What is the course about?
From love-interest to superwoman, how far - and how well - has the portrayal of women in fiction shifted since the #MeToo movement began? This one-off session explores strong women in fiction and helps you find a way through the stereotypes and clichés to develop a truly powerful and authentic female-identifying voice for your characters.
The Tutor: A former journalist, Sophie McKenzie attended a writing class at City Lit in 2003 and has been writing fiction ever since. She has published over 25 books - including award-winning teen thrillers and crime fiction novels for adults. She is currently writing a new story featuring several strong female characters and working on a drama script for a TV production company.
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 women are portrayed in fiction - the Bechdel and Mako Mori Tests and beyond.
- How to write 'strong' women - what do we mean by 'strong' and how to identify and avoid the clichés.
- Tools and topis for writing successful female characters.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
- Analyse what makes a strong female character - and work out when 'strong' may be a cliché.
- Apply a single, simple technique for ensuring your female characters leap off the page.
- Identify the elements in your story structure that give your female characters genuine power.
- Feel confident about how to write a strong female character - and start to create one.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
This course is open to everyone with an interest in strong female-identifying characters in fiction.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
Tutor-led discussion, group exercises, and individual writing.
All writing classes at City Lit will involve an element of worokshop. 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 but the tutor an 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 deadlines assigned by the tutor.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
There are no additional costs associated with this course. Please bring writing materials. You are welcome to bring a laptop or tablet to use during writing exercises if you feel it will help you.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
Continue your writing journey with one of our introductory, intermediate, or advanced creative writing courses. Browse our online prospectus or give us a call for more information.
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.
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