Date: July 16, 2024

Time: 6.30pm - 8.30pm

Duration: 6 weeks

Level: Beginner | Emerging |

Cost: €165 (€150 Members)

This course will take place online on Tuesdays for six weeks

Course Summary:

The class will not take place on Tuesday 30 July. The course will finish on Tuesday 27th August 2024

Focusing on the key aspects of fiction writing, over six weeks, we will explore ways to create intriguing characters and situations, as well as how to use dialogue effectively. We will  consider the importance of point of view and how vital conflict it is in our stories. As Flannery O’Connor famously said: “If nothing happens, it’s not a story!” With the aid of writing prompts, participants will have the chance to put into practice what they have learned and will receive feedback on their work in a fun and supportive environment.

Course Outline:

You will begin your course with a discussion on the short story. What exactly is it? How does it differ from other forms such as flash fiction, the personal essay or the novel.

From there participants will move on to using picture prompts to generate ideas for stories. Beginning our journey with paintings by Scottish artist Jack Vettriano we will brainstorm the “Who? What? When? Where? And How?” of good fiction. You will discuss how to create unforgettable characters and dynamic situations as well as exploring the importance of point of view, dialogue, conflict and setting. Students will read examples of and then try their own hand at writing short pieces with individual exercises focusing on each aspect of writing.

With these skills practised and finessed in the first four weeks, participants will then have the opportunity to write and submit a short story of up to 1,800 words for discussion in the final two weeks of the course. You will receive both group and facilitator feedback on how to improve your work.

Course Outcomes:

By the end of the course participants will have completed set writing exercises to hone their skills in each aspect of fiction writing. Through a mix of teaching, practise and production, they will have gained an understanding of how fiction works and which mistakes to avoid. Each participant will also have completed several short writing exercises and a complete short story.

Tanya Farrelly is the author of four books: two short fiction collections: When Black Dogs Sing (Kate O’ Brien Award 2017) and Nobody Needs To Know. (Arlen House, 2021), and two psychological thrillers: The Girl Behind the Lens and When Your Eyes Close (Harper Collins) She holds a PhD in Creative and Critical Writing from Bangor University, Wales and was appointed Writer-in-Residence at NUI Galway in 2021. Tanya is a recipient of an Arts Council Agility Award and is currently working on a new novel. 

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