Thursday, 14 July 2011

Writing Fiction That Sells

OK, folks, your last chance to hear it from the horse’s mouth – for a while, anyway.  I’m cutting back on my teaching commitments next year (apart from a one day Writing Romance course in York), so this September will be my last time at the Watermill at Posara in Tuscany. 

For one gorgeous week in the Tuscan sun we’ll be talking about Writing Fiction That Sells.  For some people, writing creatively is enough, but if you want your story to be published and sold around the world, and would like a week with like-minded people in beautiful surroundings, this is the course for you!

Anyone who’s ever tried to write knows that it can be a tough and at times lonely business … but not at the beautiful Watermill in Posara, in the heart of Lunigiana in the north-west of Tuscany. Spend a week learning about the key elements of writing  commercial fiction under a vine-laden pergola, and I promise you it won’t seem nearly as difficult! There’s something about being with a group of like-minded people, who all love reading and writing, with no deadlines except when the next wonderful meal is going to appear, and no distractions but the sound of the river and the clang of the church bell in the village …
Stories come alive when you’re able to spark ideas off each other, so we’ll do a mixture of discussion, group work and working on your own.  It doesn’t matter if you’re still wondering how to go about writing a story, are halfway through a manuscript or ready to submit it … or, like me, have written over 50 books, there’s still something to learn – but the atmosphere at the Watermill is so relaxed that somehow it doesn’t feel like working at all.

The course will be tailored to individual participants, so while we can obviously consider romance the techniques we’ll be examining – hooks, tension, character, dialogue, plot and so on – are common to all forms of popular fiction. We’ll also be looking at the entire process of writing, from a glimmer of an idea (“Where do you get your ideas from?”) to polishing a manuscript for submission and selling your story." 

I taught this course over eight weeks earlier this year and these were some of the comments

“Informative and inspirational”

“addressed areas and topics that other courses didn’t touch on … very enlightening.”

“Engaging and stimulating”

“Absolutely excellent course run by an enthusiastic and stimulating tutor.  It has proved incredibly useful for my writing and future plans. A++++!”

The price includes a day in beautiful Lucca
The course will run from Saturday 24 September to Saturday 1 October and there are, I understand, a couple of rooms left.  So what are you waiting for?

For details, please visit the Watermill at Posara or see my website.  See you in Tuscany??


  1. oh how i wish i could.... once i am published (October) i want to learn MORE. Well i want to learn more now really, but this week is not feasible. maybe a visit to friends in York is called for?

  2. I'm still learning, Raven ... in fact, the more I write, the more I realise how much there is to learn.

    Shame you can't make Tuscany, but keep an eye out for news of the one day course in York - it'll be part of the University of York's Lifelong Learning curriculum, but I'll flag it up here too.