Writing non-fiction for children: a taster
Time: 10:30 - 13:00
This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
Course Code: HW234
Available start dates
Duration: 2 sessions
What is the course about?
You will discover the exciting field of children’s non-fiction and develop your writing skills.
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?
- The children’s non-fiction market
- Where to find your subject and how to research your topic
- Writing for different age groups
- Making your content enticing
- Character, setting and voice
- How to approach agents and publishers.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
- use strategies to find your subject matter and carry out research
- demonstrate knowledge of the children’s non-fiction market and the different genres and formats
- choose the most appropriate format for the age group you are writing for
- create enticing content and portray non-fiction characters vividly
- employ different writing techniques like description, dialogue and play with the effects of changing the voice.
- write your agent letter.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
This is a course for beginners. No prior knowledge or experience is required.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
- Group discussion and feedback
- Lots of independent writing
- Tutor input illustrated by examples from published works.
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?
Bring a notebook, paper and writing materials, enthusiasm and loads of persistence.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
Students who wish to continue actively to write for children may like to join the Writing for Children Workshop, most of whose members began as students on the City Lit’s Writing for Children course, and of whom a significant number are now published authors.
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.
An established writer of children’s non-fiction, Catherine Ingram is author and series editor of the illustrated Art History series 'This is' (Laurence King Ltd). The 'This is' series won the Brand/Series Identity Award at the British Book Design and Production Awards in 2015 and a number of titles in the series were nominated for V & A Illustration Awards. Catherine has also written three art books for younger children: 'Where’s Warhol' (2015), 'Arnold’s Extraordinary Museum' (2016) and 'Find Frida' (2020). She studied Art History at Glasgow University and the Courtauld Institute and completed a PhD at Oxford 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.