Writing A Novel (Evening)

Advanced | Fiction
A comprehensive six-month writing course for the serious writer, with access to some of the biggest names in publishing. If you're thinking about a creative writing MA, consider this practical alternative
The structure and support you need to write the first draft of your novel – plus a whole lot of smart people to talk to

Benefit from the structure of regular workshops covering everything from the first conception of an idea through to getting words on a page, narrative structure and style and re-writing

Learn from our experienced Course Directors, as well as guest tutors including top authors from Faber and elsewhere, plus editors, agents and industry professionals -- and, of course, the 14 other dedicated writers in your class

One to ones – personalised attention to your project from your tutor

Get it done. This is a flexible alternative to a creative writing MA, designed for people who might be considering a career and who are prepared to engage fully in the hard work involved. Apart from the workshops, you will be devoting as much time as possible between classes to writing, and then you will have the chance to present your work to your class of fifteen committed novelists and get their feedback

Start your career. There is no better way to get going on the road to publication than to meet the people who make that happen every day. Hear talks from Faber's publishing directors and sales managers, then read to a room of London's top agents once the course is over – unrivalled access to those who know

Get in touch, or see below to find out more.

What happens on the Agents Reading day? Watch the video below to find out!

'It was hard work. But I not only completed my novel, I also learned how to navigate the choppy waters of the publishing world. I will be forever grateful for the experience.'
SJ Watson, author of Before I Go To Sleep

Applying for Writing A Novel

Places on this course are limited and keenly contested, so you'll need to apply. Luckily, it's very easy.

Reading your application, tutors are looking to get a sense of you as a writer and as a member of the group. That's why there are two parts to your application: a prose sample and a cover letter. Your prose sample should be 1000 words (maximum), and should be representative of your voice: if you're planning on writing first-person comic sci-fi on the course, don't send your omnisciently narrated historical mystery! Your sample does not have to be a complete story, and it does not have to be from the novel you want to write on the course – just representative, so the tutors can get a good idea of what you'll be working on. The cover letter, well, we keep that quite vague – tell us what you want to get out of the course, what sort of writing experience you've had, why you've chosen us, why you've decided to do it now.

There's more information here.

Once you've got those documents ready, click 'Apply Now' below. You'll need to create an account, and then you'll be asked to upload your documents. You can edit and alter your application right up until the moment we pass them on to the tutors by logging into your account.

Alternatively, you can email your application documents to academy@faber.co.uk.

If the application deadline has passed and you've only just found out about the course, don't worry. You can still send through your documents by emailing academy@faber.co.uk. There's always a chance that people will drop out at the last minute. What's more, the next iteration of the course is never far away.

For more information, message us or call 0207 927 3827.

Click for more info

This course consists of 22 two-hour evening sessions and 6 full-day sessions. All evening sessions will take place on Wednesdays from 7pm-9pm. Full-day sessions will take place on Saturdays from 10am–5pm. There will be one-to-ones in the morning of Saturday sessions (sessions 18 and 23).

Please note: There is a Christmas break between sessions 15 and 16.


Session 1—3 October Introductory Session

Session 2—10 October Creating Ideas/Planning

Session 3—Saturday 13 October 10am-5pm 'Capture a character'

Session 4—17 October Character

Session 5—24 October Point of View

Session 6—31 October Guest Tutor: Harriet Cummings

Session 7—7 November Voice

Session 8—Saturday 10 November 10am–1pm Workshops. 2pm–4pm Guest Tutor: Ali Smith. 4pm–5pm Debrief

Session 9—14 November Dialogue

Session 10—21 November Story vs Plot

Session 11—28 November Conflict

Session 12—5 December The role of the narrator

Session 13—Saturday 8 December 10am-5pm Workshops and Guest Tutor

Session 14—12 December Guest tutor

Session 15—19 December Conclusion of Phase 1

—Christmas Break—

Session 16—9 January The Passage of Time

Session 17—16 January Pace

Session 18—Saturday 19 January One to ones in the morning, workshops in the afternoon

Session 19—23 January Guest tutor: Faber & Faber CEO, Stephen Page

Session 20—30 January Setting

Session 21—6 February Guest tutor: An editor from Faber & Faber

Session 22—13 February Research and Exposition

Session 23—Saturday 16 February One to ones in the morning, workshops in the afternoon

Session 24—20 February Life writing

Session 25—27 February Editing

Session 26—Saturday 2 March 10am-5pm Selling your novel; synopses, pitches

Session 27—6 March Agent Q&A

Session 28—13 March Round-up sessions, next steps

Anthology Reading Days—19/06/2019, 20/06/2019—An unrivalled opportunity to present your work in front of up to thirty London literary agents – and a couple of editors, too!

Faber Academy scholarship

The Faber Academy scholarship affords two writers a year the opportunity to join Writing A Novel for free. The aim of the scholarship is to surface the voices of low-income people, voices that might otherwise go unheard. For more information about the Faber Academy scholarship and how to apply, CLICK HERE.

3rd October 2018 - 13th March 2019

Availability: In stock

4 Places

Applications for this course are no longer possible. Please contact us for further information.


Joanna Briscoe is the author of the novels Mothers and Other Lovers, which won the Betty Trask Award;<...


Richard T Kelly is the author of three novels published by Faber and Faber: Crusaders (2008, ‘a magnificent state of the nation epic’ – F...


Sarah May is the highly-acclaimed author of 7 novels, including The Nudist Colony, which was short-listed for the Guardian First Book Awar...


Richard Skinner is a novelist, poet and critic. His most recent book, The Mirror, was described as ‘beautifully written . . . immersive . ....



Come to one of the world's great literary cities and study creative writing at Faber Academy's home in historic Bloomsbury. Our London courses take place at Faber and Faber's offices.

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