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What is a Creative Writing Course?

With the right creative writing tips, you will be able to master all the essentials

There are many definitions of what a creative writing course is depending on what the course is aiming to teach you. Some courses will include details on how you can become a freelance writer earning money for your work, either full or part-time. Other courses will concentrate on improving your writing with no regard to whether the writing is to be considered for publication or not. Most creative writing courses will include advice on how to write fiction, non-fiction and poetry.

So, when you are choosing a creative writing course you should first find out what the aim of the course is.

All creative writing courses should cover the fundamentals of writing such as:

  • deciding where and when to write
  • how to start your writing
  • writer’s block and how to overcome it
  • developing your imagination
  • the benefits of reading widely
  • how to develop your powers of observation
  • personal qualities such as perseverance, determination, self-organisation, resilience and confidence
  • getting the basics right
  • rules to develop a good style and avoiding common mistakes.


Most courses that are aimed at simply helping you develop your writing skills for pleasure only may stop at that. If you need a course that will help you become a published writer it should also contain advice on the following:

  • developing your writers craft – finding original titles, writing opening paragraphs that catch the editors attention, planning the main body, checking facts, revision of work and carrying out research

  • techniques for selling your writing – including where and how to find markets and analysis of the markets

  • presenting your work – including layout, cover sheets, submitting your work electronically and query letters to editors

  • legal considerations – including libel, copyright, plagiarism

  • considering whether you need an agent and how to get one.


What Will be Covered in The Course?

Again, it depends on what kind of course you choose to study. Some may only contain advice on fiction writing, some cover fiction and non-fiction, others include poetry and so on. The different types of writing your might like to try your hand at include:

  • readers’ letters
  • fillers
  • articles – including travel, women’s and men’s magazines, trade, hobbies and general interest
  • writing for children’s publication
  • humour
  • religious and inspirational writing
  • reviews
  • non-fiction books
  • novels
  • short stories
  • writing for radio, TV and the stage
  • poems
  • biographies, family histories and memoirs
  • writing for competitions


If you want to find out more about creative writing request a Writers Bureau Comprehensive Creative Writing course prospectus.


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Theresa Gooda Writers Bureau's Student of the Year 2021

“I began my first Writers Bureau course (Comprehensive Creative Writing) in 2007. Having more than covered the course fees from published pieces I have never looked back. Initially my ambitions were to get going. I knew I wanted to be a writer, I just didn’t know how to go about it, or, if I’m honest, quite what I wanted to write. Since, I have gradually blended a teaching career with writing, first with articles and short stories, then increasing the writing commitment dramatically when I secured an agent in 2016 to ghostwrite a series of memoirs. This year I have undertaken The Art of Writing Poetry course to really hone my skills in what I now realise is a genre I love - and have already had my first poems published.”

Theresa Gooda - Writers Bureau Student of the Year 2021

Read Theresa's full story


Institute of Training and Occupational Learning

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