Dr Hannah Wood

Dr Hannah Wood

Lecturer in Creative Media

School of Art, Design and Architecture (Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Business)



Dr Hannah Wood is a Lecturer in Creative Media with expertise in interactive and immersive storytelling. Her work explores how these forms invite people to embody moments and perspectives that create connection to themselves and others, and can inspire change and understanding in the world.

She is founder and creative director of Story Juice an interactive and immersive storytelling studio making playful experiences for everyone from individuals to audiences of 200,000, ranging from large scale, 5* reviewed and OFFIES-shortlisted immersive theatrical experiences using cutting edge sensor technologies, to multilocational adventure games using cities as stages, and an augmented reality video game that has been featured on BBC Woman’s Hour and won a Global Women in Games Award 2022. 

In 2020, Hannah was selected as one of Creative UK’s 10 female entrepreneurs; in 2022, she won a University of Plymouth Vice-Chancellor's Award for Civic and Public Engagement; and Story Juice was a regional winner and national finalist in the Barclays Entrepreneur Games Award 2022.

Hannah's personal artistic practice is as a writer, experience designer, director and developer for interactive and immersive experiences. Her projects have tackled themes including untold stories, intimacy, desire, feminism, climate change and future technology across a range of genres, exploring how these topics translate into poetic mechanics, environmental storytelling, non-linear narrative structures and integrate physical and digital storyworlds. Her work is collaborative and carefully considers representation and its role in challenging and deconstructing dominant ideologies. Hannah also works as a writer in other forms, having had poetry and prose published.  

Hannah was a South West Creative Technology Network Immersion Fellow exploring designing for intimacy and subversion (separately), is experienced leading multidisciplinary teams, collaborating with artists in different fields, mentoring young creatives for organisations including the BBC and UK Games Talent, and in 2021 was selected for a programme to nurture new city leaders in Plymouth.

She's often invited to speak publicly about her creative work and research, including as the closing keynote speaker for a Gender and Games conference in tandem with a major video games exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Museum.


Hannah has a Creative Practice PhD from University of Exeter (2017), which was bursary-funded and consisted of a range of creative work and an academic thesis entitled ‘Playable Stories: Writing and Design Methods for Negotiating Narrative and Player Agency.’ This research won the ‘Best Paper’ award at the International Conference in Interactive Digital Storytelling (ICIDS) 2017. The tensions between narrative and player agency are an ongoing research investigation into how interactive and immersive narratives borrow and adapt more traditional storytelling forms and invent fresh methods to emotionally engage audiences.

Prior to joining University of Plymouth, she was a Lecturer in Creative Writing at Falmouth University, where she also taught in the Games Academy.

She has an MA from University of Exeter in English, Film and Creative Writing and a Postgraduate Certificate in Multiplatform Writing and Production, which was ScreenSkills-funded and accredited by the University of South Wales. 

Her BA (Hons) degree was in English Literature, Film and Creative Writing from Cardiff University (2003), with a year abroad at University of California, Berkeley, where author Ishmael Reed published her poetry and short fiction and she was selected to attend a filmmaking symposium at the Telluride Film Festival 2003. 

She's also an alumni of Code Coven where she learnt programming skills, has a CEFRL (Advanced) qualification in Brazilian Portuguese and MFHA England Mental Health First Aid for Managers training. 

Before academia, Hannah was a senior, NCTJ-qualified and award-winning journalist in the UK and Brazil, a digital news editor for national newspapers, a community manager for a TEDx event in Rome, a waitress, barperson, volunteer primary school teacher in Belize, ice cream lady, deli assistant and quad bike centre assistant.

Professional membership

Hannah is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, member of Creative UK Female Founders, member of the Association for Research in Interactive Digital Narratives and the British Academy Early-career Researcher Network.

Story Juice is a member of UKIE, the trade body for the UK games and interactive entertainment industry and a pledge partner in UKIE’s #RaiseTheGame.

Roles on external bodies

Hannah is a peer reviewer for the Journal of Gaming and Virtual Worlds and Convergence: The International Journal of Research into New Media Technologies, a member of Plymouth Culture's Cultural Partnership and a governor for Millbay and High Street Local Governing Body. She's also held voluntary community roles as a roller derby league director and coach.



Teaching interests

Hannah teaches and supervises postgraduates across creative forms, reflecting a multidisciplinary practice that incorporates interactive and immersive experiences, theatre, games, prose, poetry, audio and film, with writing and storytelling always at the heart. She has special interests in writing and directing for interactive, immersive and game forms, as well as in poetry, experimental literary fiction and art that drives social change.

Hannah welcomes applications for supervision of PhD students in interactive storytelling, immersive theatre, games, narratology, combined arts, representation and identity politics, writing and narrative experiences for health and wellbeing.  

She helped develop the new MA Experience Design, leads the Spatial Storytelling module, and teaches on BA Creative Media modules: Narratives, Immersive and Interactive Media, Transmedia Storytelling, Critical Dialogues and Media Futures, which is focused on professional practice. She also leads a storytelling module that's taught to students in Shanghai.  

She previously taught a Writing Practices module in the Theatre and Performance department at Plymouth and guest lectured in Digital Art and Technology and Games. 

At Falmouth University, she taught Creative Writing, English and Games modules at undergraduate and postgraduate level, and supervised PhD students.

At University of Exeter, she was a postgraduate teaching assistant in Creative Writing and English Studies.



Research interests

Hannah's academic research and her artistic and industry practice at Story Juice are interrelated and have established a portfolio of work that's contributed new knowledge to the field of immersive and interactive storytelling and a reputation nationally and internationally as an expert in the field. 

Her creative practice-based approach centres around how writing and design methods negotiate narrative and player agency and how experiences emotionally engage audiences. She works primarily in fiction, but has a professional background in non-fiction and is increasingly working in health and wellbeing. 


2023: SHIMMER (working title) – This immersive project about self and other and our relationship to what's under the water has been seed-funded by iMayflower and is currently in R&D.

2023-2025: iSAVE – narrative and user experience design for this project to create an adaptive, narrative-driven VR therapy to reduce stress in healthcare treatments, funded by Innovate UK's Mindset extended reality (XR) for digital mental health: strand 2. Project lead: Cineon Training; Partners: University of Exeter, University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust, Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust, Pico and Tobii.

Ongoing: Glass Ceiling Games – a cathartic feminist punk augmented reality game developed by Story Juice. This project emerged from Hannah's South West Creative Technology Network Immersion Fellowship investigating mechanics as storytelling devices and how immersive experiences can provoke social/behaviour change and community solidarity. It has released two demos, won a Global Women in Games Award 2022 for Best Representation of Women in a Video Game, been featured on Radio 4 Women's Hour, been named a Top 20 Hidden Gem at EGX 2019 by Get Indie Gaming and been funded by UK Games Fund, Creative UK and Story Juice.

Ongoing: Underlanda narrative exploration game investigating narrative frameworks for immersive storytelling and how the same story adapts to delivery in different narrative forms, funded by Story Juice. 


2022: Get Birding game demo – a mobile adaptation of Peanut & Crumb's award-winning podcast of the same name about how connecting to nature can change your life. This demo investigates how to engage new and diverse audiences in the subject. Collaborators: Girl Girl In Nature and Lucy Lapwing. Funded by Creative UK's New Ideas Fund.

2019-2021: Lost Origin – Lead Writer and Experience Designer on a multi-million pound, majority UKRI-funded Audience of the Future demonstrator project to reimagine the future of the visitor experience attraction using immersive technologies. Project lead: Factory42; Partners: Almeida Theatre, Natural History Museum, Science Museum Group, Magic Leap, University of Exeter and StoryFutures. Shortlisted for an OFFIES Award; rated one of Time Out’s Best New Theatre experiences; received 5* reviews in WhatsOnStage, Broadway World and London Living Large, 4* in The Stage.

2021: Biological Clock – Developer of an experimental browser-based game for PC created in a few days under game jam conditions and exploring how to tell stories through game mechanics.

2020: Not Near EnoughCo-Investigator and Dramaturge for a StoryFutures-funded project to explore VR performance and rehearsal spaces for theatre. This resulted in VR theatre production Not Near Enough, which adapted The Plague by Albert Camus to the experience of the coronovirus pandemic, as well as a prototype adaptable VR theatre space where audience members interacted with pre-recorded and real-time performance to progress through a range of spaces in non-linear exploration. Project lead: Klaus Kruse (Living Structures and Falmouth University); Partners: Ciaran Clarke and Stephen Banbury (Falmouth University), Verity Standen.   

2018-19: Research England-funded Immersion Fellow with the South West Creative Technology Network (SWCTN) exploring forms of intimacy in immersive experiences and their impact on human connection, health, wellbeing and agency. This developed into an investigation of poetic and subversive mechanics for interaction and how they can create embodied metaphors and alternate realities that excite, connect and empower people. These investigations led to two practice research projects (Glass Ceiling Games and The Future Has Been In Touch), an invited keynote presentation and a conference paper (see publications).

2017: Residential Forward Slash Story Lab, an international, invite-only event for writers, artists, technologists and designers working on new forms and functions of storytelling, organised by Columbia University’s Digital Storytelling Lab

2015: The Art of Getting Lost – Writer and Creative Director of this interactive audio experience investigating non-linear narrative structures and performed at Plymouth Art Weekender. Partners: Alan Qualtrough, Belinda Dixon and Jo Loosemore. 

2013: Resurgam – Writer and Creative Director of this multilocational immersive story experience that combined theatre, roleplay and location-based gaming to reveal new perceptions of people and place. Executive Producer, Creative Producer and Project Manager: Birgitte Aga; Creative Producer and Project Manager: Dawn Melville; Technical Direction: Mutant Labs; Partners: Rogue Theatre, i-DAT. This project was funded by Arts Council England, University of Plymouth and ticket sales.

2011-21: Bio-OS – Commissioned Artist on this i-DAT project to develop and share 'provocative prototypes' that use body data to power social gaming, performance and medical collaborations, and lead to new practices, knowledge and resources for artists and transdisciplinary practitioners. Funded by Arts Council England.

2011: Zoetrap – Creative Director, Project Manager, Co-writer and Co-producer of this indie Alternate Reality Game investigating how stories can be told across multiple platforms and how to maintain audience engagement between platforms when experiences are spread across days. It debuted at the StoryWorld Conference + Expo 2011 in San Francisco, was created by pop-up arts collective Spirit Level Productions in collaboration with Calvium/App Furnace, supported by Cyfle and Skillset and crowdfunded on Indiegogo.

Research degrees awarded to supervised students

2021: Co-supervisor, Ché Wilbraham: AHRC-funded PhD – The Virtual Gamesmaster: A New Approach to Branching Narrative in Computer Games. 

Creative practice & artistic projects

All of my research comes from artistic projects, but in addition to the above, I'm also currently developing:

Lovers Never Lose – a play with songs, which like Underland is investigating how the same story adapts to delivery in different narrative forms.

I also write and perform poetry, have written short fiction and a short play, and occasionally do some acting... driven by an interest in improvisation as a form of writing.

For more info on other artistic projects not mentioned here, with partners including Eden Project, Roald Dahl Estate, Almeida Theatre and the BBC, visit storyjuice.co.uk and see my list of publications. 




Wood, H. (2011) GCSE Science Experiment to Test the Durability of a Chemical Bond between Romeo and Juliet [Short Fiction]. In: Blackbird: An Online Journal of Literature and The Arts. Vol. 10 No.2. Available from: https://blackbird.vcu.edu/v10n2/fiction/wood_h/experiment_page.shtml


Cameron Griffiths, S., Pourzanjani Phoenix, H., Wood. H., (2003) Out Of Cardiff. 1st ed. Berkeley: Ishmael Reed Publishing Company [Poetry and Short Fiction Collection]


Wood, H. (2017) Dynamic Syuzhets: Writing and Design Methods for Playable Stories. ICIDS 2017, Funchal, Madeira, Portugal, 14-17 Nov. In: Interactive Storytelling: 10th International Conference on Interactive Digital Storytelling, ICIDS 2017. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, Vol. 10690. Springer, Cham, Switzerland, pp. 24-37. Print ISBN 978-3-319-71026-6. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-71027-3_3

Conference Papers

Bergstrom-Katz, S., Brown, W., Case, J., Douaihy, M., Freeze, E., Pane, S., Sutton, H., and Wood, H. (2021) Roundtable: Interactive Writing: Games & VR. Futures for Creative Writing [online]. University of East Anglia in partnership with the European Association of Creative Writing, 21-22 May.

Wood. H., (2019) Intimacy and Immersion: How Walking Simulators Use Poetic Mechanics and ‘Play, Don’t Tell’ to Negotiate Narrative and Player Agency. Wandering Games Conference, Bangor University, Wales, 10-12 July.

Wood. H. (2019) 3 Power Ups: Can Game Narratives Change the Future of Gender? [Keynote]. Beyond the Console: Gender and Narrative Games conference, London South Bank University and the V&A, 8-9 February.

Wood. H. (2017) Playable Stories and Experience Protagonists in Video Games. MIX 2017: Writing Digital, Bath Spa University, 10-12 July.

Wood, H. (2013) Writing and Designing Interactive Stories [Public Talk and Panel] at Creating & Innovation – Arts and Digital Media conference, Caernarfon, Wales. May.

Internet Publications

Wood, H. (2022) 4 Tips For Immersive and Interactive Storytelling. Story Juice Blog. 1 June. Available from: https://www.storyjuice.co.uk/blog/4-tips-for-immersive-and-interactive-storytelling

Factory42 (2022). What is Lost Origin? YouTube [Video Interview with Creators]. 7 March. Available from: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lyX6nyUaVmo

Wood, H (2018) Documentation of ‘A Dinner with Frankenstein AI’ in Bristol, UK. Medium. November 12. Available from: https://medium.com/@hannahwood/documentation-of-a-dinner-with-frankenstein-ai-in-bristol-uk-6fa01154c030

Wood, H. (2017) Could There Be A Speculative Script Industry For Narrative Games? Gamesindustry.biz. July 11. Available from: https://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/2017-07-11-could-there-be-a-speculative-script-industry-for-narrative-games

Wood, H. (2016) Underland [Narrative Game Prototype] and Playable Stories: Writing and Design Methods for Negotiating Narrative and Player Agency [Academic Thesis]. PhD, University of Exeter. Available from: https://ore.exeter.ac.uk/repository/handle/10871/29281

Multiplatform Producer for transmedia extension of BBC Radio 4 play A Showbox of Snow (2011). Written by Julie Mayhew, Produced by Red and Savvy Productions. https://www.storyjuice.co.uk/our-work/shoebox-of-snow-interactive

Wood. H. (2011) The Anniversary Card [Short Radio Play]. Shoebox Of Snow [online].

Wood. H. (2009) Facebook King Lear [Social Media Fiction].

Wood, H. (2002) PL14 [Poetry]. In Konch Magazine [online]. Winter Issue.


Lost Origin (2021) Written by Hannah Wood, Directed by Dani Parr, Almeida Theatre, Executive Produced by Michelle Feuerlicht and John Cassy, Factory42, in partnership with Sky, Magic Leap, Natural History Museum, Science Museum Group, University of Exeter and StoryFutures [Immersive Experience]. Hoxton Docks. September-December 2021. https://www.storyjuice.co.uk/our-work/lost-origin

The Future Has Been In Touch (2019) by Hannah Wood [Interactive Experience]. Directed by Hannah Wood. Mikrofest, Kaleider Studios, Exeter, 16 March.

Mission To Mars (2018) by Hannah Wood [Immersive Theatre]. Directed by Hannah Wood. Eden Project and National Space Centre. 21 July-2 September.

The Great Cornish Take Off (2018) by Nathan Mansbridge [Interactive Theatre]. Directed and Dramaturged by Hannah Wood. Eden Project. 21 July-2 September.

Press Go (2017) by Hannah Wood [Interactive Theatre]. Directed by Christopher Elmer-Gorry. Almeida Theatre, London. 10-13 April.

Witch Watch Club (2017) by Hannah Wood [Interactive Theatre]. Directed by Hannah Wood. Eden Project and Roald Dahl Estate. 21-29 October.

Dangerous (2017) by Hannah Wood. Directed by Hannah Wood. The Lab, Theatre Royal Plymouth. 25 February.

Performer for Walk, Hands, Eyes (2016) by Myriam Lefkowitz. Plymouth Art Weekender. 23-25 September.

Performer for How Can One Know In Such Darkness? (2016) by Myriam Lefkowitz. Plymouth Art Weekender. 23-25 September.

The Hallowed (2013) by Hannah Wood and Ollie Oakenshield [Immersive Theatre]. Directed by Rogue Theatre. 30 October-2 November.

Resurgam: The Lost Pearl of Plymouth (2013) Written by Hannah Wood, Created and Produced by Story Juice, i-DAT and Mutant Labs, with Rogue Theatre. Citywide, Plymouth, UK. 21 September.

Zoetrap (2011) Devised and Produced by Spirit Level Productions. Directed by Hannah Wood [Alternate Reality Game].

Wood, H. (2005) Pop Culture Bulimia. Apples & Snakes Performance Poetry Slam. Exeter Phoenix. October.


Not Near Enough (2020) Devised by Klaus Kruse and Gwirvos Theatre, Dramaturgy/Narrative Design by Hannah Wood, Technical Direction by Ciaran Clarke [VR Theatre Production]. StoryFutures TTT Research Project. https://www.storyjuice.co.uk/our-work/not-near-enough-r-and-d

Dimension X: Dinosaurs (2020) by John Foster and Hannah Wood [Immersive AR Game]. Directed by Dani Parr. Produced by Factory42. Natural History Museum and Intu Shopping Centres. March.

Dimension X: Robots (2020) by John Foster and Hannah Wood [Immersive AR Game]. Directed by Dani Parr. Produced by Factory42. Science Museum and Intu Shopping Centres. March.

Underzone (2020) Devised and Directed by Martin Darby, Written by Hannah Wood, Produced by Strike Gamelabs. Published by Sixth Realm [Video Game].

A Dinner With Frankenstein AI (2018) Designed by Hannah Wood and Coral Manton in response to the Columbia University Digital Storytelling Lab’s Global Design Challenge. 31 October.

The Art of Getting Lost (2015) Devised, Written and Designed by Hannah Wood, Art by Alan Qualtrough, Sound Design by Belinda Dixon and Jo Loosemore [Interactive Experience]. Plymouth Art Weekender. 25-27 September. https://www.storyjuice.co.uk/our-work/the-art-of-getting-lost


The Glass Ceiling Games (2022) Devised by Hannah Wood, Produced by Story Juice [Video Game]. Discovery Rooms: Immersive Technologies – Innovations, Applications and Opportunities. Devonport Market Hall and online. May 18. https://glassceilinggames.com/

Get Birding Game demo (2022) Co-produced by Peanut & Crumb and Story Juice [Video Game]. https://www.storyjuice.co.uk/our-work/get-birding-game

Biological Clock (2021) by Hannah Wood [Video Game]. Available from: Available from: https://hannahwood.itch.io/biological-clock

The Glass Ceiling Games (2019) Devised by Hannah Wood, Produced by Story Juice [Video Game]. EGX. ExCel London. 17-20 October. https://glassceilinggames.com/

Commissioned artist for Bio-OS Human Geography (2011) https://op-sy.i-dat.org/projects/bio-os-human-geography/

Other Publications

Wood, H. (2022) Embedding Inclusivity In Your Design Processes [Public Talk]. Culture & Creativity Exchange 2022. Epiphany House, Truro. Nov 10.

Wood, H. (2022) Creating Immersive Experiences [Public Talk]. Spillover. Online. Sept 23.

Wood, H. (2022) Women and Gaming. Interview with Hannah Wood and Karla Reyes by Emma Barnett. BBC Woman’s Hour, Radio 4, June 14. Available from: https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/m00187qv

Ashkanasy, Z., Felix, M., Sharp, A. Wood, H. (2022) Inside revitalising culture in Plymouth. Nouscast. February 15. Available from: https://nousgroup.com/podcasts/inside-plymouth/

Wood, H. (2022) Putting Audiences at the Heart of Experiences [Public Talk]. Discovery Rooms: Immersive Technologies – Innovations, Applications and Opportunities. Devonport Market Hall and online. May 18.

Brown, S. (2022) Street harassment and everyday sexism tackled in new mobile game made by Plymouth developer. Plymouth Live [online] June 10. Available from: https://www.plymouthherald.co.uk/news/plymouth-news/street-harassment-everyday-sexism-tackled-7180781

WhatsOnStage (2021). Lost Origin at Hoxton Docks – Behind the Scenes. YouTube [Video Interview]. 23 November. Available from: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rx0YdJJveG4

Script Consultant for Thunkd (2021) The Magnificent Trufflepigs [Video Game]. AMC Games.

Taylor, I. (2020) Standing on the shoulders of Riot Grrrl: Story Juice and punk feminism in games. Gamesindustry.biz. 30 October. Available from: https://www.gamesindustry.biz/standing-on-the-shoulders-of-riot-grrrl-story-juice-and-punk-feminism-in-games

Attridge, J. Mansi, A. Marchal, C. Wood, H. (2020) Writing For Video Games [Panel Discussion]. BFI Future Film Festival. BFI Southbank, London, 23 February.

Bevan, C., Cater, K., Gray. S., Pooley, W., and Wood, H. (2020) Futures: An art-science collaboration exploring the worlds of quantum and virtual reality / Feminist punk augmented reality in The Glass Ceiling Games [Research Presentation and Discussion]. Knowledge Exchange and the Creative Industries Seminar Series. University of Bristol. 15 January.

Ahmad, S., French, M., Jackson, G., Mansi, A., Wood, H. (2019) Games For Good [Panel Discussion]. Focus: The Meeting Place For International Production, Business Design Centre London, 3-4 December.

Wood, H. (2019) Intimacy and Immersion SWCTN Research Sharing [Public Talk]. Mikrofest, Kaleider Studios, Exeter, 16 March.

Consultant for Aga, B. (2018) The Infinite Guide. Karst, Plymouth and online. 1-9 September.

Wood, H. (2017) Between Self and Other: Player Characters, Narrative, Agency and Identity in Video Games [Public Talk]. Plymouth Arts Centre Lunchtime Talks. 9 August.

Transmedia Consultant for Dartmoor Killing (2015). Directed by Peter Nicholson. UK.

Wood, H. (2014) A Multiplatform Approach to Immersive and Interactive Storytelling [Public Talk]. Air Studio, Falmouth University.

Wood, H. and Reid, J. (2011) Zoetrap Alternate Reality Game and Story App [Public Talk]. Pervasive Media Studio, Watershed, Bristol. 23 December 2011.