Getting Started: Beginners' Fiction Getting Started: Beginners' Fiction Getting Started: Beginners' Fiction

Getting Started: Beginners' Fiction

Learn everything you’ll need to take you from a standing start to creating scintillating stories from scratch. Under the stewardship of an experienced Faber tutor, you’ll gain the tools needed to start writing gripping prose with both substance and style.


Starting out

What do these levels mean?




12 weeks
  • Start Date
  • Time
  • Flexible (see Course Programme)


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You want to write. Start here.

This engaging course offers some of the practical tools needed to start crafting compelling stories from scratch. Along this explorative journey, which starts with perceptive notetaking and generating creative ideas, we will begin to explore the poetry of prose, decode how to create flawed or fabulous characters, learn how to flesh out the three-dimensionality of setting and much more.

All the essentials will be covered; everything from point of view, to structure, from setting to characterisation, so that by the end of the course, you will be fully equipped with the toolkit needed to start crafting original stories with confidence.

Is this the right course for me?

This course is for writers with a story to tell who are ready to take that first step, facilitated by expert tutors who’ll guide you through the different modules and support you along the route. Study wherever you are in the world, at a time that suits you, with a flexible fortnightly structure

A great first line: simple, punchy and memorable. An opening paragraph bristling with hooks. A first chapter that sets up the inciting incidents to follow so well, it would be impossible not to read on. A compelling character arc. Propulsive, poetic prose at sentence-level that makes a reader’s eyes fizz down the page. There’s a lot to get right, it seems, and this course is for those ready to be bold and take that first step by writing the first line.

    This course is formed of six sessions, each open for a fortnight. All sessions will open on a Monday.

Course Programme

Session 1

27 March – 9 April

Becoming a Writer: Finding Your Vo...

Session 2

10 April – 23 April

The Poetry of Prose: The Sound of ...

Session 3

24 April – 7 May

Structure and Pace: Keeping the Re...

See remaining sessions

Course Programme

Getting Started: Beginners' Fiction (Online)

Session 1

27 March – 9 April

Becoming a Writer: Finding Your Voice and Deciding Who Tells the Story

We'll look at how writers work and how we can develop creativity and discipline. This session will focus on how to generate original ideas, perceptive note taking and maintaining good habits to get started and alleviate fear of the blank page.

Session 2

10 April – 23 April

The Poetry of Prose: The Sound of That First Line

Drawing on an exploration of the poetic form to inform our prose. Encouraging close analysis of how words and lines sound, how to conjure imagery for descriptive texture. Exploring how pithy poetry can help shape a longer narrative.

Session 3

24 April – 7 May

Structure and Pace: Keeping the Reader Reading

Thinking about story shape and structure, plotting the right scenes in the right places. Exploring techniques to vary the pace of your story to keep the reader engaged and invested in the hooks that have been set up.

Session 4

8 May – 21 May

Setting and Characters: People and Places, People and Places…

Where your story takes place – why it's important? The tools to craft a three-dimensional storyworld. Creating round characters, where they come from, and making them believable.

Session 5

22 May – 4 June

Let’s Talk Dialogue

Offering techniques to ensure dialogue moves the story on, seeking the right balance between realism and economy of speech. Beginning to edit and finessing your work.

Session 6

5 June – 18 June

Independent Writing Time

Independent writing time, with full access to chat rooms and forums to share work and feedback.


Ashley-Hickson-Lovence-328×492 – Edited

Ashley Hickson-Lovence

Ashley Hickson-Lovence is a novelist and Creative Writing lecturer based in Norwich. While working as a secondary school English teacher...

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Ashley Hickson-Lovence
Judith Bryan 2020 – Edited

Judith Bryan

Judith Bryan’s 1998 Saga Prize debut winning novel, Bernard and the Cloth Monkey, was...

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Judith Bryan

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