When we think of great works of fiction – and our favourite books – it tends to be the characters that linger long after the intricacies of plot have faded: Scarlett O’Hara, Nazneen Ahmed, Scrooge, Elizabeth Bennet, Baby Kochamma and so on. What is it that makes these characters so unforgettable? They’re not all good, or likeable. How do we build characters readers care about?

In this one-day masterclass we will be looking at some of the different ways to find our characters, how to make them credible and complex, and the tools we have to show them to our readers. Book your ticket here.

The workshop will be led by Laura Wilkinson. Laura has published six novels for adults (two under a pseudonym) and numerous short stories. Her contemporary fiction is published by Headline Accent. These novels are Crossing the Line, The Family Line, Redemption Song and Skin Deep. Crossing the Line was a Welsh Books Council book of the month and Skin Deep has been widely praised. Alongside writing, she runs workshops on craft and has spoken at literary events nationwide. Over the past decade she’s worked as a creative writing tutor for organisations including New Writing South and on the MA programme at West Dean. She is also a structural editor and mentor for leading literary consultancies, coaching writers to competition short listings and publication.

The session will be based in central Brighton and will run from 10-4pm with an hour for lunch. The venue is wheelchair accessible and a three-minute walk to St James’ Street with its array of shops and eateries. There are also coffee and tea making facilities at the venue, together with a fridge and microwave if you want to bring your own lunch.

The workshop is part of a series of four Weekend Schools held this autumn. They are open to existing students on the Creative Writing Programme and other writers looking to improve specific areas of their writing craft. Other workshops include:

• Saturday 25th November: The creative act – Roy McFarlane (in-person in Brighton) £40

• Sunday 26th November: Speaking of which: Improving your dialogue – Beth Miller (in-person in Brighton) £40

• Sunday 3rd December: Imagery, Symbolism and Metaphor in Prose – John McCullough (online) £30

Find out more and book your tickets here. 

If you have any questions about this workshop, or any of the others, please email cathy@creativewritingprogramme.org.uk