Writing Tips Posts

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 in London or online, 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 […]

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 online and London-based 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 […]

19 January 2017

Submission tips from the Curtis Brown literary agents

by Rufus Purdy From the Agents, Writing Tips

We get a lot of submissions to our creative writing courses in London and online – as do the literary agents at Curtis Brown and C&W. And all of us have strong opinions about what makes a submission ‘good’. So we asked the agents for their top tips for new writers planning to send their work […]

13 January 2017

How to build suspense in your novel

by Anna Davis From the Agents, Opinion, Writing Tips

Lots of students join our creative writing courses in London and online to work 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 […]

08 December 2016

All writers start their novels in one of two ways – which is you?

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

Curtis Brown Creative runs creative writing courses in London and online. Our director, Anna Davis, 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 get going …  When you decide to write your novel, there are two basic starting […]

10 November 2016

CBC Tutor Q&A: Simon Wroe

by Jack Hadley Author Interviews, Writing Tips

Curtis Brown Creative runs creative writing courses in London and online. And, for our next London-based course beginning in February, 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, […]

04 November 2016

National Novel Writing Month: Best of the Web

by Jack Hadley Writing Tips

For many on our creative writing courses in London and online, one of the most important things Curtis Brown Creative can offer is structure. Whether it’s our six-week Starting to Write Your Novel course, or our longer London-based or online courses, the shape, incentive and deadlines provided by a formally structured course can be key in helping to get that novel off […]

28 October 2016

A Halloween Reading List

by Jack Hadley Opinion, Writing Tips

As our creative writing courses in London and online get into full swing, the nights draw in ever further. The November darkness beckons –  we’ve long cast off our cosy summer reads; we want to engage in something which can supply that thrill of discomfort and fear. Clichés aside, the horror tradition is a rich […]

07 October 2016

What Novel Are You Writing: Literary or Commercial?

by Jack Hadley Opinion, Writing Tips

One of the most frequently asked questions on our creative writing courses in London and online is, ‘What kind of novel am I writing – literary or commercial?’ Our students are often confused about what the terms mean and are uncertain of what they should be aiming for. It wasn’t always this way. Dickens was […]

03 October 2016

Tips on preparing your submission package

by Anna Davis From the Agents, Opinion, Writing Tips

Curtis Brown Creative runs creative writing courses in London and online, but we also specialise in giving our students book-industry advice. January is a great month to send your work in to agents. But how do you put together a submission package that will catch their eye and make them want to read your work? […]

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