Finish Your Draft Finish Your Draft Finish Your Draft

Finish Your Draft

Develop the tools, techniques and motivation to complete your novel within nine months.



What do these levels mean?




6 month +
  • Start Date
  • Time
  • Flexible
  • Application Deadline
  • Monday 25 Mar 2024

Spaces left



£350 / month for 4 months and a £450.00 deposit


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The structure and support to get you to the final line

This is a flexible but intensive course for the advanced writer, designed to help you hone your editorial eye and get to the end. Within a small, supportive community of fellow writers, you will be pushed to analyse the robustness and effectiveness of your structure, style and other narrative choices, and to stay on track with your word-count.

You can work at your own pace through the monthly lessons and exercises, while always keeping in touch through private class forums, optional monthly video-call sessions and check-ins with your tutor. Submit up to 5,000 words every month for peer feedback and make use of regular self-assessment and reflection opportunities to develop a practice that will carry you through to your next book and the one after that.

Is this the right course for me?

This is an advanced level course designed for those who have already made significant progress with their novel and would benefit from the structure, support and community to get to the end of their first draft.

What ‘significant progress’ means will vary from writer to writer, as will the amount of time you need to devote to writing your novel. By this stage in your practice, you should have some idea of the pace at which you write and edit, so it’s important to be honest with yourself about the feasibility of completing your remaining word count within nine months. If you’re unsure, please get in touch.

Upon successful completion of this course, you will have:
- Written a complete draft of your novel. (Hurrah!)
- Honed your editorial eye and gained the necessary skills to tackle the next draft alone.
- Practised close analysis of a diverse range of published works.
- Learnt to give and receive detailed critical feedback within a structured and caring environment.
- Found a life-long place within a supportive writing community.
- Made a plan for the next steps.

You will also:
- Receive peer feedback on up to 45,000 words of your manuscript.
- Receive tutor feedback on 10,000 words.
- Have two one-to-ones with your tutor.
- Gain exclusive access to monthly Faber Academy novel-writing student events.

    The course will be delivered in nine sessions, each lasting four weeks.

Course Programme

Session 1

8 April – 6 May 2024

Getting Started...

Session 2

7 May – 2 June

Interrogating Your Instincts...

Session 3

3 June – 7 July

Scene and Chapter Shape...

See remaining sessions

Course Programme

Finish Your Draft

Session 1

8 April – 6 May 2024

Getting Started

Get to know each other and the novels you’re writing, hone your pitch, synopsis and plot outline, and work with your tutor to create a detailed plan for the next nine months.

Session 2

7 May – 2 June

Interrogating Your Instincts

Evaluate your choices about point of view, tense, structure and chronology, and the impact these have on a reader. Examine your personal relationship to your narrative and how positionality affects the stories we tell.

Session 3

3 June – 7 July

Scene and Chapter Shape

Analyse the structure of your individual scenes, the effectiveness of your scene shifts, and the balance between front- and back-story.

Session 4

8 July – 4 August

Setting and Imagery

Explore ways to make the world of your narrative more vivid, consider the relationship between setting and character, and work to enhance each of your descriptions.

Please note this session will be followed by a two-week Summer break.

Session 5

19 August – 22 September

Progress & Plot Check-Up

At the mid-point of the course, it’s time to review. Are you on track with the plan you made in session one? Is your plot still working? Closely examine how each turning point, character arc and narrative device is functioning on your page.

Session 6

23 September – 20 October

Pace, Momentum and When to Release Information

Learn to avoid a saggy middle and scenes that drag on longer than they should. Explore how to withhold information and create suspense without losing your reader.

Session 7

21 October – 17 November

Dialogue and Gesture

Hone your ear and improve the dialogue in each of your scenes. Explore the power of gesture and how to trim your manuscript of all those shrugs, blinks and raised eyebrows.

Session 8

18 November – 15 December

Ending & Editing

Find the most satisfying way to conclude your story and consider the full relationship between beginning, middle and end. Start thinking about ways to tighten your entire manuscript.

Please note this session will be followed by a three-week Winter break.

Session 9

6 January – 2 February

Next Steps

Explore the different routes to publication, polish your cover letter and synopsis and make a detailed plan with your tutor for how to move from finished draft to fully finished book.


Natasha+Bell+1 – Edited

Natasha Bell

Natasha (she/her) is a cross-genre author and researcher. She's published two novels...

More About This Tutor
Natasha Bell

How to Apply

When applying, you'll be prompted to upload the following documents:

A covering letter

Tell us about your writing experience, any creative writing courses you have been on, and what you are looking to get from the course.

A synopsis of your novel

We'll want to see that you have a good sense of the shape of your story – it doesn't need to be final, but enough that you'll be able to dive into the writing straight away, and be able to deliver the required wordcount each month to really get the most out of this course.

Prose sample (5,000 words)

This should be the first 5,000 words of your novel – it's important that you use the book you're planning to work on during the course.

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.

For more information, message us or call 0207 927 3827