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There are 8 lessons in this course:

1.         Scope and Nature of Fiction

•        Elements

•        Types of Fiction (Category/genre and Mainstream)

•        Characteristics of Category Fiction (strong plot, hero/heroine, motivation. Action, background/setting)

•        Characteristics of Mainstream Fiction (Strong plot, Action or intrigue, hero, heroine, romance, happy ending)

•        Book, play or short story

•        Categories (Fantasy, fairy tale, fable, myth, legend, science fiction, western, drama, romance, comedy, horror, crime, suspense, erotica)

•        Getting an Idea (using a fragment, philosophical approach, develop from a title or opening sentence)

•        Back story

•        Types of writing

•        Theme development

•        Write an Analogy

•        Writing a Balanced Theme

•        Are You Suited to Writing Fiction ; Imagination, Being Informed, Human Behaviour

•        Importance of Focus

2.         Components of a Story

•        Story Components

•        Story Structure

•        Theme

•        Plot

•        Characterisation

•        Settings

•        Developing your own Style

•        Aspects of Style.

•        Case Study

3.         Technique

•        Conception (Characters, Settings, Events)

•        Write a Synopsis

•        Developing a Story

•        Examples of Plot Structure

•        Method Writing (Developing characters, changing characters, Appropriateness of

          characters, Revealing characters through crisis, names, stereotypes, creating dynamic characters)

•        Writing a Draft

•        Editing and Rewriting.

4.         Conception and Research

•        Conceiving a Story

•        Parts of Conception

•        Making conception original

•        Types of research (Primary and secondary data)

•        Planning a formal survey

5.         Drama

•        Writing a Dramatic Story

•        Common mistakes

•        Time Shifting

•        Transition between events

•        Dramatic conflict

•        Motivation

•        Dialogue

•        Point of View.

•        Representing Characters Speech

6.         Fantasy

•        Science Fiction

•        Methods to develop Sci Fi

•        Fairy Tales.

7.         The Short Story

•        Characteristics of Short Stories.

•        Length in terms of: the time frame; the number of characters; the number of events; the number of settings

•        Common Problems with Short story Writers

8.         The Novel

•        Guidelines

•        Planning a Novel

•        Making a story Endure (Archetypes, etc)

•        Tips

•        Getting Started

•        Submitting a Manuscript.

•        Which Publisher


Each lesson culminates in an assignment which is submitted to the school, marked by the school's tutors and returned to you with any relevant suggestions, comments, and if necessary, extra reading.

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