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08 March 2021

Meet Brooke Maddison, our HW Fisher novel-writing scholar

by Katie Smart Course News, From Our Students

We’re pleased to announce that Brooke Maddison has been awarded the HW Fisher Scholarship for Writers with Low Income for her novel-in-progress Adrift. Brooke has won a fully funded place on our three-month online Writing Your Novel course.

The CBC team were hooked by Brooke’s stylish prose and her powerful portrayal of the relationship between mother and son and the love story of two women connected by a dark past. We’re excited to have Brooke on board for our current online course and can’t wait to find out more about Adrift

Please could you tell us a bit about yourself and your novel-in-progress Adrift?

I’m a freelance writer and editor living on the unceded land of the Turrbal and Yuggera people in Brisbane, Australia. I live with my son, housemate and our budgies Pluto and Jupiter and our cat Pancakes. My creative nonfiction has been published in print and online, but writing a novel has always felt beyond my reach.

Adrift started life as a short story but I have been working on turning it into a novel for the past six months. I like to approach work thematically, and Adrift encompasses themes related to memory, trauma, family, and connection to place. It’s also about love and all the different forms that it comes in.

When I’m writing I feel most like my authentic self, and I can’t wait to continue developing my manuscript.

What does winning this scholarship place mean to you?

Winning the scholarship means so much to me, but it hasn’t quite sunk in yet. It means a lot to have my writing validated, especially after all the hard work I have put in and the rejections I have gotten along the way. Writing is such a solitary experience, and the opportunity cost of writing a novel is huge, so getting the chance to share my work with others is exciting.

I have been struggling with plotting and structuring a longer form manuscript, so working on this with experienced authors and getting their feedback will be priceless. I’m also really looking forward to workshopping alongside other writers. I am so thankful for this opportunity and I love the fact that this course is accessible enough that I can take part from Australia. 

The CBC team are hugely grateful to HW Fisher for their ongoing support of our courses through scholarships. HW Fisher are a top London chartered accountancy firm, their sponsorship of CBC started when Andrew Subramanium, a partner in HW Fisher’s media group, working with an impressive list of writers, musicians and artists, got talking to CBC’s MD Anna Davis. That first conversation, back in 2016, quickly led to the development of a scholarship programme that has funded two students per year ever since.

Many of our scholarship students have gone on the gain representation and become published authors, read about their successes here.

If you’re interested in free writing opportunities and want to study with us, check out The Breakthrough Writers’ Programme. This is our exciting programme of courses, mentoring and scholarships for under-represented writers, funded by Curtis Brown Literary Agency and partners.

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Writing a Romance Novel

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Writing Your Novel – Three Months

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