How to Write a Novel: Writing the Draft

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9/10 stars
based on  15 reviews
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Cost $295
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Course Details

Cost

$295

Upcoming Schedule

  • Upcoming

Course Provider

edX online courses
Harvard University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the University of California, Berkeley, are just some of the schools that you have at your fingertips with edX. Through massive open online courses (MOOCs) from the world's best universities, you can develop your knowledge in literature, math, history, food and nutrition, and more. These online classes are taught by highly-regarded experts in the field. If you take a class on computer science through Harvard, you may be tau...
Harvard University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the University of California, Berkeley, are just some of the schools that you have at your fingertips with edX. Through massive open online courses (MOOCs) from the world's best universities, you can develop your knowledge in literature, math, history, food and nutrition, and more. These online classes are taught by highly-regarded experts in the field. If you take a class on computer science through Harvard, you may be taught by David J. Malan, a senior lecturer on computer science at Harvard University for the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. But there's not just one professor - you have access to the entire teaching staff, allowing you to receive feedback on assignments straight from the experts. Pursue a Verified Certificate to document your achievements and use your coursework for job and school applications, promotions, and more. EdX also works with top universities to conduct research, allowing them to learn more about learning. Using their findings, edX is able to provide students with the best and most effective courses, constantly enhancing the student experience.

Provider Subject Specialization
Sciences & Technology
Business & Management
23854 reviews

Course Description

Have you created an outline and now feel prepared to start writing your novel? Or have you started a novel draft only to find your interest or confidence waning? In this course, the international best-selling authors and professors from The University of British Columbia’s renowned MFA program introduce the essential fiction craft toolbox for writers struggling with the common hurdles of first drafts. 

While ideas and inspiration are often enough to ignite interest in writing a novel, writers can quickly lose confidence, especially when their best efforts have inadvertently produced flat characters, waning conflicts, tangled plots and weak dialogue. Reaching your goal of writing (and perhaps, publishing) a novel requires an understanding of fiction’s deeper mechanics and a familiarity with the specific craft elements that will help translate your creativity and imagination into compelling paragraphs, scenes and chapters....

Have you created an outline and now feel prepared to start writing your novel? Or have you started a novel draft only to find your interest or confidence waning? In this course, the international best-selling authors and professors from The University of British Columbia’s renowned MFA program introduce the essential fiction craft toolbox for writers struggling with the common hurdles of first drafts. 

While ideas and inspiration are often enough to ignite interest in writing a novel, writers can quickly lose confidence, especially when their best efforts have inadvertently produced flat characters, waning conflicts, tangled plots and weak dialogue. Reaching your goal of writing (and perhaps, publishing) a novel requires an understanding of fiction’s deeper mechanics and a familiarity with the specific craft elements that will help translate your creativity and imagination into compelling paragraphs, scenes and chapters.

Through writing exercises aimed at developing new skills, concrete examples from published novels, feedback and discussion with fellow writers and opportunities to identify and strengthen weaknesses in their own projects, learners will broaden their knowledge of fiction craft as they explore creating memorable characters, the art of scene design, tactics for managing unwieldy plots and steps for writing layered and meaningful dialogue.

Whether you’re beginning your novel draft or nearing the end, this course is a unique opportunity to learn the essentials of strong fiction writing from award-winning authors sharing their proven methods and approaches.

The course is recommended for professional and aspiring writers, writing groups, those participating in NaNoWriMo, teachers and anyone who has a novel in progress.

Reviews 9/10 stars
15 Reviews for How to Write a Novel: Writing the Draft

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Tania De Rozario profile image
Tania De Rozario profile image

Tania De Rozario

10/10 starsCompleted
2 years, 7 months ago
Excellent course. The material is succinct and vital, the learning atmosphere is warm but purposeful, and Nancy and Annabel are both rockstars. Really pleased to have enrolled.
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Lenna Minion profile image
Lenna Minion profile image

Lenna Minion

10/10 starsCompleted
3 years, 2 months ago
Excellent course! Fun, witty instructors make the intensity of the material very palatable. Good for serious writers with an advanced work in progress.
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Count Snackula profile image
Count Snackula profile image

Count Snackula

9/10 starsCompleted
3 years, 3 months ago
This course provides the nuts and bolts tools for constructing compelling scenes, incorporating research effectively, and finding effective opening and closing scenes for your novel. I have published short fiction before, and been in fiction workshops in grad school, and this course gave me practical skills I didn't yet have. I didn't take the Outline course first, but that wasn't a hindrance here. The instructors are very diligent in addressing specific questions in the weekly hangout but don't expect critiques on your assignments. I did appreciate seeing the work done by other students (our actual drafts of scenes are only posted in a couple of modules)and I found it helpful to hear about the struggles others had with particular exercises and the weekly writing goals -- a very worthwhile course that got me deeply re-engaged with a languishing novel.
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Polina M.V. Timasheva profile image
Polina M.V. Timasheva profile image

Polina M.V. Timasheva

10/10 starsCompleted
3 years, 3 months ago
Nice and very helpful course which gives you both self-assurance and real skills how to write a novel. I had only a few scenes of my story before the course started and wrote much more during the course. It was very interesting for me due to I am not an English native speaker and had to translate some pieces of text into English, so I improved my English too. I liked very much the artistic videos with Nancy and Annabel!! Hope to join the 1st and 3rd courses later.
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Vítor de Lerbo profile image
Vítor de Lerbo profile image

Vítor de Lerbo

10/10 starsCompleted
3 years, 7 months ago
Amazing. You can feel the passion Nancy and Annabel have for the subject. The discussions make you think deeply about your novel and what you want it to be; and the tasks help you get there. The tips from the other writers are also great.
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Gary Daugherty profile image
Gary Daugherty profile image

Gary Daugherty

10/10 starsCompleted
3 years, 8 months ago
A great course. I particularly appreciated the feedback on each week's topics from contemporary authors and the Q&A video sessions at the end of each week. The rest was merely exceptional. If you are struggling to write a novel, you should take this course.
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Deborah Blacklock profile image
Deborah Blacklock profile image

Deborah Blacklock

10/10 starsTaking Now
3 years, 8 months ago
This is an excellent course that has made me think a lot about process and structure. Annabel and Nancy make the material easy to understand and entertaining.
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Gordon Wiebe profile image
Gordon Wiebe profile image

Gordon Wiebe

10/10 starsCompleted
3 years, 8 months ago
I've read a lot of books on writing and have taken a few courses now. This is, by far, the best series of courses [I've taken courses 1 and 2] I have ever been involved with. This is real meat and potatoes stuff. There is a wealth of material here to take away and put into effect in your own writing.
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Josephine LoRe profile image
Josephine LoRe profile image

Josephine LoRe

10/10 starsCompleted
4 years ago
Oops -- I mistakingly rated this course as a "1" instead of a "5". I would like to amend my review. As evidenced by the comments accompanying my original review, the course material was excellent and comprehensive. The instructors were knowledgeable, engaging, and very responsive to learner questions. The provider, edX was wonderful. My only negative comment is that it took me much longer than the 3-4 hours a week to complete the course, but it was well worth it.
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JF Beningson profile image
JF Beningson profile image

JF Beningson

8/10 starsCompleted
4 years, 1 month ago
I am a repeat student, with course 1 and now course 2 under my belt... both excellent! Instructors are so knowledgeable and share openly. EdX platform works great. Search tools for discussion posts could be better (there are lots of discussions in a writers workshop) Given that I still work full time and have a family, I wish the course had more time to complete assignments, especially at the end of the course... it's hard to fit it all in by the deadlines. However, the ability to back and review material will be highly valuable! Definitely take this course and the first one if you want to learn how to get going on a novel. Highly recommend.
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Wendy Jensen profile image
Wendy Jensen profile image

Wendy Jensen

10/10 starsCompleted
4 years, 1 month ago
My writing has been jump-started by this course. I was worried about being able to bring my story to fruition, and now I know why! With the tools provided, and Nancy and Annabel's gentle exploration of various pit-falls, together with humor and insight, I now have the means to finish my novel.
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Josephine LoRe profile image
Josephine LoRe profile image

Josephine LoRe

2/10 starsCompleted
4 years, 1 month ago
Excellent course, material was well prepared and so helpful. My only negative comment is that I spent much more time on it than 3-4 hours a week, not that I regret a minute of it, but it became difficult to keep on top of the lessons and hang-out, the weekly writing assignments, reading posted comments, providing meaningful feedback. However, excellent instructors and a great community of evolving writers. Thanks!
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Jocelyn Pletz profile image
Jocelyn Pletz profile image

Jocelyn Pletz

9/10 starsCompleted
4 years, 1 month ago
great course - the exercises were beneficial and informative and the course content very relevant and useful. Somehow I had stopped giving myself permission to experiment with my writing and this course has helped me to be a bit more playful ... particularly given i am writing a first draft. I wasn't able to participate in the hangouts due to work/my schedule but i enjoyed being able to listen to the archived version. I am sure i will review the course materials many times as i complete my first draft. Thanks.
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Joanna Francis profile image
Joanna Francis profile image

Joanna Francis

10/10 starsCompleted
4 years, 1 month ago
I was half-way through the first draft of my second novel when I signed up for this course. At the end of it, I not only understood what hadn't worked in the first novel, I had completely restructured and re-conceived the second one. The course addresses the major issues that every writer faces. Topics such as voice and theme, which can potentially be overwhelming, are simplified and clarified. The combination of video and text is engaging and the delightful instructors do a wonderful job at conveying their passion for writing. I will definitely sign up for another of the courses in this series
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albina jata profile image
albina jata profile image

albina jata

10/10 starsTaking Now
4 years, 4 months ago
i think that this course is so important in our society.I saw that learning in this way even though I am small I could overtake time.me wish I could see how to begin publishing a novel except to write in block tim.tani I will try to do something more than what I've done in the past. In this way I serve my country
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