Be a Writer - study with our Creative Writing Course

Don't say you want to be a writer, say you are a writer. Every writer starts somewhere. From scribbling notes in a notebook to typing a story on their computer. Every writer has a desire to write. If this sounds like you, why not stop wishing you were a writer and take the first step to being a writer.

‘Creative Writing’ is any writing that expresses events and emotions in an imaginative manner and whose primary intent is to arouse emotions.

Creative writing can therefore be fiction, using imaginative narration, or non fiction, based on facts and events. The common ground of fiction and non-fiction writing is the creativity the writer uses to express his or her thoughts and emotions.

Tutors in this course are exceptionally well qualified, with relevant university degrees,  more than 10 years experience in writing and publishing;  and are published writers themselves. Learn from their experience!

Dan Read, a student on our Creative Writing course has recently had an article purchased for publication.  He said of the course - "I feel that the course has given me the tools and confidence necessary to make this possible."

How do you become a Creative Writer?

  • Develop your skills as well as stimulating your ability to be more creative in your writing.
  • This course is a good starting point for you to learn to write professionally.
  • Studying this course will help improve your general communication skills.
  • Develop a more creative and interesting approach to writing in everyday life - whether writing letters to friends or putting together community newsletters.

Duration: 100 hours

Course Content

The nine lessons are as outlined below:
  1. Introduction

  2. Basic Writing Skills

  3. Being Concise and Clear

  4. Planning what you write

  5. Fiction

  6. Non Fiction

  7. Newspaper Writing

  8. Magazine Writing

  9. Writing Books

  10. Special Project




What You Will Do In This Course

Some of the activities and exercises that you will do as part of this course are:

  • Analyse three texts to identify their genres, describe their layout, and any key elements.

  • Locate a vanity publisher and a well-known publisher and obtain information on their submitting requirements.

  • Write part of a newspaper feature article in 3 different ways, using 3 different types of language to create different impressions.

  • Critique a piece of your own writing (250 words or more), noting its good points, its weaknesses.

  • Develop one short scene for three different storylines, letting the setting, characters, dialogue and action show what is happening, what might have gone before, and what might follow.

  • Make notes on two authors' uses of concealing and revealing (transparency and ambiguity), and analyse their effectiveness in each case.

  • Describe a place or person in your life from two completely different perspectives.

  • Rewrite an assignment in a different voice.

  • Use defamiliarisation to make a common object appear mysterious, or dangerous, or alien.

  • Discuss the organisation of texts, considering why the authors might have organised their texts this way, and discuss how the structures contribute to the overall effectiveness of the text.

  • Write a first draft in 3 hours, without editing.

  • Edit the draft for structure, clarity, flow of ideas, content, mood, voice etc.

  • Edit 3 items of your writing (include one short story) for clarity and succinctness; explain your changes.

  • Research likely publishers for one of your stories and submit it.

  • Construct outlines of fiction stories using the first and last sentences of published works.

  • List 3 possible non-fiction writing projects for specific publishers, and explain your choices.

  • Write three outlines for non-fiction pieces, modelled on the outlines of your three creative writing readings.

  • Interview someone in preparation for writing a profile on that person. Explain why you think that person might be of interest to others.


What Is Creative Writing?

Creative writing is usually defined as the writing of fiction, where the author creates events, scenes and characters, sometimes even a world. In reality, aside from instinctive utterances like the yelp of an injured child or a delighted ‘Oh!’, all expressions are creative. They are all about reality, which means that to some degree, they re-create the reality they are trying to represent. No two representations will ever be exactly the same, and usually differ considerably.

Take, for instance, a little boy’s excited announcement to grandmother about a new puppy:

“He’s got big ears, Nanna, jus’ like mine … and he cries and cries …. Mummy gived him a sausage and he ate it so fast he’s gonna grow into a giant…he’s the bestest puppy I ever had, Nanna.”

Human beings are natural story tellers, and like all story tellers, this little boy takes some parts of his experience that are meaningful to him, expands on that experience to make it more exciting and unique, and conveys it in language that both conveys information and feeling. He also anticipates a particular kind of response (“Oh, how sweet” …“That’s so exciting” …”I am so happy for you”), and communicates in ways that are most likely to elicit it.

To further appreciate the selective creative aspect of communication, let’s read a letter written by the boy’s sister:

“Did I tell you that our dog, Jacko, died last week? Brennnie was really sad, so dad bought him a puppy yesterday, and he couldn’t care less about Jacko any more. Little brat. I had to beg for months to get Jacko, but Brennie gets a puppy just by crying. It’s whiney and ugly, anyway”.

Notice that this person has a completely different focus, selects different information and expresses her own emotional perspective to create a different story out of the same events. To some degree, then, all writing is creative, since it always involves re-creation – the selection of some elements (imagined or real), and exclusion of others, focusing on one thing and de-emphasising another, and packaging the information or message in ways that reflects the writer’s intent, meaning and priorities.

So, is creative writing different from other kinds of writing? Yes, it is fiction, whereas other kinds of writing are non-fiction. For the purposes of this course, however, and because most creative writers also write non-fiction, we can use a much broader definition. We will include under the name of ‘creative writing’ all writing whose primary intent is to arouse emotions. Like informative writing, or expositions, or instructions, creative writing does convey information, even when we define it so broadly; indeed, information is the basic stuff of all communication, no matter what kind. But the overall intent of creative writing is not to inform, it is to stir the emotions, to elicit an emotional response.

The storyteller’s narrative is designed to express the storyteller’s feelings about some aspect of life, and to engage the reader in those feelings. The poet uses events, images and people to deliver concentrated emotion. The dramatist and screen writer convey and stir emotions through action and dialogue, while the magazine feature writer comments on real people and real lives to arouse our sympathy, delight, horror or concern.

Becoming a Writer

Writers can draw on two levels of support for their writing and writing careers: inner resources, such as creativity, persistence, self-discipline, good skills, experience, knowledge, empathy, and a real interest in the world around them; and outer resources, which are the people and environments that constitute the writer's support system.

This course can provide a starting point, through the mentoring you receive from a tutor who is themselves a professional writer; but that is normally only the start.

What is Needed for Success?

Success as a writer means different things to different people. For some, success is to simply have people read and appreciate what they write; and the readers might be no more than friends and/or family.
For others, the goal may be far more ambitious: to have books or articles published and sold, and read by tens of thousands of people.

The best writers spend a lifetime discovering, experimenting, learning and improving their skills.

Writing is a Business

Writing is only part of the business of being a writer. If your aim is to be published, and be read by the "masses"; you need to understand and recognise what is involved in the publishing business as a whole.

You should also recognise from the beginning that success does not always come to those who deserve it; and a certain amount of luck is probably going to be involved no matter how skilled or well educated you are.

Successful writers are not just those who write well; but more often than not, they are also people who happen to be in the right place at the right time.

If you hope to make a complete or partial living from creative writing, or to make it your career, you can improve your prospects by developing good sources of information and support.

These will help you achieve two main goals:

1. To become a better, more effective writer, and

2. To sell and/or publish what you write.


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Email: [email protected]

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