The Art of the Novel

Course code ENGL6005
Not available in 2016


This course offers advanced training in fiction writing for students aiming to write their first novel. Through a study of exemplary texts and their own work, students explore narrative options available in the writing of sustained fiction. Students will also learn to revise their chapters in the quest for the finished novel.


Not currently available.

Learning Outcomes

1. Demonstrate understanding of the art and form of the novel;

2. Demonstrate detailed understanding of the techniques of major writers;

3. Demonstrate advanced skills in written communication and in creative practice;

4. Critically analyse works of fiction at an advanced level.


Writing a novel entails a marathon process, from the inchoate idea to the final draft. Attention must be paid to all elements of fiction, but some aspects must be emphasized, depending on the shape the novel takes. Students explore what narrative strategies are most suited to their project. Through exemplary texts, they learn the skills and techniques involved in writing a sustained work of fiction. They will attend to larger issues like theme, structure, voice and style, besides working on basic features such as plot and character. They will learn to shape their work through drafts in workshops and through consultation with the tutor.Particular attention will be paid to:

  • Developing the initial idea
  • Narrative strategies such as plot, setting and characterization
  • Larger issues like theme, structure, voice and style
  • Chapter coherence
  • Revising and editing.

Assessment Items

Portfolio: Creative writing portfolio

Essay: Critical essay

Contact Hours