Writing Tips Posts

04 October 2017

Creative writing workshops: what you need to know

by Anna Davis Opinion, Our Courses, Writing Tips

Writing workshops have been at the heart of creative writing courses since the dawn of time itself – and are a major feature of our online writing courses and our London writing courses. For the benefit of the uninitiated, this is where writers get comment on extracts from their novels-in-progress (or indeed on short stories […]

21 September 2017

Reviewing the first draft: how to read your own novel

by Anna Davis From the Agents, Our Courses, Writing Tips

In the excitement of typing ‘The End’ on your completed first draft, you could be forgiven for thinking you’re all set to start sending your work out to literary agents (many students on our creative writing courses have fallen into this trap). But I would always recommend you go the extra mile (or indeed the […]

29 June 2017

How to write a novel: tips from Jonny Geller

by Jack Hadley From the Agents, Writing Tips

Top literary agent and joint CEO of Curtis Brown Jonny Geller recently posted up a Twitter ‘thread’ with some tips on how to write a novel for new writers. We’re sharing them on the blog for your leisure. Jonny’s post certainly created a stir on social media, with lots of budding novelists and students on our creative […]

17 May 2017

More writing and publishing advice from Anna Davis

by Jack Hadley Opinion, Writing Tips

Curtis Brown Creative MD Anna Davis recently answered some of our students’ most burning questions on the publishing industry. We’ve picked out some of the best to share with you here.   Q: It seems essential to identify a genre for one’s novel. Have you got any advice on how to identify it when your novel has elements […]

20 March 2017

Killer facts and fiction: how to write a crime thriller

by Stuart Prebble Guest Blog, Writing Tips

Anyone who’s writing a crime and thriller novel, and is thinking of applying to our creative writing courses, needs to understand the expectations of the genre and what its readers want. Stuart Prebble (above) – whose novel The Bridge is published by our sister company Studio 28 today – tells us how he created such […]

03 March 2017

Does your protagonist have to be likeable?

by Anna Davis From the Agents, Opinion, Writing Tips

A question I’m often asked by students on our creative writing courses is, “Does my central character have to be likeable?” The honest answer is, it depends on how you’re constructing your novel and how reader-sympathies need to work with it. Let me explain … If you need the reader firmly on-side with your central […]

19 January 2017

Submission tips from literary agents

by Rufus Purdy From the Agents, Writing Tips

The literary agents at Curtis Brown and C+W get hundreds of submissions each week, so how do you – as a writer – make your work stand out? We asked the literary agents for their top submission tips for new writers who are trying to find an agent. Here’s a selection of their responses… Good […]

13 January 2017

How to create suspense in your novel

by Anna Davis From the Agents, Opinion, Writing Tips

Lots of students on our creative writing courses are working on psychological suspense novels – one of the biggest-selling genres at the moment. We associate suspenseful writing with other genres too, particularly crime fiction, action thrillers, horror and supernatural novels. But actually lots of other sorts of novels make use of suspense: when a young […]

08 December 2016

‘Before you start writing a novel, work out what kind of writer you are’

by Anna Davis From the Agents, Opinion, Our Courses, Writing Tips

Curtis Brown Creative director Anna Davis, who provides the video lectures and teaching notes for our Starting to Write Your Novel and Edit & Pitch Your Novel online writing courses, believes that when you start writing a novel, you will inevitably fall into one of two categories. Here’s her theory and her tips to help you […]

10 November 2016

CBC Tutor Q&A: Simon Wroe

by Jack Hadley Author Interviews, Writing Tips

For the next of our London writing courses, we’ve hired a new tutor, Simon Wroe. Simon’s debut novel Chop Chop, a brilliant, darkly comic story of a young graduate working in a gastropub in Camden, was shortlisted for the 2014 Costa First Novel Award, longlisted for the Desmond Elliott Prize and won a Betty Trask […]

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