Creative Writing Weekend Classes

Every Saturday, we offer FREE creative writing workshops on a wide variety of topics, led by our wonderful teen writing instructors. Join a group of likeminded teens to explore poetry, fiction, memoir, slam poetry, songwriting, playwriting, and much more!

ENROLL NOW

Classes Start Feb 28, 2023

Program Info:

Course Contents

Introduction & Welcome

Once you have completed this lesson you will understand how the building blocks of this course work and how they can be used to make up stories. We also touch on how reading helps us as writers and how we can use what we have read in the past to build our own stories.

Getting to Know Your Character

In this lesson we look at how to build a character.

We start with the basics – describing your character in terms of appearance and personality – and then move on to adding a surprise twist or contradiction to make that character more interesting.

We also discuss ideas for naming your character and learn how to avoid the common problem of overwriting or over-describing.

By the end of the lesson, you will be able to write up a character description, so make sure you have a pen and paper handy.

Setting

In this lesson we consider where your story will take place. We work from the “bigger picture” setting to the more detailed ways in which we can describe a place. We also think about where the reader first meets your character and how this sets the mood of the story.

By the end of this lesson you will have a good understanding of where your story is set and how to describe it – considering aspects like time, place and mood or atmosphere.

Plot

Once you have completed this lesson you will understand the “witch’s hat” plot structure and will be able to identify these points in your own story as you plan it. This will help you with sequencing and pacing the events that happen in your story.

We will also look at some examples from other children’s books that give you an idea of how conflict is the driving force of plot.

Suspense

In this lesson we will learn about another strategy to keep your reader engaged and interested by avoiding long descriptions.

Conclusion

In this lesson we briefly review what we have learnt about building stories and consider the problem of getting writer’s block.

Here you will find some Story Starter ideas to fire up your imagination and tackle that problem.  While this lesson might be the end of the course, it is the beginning of your story-building adventures!

LEARNING GOALS:

  1. Students will learn the basic elements of fiction while creating ideas and content to fit these elements.
  2. Students will also learn the importance of creating dynamic characters, a plot line with rising and falling action and resolution (or intentional lack thereof) as well as proper details that will make themes obvious and relatable to readers.

SKILLS TAUGHT:

Creative Writing

Story Telling