Seven Ways to Improve Your Story

8th February 2022 7:00pm to 8:30pm, Online

Critically acclaimed author William Ryan identifies and explains seven ways to improve your fiction in a fun and fast-paced masterclass that will change your fiction for the better in only 90 minutes.

  • How to start a scene and how to end it

  • How creating a dramatic world to contain your characters can help develop a focussed story

  • How to build physical and social settings for your novel to take place in

  • The importance of conflict and how to use it to create dramatic tension

  • Understanding how shifts in the control of a conversation can improve dialogue

  • The importance of hidden subtexts in character interactions and how this can add depth and complexity to your story

  • How to convey information about characters and place without slowing down your writing

A recording of the full masterclass will also be available to share with attendees.

 

Testimonials from W&A writing courses led by William Ryan

'Taking Bill Ryan’s novel course was one of the best decisions I have made as a writer. His classes combined useful lessons on crafting a novel in all its component parts with the close reading of each writer’s text. His insightful critique of my prose cut to the heart of what did and did not work in the scene, and his kind encouragement left me motivated to keep pushing myself to grow as a writer. All this while creating a warm and welcoming atmosphere where students felt confident to share their work.' Tammye Huf, author of A More Perfect Union (Myriad Editions)

'Bill gently teases the story out, with the sort of questions readers would ask. He helps writers understand that every sentence is important, that every conversation must add to the overall narrative arc, and that there is no valid ‘filler’. His feedback plus the feedback of others on the course, was invaluable for getting outside the writer’s point of view and into the reader’s.' Michele Kirsch, author of Clean (Short Books), winner of the RSL Christopher Bland Prize

'I was very impressed with the amount of work Bill put in, and the overall standard of work was very high indeed. It was a good catalyst for getting people writing, and the criticism from other students was, in the main, helpful.' Liz Newman

'[T]his was superb. One of the best writing courses I've been on.'  Wassim

'Thank you for a useful and inspiring course. The weeks flew. I feel I’ve improved as a writer and also as a reader; I find I’m looking for the ‘strings’ when I’m reading published novels now, and marvelling when an author has hidden them well. The tutor was encouraging, as were the other writers on the course. Some of us are keeping in touch to give continued feedback on one another’s work.' Marie Kreft

'This was my first course on creative writing and I feel like a whole new world has opened up for me. I can now see so many more ways to improve my writing. Now I just need to put them into practice. Bill was patient and encouraging for those who needed support to boost their confidence. He created an environment that urged improvement in a comfortable way. Thank you!' Beth Rehman

'This was the first online course I’ve taken. I didn’t really know what to expect, but I was delighted. I learned so much from Bill’s feedback in the workshops – not just with me but also with the other participants. And I gained a lot too from exchanging feedback with my fellow course participants. I don’t hesitate to recommend the course to anyone with a first novel in progress.' John Nixon

'I have been on courses before, but haven’t experienced such a solid, useful mix of the tools of the trade and feedback. Inspiring, practical, enjoyable.' Clare Palmer

'Bill gave very detailed feedback, sometimes quite challenging. He made a real effort to balance criticism with encouragement – not easy […] There was a real sense of progress, especially in the last couple of weeks where everyone seemed to have raised their game. […] Insightful. Challenging. Encouraging.' Stuart Blake

 

Speaker profiles
William Ryan

William Ryan has written six historical novels which have been shortlisted for numerous awards, including the Theakstons Crime Novel of the Year, The Kerry Group Irish Fiction Award, the HWA Gold Crown for Historical Fiction, the Crime Writers Association’s Steel, Historical and New Blood Daggers and the Irish Crime Novel of the Year (four times). William has previously taught creative writing at City, University of London and at the University of East Anglia as well as being the author of the Writers & Artists Guide to How to Write. His latest novel, The Winter Guest, was published in January 2021 by Bonnier Zaffre.

Booking & payment

The workshop fee of £30 (incl. VAT) is payable in full online.

This is a live online event which will be presented using video conferencing software. Joining instructions and full guidance will be provided by the W&A Team a week before the event start-date.

Event materials will be made available to attendees for a time-limited period after the event at the speaker's discretion.

Please note that payment instalment plans are available for all W&A events, writing courses and editing services. Contact W&A Admin on writersandartists@bloomsbury.com so that we can find a payment schedule that works for you.

Accessible to All

It’s of real importance to Writers & Artists that our events and courses remain accessible to all.

  • Writers & Artists has made up to five bursary places available for this event as part of our accessibility scheme. Please visit our bursaries page for further information about how to apply. All bursary applications must have been submitted for consideration by Wednesday 23rd March 
  • At the speaker's  discretion, event materials will be made available to attendees after the masterclass.
  • A link to a recording of the masterclass will be circulated after the event. This will be made available to event attendees only, and for a time-limited period.
  • This event will include written text and visuals. Please contact us in advance so that we can make arrangements to be sure all documents appear in a format that works for you.
  • If you’d like to attend but have any questions or concerns regarding accessibility, then please email AccessWA@bloomsbury.com

Location

Online
Tags

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