Accepting PhD Students

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Personal profile


I'm a writer and researcher exploring the relationships between technologies, writing practice and the world around us. I'm particularly interested in how we can make and share stories that engage people with environmental issues and inspire a sense of wonder in everyday settings.

My short stories are widely published in print and online and are included in Best British Short Stories (Salt, 2017, 2014 & 2011), Thought X (Comma Press, 2017), Spindles (Comma Press, 2015) and Beta-Life (Comma Press, 2015). Bremen, The UnwishMarionettes and Into the Penny Arcade are published as limited-edition chapbooks by Nightjar Press. My first collection, The Museum of Shadows and Reflections, was published by Unsettling Wonder in 2016. My stories often draw on fairy tales, folklore, myth and surrealism. My work has been anthologised, reprinted, translated and podcasted by a broad range of literary, horror and weird fiction publications. I've also developed a range of site-specific installations and performance work for festivals and large-scale arts events. 

Before embarking on PhD research in Design and Computing at Lancaster University, I worked as an Associate Lecturer in Creative Writing at MMU and UCLAN. Prior to this, I worked in industry for more than ten years, including roles as a bookseller, editor, literature festival coordinator, community workshop facilitator and project manager. 

Alongside my position at Edge Hill and freelance writing, I’m currently writer-in-residence for Ensemble, a computing and environmental science project at Lancaster University.

Research interests

My current reserach interests include: digital storymaking, material writing practice, writing technologies, environmental science communication, story and placemaking, and transformation in short fiction.

As part of my ongoing practice-as resreach, I have been making handmade digital wonder tales in repsonse to ecological themes. Many of these stories use sensors to respond to either the reader or the environment. Examples include Persephone’s Footsteps, a version of the Persephone myth that is altitude responsive – the listener can only hear the next part of the story if, like Persephone, they can reach higher ground; Detours from Lichen Cartography, an urban wonder tale that will only grow longer if you take it outside in daylight; and The Tide Jar, a short graphic story about flooding that is illuminated only at full and new moon, when the tide is highest.



I lead undergraduate modules Building the World (WRI1014), Introduction to Non-fiction: True Stories, Well Told (WRI1022) and Writing Short Stories (WRI2024). I also teach on Advanced Fiction (WRI3022), Inside the Publishing Industry (WRI2020), Experiments (WRI3026) and on the Creative Writing MA.

Education/Academic qualification

Design and Computing, PhD, Lancaster University

1 Sep 20151 Mar 2019

Creative Writing, MA, Edge Hill University

1 Oct 20091 Jun 2011

Acting, BA, University of Essex

1 Sep 19991 Jun 2002

External positions

Writer-in-residence, Ensemble, Lancaster University

25 Jan 2017 → …


  • P Language and Literature
  • short stories
  • digital literature
  • writing practice
  • science communication
  • writing technologies
  • fairy tales

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where CLAIRE DEAN is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

museum Social Sciences
inclusion Social Sciences
fairy tale Social Sciences
syllabus Social Sciences
edition Social Sciences
criticism Social Sciences
university Social Sciences
Short Story Arts & Humanities

Research Output 2016 2020

Leonora, Fly!

DEAN, CLAIRE., 2018, (Accepted/In press) Leonora Carrington: Living Legacies . Cox, A., Hewison, J., Man, M. & Shannon, R. (eds.). New York: Vernon Press

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterResearchpeer-review

Short Story
Leonora Carrington

The Museum of Shadows and Reflections

DEAN, CLAIRE., 24 Nov 2016, St Andrews/Wakefield: Papavaria Press. 116 p.

Research output: Book/ReportBookResearch

fairy tale

Activities 2019 2019

  • 1 Participating in a conference, workshop, ...
  • 1 Invited talk
  • 1 Oral presentation

We are riverish: writing at the threshold of city and river

5 Apr 2019

Activity: Talk or presentation typesInvited talk

Storyhack Liverpool

CLAIRE DEAN (Participant)
23 Apr 201926 Apr 2019

Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesParticipating in a conference, workshop, ...

Sea Homes

18 Mar 2019

Activity: Talk or presentation typesOral presentation