Rosie Chard has taught on the Creative Writing Programme for many years, and is the author of three published novels. Here she offers her top five writing tips:

  1. As you move through your everyday life keep an antenna up for anything that stands out such as strange objects, an unusual pairing of things, or anomalies in the landscape, and photograph or sketch them for later reference.
  2. Experiment with writing by hand as well as writing on the computer. Each method can help you work through your ideas in different ways.
  3. Try to touch your writing in some way every day. It could be writing a 1,000 words, it could be jotting down a few notes, it could be writing a single sentence, it could be talking to someone about your ideas, it could be something as small as just opening your document and reading what you last wrote, but regular contact of any sort can help keep your ideas fresh and your characters alive.
  4. Try to notice story shapes in other narrative forms you enjoy as well as in books, such as in music and lyrics, visual arts, photographs, museum collections, dance, poetry, personal anecdotes and jokes.
  5. Consider how your characters arrive on a scene. Are they already there or do they slink in subtly and quietly, or perhaps burst in noisily and demanding attention? Do they have any impact on an already unfolding scene?

Rosie teaches on the two-year Creative Writing Programme which starts in October. It takes students from zero (little writing experience or perhaps a very rough few chapters of a novel) to hero (a solid first draft of a novel) by the end of the course. This year she’s running both online and blended (online and in-person) courses. Sign up now and join of brilliant alumni success stories.