Finish Your Novel – Eight Months

8 months

Application Deadline
11th Sep 2022
Applicant Notification
15th Sep 2022
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Finish Your Novel – Eight Months

Get all the way to the end of that tricky first draft on this advanced course, with help and advice from three expert author-tutors and a supportive peer group.

Our eight-month advanced course is designed for writers already at work on a novel who feel like they would benefit from a structured course plus a supportive peer group as they write. The course also includes dedicated writing time to ensure you continue to make steady progress on your novel throughout the eight months. We'll provide dedicated advice on your work-in-progress and teaching on useful topics from expert tutors, and smattering of deadlines to help you get all the way to that oh-so-elusive ending.

The best investment in my writing I have ever made!

Jennie Godfrey


Christopher Wakling

Christopher’s six acclaimed novels include What I Did, The Devil’s Mask and On Cape Three Points. Born in 1970, he read English at Oxford, then worked as a farm hand, teacher and lawyer, before turning to writing full-time in 2001. As well as writing fiction, Christopher is a travel writer for the Independent. He is also the Royal Literary Fund Fellow at Bristol University and has tutored numerous creative-writing courses for Curtis Brown Creative and The Arvon Foundation.

Ayisha Malik

Ayisha Malik is the author of the critically acclaimed novels, Sofia Khan is Not ObligedThe Other Half of Happiness, and This Green and Pleasant Land. She was a WHSmith Fresh Talent Pick and Sofia Khan was a London CityReads choice in May 2019. Ayisha is winner of The Diversity Book Awards and has been shortlisted for the Asian Women of Achievement AwardMarie Claire’s Future Shapers Awards and h100’s Awards for Publishing and Writing. Her fourth adult novel, The Movement, is to be published in summer 2022.

Anna Freeman

Anna Freeman is a novelist, poet and creative writing tutor, and the host of Radio 4’s Sketches: Stories of Art and People. Her first novel The Fair Fight, a pulsating historical adventure set within the world of female prize-fighters in eighteenth-century Bristol, won the Tibor Jones Page-turner Prize in 2013, and is being adapted for theatre by Bristol Old Vic. Her second novel, Five Days of Fog, was acclaimed as ‘Peaky Blinders with a feminist twist’ (Metro). Anna is also a slam-winning spoken word performer. Anna has taught creative writing at Bath Spa University in addition to her work with CBC.

What does this course give you?

  • Live teaching sessions: Each tutor will lead three Zoom teaching sessions, covering topics such as how to get rid of writer's block, how to inject pace into your writing and how to deepen your characterisations and nail that pesky plot.
  • A community of writers: Our selective applications process means that you will be writing your novel in a peer group of 15 students working at a high level. We have developed a bespoke learning platform exclusively for our students. Here you can give and receive feedback, and discuss the week’s topics with your fellow students and tutors. Many of our former students have found their trusted readers with us – and form strong working friendships with classmates which go on long after the course is over.
  • Writing workshops: You'll get three dedicated workshops focused on an extract from your novel-in-progress offering in-depth written feedback from tutor and peer group. They are also designed to help develop your self-editing skills.
  • 1-to-1 tutorials: You'll get a 30-minute one-to-one tutorial with each tutor, during which you can address specific concerns about your writing.
  • Industry masterclass: Join a live Zoom session with a top UK literary agent or publisher, they will talk about writing, editing and the submissions process, drawing on their experience of real-life publication journeys. There will also be an opportunity to ask questions.
  • Alumni services: At the end of the course you'll be offered access to our exclusive alumni services (such as our full manuscript report, which will be available at a discount for three months after the course ends, discounted from £750 to £700 for a manuscript of up to 90,000 words – £35 extra for each additional 5,000 words). Read more about the opportunities available to our alumni here.
  • Help submitting to agents: We’re committed to helping you submit the novel you worked on with us to literary agents at Curtis Brown and C&W. Whenever you’re ready – no matter how long after your course – we want to hear from you.


  • Stage 1
    Chris Wakling: Mon 3 October - Fri 2 December
  • Stage 2
    Ayisha Malik: Mon 9 January - Fri 10 March
  • Stage 3
    Anna Freeman: Mon 17 April - Fri 23 June

Course Fees

The course fee of £1,500 (inc VAT) per student is payable, in full, by bank transfer or cheque, before the course begins. If you are unable to pay the full fee upfront, let us know and we can discuss a payment plan.

Ready to apply?

This course is suitable for anyone who is working seriously on a novel, irrespective of whether you’ve studied with us before. Former students of our three- or six-month Writing Your Novel courses (online or in London) will be given automatic entry to this course – on a first come, first served basis – on completing the application form. All applicants should already have produced at least 15,000 words of their first draft.

The CBC team will select applicants based on the quality of the writing sample provided. The deadline for applications is midnight, end of day Sun 11 September, and we will respond to applicants by Thurs 15 September.

We read all application material promptly after the closing date and make our selection of students swiftly at that time. However if you require an earlier response from us in order to be able to take part in this course, please email us with full details and we will consider and respond on a case by case basis.

Please upload your application via the form at the end of this page. If you encounter any problems during the application process, or have any more questions about the course, please email for assistance.