We blogged about the latest developments in the Curtis Brown Creative and Kobo Jeffrey Archer Short Story Challenge back in April, when Lord Archer announced the three finalists at the London Book Fair. The challenge, as you’ll no doubt remember, was to write a story that had a full narrative arc – ie, it should have a beginning, a middle and an end – and be no more than 100 words in length (excluding the title).
Well, that triumvirate – selected from around 1,000 entries – have been waiting anxiously ever since to hear which of them had been awarded a free place on Curtis Brown Creative’s inaugural online novel-writing course this autumn. All were given the opportunity to send the opening 3,000 words and a one-page synopsis of their novel-in-progress to Curtis Brown book agents, and all received a detailed written report on their work.
All three submissions were excellent. Step forward, though, Robert Maslen, whose application and book – provisionally titled The Kurokama Silversmith – was, we felt, the strongest. Robert will be joining 14 other students (all chosen for their writing ability) on our first-ever online novel-writing course, to run between September and December this year. Taught by acclaimed tutor and author Christopher Wakling, the course is a great opportunity for those who might find it difficult to attend Curtis Brown Creative’s London-based creative-writing school.
Here’s another chance to enjoy the 100-word story that gained Robert his place.
Never date a ventriloquist, I mean never.
Okay, first couple of weeks, there’s a novelty. Soup complains to the waiter, the dog squatting in the park asks for Sports Illustrated. Funny.
And bed, voices from every which way, like banging the Cleveland Browns. I had worse.
But it wears thin. Then at Uncle Arty’s funeral, he does the little voice coming out of the box. And pandemonium. That did it.
Ventriloquists? Trust me, steer clear.
New guy? Fixes high voltage cables wearing chain mail, way up, half a mile or something. Guy like that, you know where you are.
As well as expert teaching from published authors, all our novel-writing courses offer dedicated modules on submitting your novel to literary agents – and include sessions on writing a synopsis and preparing a covering letter. Click for more information or to apply for our creative writing courses.