Creative Writing Courses
Roderic Grigson has been running successful and popular creative writing courses both online and in a classroom setting for several years.
Here he details the course curricula and what attendees can expect from each…
About the courses...
Creative writing classes are great primers to kick-start your writing. It certainly helped me to get started.
Studying the craft of writing is essential as there are many techniques and skills that need to be learned when you write not just for yourself.
Learning the ways of taking an idea and building the story, creating conflict and suspense, how and when to use dialogue or description, ways to keep the reader focused on the theme, are all things that you should learn.
To help writers get started, I run an online Introduction to Creative Writing course for beginners followed by an Advanced Creative Writing course.
Recently I have developed a Memoir and Family History Writing course called Writing Your Life.
In this new course, you will explore the art and craft of memoir and are given guidance in the process of imposing a narrative framework on experiences, memories, and emotions. By the end, participants will have greater clarity on how to create a compelling memoir.
I will also teach you about a new writing genre called Creative or Dramatic Nonfiction which is the relating of factual information in a manner that makes it as gripping as fiction. Using the techniques and guidelines in fiction writing, writers in this genre are able to create nonfiction works that rise to the level of great literature without sacrificing credibility.
Details of each course are listed below.
Introduction to Creative Writing (8-sessions)
Session 1 – Understanding why you write and using experience and observation to begin your writing journey.
Session 2 – Evoking a Vivid Sense of Place and Time. Show don’t Tell and Freewriting techniques.
Session 3 – How to Structure a Story’s Outline, finding your Voice & Style, and Understanding Viewpoint.
Session 4 – The basic elements to a story – Plot, Structure and Theme
Session 5 – Creating a Sense of Place. Creating Conflict & Suspense. Creating Characters & Writing Dialogue
Session 6 – Bringing the reader into the story and delivering an answer at the end.
Session 7 – Transforming your draft into a finished, polished narrative.
Session 8 – A new definition of writing success. Includes Writers Resources and Publishing.
The introductory course is 8-weeks long. I will send you each week, a presentation in PDF format, with notes and exercises, for you to complete. You will need a minimum of 2-hours each week to go through the presentation and read the notes, more if you do the exercises diligently.
I also have a more Advanced Creative Writing course for those who want to delve deeper.
Advanced Creative Writing (8-sessions)
Session 1 – From Where You Dream – The Emotional Craft of Fiction.
Session 2 – Writing Dialogue – Letting Your Characters Talk!
Session 3 – Writing Active Hooks – Taking an overlooked technique and using it to guide your reader deeper into your book.
Session 4 – Hook Placement – There are several places in your manuscript where you’ll want to pay particular attention.
Session 5 – Word Painting – The Way to a Readers Heart.
Session 6 – The Eye of the Teller – the Many Layers of Emotion.
Session 7 – Writing Compelling Fiction – Polishing your writing style and picking up the pace of a story you’ve already written.
Session 8 – Putting it all Together.
I suggest fortnightly breaks between sessions for the Advanced course as there is much more to absorb, and the exercises require more effort. I urge you to complete all the exercises as they are designed to move you forward in your development.
I am available on the phone, or by email, to answer any questions you may have. We can also arrange a specific time each week to talk about your progress (or not). I found this very useful when I was doing my writing course many years ago.
Writing Your Life - Memoir & Family History Writing (8-sessions)
This online course is suitable for writers that want to:
- structure a memoir for publication
- write a memoir for family and friends
- explore life experiences as material to write Autobiographical Fiction
- use writing as a therapeutic process
Did you know that the #1 thing that baby boomers want to do in retirement is write a book about themselves? It's not that every person has lived such a unique or dramatic life, but we inherently understand that writing a memoir—whether it's a book, blog, or just a letter to a child is the single greatest path to self‐examination.
In this course, you will explore the art and craft of memoir and are given guidance in the process of imposing a narrative framework on experiences, memories, and emotions.
Session 1 – Autobiographies, Biographies, and Memoirs – Explore the art and craft of memoir and learn the process of imposing a narrative framework on experiences, memories and emotions.
Session 2 – Structure – How to impose a structure on your memoir writing project.
Session 3 – Truth and Memory – How to Tell the Truth while writing a memoir
Session 4 – The Real People in Your Life – Looking at people in your life with clarity, understanding and as much objectivity as you can muster.
Session 5 – Writing Your Family History – To give you the tools to present the answers to those questions by telling the story of your ancestors’ lives in an accessible and interesting manner.
Session 6 – Handling the Truth – Why research is important to your memoir.
Session 7 – Creative Nonfiction – How to employ creative writing techniques of literature, such as poetry and fiction, to retell a true story.
Session 8 – Writing Dramatic Nonfiction – What makes fiction a powerful art form is also adaptable to nonfiction.
I am available on the phone, or by email, to answer any questions you may have. We can also arrange a specific time each week to talk about your progress.
“I previously attended a creative writing course some time ago, but it left me feeling unfinished and wanting more. This course under the guidance of Roderic Grigson was crisp and refreshing, covering methods of writing I had never considered. Each week Rod covered a new topic, from descriptions to hooks, to dialogue and painting words; always with the emphasis of using one’s own writing voice. This gave me the confidence to try new techniques and my writing has become far more professional. I would definitely recommend this course to anyone who would love to write and wants to write but doesn’t know how to start.”
"I recently attended the Writing Your Life - Memoir & Family History course under Rod’s direction and acquired a vast knowledge with a view to writing my memoirs - a goal I wish to achieve in the coming months. After attending all of Rod's writing courses mentioned above, I can recommend to those who decide to attend that you will have your writing appetites whetted in a very satiable manner with the skills and understanding you would gain under his guidance."
"After being told as a teen that writing was a hobby and could never be a job, I lost the passion to write. This passion was re-instilled upon attending Rod's "Writing Your Life" course recently. Rod equipped me with the tools, vision, skills, and most importantly the inspiration and belief in myself to tackle my own memoir, which is now my absolute passion project. I highly recommend any aspiring writer attend this course as under Rod's guidance, you can and will achieve your goals."