Guest Blog Posts

09 May 2018

Researching your historical novel: 6 Key Points

by James Hall From Our Students, Guest Blog, Opinion, Student Successes

James Hall took our London based novel-writing course in 2012, and his debut novel, The Industry of Human Happiness (Lightning Books), is set in the murky backstage world of late-Victorian theatreland. It lovingly depicts the early years of recorded music in turn-of-the-century London. James offers us some insights on how he approached the research for his book, a key question for anyone writing […]

20 April 2018

Why authors should be using social media

by Rae DelBianco Guest Blog, Novels by CBC Alumni, Opinion

Rae DelBianco was a student on our London novel-writing course in 2015 – in fact she came over from the US for six months specifically to study on our course! Her much anticipated debut Rough Animals is out from Arcade publishing on June 5th, and has already been compared to the likes of Cormac McCarthy. Rae grew up in Bucks […]

17 April 2018

How to tackle tough subjects in YA fiction

by Eve Ainsworth Author Interviews, Guest Blog, Opinion, Writing Tips

Eve Ainsworth is the acclaimed author of four YA novels, and is represented by Curtis Brown agent, Stephanie Thwaites. Before she became a published author, Eve worked in a large secondary school supporting pupils with their emotional and behavioural issues. Now she’s taken this interest forward into her fiction, which tackles real-life teen issues. Her latest novel, Tender, explores mental […]

06 April 2018

How not to write a children’s book

by Chris Smith Guest Blog, Writing Tips

Greg James and Chris Smith are the creative minds behind the best-selling Kid Normal children’s books. The duo are represented by Curtis Brown’s very own Stephanie Thwaites.  With the second Kid Normal book, Kid Normal and the Rogue Heroes new out (March 2018), Chris Smith is here to offer some advice on how NOT to write a children’s book: […]

28 March 2018

The difficult second novel

by Annabelle Thorpe Guest Blog, Novels by CBC Alumni, Opinion, Writing Tips

So, the hard part is over, you’ve published your first novel! Well, former CBC student and author Annabelle Thorpe is here to tell us all about the difficulties of writing that second novel from her own experience, and offers some guidance along the way. Considering it’s a known thing, like the Difficult Second Album, you […]

22 March 2018

Does your novel need a prologue?

by Lisa O'Donnell Guest Blog, Opinion, Writing Tips

We asked award-winning novelist and CBC tutor Lisa O’Donnell to tell us what she thinks about that most Marmite of literary devices – the Prologue. Here’s what she had to say – and she didn’t mince her words …  Prologues – I hate them. I’ve read a lot of novels in my life, but out […]

21 March 2018

Five pitfalls to avoid as a new author  

by Maria Realf From Our Students, Guest Blog, Student Successes, Writing Tips

Want to boost your chances of getting that book deal? Then steer clear of these common mistakes. Here are five pitfalls that new authors should avoid, as told by author and Curtis Brown Creative Novel-Writing Course alumna, Maria Realf. Don’t try to second-guess the market It may seem tempting to write for the genre du jour, but […]

16 March 2018

When your book-writing leads to book-keeping …

by Jenny Quintana From Our Students, Guest Blog, Opinion,

Jenny Quintana studied on one of CBC’s London-based creative writing courses, and now her debut novel, The Missing Girl has been published by Mantle in the UK – with German, Italian and audio rights also sold. All great news – but publishing deals come with new responsibilities, and – like many authors before her – Jenny soon realised […]

16 March 2018

How to get through the first draft of your novel

by Hannah Mary McKinnon From Our Students, Guest Blog, Novels by CBC Alumni, Student Successes, Writing Tips

Hannah Mary McKinnon took one of our online creative writing courses, and is now a published author with her second novel,  The Neighbours, newly launched in the US, UK – and Canada, where she lives. Hannah has been one of our most positive and persevering students, and she brings these qualities very much to bear […]

02 March 2018

How to write fiction in your second language

by Clarissa Goenawan From Our Students, Guest Blog, Opinion, Student Successes, Writing Tips

Clarissa Goenawan is easily one of the most determined and tenacious writers who’s ever joined CBC’s creative writing courses. She’s also really good! With her first novel Rainbirds just coming out from Soho Press in the US, Clarissa tells us how hard it was to start writing a novel in a language that isn’t her mother tongue […]

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