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How To … Posts

05 December 2018

How to query a literary agent

by Catherine Cho From the Agents, How To ..., Writing Tips

Finding an agent is a matter of fit. It takes persistence and confidence, remember that publishing is a subjective business, and so what might be a NO for some agents is a YES for others. Catherine Cho, an Associate Agent at Curtis Brown, shares her top tips on how to send a query to a literary agent.

24 August 2018

How to write great dialogue in fiction

by Anna Davis How To ..., Writing Tips

Well-handled dialogue is one of THE essential ingredients of a good novel. And yet it’s something that many writers struggle with and even shy away from. The trick to writing great dialogue in fiction is to make your characters’ speech carry the ring and rhythm of real-life conversations without actually trying to recreate them verbatim, […]

09 August 2018

How to create great characters in fiction

by Anna Davis From the Agents, How To ..., Writing Tips

All of us need to think hard about how to create striking, memorable characters in our novels and stories – so really there should be something for everyone here.  So here goes … We have four separate pieces of writing advice plus writing exercises here for creating great characters in fiction… 1. Using little everyday details […]

05 July 2018

Preparing your application material for our novel-writing courses

by Anna Davis Course News, How To ..., Writing Tips

All of our longer creative writing courses, in London or online (whether 3 or 6 months), have a selective applications process. When the closing date for the course arrives, the CBC team sit down to read everything we’ve received and select the 15 we consider to be the strongest from the applications received. We look closely […]

22 June 2018

How to write a synopsis for your novel

by Anna Davis How To ..., Writing Tips

At Curtis Brown and C+W, we like to see a good one-page synopsis as part of your pitch package. Read our 16 tips on how to write a great synopsis for your novel…

16 March 2018

How to write the first draft of your novel

by Hannah Mary McKinnon From Our Students, How To ..., Writing Tips

First draft. Two words that send shivers up and down an author’s spine like a dinner date with Hannibal Lecter. Blood, sweat, tears, and, in my case, a substantial amount of cookies, go into first drafts. It got me wondering – does it have to be this way? To prove it doesn’t, here are eight […]

13 January 2017

How to create suspense in your novel

by Anna Davis From the Agents, How To ..., Writing Tips

We use suspense in fiction to get the reader on the edge of their seat and make it as difficult as possible for them to put the book down. So how do you create suspense in your novel? Lots of students on our creative writing courses are working on psychological suspense novels – one of […]

11 March 2016

How to write a children’s book: Tips from agent Stephanie Thwaites

by Anna Davis From the Agents, How To ..., Writing Tips

How do you write a children’s book – or a novel for young adults? Children’s literary agent Stephanie Thwaites offers her tips and practical advice on writing Young Fiction, Middle Grade and YA books … 1. Do your research, read lots of Children’s Books Lots of writers who send us the novels they’ve written for […]

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