Troubleshoot Your Novel

Stuck as a pig in a poke? Unstick thyself and fix your dang book

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ (see reviews)

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After completing this, I found that I could find the heart of my plot which meant deleting a few early scenes to get into the action earlier. A vital course for a first-time novelist like me. Five stars, five claps, pats on the backs, hurrahs, hugs.
- Helene du Mauri

Part of the WHQ membership

Five part course, rolling access

Join our kickass community

COURSE HOME

No matter what stage you’re at, writing a novel can often be an exercise in frustration… But you’re not alone. ALL of us suffer from sticking points, plot issues and existential literary problems.

And it can be hard to stay objective and figure out how to fix things. Maybe you know exactly what’s wrong but have no idea how to make it better. Or maybe you know something’s wrong but you can’t quite put your finger on it…

In this course, you’ll find out how to identify what’s causing your novel issues, make a plan of action, and utilise a whole bunch of ideas and tips to sort it all out.

Whether you’re just starting out, half way through the first draft, or well into your twelfth version of your novel, we’ll help you figure out a fix and get back on that writing horse.

CURRICULUM

Part 1: Assess your shit
1) Why are you stuck? 2) Identify your blockages 3) Figure out how to move forward

Part 2: The trickiest parts of writing a novel are ALL OF THEM
1) Beginnings 2) Middles 3) Endings

Part 3: Tweaking, re-framing, developing
1) Re-plot the sucker 2) Character = plot 3) Look at your story in a different way

Part 4: Practical tips
1) Ramp up the action 2) How to get out of a writing slump 3) Productive procrastination

Part 5: The REAL secret to writing a novel…
(shhhh)

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 a week 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
Our membership is the most cost effective way of accessing our courses and the first month is half price. Alternatively, if you have no spare cash, have a look at our Sponsor A Writer 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
  • Step by step online classes and exercises to lead you through the troubleshooting process and take an objective look at your story.
  • Advice from bestselling authors, including Costa Award-winning Emma Healey, Polari Prize-winning Paul McVeigh, and Bridport Prizewinner Vanessa Gebbie.
  • A practical breakdown of structure, plotting, characterisation, common complaints and sticking points.
  • Tips and techniques for tightening up your writing, keeping your story moving forward, and getting to the finish line.
  • Learn to look at your novel in new ways and break through blockages!
  • Access to our private forum to discuss your problems (and fixes!), and get advice and support from your tutors and fellow troubleshooters.

Figure out what’s wrong with your story and find a practical solution.

Suitable for any stage of the novel-writing journey.

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

LOVE FOR WRITERS’ HQ

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Top notch course and the exercises are really challenging. It is hard work but it helps build a habit of writing too. I am really enjoying it a lot and surprised by how much I managed to do within those few weeks. Sarah has been an absolute brick really supportive and verifying or checking things in such a gentle and encouraging way. Go for it, you’ll love it.

Jeannine

Plotstormers

Everything you need it to be. And more. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

If you think you’ve done editing courses before, so you don’t need to do another one, then you’re completely and utterly wrong. This course takes your book by the short and curlies and makes it scream for it’s mamma. Because this course isn’t your average ‘let’s look at some of your prose & pretty it up’ kinda course, it’s a RIP IT TO PIECES & GIVE IT A FULL BODY SEARCH kinda course. Sound brutal? It is. Your brains will ooze out of your ears. But you won’t regret it. Not one bit. Trust me. By the time you’re done, you will know exactly what you need to do to your book to get it to tell the story you want it to tell. What more can you ask?

Lorna

Plotstormers II: The Editing Strikes Back

When there’s something weird (in your story idea) and it don’t look good…Who ya’ gonna call? PLOTSTORMERS! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Superb materials, featuring advice, ideas, exercises and tips from both Sarah and Jo, as well as a plethora of published authors, all contribute to making Plotstormers the course to take if you just don’t know how the hell your hero is going to find their mentor, or which character should die next, or who should kiss who and when (bleeeurgh!) – whatever kind of novel you’re wanting to write, whatever style you’ve had previously, the course will help to amplify, hone and refine your ideas into a coherent and detailed road map, directing you through the asteroid belt of your story! These guys rock, I had a blast and would recommend with reservation.

Stuart White

Plotstormers

WHAT A TOTALLY BRILLIANT COURSE!! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

It’s my editing blueprint for good, for now, forever! I could write a song about this course .. but instead I’ll sing your praises and say how you’ve taken the huge job of drafting a novel and made it simple .. well, simpler, because you have the knack of getting right to the heart of what a novel is, what it’s for, how it works as an entity, who inhabits it. About midway through the course I had a personal business crash that required my total attention to fix, and it’s a shame because I was enjoying the forum and taking part in it. BUT I was safe in the knowledge that if I could get back to reality and my life quick enough, I could continue and I have – and completed! I have a deadline to fulfil with my writing group and if I can manage it, I will return to the Forum too before the course ends in a few days. I will undoubtedly be returning for the course on Submission to an Agent but I’m nowhere near ready. Can I just say how helpful it was knowing the course materials would continue to be up on the site as I’ve desperately needed this time. My only crit would be, and I mean it in a positive way, is that I felt the whole course could have been double the length anyway – as in 3 months, and then another 6 weeks for the materials to be up on the site. Many exercises of ’60 mins’ or ’45 mins’ took days or a whole week! By the way, more expensive courses I’ve taken (e.g. for thousands!) were NOTHING compared to this!! Bless you, and though I wish you EVERY SUCCESS with your own writing, I hope you DON’T STOP DOING THIS!!! A THOUSAND THANKS.

Nicolle Freni

Plotstormers II: The Editing Strikes Back

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

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