Writing for Children and Young Adults: Course Content

Week One

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


Welcome and course outline

Starting out as a writer

Creating time and space for your writing

Writers block

Week Two

We’ll examine where writers get their ideas from and how they turn these into stories. We’ll also look at how important it is to edit and revise your work and the need for writers to engage in planning and create outlines.


Where do ideas come from?

The importance of editing and revision


Assignment 1: Spectacular story starters – Making a mystery

Week Three

Research plays an important role in certain types of stories, such as historical fiction, but also in creating realistic settings for your stories. This is also an important element to consider when writing for children and young adults. We’ll also look at some of the most common elements of children’s stories.


The importance of research

Writing for children and young adults

Week Four

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


Naming your characters

Dynamic dialogue


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.


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.

In the writing for children course 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.


Submitting your work

Cover letter


Rejection letter

Dealing with rejection


Assignment 6: Hooking the reader