Ways into creative writing
Time: 12:30 - 14:30
Location: Keeley Street
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Course Code: HW016
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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 friendly and hands-on introduction to creative writing. 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 only to improve their grammar and punctuation skills.
Students say: "It was a warm, encouraging and nurturing environment"; "I liked the vibe, the positive attitude, and the feedback from the tutor"; "There was variety - we did lots of exercises, feedback, and interesting stuff"; "The group was open, friendly and supportive"; "I liked meeting people with writing in common"; "I could feel my confidence growing.".
What will we cover?
Class exercises will cover a variety of approaches to different types of creative writing. Exercises are designed to bring out each student's individual creativity, unlock the imagination, and promote confidence. You'll be encouraged to share your ideas and your writing with the class. You will also be given the opportunity to receive constructive feedback from your peers and the tutor.
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 and 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 writing exercises, out-of-class assignments, discussion and interactive tutor presentations. 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.
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?
Please bring your own writing materials. You are welcome to bring a laptop or tablet to use for in-class writing exercises if it will help you.
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. If you would like to continue building your confidence you are welcome to repeat Ways into creative writing, though we recommend you do so with a different tutor so as to experience a new approach. You can also progress to an intermediate level course such as Developing 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/creativewriting.
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.
Paul Laffan is the author of four novels, a book of reportage and has ghosted several works of autobiography. His most recent publication: The Fabricated Christ was published in June 2019. He holds a BA in English Literature from Oxford and an MA in Creative Writing and a PhD in English from Florida State University in America. He taught writing and literature for six years at Florida State, and has also taught at Birkbeck, Morley College, the Mary Ward Centre and Lambeth College.
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.