What is the course about?
A structured overview of the skills involved in writing for children of various ages. You will also gain an up-to-date knowledge of publishing for children.
Students say: "Lots of brilliant advice from the tutor"; "The class atmosphere and group discussions were great"; "A well-structured approach to different topics"; "I liked the camaraderie, the breadth of the syllabus, and the opportunity to hear from each other"; "It sparked loads of new creative ideas."
The Tutor: Elizabeth Hawkins, over her career as a professional writer, has written a number of books for both adults and children. She initiated the Writing for Children courses at the Build and has many years experience as a tutor of writing classes and workshops.
Build reserves the right to change course tutors from those advertised in this outline. In line with our refund policy we are unable to grant a refund on the grounds of a change of tutor.
What will we cover?
The picture book format, writing picture book text, nursery rhymes, fairy tales, animals in fiction, books for young readers, chapter books for developing readers, fiction for the more confident readers, relevant child development and interests of children to the age of eleven. In addition we will examine the components of writing fiction for children, e.g. character, plot, dialogue as applied to all age groups. We will also consider writing for older children and young adults and look at the work of contemporary authors, including various genres such as thrillers, historical fiction and more. Students may intend to write for one particular age group, but may well find that, through the course, they are drawn to write for several age groups.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
- respond to, and assess, pieces of writing with sensitivity
- use various writing techniques through which your creativity can be expressed
- identify the variety of books available for children today
- promote your own work further (if desired).
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
Entry is open to all potential writers who can write fluent English.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
Talks, illustrated with contemporary children’s books
Class writing exercises
Group discussion and group work
Independent reading and writing projects outside class.
All writing courses at Build will involve an element of workshop. This means that students will produce work which will be discussed in an open and constructive environment with the tutor and other students. The college operates a policy of constructive criticism, and all feedback on another student’s work by the tutor and other students should be delivered in that spirit.
For classes longer than one day regular reading and writing exercises will be set for completion at home to set deadlines.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
Bring a notebook, paper and writing materials, enthusiasm and loads of persistence. A reading list will available from Build or online by the start of the course.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
Advanced workshop courses will be offered in the following academic term, so students with a work-in-progress can continue to receive in-depth feedback on their work.
All students are invited to join us at Late Lines, our regular performance night for Build writers. Students are also encouraged to submit their work to Between the Lines, our annual anthology of creative writing. For the latest news, courses and events, stay in touch with the Department on and Twitter.
General information and advice on courses at Build is available from the Student Centre and Library on Monday to Friday from 12:00 – 19:00.
See the course guide for term dates and further details