About Lisa Selvidge

I am a writer, editor and a tutor of creative writing based mainly in the mountains of Monchique in the Algarve, Portugal, where I live with my son, two ponies, two cats, two fish and, erm, two dogs now. I teach online courses for several universities in the UK (including short courses for Oxford and York) and I also run local workshops and, occasionally, writing retreats. Prior to that I lived in Norfolk where I worked at the University of East Anglia for many years – and also at the Norwich School of Art & Design (now called something completely different). I completed a BA in Russian and Portuguese  at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies and an MA in Creative Writing at the UEA. I love to travel as well as write and frequently go to Spain and travel around Portugal. Several years ago I visited Mozambique and Cuba, and back in the eighties, when the world was a different place, I lived in Japan and travelled extensively around Asia. My first degree allowed me to experience the collapse of the Soviet Union and the emergence of the new Russia. Place is very important to me as a writer and much of my inspiration comes from other countries, other cultures, other people. It’s the little differences that make us unique and interesting and I like to play with those differences. And celebrate them.

My most recent publication is The Magic Campervan, my first chapter book for children.


Please note that my previous website http://www.lisaselvidge.com was hacked and is, sadly, no longer under my control.

11 thoughts on “About Lisa Selvidge

  1. Dear Lisa,
    I have a strange request and fortunately a couple of delightful ladies have helped me so far in my quest, including Margaret Brown who contributes to Algarve Resident. I holidayed in the Algarve quite recently and on visiting Monchique with friends and we met a charming Irish man from Cork who was on retreat in Monchique for a month, I don’t know if he was staying in a hotel or staying at his X sister in law’s who resides there! We all chatted for some time whilst dodging the rain & he invited us to a music evening,which we missed!
    As I work in IT I decided it would be possible to find this chap & talk to him some more, I suppose I assumed that the expat community would have some central email address that I could contact …….. this has proved to be not quite so simple, my logic was that as there are only 7,000 residents in Monchique , someone must know how to contact this chap.
    I am aware that it all sounds a little odd and if he is known possibly someone could pass on my contact details rather than giving me any information. His name is Buntie he told us his grandfather named him & he is in his late 50’s mid 60’s ! Do you have any idea how I can proceed with this? Does a Monchique Resident’s email exist? This is very much a case of ‘ I started …….so I’m going to give it one last go!’
    Please forgive my intrusion on your valuable time.

    Chris Marsden ( Christine )
    Sheffield University

  2. Hello there Lisa, my names Josephine. I’m a 21 yo Australian traveller currently living in Lagos and am extremely interested in creative writing. I have unfortunately fallen into a pit of laziness since arriving as I haven’t been able to speak with a mentor. Your history and experience has caught my eye and I would love to have a chat with you if you have the time! Or if you offer a monthly tutor class at all let me know :). I’m delighted to have come across your blog and hope to hear from you soon. My email is phini_74@hotmail.com.

  3. Hi Lisa, I don’t know if you remember me but I was one of the Fakenham Four who completed your Diploma in Creative Writing course (part of UEA outreach) in 2002/2003. I have applied to do a scriptwriting course at UEA and I desperately need a reference to say that I am capable of writing. I do not know your address or contact number or email so am hoping this will reach you. I am rather late with my application so need the reference very urgently. I should be most grateful if you could give me one. Kind Regards, Christine Blakemore. (At the time of the course end, you said you thought I might be good at writing for Mills and Boon!)

  4. Hi Lisa,
    I completed one of your Writing Lives Oxford courses and saw you ran creative writing retreats…do you still do these or have any good recommendations of similar courses in Europe? I really liked your online course and would like to do a workshop week.
    Many thanks for your help!
    Best wishes
    Alison Power

    • Hi Alison,

      Thanks for contacting me. I stopped doing the retreats when I had Leo but now he’s more or less settled in school, I have been thinking about setting them up again… I will give it some thought. Are you more interested in non-fiction as in Writing Lives? I have an online fiction course starting Monday for the University of York if you’re interested (10 weeks, non-accredited)? It is very affordable and there are a few places left. http://bit.ly/2iM5uji

      Warm wishes,


  5. Hi Lisa, did you ever go to Hotel California Boracay? Did you meet Joserra? If so please contact me. Im his son and I spend a lot of time in Algarve aswell around Vale Figueiras. Would love to talk to you.

  6. Hi Lisa, I thought I’d drop by & say hi as I’ve been contemplating whether to take the Writing Lives Advanced Course. You’re not the tutor so I thought I’d revisit the idea later.
    I read your blog post on Parenting in the 2020s and its so spot on. Seems we’re on the same boat. ha ha Nonetheless, I love that your post is hopeful and positive. Such a changed world we live in. I feel time is flying too fast, “tempus fugit” indeed!
    Hope alls well with you guys.
    Cheers & warm regards,

    • Thank you for reading, Cookie, and nice to hear from you. The Advanced Writing Lives course is very good. These are very difficult times for us parents. As an older mum it is even harder, I think. I don’t know where it’s heading but we need to stay positive.
      Warm wishes,

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