What is the course about?
This is a fast-track course in writing for magazines, teaching you the techniques for researching, interviewing and writing magazine articles. Throughout the course you will get feedback on your ideas, and practical help with any difficulties or obstacles you may encounter while you research your stories.
Students say: "So much material was covered, and we got a real insight into what magazine editors are looking for": "It's given me the confidence to do a pitch, write a feature/article and approach editors"; "Class discussions were rich and varied"; "It was a very practical course, packed with great tips and information"; "Brilliant."
The Tutor: Susan Grossman has had a long career as a travel, food and health writer. She has broadcast for BBC Radio 4, presented the Food and Drink programme for BBC2, been travel editor for the Telegraph Magazine, and published five travel guidebooks. She lectures on the Journalism MA at Westminster University and teaches journalism at City University. She is a ILM-certified career coach and mentor and runs regular workshops for freelancers and media professionals.
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?
- How to analyse the market in terms of general features, hard and soft features and specialised articles.
- What makes for a sellable feature and where to look for inspiration.
- Research shortcuts and where to look for extra information. Internet research facilities.
- How to prepare for interviews.
- How to get your readers interested and keep them interested.
- Planning an article.
- Selling an article.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
- Begin analysing the market and write first drafts of general features, news features and specialised articles.
- Brainstorm for ideas - recognise what will make a good sellable story and where to look for inspiration.
- Prepare for interviews by researching the subject and formulating the right questions - in the right order.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
The course is tailor-made for students serious about getting their work published and will involve a rigorous approach to analysing the market. Some of the main qualities which will determine an individual’s success or failure are determination, enthusiasm, and hard work. It’s essential you have a good command of English.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
Group work, discussion, handouts highlighting key points and short in-class writing tasks. You will be encouraged to think through issues and determine answers. You may find it useful to practice the writing skills you experiment with in class at home. Verbal feedback will be offered on your writing on a rota basis where time permits.
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?
Before joining the course, you should be reading newspapers and magazines in print and online. Remember – huge proportion of magazine features ideas come from newspapers. Familiarise yourself with the market, noticing which papers and magazines favour particular kinds of articles. Start thinking about what you want to write about and where you think you can place articles. Start asking yourself – why was this article selected….how did they get the idea….how did they do the research?
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
General information and advice on courses at City Lit is available from the Student Centre and Library on Monday to Friday from 12:00 – 19:00.
See the course guide for term dates and further details