Intermediate novel writing:getting to the end ADED2087E

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: Short Courses
  • Credits: 10
  • Level: Level 2 (SCQF level 8)
  • Typically Offered: Summer
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

Writing a novel can be a long process and the midway point can be challenging for writers. This course enables students to build on their previous experience to learn new techniques that can help them plan, write and edit their novel towards completion. Examples of novel structures, styles and synopses will be examined to identify further key techniques that can be applied to our own writing. Writing exercises will allow us to practise these techniques and share them for oral and written peer feedback. We will also reflect on our writing practices, creative decision-making and engagement with the novel form.


Block 4, Weeks 1-10

2 hours per week for 10 weeks

Saturday, 11.00-13.00

Requirements of Entry

While there are no prerequisite courses that need to be taken in advance, some prior experience of creative writing (such as familiarity with novel writing, a novel that is under development or drafted, plus some awareness of plot, characterisation and narrative perspective) and sharing work for peer-review feedback would be beneficial.

Excluded Courses





Practical Feedback sample: submission of editorial feedback for a fellow student on the course, including minor annotations and a short constructive commentary of up to 300 words tailored to the literary form. (10%).


Portfolio: submission of both novel extract (3,000 words) plus a synopsis (750 words) providing an outline of the same novel (75%)


Self-reflective essay: submission of a short self-reflective essay (1000 words) identifying the literary techniques and synopsis choices made by the student for their portfolio and their personal creative process during composition and redrafting (15%).

Course Aims

This course aims to

■ Provide students with the opportunity to study in greater depth the literary characteristics and conventions of the novel form, such as plot, characterisation and narrative perspective, as well as the process of planning, drafting and editing an in-development novel

■ Encourage students to further develop individual, creative approaches to writing a novel through practical writing exercises that enable them to apply more in-depth key techniques to their own writing

■ Further develop students' confidence in submitting their creative writing for peer and tutor feedback, including building their editorial skills through written and oral peer feedback

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

■ Identify in-depth key literary characteristics and conventions at work (such as plot, characterisation and narrative perspective) and demonstrate an understanding of key planning techniques through the composition of a synopsis for an in-development novel

■ Compose persuasive, artistically coherent and technically proficient written work that demonstrates key techniques in drafting and editing prose fiction in the novel form

■ Appraise and reflect upon their own creative process and that of others including offering written editorial feedback to other students

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.