Novel-Writing Class Best Practices

Novel-Writing Class Best Practices

If you’d like to teach a class in novel-writing but don’t know how, have no fear. My panel is here!

David Haynes, Patricia Henley, Sheila O’Connor, Elizabeth Stuckey-French, and I have all taught the course, and we’ve compiled a Best Practices handout: syllabi, exercises, and other resources to guide you on your way.

Some of us focus on the early stages of writing a novel–generating ideas, writing a summary or treatment, studying published books as models, getting scenes on the page–while others focus on later stages and include all-group workshop of novels in progress. There’s 16 pages of material here, and we hope you find something that works for you.



  1. John Vanderslice says:

    Great session yesterday, Cathy. The passion–and size–of the audience shows just how pressing a concern this is, and should be, for teachers of creative writing and administrators of MFA programs. I heard some great ideas for teaching novel writing, but also some rather funky anecdotes about how your panelists’ colleagues teach novel writing. Definitely a good session to learn about what or what not to do. Thanks for putting it together.

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