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Writing Historical Fiction: Course Content

Week One

We begin with a look at ways to get started as a writer and get organized in order to pursue your writing to its full potential. We’ll also cover some of the ways you can spark your creativity and stay motivated with your writing.

Readings

Welcome and course outline

Starting out as a writer

Creating time and space for your writing

Writers block

Week Two

We examine the nature of historical fiction, popular time periods for stories, and some of the different eras that history is divided into. We’ll also look at the importance of editing and revising your work and the need for planning and outlines.

Readings

What is historical fiction?

The importance of editing and revisio

Assignments

Assignment 1: People and Places

Week Three

Research plays an important role in historical fiction. You need to get all the facts correct and also create a realistic setting for the reader. We take a look at why research is important to historical fiction and things to consider when choosing a setting for your story.

Readings

The importance of research

Historical eras

Choosing a setting

Week Four

Explore the many methods of creating strong characters, including names and personality features that make them more realistic and believable. We also examine ways to create dialogue that makes your characters come to life.

Readings

Naming your characters

Dynamic dialogue

Assignments

Assignment 2: Creating Characters

Assignment 3: Dynamic Dialogue – Bringing Characters to Life

Week Five

Create a story based on your impression of a picture. Also learn how to create a short, yet compelling, back cover synopsis for your story.

Assignments

Assignment 4: Every picture tells a story – Ideas from pictures

Assignment 5: Back covers

Week Six

Compose the first attention-grabbing chapter of your story to really hook the reader and make them wish to continue reading.

Using the story idea generated from Assignment 4, learn how to create a short, yet compelling back cover synopsis for your story. You’ll also compose the first attention-grabbing chapter of your story to really hook the reader and make them wish to continue reading.

We’ll also be discussing the publishing world, how to research publishing houses, cover letters, synopses and sample chapters, and ways to promote yourself as an author, once your book is published.

Readings

Submitting your work

Cover letter

Synopsis

Rejection letter

Dealing with rejection

Assignments

Assignment 6: Hooking the reader

 

 

 

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