The art of writing the personal essay

Course Dates: 02/02/20
Time: 10:30 - 16:30
Location: KS - Keeley Street

Follow in the footsteps of Dorothy Parker, George Orwell and Zadie Smith with this taster course on the personal essay, a continuously thriving genre of autobiographical writing.


What is the course about?

This course explores the key considerations when writing the personal essay in relation to tone, perspective, language and structure.

City Lit reserves the right to change course tutors from those advertised in this outline. In line with our refund policy we are unable to grant a refund on the grounds of a change of tutor.

What will we cover?

- What kind of experiences lend themselves to the personal essay.
- Establishing tone and perspective in the personal essay.
- Using language and structure for effect in the personal essay.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

- Select material from their personal experience for use in an essay.
- Experiment with using tone or perspective for effect in the personal essay.
- Experiment with using language or structure for effect in the personal essay.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

This is an introductory course but an understanding of basic language techniques used in creative writing would be of benefit.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

You will be a taught through a mix of tutor instruction, writing exercises general discussion of approaches, issues and skills in pairs, groups or as a class. There will also be some analysis of example essays written by a range of authors.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

Please bring writing materials with you.

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

City Lit runs a wide variety of autobiographical writing courses. For further information please browse our website.

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.


Customer Reviews 2 item(s)

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Reviews below are by students who have attended this course, regardless of the course teacher. Please be aware you may not be booking onto a course with the same teacher.

A high standard of class. Warm friends and most of all, it has given me lots to think about
Course Rating
Review by Anonymous / (Posted on 04/02/2019)
Go for it!
Course Rating
Review by Vince Love / (Posted on 03/02/2019)

Book your place

Course Code: HW504

Please choose a course date 

Sun, day, 02 Feb - 02 Feb '20

Duration: 1 session

Full fee: £59.00
Senior fee: £59.00
Concession: £24.00

Or call to enrol: 020 7831 7831

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Any questions?
or call 020 7492 2717

Please note: we offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. For more information visit our online Help Center. You can also visit the Information, Advice and Guidance drop-in service, open from 12 – 6.45, Monday to Friday.