Compelling story writing – plot and character with Greg Mosse

Creative writing and publishing

Ref: SWE12164

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About this course

An enjoyable and varied weekend course for beginners and more experienced writers – all who want to develop a clear sense of how characters drive the plot and how the plot reveals character.

Course Description

The goal of this creative weekend course is to help you to make objective, writerly judgements about planning and developing plot and character. Some of the key points are:

• A story is a sequence of imaginary events.

• However interesting the events, readers need characters to get them involved in the story.

• How a gripping plot is driven by convincing characters.

• The events of the story happen because of what the characters are like.

• How characters react to events in their story reveals what the characters are like.

• How in each scene, the author must be aware of whether they are trying:

o to show more about each character (depth) or

o to show characters changing and growing (progression).

With a careful mixture of teacher-led discussion, individual study and collaborative writing, the course uses a variety of visual stimuli, including paintings, plenty of question-and-answer opportunities and lots of professional advice. To provide private writing time, one of the Saturday afternoon sessions is replaced by an extra, after-dinner session on Saturday evening. (Non-resident students may wish to book dinner on Saturday night to accommodate this session.)

Participants may like to consider attending the two optional companion courses on Compelling story writing on Where, When, Dialogue and Description (December 9-11) and Creating a whole novel (17-19 February 2023).


Arrival Day - this is the first date listed above

Courses start early evening. Residential students to arrive from 4pm, non-residential students to arrive by 6.45pm.

6.45pm: Welcome, followed by dinner (included).

8 - 9pm: First teaching session, attendance is essential.

Daily timetable

Classes 9.15 - 5pm, lunch is included.

From 6.30pm: Dinner (included for residential students).

Evening working - students may have access to workshops until 9pm, but only with their tutor's permission and provided any health and safety guidelines are observed.

Last day

Classes 9.15am - 3pm, lunch is included.

Residential students are to vacate their rooms by 10am please.

(This timetable is for courses of more than one day in length. The tutor may make slight variations)

Course Materials


  • On this course the tutor will supply any required teaching materials.

What students need to bring

  • A notebook/pen or laptop computer.



Residential option available. Find out accommodation costs and how to book here.

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