Advanced fiction writing workshop
Time: 17:30 - 19:30
Location: Keeley Street
Course Code: HW068
Choose a start date
Duration: 11 sessions (over 11 weeks)
Please note: We offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. Just visit our online Help Center for more information on a range of topics including fees, online learning and FAQs.
What is the course about?
This is a supportive but rigorous workshop for experienced writers, ideal for those who have completed intermediate fiction writing courses. Students' work will be discussed and critiqued, and you will benefit from an in-depth exploration of approaches to writing and revising fiction. All forms of fiction writing - long or short - are supported on this course.
Students say: "The atmosphere was open, critical, but friendly and helpful"; "Rigorous and incredibly useful feedback from the tutor and the class"; "Outstanding teaching and genuine warmth and constructive criticism"; "I received useful, actionable feedback on my writing.".
What will we cover?
- Constructive workshopping of student short stories and novel excerpts
- Craft issues, which will usually arise through workshopping, such as character, point of view, pacing, structure and style
- The process of revision.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
- Assess and respond to pieces of writing with acumen and sensitivity
- Identify the basic issues involved in writing fiction, short stories, novellas, novels, etc.
- Apply your critical and editorial skills to your own work
- Produce submissions for comment on a regular basis.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
The course is aimed at experienced writers who have previously attended writing courses and who have some years' experience of creative writing. You will need to be an enthusiastic reader who enjoys critical engagement with others' prose. Suitable only for those with reading and writing fluency in English.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
Through discussion, peer evaluation and tutor feedback. You will be expected to read your peers' workshop submissions closely at home and to provide them with constructive written feedback that will then be shared in class.
All writing courses at City Lit will involve an element of workshop. This means that students will produce work which will be discussed in an open and constructive environment with the tutor and other students. The college operates a policy of constructive criticism, and all feedback on another student’s work by the tutor and other students should be delivered in that spirit.
For classes longer than one day regular reading and writing exercises will be set for completion at home to set deadlines.
City Lit Writing endeavours to create a safe and welcoming space for all and we strongly support the use of content notes in our classes. This means that learners are encouraged to make their tutor and classmates aware in advance if any writing they wish to share contains material that may be deemed sensitive. If you are unsure about what might constitute sensitive content, please ask your tutor for further clarification and read our expectations for participating in writing courses at City Lit.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
You may be asked to provide photocopies of your work for discussion. Your tutor will confirm the expectations for workshop logistics in the first session. Please bring writing materials.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
You are welcome to enrol on another term of Advanced fiction writing workshop, though we recommend you do so with another tutor for a fresh approach. If you feel ready to progress, you can apply to enrol on one of our selective, application-only fiction writing Masterclasses. Please see the website for further details regarding Masterclass: fiction workshop.
Our Craft Focus series is also available to writers who wish to focus on an isolated element of fiction writing craft. We offer short intensive courses in developing character, plot, setting, point of view, and more. See our website or contact the department for advice on how you can develop a programme of fiction writing study.
All students are invited to join us at Late Lines, our regular performance night for City Lit writers. Students are also encouraged to submit their work to Between the Lines, our annual anthology of creative writing. For the latest news, courses and events, stay in touch with the Department on Facebook and Twitter.
Sarah Leipciger’s debut novel, The Mountain Can Wait, was published in 2015 with Tinder Press in the UK and Little, Brown in the US. She has had short stories shortlisted for the Bridport Prize, the Fish Prize and the Asham Award, and is a past winner of THIS Magazine’s Great Canadian Literary Hunt. She has also written non-fiction for The Guardian and The Toronto Star. She has facilitated workshops at several literature events, including the Edinburgh International Book Festival, and has been teaching fiction and life writing to young people and adults in prisons since 2003; she is currently the Creative Writing tutor at HMP Brixton in London. Her second novel, Coming Up for Air, will be published in February 2020 with Doubleday UK and House of Anansi Press in Canada. Doubleday UK has also procured her third novel, with a release date TBA. She is a PhD student in Creative Writing at Goldsmiths University.
Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.