Writing strong women (in celebration of International Women's Day)

Course Dates: 08/03/20
Time: 10:30 - 16:30
Location: KS - Keeley Street

Celebrate strong women on International Women's Day with this one-off session on how to create your own, powerful fictional females.


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.

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.


Customer Reviews 2 item(s)

Write a review

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.

Provides good ideas for writing strong female characters, very worthwhile course.
Course Rating
Review by Anonymous / (Posted on 09/03/2019)
Really good session - so glad I attended. Although just one evening, I've gone away with various things to do to improve my writing. And the material applies equally to writing realistic male characters as well!
Course Rating
Review by Deborah J Briers / (Posted on 09/03/2019)
Tutor Biographies
Sophie Mckenzie

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.

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.

Book your place

Course Code: HW541

Sun, day, 08 Mar - 08 Mar '20

Duration: 1 session

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

Or call to enrol: 020 7831 7831

Download form & post

Any questions? writing@citylit.ac.uk
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.