Student Profiles

Department of English

Graeme Shimmin


“Manchester Met definitely helped me to achieve my goal of becoming a published author.”
About my career

I had been writing for years and had completed one novel, but wasn’t having any success getting published. I thought getting an MA might help my writing, help me make contacts, and help me stand out. It did!

The MA helped me to advance my fiction writing skills, and pushed me to write higher quality, more literary work. Kill in the Morning was the novel I wrote for my MA, was published in June 2014 by Transworld (part of Random House Penguin). So, MMU definitely helped me to achieve my goal of becoming a published author.

My top tip for students is…

Networking is vital in commercial publishing. My advice is to start with other authors. Support each other. Help each other. And don’t give up! It’s not unusual for the road to publishing to be a long one - it took me ten years to get a novel published. Besides, the first draft is just that – the first draft! You need to write at least three drafts before you even attempt to find an agent or publisher. There will be at least three more drafts if they buy your book. Remember, even most commercially published writers still have to have a ‘day job, but if you keep writing, keep learning and improving and keep networking, you can make it! 

I’m inspired by…

My tutor Nicholas Royle. He gave, and continues to give me lots of good advice.

Why I love Manchester Metropolitan University

The best part of the MA was the writing week at Lumb Bank, an 18th century mill  house which once belonged to non-other than poet and children’s writer Ted Hughes.


To read more about Graeme, A Kill in the Morning, and his advice on becoming a published author, please visit his website Graeme also welcomes current Manchester Met students to get in touch with him via his site.

Student Profiles