
Bullock, Emily; Harlow, Nicky; Richardson, Heather and Sweeney, Emma
Writing in Education, 62 (pp. 52-55)

‘Texts of Poetics’ and historical fiction: authors’ critical reflections on their work (2012-04)
Richardson, Heather
Writing in Education(56) (pp. 34-37)

The plot thickens (2011-04)
Richardson, Heather
Writing in Education(53) (pp. 26-29)

A Dress for Kathleen (2023-09-07)
Richardson, Heather
ISBN : 9781912665297 | Publisher : Story Machine | Published : Norwich

Doubting Thomas (2017-10-26)
Richardson, Heather
ISBN : 978-1-908251-87-9 | Publisher : Vagabond Voices | Published : Glasgow

All the rules we could ask for (2017-10-31)
Richardson, Heather
In: Anderson, Linda and Sherratt-Bado, Dawn Miranda eds. Female Lines: New Writing by Women from Northern Ireland
ISBN : 978-1-84840-642-1 | Publisher : New Island | Published : Dublin

It's Mr Otello... (2017-10)
Richardson, Heather
Australian Association of Writing Programmes, Australia.

Shake Hole (2017-10)
Richardson, Heather
Australian Association of Writing Programmes, Australia.

Studio Notes (2016-04-29)
Richardson, Heather
National Museums of Northern Ireland

Outbound/Inbound (2015-03-01)
Richardson, Heather
Australian Association of Writing Programmes, Australia.