Starts Monday 3 February 2020

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ (see reviews)

"I loved this course. It helped me unpack my main character, see the true depth of my character and helped inform the shape of my novel. Writers' HQ courses have really impressed me. They're fun, easy to walk through, and have made my writing much, much better."
Emma Basu


Create characters who are original, real and memorable, right down to that bit of dried cheese sauce on their trousers and their fear of flip-flops.

Imagine if Lizzie Bennett had no sense of humour, or if Offred just gave up, or if Matilda wasn’t fussed about books. Imagine if Frankenstein had even the tiniest ounce of empathy. Without great and believable characters, stories don’t fly, plots wilt, worlds end and, worse, manuscripts get thrown in the bin.

Our one week long characterisation masterclass will show you how to turn your characters into people, how to stop yourself falling back on tropes and stereotypes, and how to avoid hashing out two-dimensional cardboard cutout figures instead of sculpting living, breathing people.

Prepare your loins to CREATE LIFE!


Yes, it’s free, FREEEEE! (But obviously we’re gonna try to get you to join as a member in the emails because we cannot get enough of helping writers do that writing thang. But you can ignore that stuff. We don’t care. We don’t. It’s fine. WE SAID IT’S FINE.)


You are also being signed up for our regular newsletter*. You can unsubscribe at any time using the unsub button at the bottom of each email. What’s in the newsletter? All kinds of wonderous things, including but not limited to: special offers, the latest super cool blogs, John-Williams-score-rousing pep, gifs, the occasional haiku, and a reasonable quantity of swearing.

*we’re not being cynical list-building twats, we genuinely can’t operate our newsletter software well enough to stop it happening.

Our privacy policy is here. We store your data in a handful of places – Mailchimp primarily, and if you sign up to our courses then we use Zapier and Thinkific. All are GDPR compliant. You can unsubscribe at any time


Don’t like gin, swearing or memes?

Yeah no we’re probably not for you then. Our approach isn’t for everyone (your first clue is in our logo). We swear more than is ‘ladylike’ and use gifs when we could use our words. But, eh, fuck it. We don’t believe that linguistic purity or literary snobbery does anyone any favours.

If we’re not a match for you, thanks for giving us a go and good luck with your writing – we wish you every success. Please don’t sign up and then email us with how offended you are because that’s a silly waste of everyone’s time.

But if, like us, you’ve never found your rightful place in the writing world and think WHQ could be just the ticket – welcome home, come in, grab a cuppa, we’ve been waiting for you (in a totally non sinister way ofc).

Learn how to craft unique, intriguing characters who have their very own agenda, opinions, fears and dreams.

Write backstories and memories and find out how to thwart your poor protagonist’s desires at every turn to up the stakes and layer your story with conflict.

Join our lovely little online community to support you through starting, middling, finishing and beyond, plus peer and WHQ feedback.


“Writers’ HQ gave me the confidence to write. I’ve had short stories, poems, and a children’s book published. Through hundreds of tiny steps and stumbles, each one supported by the Writers HQ community, I am finally happy to call myself a writer. It has become my job.”

Lisa Fransson
author, Älgpappan

“The endless enthusiasm and encouragement of Sarah and Jo has worked magic. My novella-in-flash was published by Ellipsis and won Best Novella in the Saboteur Awards 2019 and I’m now represented by super-agent Sheila Crowley at Curtis Brown.”

Stephanie Hutton
author, Three Sisters of Stone

“With Jo and Sarah’s help I put together a query letter that got me four full requests from the slush-pile, three offers of representation and ultimately, an agent. There’s a reason I mention WHQ in the acknowledgements of my debut novel – they are awesome.”

Emma Reid
author, Milton the Mighty