Ways into creative writing: an introduction
Time: 18:00 - 20:00
This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
What is the course about?
This hands-on course will introduce you to creative writing in a friendly and supportive atmosphere. You'll be encouraged to think in a creative way and to experiment with language in prose fiction, poetry and other media. You'll gain a greater understanding of the devices and techniques used by writers, and unlock your imagination as you begin to produce work of your own. This course is not designed for students wishing to improve their grammar and punctuation skills.
Students say: "It gave me discipline, courage and inspiration to write"; "Outstanding and inspiring - the classroom exercises were very helpful, and I feel that I've learned a good deal"; "It was very interactive and there was a positive atmosphere throughout the course"; "Well-paced and supportive."
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.
This is a live online course. You will need:
- Internet connection. The classes work best with Chrome.
- A computer with microphone and camera is best (e.g. a PC/laptop/iMac/MacBook), or a tablet/iPad/smart phone/iPhone if you don't have a computer.
We will contact you with joining instructions before your course starts.
What will we cover?
Class exercises are designed to bring out each student's individual creativity, unlock the imagination, and promote confidence. Students and the tutor respond to the work that individuals choose to read out in a supportive workshop atmosphere.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
- Respond to, assess and discuss pieces of writing with sensitivity
- Recognise and develop your own writing skills
- Identify various techniques used by creative writers, such as imagery, point of view, first person/third person narrative
- Begin to apply these techniques in your own writing
- Produce several pieces of writing - poems, short fiction or other media.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
This is an introductory course and no previous writing experience is required. You should be able to read and write fluently in English, and be enthusiastic about the prospect of reading and writing prose fiction and poetry.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
You will learn through in-class exercises, out-of-class assignments, and discussion with the other students and your tutor. Writing tasks will also be set as homework. You will be invited to read out texts you produce in class and at home.
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.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
Please bring writing materials. You are welcome to bring a laptop if you feel you need one.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
City Lit offers a fantastic range of creative writing courses covering all genres and levels of ability. You can progress to Furthering your Creative Writing, where you'll continue to experiment with a range of forms. Or you can take a course in a particular medium, including novel and short story writing, screenwriting, playwriting, and creative non-fiction. To browse our full range of creative writing courses, visit www.citylit.ac.uk/writing.
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.