SHORT FICTION MINI MASTERCLASS

A QUICK INTRO TO BIG LITTLE STORIES

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ (see reviews)

null

I've come back to this course for the third time, and still haven't exhausted its possibilities. There's no doubt this course has helped me get my short fiction published. I've had so many successes over the past year, and been mightily encouraged. I love Writers' HQ to the point where I think I'm even boring my writer friends mentioning you!
- Jan McCarthy

Part of the WHQ membership

14 days course, rolling access

Join our kickass community

COURSE HOME

Want to know what this short fiction thang is all about? Want to know the difference between a flash and a drabble? Want to know how to harness story ideas and turn them into something tangible? Want to discover the secret ingredient to all worthwhile fiction?

This quick ‘n’ dirty little intro to short fiction has all the answers you’re looking for, including:

  • How long is a short story?
  • How can you turn the most mundane anecdote into a story full of intrigue and conflict?
  • How do you drill down to the ‘fundamental human truth’ of a story?
  • How do you redraft and restructure and rework an idea until you find the *right* one?
  • And how do you make characterisation the juicy, emotive centre of a story?

PLUS: stellar short fiction examples and expert advice from authors like Paul McVeigh and Kit de Waal.

It’s a mini short fic overhaul, y’all.

CURRICULUM
  • How long is a short story?
  • So this one time, at bandcamp…
  • The nugget of fundamental human truth
  • Connecting the dots…
  • The importance of percolation
  • What do you look for in a story?
  • Project salvage
  • Project expansion
  • Enter the story
  • Layering it up
  • Reflect, refine, rewrite
  • And now… we wait
  • What happens next?
HOW IT WORKS

1. Enrol
Once you’ve joined you’ll get an email confirming your place and explaining how you access the course. Spoiler: you click a link. Super simple.

2. Read, watch, do
The lessons are a mix of text, images, videos and exercises. To get the most out of the course, try to give yourself at least an hour a day to read or watch the material and do the exercises. We’ve made them as bite-size as possible but also if you wanna do the thing you gotta do the work.

3. No rush
This course is written to be done over 14 days but if you miss a day or something comes up, don’t panic! Go at your own pace. We’ll be waiting for you in the community forums when you’re ready to catch up.

4. No money? No problem
Periodically we run this course as a freebie so please make sure you’re on our newsletter list to get notifications of that. Alternatively, if you can’t wait and have no cash, have a look at our bursary scheme.

5. Milk no sugar
Drink plenty of tea, stock up on biscuits, gin for later. Enjoy it. It’s supposed to be fun. Love you. Mwa.

WHAT YOU GET
  • This course is exclusive for members, so when you join you get access to all our amaaazing creative writing courses, including this one, which is 14 days of videos, exercises, advice and resources exploring the juicy innards of the short fiction process
  • Inspiration, whip-cracking, writing exercises and prompts
  • Access to our private forum full of super cool people to help and support you along the way, including Team WHQ, our specially-picked and hand-baked gang of badass writers.

Learn the secret that lies at the heart of all short fiction.

Craft a story from start to finish with prompts and advice.

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

LOVE FOR WRITERS’ HQ

…well, the best thing ever editing-wise. My novel’s been stuck in the doldrums for ages and I was losing heart, knowing it wasn’t right, but not knowing how to identify what was wrong, far less having a clue as to how to go about fixing it. But now I do, and that’s really exciting and invigorating. The course is clearly laid out in small, bite-sized chunks. It’s all really well signposted, so you know what you need to do every week, why you need to do it, and how to do it. It’s laid out in a logical order. It takes things one step at a time. It’s completely bargainous. Jo and Sarah are friendly and down-to-earth and they explain things in the way you would talk to your friends down the pub and not as if you’re in a university lecture. I really can’t fault the course, nor can I recommend it enough.

Annie Kirby

Plotstormers II: The Editing Strikes Back

The scales have truly fallen ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
I had an idea. I wrote it out for 60k words. Someone said it was more like a short story. I was stuck. Then I discovered Writers HQ… I’ve found my people. This course has literally transformed my work. I now have something that actually reads like the outline for a novel. The teaching methods, materials and support (both from Sarah and Jo, and my fellow plot-a-trons) has been superb. Sensible, practical, intense, with a good splosh of anarchy. I now feel more confident about the actual writing and am also happy that the original idea holds up. Thank you so much and I’m looking forward to the next course (9 month…). It’ll be AWESOME!

Liz

Plotstormers

Writers’ HQ are amazing ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Their courses are easy to apply, fun to do and will improve all areas of your writer life. Plus they’re an absolute bargain. Get in now before they realise how much they could charge.

Clare Wade

Membership

Highly Recommended ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
I came to this course with the complete first draft of a novel I had already written, but which (after a year of failing to rewrite it on my own) I knew needed more than just a bit of editing to make it work. Plotstormers has been a great way of completely deconstructing what I had to begin with, and then building it up again from scratch into first four, then seven, then sixteen units. The early weeks give you a brilliant introduction to various theories of plotting, soundbites from successful authors, and links to useful blogs and resources; this part is huge fun, and the video of Kurt Vonnegut explaining the shapes of stories is absolutely priceless. When it came to the actual writing bit, Sarah and Jo provided excellent support, encouragement and incisive feedback throughout (though be warned: the swearing is contagious. You’ll know you have a problem when your 2 yr old starts effing at random people in shops). In the latter weeks of the course the forums (fora?) became indispensible for sounding out ideas and identifying problems as well as helpful cameraderie. I lagged behind towards the end, but nevertheless this course has given me the boost I needed to get my novel back off the ground, or at least back onto the runway. I highly recommend it, and look forward to taking more Writers HQ courses in the near future.

Rosemary Sgroi

Plotstormers

TUTORS

Sarah Lewis
Half of Writers’ HQ
Procrastinator Level: Set up WHQ and had a baby to avoid writing her novel

Jo Gatford
Half of Writers’ HQ
Procrastinator Level: Set up WHQ and did an MA to avoid writing her novel

RELATED COURSES

Writing Short Fiction
small words. big impact
course info >>

Making People
the characterisation masterclass
course info >>

Menu