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Novel Writing

This class begins with the importance of separating the process of writing a novel from the novel as a product to critique and edit. It covers the basic elements and vocabulary for talking about novels–things such as the uses of description, finding where you stand as you tell your story (A.K.A. Point of View), writing strong dialogue, pacing, building scenes, and working with the logistics of physical action and group scenes. The class spends time on issues like how to sustain interest for the writer as well as the reader; how to make a place in a life for writing a novel; what novels can do that film can’t; whether you should outline; and if you do, when to do it; among many other topics. Class sessions include in-class writing exercises and discussion as well as brief mini-lectures and critiquing of student work. There is a progression of homework assignments that gives new novelists a good start on a manuscript. In fact, any student who does all the in-class writings and homework assignments is likely to have a substantial number of new pages written by the end of the course.  At the same time, the class also explores how to organize and revise manuscripts for those with projects underway. The course may be repeated for those with drafts and substantial parts of drafts. There are always assignments, but students may substitute work-in-progress if they choose. The instructor will respond to a fair sample of pages from each student with holistic and specific suggestions.
Registering at least three weeks prior to the course start date is highly recommended.
This course may be used to fulfill the requirements of the Certificate in Storytelling. It may be taken to pursue the certificate, or as a standalone course. Questions? Contact us at The Center for Publishing and Applied Liberal Arts: Email sps.pala.ce@nyu.edu or call 212-998-7289.

More details

You'll Walk Away with

  • Instructor critiques of your writing
  • Knowledge of the editing and publishing process

Ideal for

  • Writers of all levels
  • Writers interested in getting published

1 section

  • Fall 2024

    • Section

    • Semester

      Fall 2024
    • Date

      Sep 18 - Nov 20
    • Day

    • Time

      • Online
    • Format

      • Online
    • Sessions

    • Location

      Instructor Led