Beginners' Writing Courses Beginners' Writing Courses Beginners' Writing Courses

Beginners' Writing Courses

Whether you've always wanted to write fiction or are looking for an introduction to poetry, we offer a range of creative writing classes for beginners – from one-day workshops to longer twelve-week courses, online and in our London offices.

Our beginners' writing courses: an overview

Many of our beginners’ classes require no experience at all – if you’ve always wanted to write but never known where to start, you’ll find a supportive, welcoming environment with an experienced tutor and a group of fellow aspiring authors.

Our online courses are accessible wherever you are in the world, and many of our online beginners’ courses are self-paced, meaning you don’t need to be online at a set time and can work through the course materials at a time that suits you.

You’ll leave with a clear idea of the requirements of your chosen genre and the technical tools you’ll need to carry on writing.

Who are these courses for?

Complete beginners

Avid reader ready to start creating fictional worlds of your own? Looking for a new hobby or taking the very first step on a new creative path? These courses are designed to show you how to start writing – and how to carry on after the final session.

Writers looking to refresh their skills

If you've written before but feel you're lacking in confidence after a break, a short course can be a great way to brush up your knowledge and get those ideas flowing again, with a supportive group to cheer you on.

Writers exploring a new genre

An experienced non-fiction writer looking to try your hand at poetry? Or a poet who'd like to experiment with fiction? Our beginners' courses are a great place to test out a new discipline

Beginners' Writing Courses (38)

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Fiction Development

Start to Write

A no-excuses, let’s-get-going, beginners' creative writing course to kickstart your writing life.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

Online

Length

1-5 days

Tutors

Sarah May

Start Date

Saturday 11 Dec 2021

£100
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Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Start to Write

A no-excuses, let’s-get-going, beginners' creative writing course to kickstart your writing life.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

London

Length

1-5 days

Tutors

Richard Skinner

Start Date

Saturday 18 Dec 2021

14 more start dates available

£100
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Out of stock

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Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Start to Write

A no-excuses, let’s-get-going, beginners' creative writing course to kickstart your writing life.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

Online

Length

1-5 days

Tutors

Sarah May

Start Date

Saturday 08 Jan 2022

3 more start dates available

£100
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Out of stock

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Non-fiction

Five Days to Write a Life

There are many ways in which a life story can be presented but this course aims to understand the story you wish to tell – and to help you tell it well.

Level

Improving

What do these levels mean?

Location

London

Length

1-5 days

Tutors

Julia Blackburn

Start Date

Monday 10 Jan 2022

£550
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Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Getting Started: Beginners' Fiction

Everything you need to call yourself a writer – discipline, craft skills and a great group of people to work with – in one online writing course experience.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

Online

Length

5-12 weeks

Tutors

Helen Shipman

Start Date

Monday 10 Jan 2022

3 more start dates available

£350
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Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Writing Fiction

Whether you're just starting out or trying to revitalise your writing process, find your feet in fiction with this intensive twelve-week course – and learn to write in a way that belongs entirely to you.

Level

Improving

What do these levels mean?

Location

London

Length

5-12 weeks

Tutors

Keith Ridgway

Start Date

Tuesday 18 Jan 2022

1 more start date available

£995
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Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Getting Started: Beginners' Fiction

A twelve-week creative writing course for beginners. Playful, serious and fun, it asks what writing is and why we do it.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

London

Length

5-12 weeks

Tutors

Sue Gee

Start Date

Wednesday 19 Jan 2022

£995
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Short Story

Writing Short Stories

Learn the craft of short story writing, then create and polish new stories of your own with an award-winning writer.

Level

Improving

What do these levels mean?

Location

Online

Length

5-12 weeks

Tutors

Lucy Caldwell

Start Date

Thursday 20 Jan 2022

£795
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Poetry

Writing Poems

A playful, supportive three-month poetry course for beginners and aspiring amateur poets, with two of the best practitioners and teachers in the country.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

Online

Length

5-12 weeks

Tutors

Maurice Riordan, Richard Scott

Start Date

Monday 24 Jan 2022

£550
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Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Start to Write

A no-excuses, let’s-get-going, beginners' creative writing course to kickstart your writing life.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

Online

Length

1-5 days

Tutors

Sarah May

Start Date

Saturday 19 Feb 2022

3 more start dates available

£100
Book Now

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Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Start to Write

A no-excuses, let’s-get-going, beginners' creative writing course to kickstart your writing life.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

Online

Length

1-5 days

Tutors

Sarah May

Start Date

Saturday 12 Mar 2022

3 more start dates available

£100
Book Now

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Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Create Brilliant Characters

Discover the secrets of successful character creation, and try out failsafe techniques to bring your own characters to life.

Level

Improving

What do these levels mean?

Location

Online

Length

1-4 weeks

Tutors

Tom Bromley

Start Date

Monday 14 Mar 2022

2 more start dates available

£120
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Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Getting Started: Beginners' Fiction

Everything you need to call yourself a writer – discipline, craft skills and a great group of people to work with – in one online writing course experience.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

Online

Length

5-12 weeks

Tutors

Helen Shipman

Start Date

Monday 21 Mar 2022

3 more start dates available

£350
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Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Fiction Skills: Plot

Create storylines that keep readers turning those pages in this self-paced online course.

Level

Improving

What do these levels mean?

Location

Online

Length

1-4 weeks

Tutors

Tom Bromley

Start Date

Monday 21 Mar 2022

2 more start dates available

£120
Book Now

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Writing for Children

Writing Picture Books

Everyone's first favourite book is a picture book. Immerse yourself in the craft and magic of this vital form.

Level

Improving

What do these levels mean?

Location

London

Length

5-12 weeks

Tutors

Laura Mucha, Lucy Farfort

Start Date

Wednesday 23 Mar 2022

£995
Book Now

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Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Start to Write

A no-excuses, let’s-get-going, beginners' creative writing course to kickstart your writing life.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

London

Length

1-5 days

Tutors

Richard Skinner

Start Date

Saturday 26 Mar 2022

14 more start dates available

£100
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Poetry

Start to Write Poetry

Kickstart your writing life with a specially designed day of online learning, writing and discussion from the home of British poetry.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

London

Length

1-5 days

Tutors

Richard Scott

Start Date

Saturday 26 Mar 2022

2 more start dates available

£75
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Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Start to Write

A no-excuses, let’s-get-going, beginners' creative writing course to kickstart your writing life.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

London

Length

1-5 days

Tutors

Richard Skinner

Start Date

Saturday 23 Apr 2022

14 more start dates available

£100
Book Now

15 spaces left

Details
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Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Read Like a Writer

Read wider, read smarter and find new ways to get your words onto the page.

Level

Improving

What do these levels mean?

Location

Online

Length

1-4 weeks

Tutors

Tom Bromley

Start Date

Monday 25 Apr 2022

2 more start dates available

£120
Book Now

15 spaces left

Details
Close-up of a woman writing in a notebook on hillside
Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Create Brilliant Characters

Discover the secrets of successful character creation, and try out failsafe techniques to bring your own characters to life.

Level

Improving

What do these levels mean?

Location

Online

Length

1-4 weeks

Tutors

Tom Bromley

Start Date

Monday 02 May 2022

2 more start dates available

£120
Book Now

15 spaces left

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Crime, Novel Writing

Writing Crime

Learn the secrets of the UK's most popular genre and begin work on your own crime novel in this eight-week online course.

Level

Improving

What do these levels mean?

Location

Online

Length

5-12 weeks

Tutors

Andrew Wilson

Start Date

Monday 09 May 2022

2 more start dates available

£495
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Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Fiction Skills: World Building

Learn how to create unforgettable story worlds that a reader can immerse themselves in – and how other writers use setting to transform their fiction.

Level

Improving

What do these levels mean?

Location

Online

Length

1-4 weeks

Tutors

Tom Bromley

Start Date

Monday 09 May 2022

£120
Book Now

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Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Getting Started: Beginners' Fiction

Everything you need to call yourself a writer – discipline, craft skills and a great group of people to work with – in one online writing course experience.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

Online

Length

5-12 weeks

Tutors

Helen Shipman

Start Date

Monday 23 May 2022

3 more start dates available

£350
Book Now

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Writing for Children

Writing YA

Young Adult fiction is one of the boldest forms of recent times – learn how to write for the most passionate and discerning audience out there.

Level

Improving

What do these levels mean?

Location

Online

Length

5-12 weeks

Tutors

Lee Weatherly

Start Date

Monday 23 May 2022

2 more start dates available

£495
Book Now

15 spaces left

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Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Start to Write

A no-excuses, let’s-get-going, beginners' creative writing course to kickstart your writing life.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

London

Length

1-5 days

Tutors

Richard Skinner

Start Date

Saturday 28 May 2022

14 more start dates available

£100
Book Now

13 spaces left

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Woman sitting cross-legged on living room floor, thoughtful, with her laptop in front of her
Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Fiction Skills: Plot

Create storylines that keep readers turning those pages in this self-paced online course.

Level

Improving

What do these levels mean?

Location

Online

Length

1-4 weeks

Tutors

Tom Bromley

Start Date

Monday 30 May 2022

2 more start dates available

£120
Book Now

15 spaces left

Details
Overhead shot of a jumble of hardback books, pages facing the camera
Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Read Like a Writer

Read wider, read smarter and find new ways to get your words onto the page.

Level

Improving

What do these levels mean?

Location

Online

Length

1-4 weeks

Tutors

Tom Bromley

Start Date

Monday 13 Jun 2022

2 more start dates available

£120
Book Now

15 spaces left

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Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Getting Started: Beginners' Fiction

Everything you need to call yourself a writer – discipline, craft skills and a great group of people to work with – in one online writing course experience.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

Online

Length

5-12 weeks

Tutors

Helen Shipman

Start Date

Monday 27 Jun 2022

3 more start dates available

£350
Book Now

30 spaces left

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Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Start to Write

A no-excuses, let’s-get-going, beginners' creative writing course to kickstart your writing life.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

London

Length

1-5 days

Tutors

Richard Skinner

Start Date

Saturday 02 Jul 2022

14 more start dates available

£100
Book Now

15 spaces left

Details
Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Start to Write

A no-excuses, let’s-get-going, beginners' creative writing course to kickstart your writing life.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

London

Length

1-5 days

Tutors

Richard Skinner

Start Date

Saturday 30 Jul 2022

14 more start dates available

£100
Book Now

15 spaces left

Details
Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Start to Write

A no-excuses, let’s-get-going, beginners' creative writing course to kickstart your writing life.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

London

Length

1-5 days

Tutors

Richard Skinner

Start Date

Saturday 20 Aug 2022

14 more start dates available

£100
Book Now

15 spaces left

Details
Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Start to Write

A no-excuses, let’s-get-going, beginners' creative writing course to kickstart your writing life.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

London

Length

1-5 days

Tutors

Richard Skinner

Start Date

Saturday 24 Sep 2022

14 more start dates available

£100
Book Now

15 spaces left

Details
Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Start to Write

A no-excuses, let’s-get-going, beginners' creative writing course to kickstart your writing life.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

London

Length

1-5 days

Tutors

Richard Skinner

Start Date

Saturday 29 Oct 2022

14 more start dates available

£100
Book Now

15 spaces left

Details
Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Start to Write

A no-excuses, let’s-get-going, beginners' creative writing course to kickstart your writing life.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

London

Length

1-5 days

Tutors

Richard Skinner

Start Date

Saturday 26 Nov 2022

14 more start dates available

£100
Book Now

15 spaces left

Details
Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Start to Write

A no-excuses, let’s-get-going, beginners' creative writing course to kickstart your writing life.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

London

Length

1-5 days

Tutors

Richard Skinner

Start Date

Saturday 17 Dec 2022

14 more start dates available

£100
Book Now

15 spaces left

Details
Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Start to Write

A no-excuses, let’s-get-going, beginners' creative writing course to kickstart your writing life.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

London

Length

1-5 days

Tutors

Richard Skinner

Start Date

Saturday 28 Jan 2023

14 more start dates available

£100
Book Now

15 spaces left

Details
Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Start to Write

A no-excuses, let’s-get-going, beginners' creative writing course to kickstart your writing life.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

London

Length

1-5 days

Tutors

Richard Skinner

Start Date

Saturday 25 Feb 2023

14 more start dates available

£100
Book Now

15 spaces left

Details
Fiction Development, Novel Writing

Start to Write

A no-excuses, let’s-get-going, beginners' creative writing course to kickstart your writing life.

Level

Starting out

What do these levels mean?

Location

London

Length

1-5 days

Tutors

Richard Skinner

Start Date

Saturday 25 Mar 2023

14 more start dates available

£100
Book Now

15 spaces left

Details

Beginners' Course Tutors

The tutors on our beginners' writing courses are all experienced teachers and published writers themselves, with a wealth of experience in introducing new writers to the craft.

richard-skinner-tutor

Richard Skinner

Richard Skinner

Inspiring surroundings, excellent tutor, supportive fellow participants. I learnt a great deal about character, plot, voice, narration and language.

Inspiring surroundings, excellent tutor, supportive fellow participants. I learnt a great deal about character, plot, voice, narration and language.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I start writing?

There’s no “right” way to start writing – it really is about taking that first step and writing that first line! It could be that you start straight away with a project of your own; a poem or a short story or a novel. Or you can use creative writing exercises and prompts to provide some structure (you can find ours [here]). In either case, the most important thing is: don’t be afraid of it not being perfect. No-one’s first draft of anything ever is. You hone your voice and prose over time, by continuing to put words on the page and experimenting with techniques and styles to find what works best for you. Beginners’ writing courses will offer a good introduction to those technical elements, as well as a constructive place to start getting feedback on your work.

What skills do you need to be a writer – do I need any particular experience to take these courses?

You don’t need any experience to take these courses – they’re designed as an introduction to your chosen discipline and are suitable for complete beginners. In terms of skills, being an enthusiastic and eclectic reader will always serve an aspiring writer well – when you read a book you enjoy, try and think about what in particular you liked about it, and whether there are qualities you might also like to see in your own work. And paying attention to the world around you is also a good habit to have. Listen out for interesting snippets of overheard conversation and watch out for images or scenes that catch your eye – you never know where inspiration may strike!

I've done some writing before, but I still feel like a beginner – are these courses right for me?

Absolutely. With all of our courses, we usually say that the level is something of a confidence thing rather than based entirely on experience. If you feel like you need to get a solid grounding in the foundations of your chosen genre before moving on to something more advanced, these courses will help you do that.

Can't find the right course?

Manuscript Assessment

Get comprehensive editorial feedback on your manuscript from our experienced readers – whether it’s still a work-in-progress or you’re preparing to submit to literary agents.

Find out more

Mentoring

We offer a range of mentoring options if you’d prefer to work one-on-one with an established writer to help you shape your project and realise your writing ambitions.

Find out more

Browse the Reading Room

From author interviews and writing tips to creative writing exercises and reading lists, we've got everything you need to get started – and to keep going.