January 2017 - Course Timetable

Course

Description

Jan ‘17

Feb ‘17

March ‘17

Writers Write

How to write a book

 

4,11,18,25

4,11,18,25

Writers Write

How to write a book

 

20-23

27-30

The Plain Language Programme

Advanced business writing

 

7-8

 

Blogging and Social Media Course

Write for the web

28-29

14-15

14-15

Short Cuts

How to write a short story

 

 12

kids etc.

How to write for children

 

 

 19


Please email news@writerswrite.co.za for more information.

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Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

The Next 5 Months In Writing

Course

Description

Nov ‘16

Dec ‘16

Jan ‘17

Feb ‘17

March ‘17

Writers Write

How to write a book

5,12,19,26

 

 

4,11,18,25

4.11.18,25

Writers Write

How to write a book

7-10

5-8

 

20-23

27-30

The Plain Language Programme

Advanced business writing

15-16

 

 

7-8

 

Blogging and Social Media Course

Write for the web

22-23

 

28-29

14-15

14-15

Short Cuts

How to write a short story


 

 

 12


kids etc.

How to write for children

27

 

 

 

 19

Email news@writerswrite.co.za for more information.

Gift Vouchers

Are you looking for a life-changing gift for a relative, friend, or work colleague who wants to write? Why not buy a gift voucher for one of our writing courses? Click here to find out how it works.

source for gif

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Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

The Top 10 Quotes About The Earth


Earth Day is an annual event, which is celebrated on 22 April. Events and demonstrations in 193 countries highlight support for environmental protection. 

On Earth Day 2016, 195 countries will sign the Paris Agreement, a treaty which aims to protect Earth's climate. 

From Earth Day 2016: "This Earth Day and beyond, let’s make big stuff happen. Let’s plant 7.8 billion trees for the Earth. Let’s divest from fossil fuels and make cities 100% renewable." 

In honour of the day, I put together a selection of quotations about our planet.

10 Quotes about Earth
  1. How can we be so arrogant? The planet is, was, and always will be stronger than us. We can't destroy it; if we overstep the mark, the planet will simply erase us from its surface and carry on existing. ~Paulo Coelho
  2. A true conservationist is a man who knows that the world is not given by his fathers, but borrowed from his children. ~John James Audubon
  3. Environmentalists have long been fond of saying that the sun is the only safe nuclear reactor, situated as it is some ninety-three million miles away. ~Stephanie Mills
  4. Do not let selfish men or greedy interests skin your country of its beauty, its riches or its romance. ~Theodore Roosevelt
  5. Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity, in all this vastness, there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves. The Earth is the only world known so far to harbour life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment the Earth is where we make our stand. ~Carl Sagan
  6. Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's needs, but not every man's greed. ~Mahatma Gandhi
  7. You can't be suspicious of a tree, or accuse a bird or a squirrel of subversion or challenge the ideology of a violet. ~Hal Borland
  8. There are no passengers on Spaceship Earth. We are all crew. ~Marshall McLuhan
  9. Water and air, the two essential fluids on which all life depends, have become global garbage cans. ~Jacques-Yves Cousteau
  10. I would feel more optimistic about a bright future for man if he spent less time proving that he can outwit Nature and more time tasting her sweetness and respecting her seniority. ~E.B. White

 by Amanda Patterson. Follow her on  Pinterest,  Facebook,  Tumblr,  Google+,  LinkedIn, and  Twitter.

If you enjoyed this post, you may want to read:

The Top 10 Writing Posts from March 2016

These were the new Writers Write posts you enjoyed most in 2016:

  1. The 4 Writing Styles Everybody Needs To Know
  2. Don't Ever Do This When You Write For Children
  3. All About Prefixes
  4. 10 Rules I’ve Lived By Throughout My 72 Years As A Novelist
  5. Past Tense Or Present Tense? Which One Tells A Better Story?
  6. Write Your Novel In A Year - Week 9: The Building Blocks Of Your Novel
  7. Write Your Novel In A Year - Week 10: Your Next Move
  8. March Writing Prompts
  9. Write Your Novel In A Year - Week 11: State Of Mind
  10. 12 Lessons Writers Can Learn From Famous Speeches

Previous Posts

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Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate.

April Writing Prompts

Remember that you can send an email to news@writerswrite.co.za with the words DAILY PROMPT in the subject line. We will add you to the mailing list and you will receive a daily prompt.   

If you want to learn how to write a book, join our Writers Write course in Johannesburg. Please email news@writerswrite.co.za for more details.

 by Mia Botha

If you enjoyed this post, you will love:

  1. Don't Ever Do This When You Write For Children
  2. How To Create Headlines That Make Your Readers Happy
  3. Your Book Is A Business – You Need To Invest In It
  4. How To Use Writing Prompts

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    Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate

    The Top 42 Writing Posts of 2015

    At the beginning of every year, we post our Top 42 Writing Posts from the previous year

    These were the posts you wanted to see on this website in 2015. We have also included the number of views each post received as at 31 December 2015. The articles are written by Amanda PattersonMia BothaAnthony Ehlers and Donna Radley.

    The runaway favourite was The Daily Word Counts of 39 Famous Authors. Please tell us which post you liked best in the comments section below.

    Post

    Views

    The Daily Word Counts of 39 Famous Authors

    82,923

    17 Of The Most Powerful Excerpts From Poetry

    38,238

    37 Ways To Write About Anger

    26,663

    Six Sub-Plots That Add Style To Your Story

    24,929

    93 Extremely Bad Business Writing Habits to Break

    23,346

    Torture your Character - The Three Most Effective Types of Inner Conflict

    20,923

    Proust's Questionnaire - 35 Questions Every Character Should Answer

    19,808

    How To Become A Writer - The Easy Way - by Neil Gaiman

    19,475

    When To Use ‘That’ And When To Use ‘Which’

    14,253

    How To Write A Beginning And An Ending That Readers Will Never Forget

    13,432

    11 Things To Know About Dating A Writer

    13,106

    Word Counts - How Long Should Your Novel Be?

    12,514

    Howdy Ma’am: Three Ways To Introduce Your Characters In The First Few Lines

    12,208

    10 Things To Stop Doing To Yourself As A Writer

    11,639

    The 5 Best Online Tools to Help You Outline Your Novel

    10,915

    Make Me Care - Nine Ways To Ensure An Unforgettable Read

    10,906

    The Three Mistakes Writers Make That Stop Us Reading Their Books

    10,307

    Why First Time Authors Don't Write The Books They Want To Read

    9,948

    How To Avoid ‘Telling’ Words

    9,656

    The Opposite Habits of Famous Writers

    9,649

    The Nine Types of Unreliable Narrator

    9,550

    13 Ways To Start A Story

    9,228

    The Three Surprises You Need In A Story

    9,182

    Six Questions To Ask Before You Even Start Your First Draft

    8,981

    The 12 Worst Mistakes People Make In Email Subject Lines

    8,023

    NaNoWriMo Calendar – Organise and Conquer!

    7,829

    Literary Style: 15 Writers and Their Bedrooms

    7,462

    The Romantic Sub-Plot - Six Uncommon Romantic Love Interests

    7,276

    Three Steps To Help You Write Brilliant Descriptions

    6,983

    10 Remedies For The Horrible Things Writers Tell Themselves

    6,891

    180 Emotionally Powerful Words To Use In Headlines

    6,850

    Write Small - Five Ways To Make Your Reader Care

    6,543

    How To Plot A Perfect Scene In 10 Minutes

    6,495

    It's Never Too Late To Start Writing - When 27 Famous Authors Were Published

    6,283

    One Goal To Rule Them All – 5 Things To Consider Before You Write An Epic Fantasy

    6,239

    Unhinged — Three Plot Devices You Should Definitely Be Using

    5,983

    12 Inspiring Literacy Quotes

    5,903

    10 Elementary Tips For Writers From Sherlock Holmes

    5,610

    Four Ways To Remove Padding Words

    5,508

    Five Ways To Create Fictional Conflict That Counts

    5,467

    The Writer's Journey - Five Exercises To Get You Started

    5,447

    Three Lines That Will Help You Write A Better First Draft

    5,418

    ~~~

    Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. If you want to learn how to write a book, write for social media, and improve your business writing, email news@writerswrite.co.za for more information.

    Writers Write - Write to communicate

    The 3 Most Important Things To Remember About The Dramatic Question


    What is the dramatic question?

    The dramatic question is the cornerstone of your story and it is always about the protagonist's central conflict. Although the term was originally coined for theatrical works, it is also used for novels.

    Here are three points to think about when you ask this question:
    1. Be specific. At the heart of every story we have a protagonist who has to overcome obstacles in order to resolve a problem. The dramatic question is always 'Will the protagonist achieve his or her story goal?'. This seems simple, but you have to be specific here. The question you ask must be at the heart of the story, and everything else should depend on it. 
    2. Answer yes or no. It is best if it is a tangible question with a concrete rather than an abstract outcome. You can improve a dramatic question's effectiveness by making sure that it requires a yes or no answer.
    3. Honour the contract. The question is also an unspoken contract between the writer and the reader. It gives them the promise of the shape and outcome of the story. Readers need to grasp this question early on in the novel. If they do not, they will stop reading or become increasingly frustrated with the author. How many times have you given up on a story because you could not work out what it was about?
    Good examples of dramatic questions:
    1. Will Luke Skywalker defeat Darth Vader?
    2. Will Santiago catch the fish?
    3. Will Katniss win The Hunger Games? 
    4. Will Romeo and Juliet end up together?
    5. Will Clarice Starling catch Buffalo Bill?
    Readers want the answer to these questions to be 'yes', but it is the writer's job to add as many 'nos' to the story on the way to the final 'yes'. If you do not want the protagonist to achieve the story goal, your answer will obviously be 'no' at the end.


    How the dramatic question affects your writing 

    If you have a good understanding of your dramatic question, you can write a readable novel. The dramatic question is all about suspense, and even those writers with poor writing techniques do well if they understand this. For example, Dan Brown manages to do this repeatedly, as does Stephenie Meyer who managed to create a series around the dramatic question 'Will Edward and Bella live happily ever after?' 

    The good news is that if you have a relevant, exciting, suspenseful dramatic question, and you write well, you can create an unforgettable story.

    If you want to learn how to write a book, join our Writers Write course in Johannesburg.

     by Amanda Patterson. Follow her on PinterestFacebook,  Google+,  Tumblr  and Twitter. 

    If you enjoyed this post, read:

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    Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate

    The Six Questions Writers Must Answer In And Within A Novel


    We sometimes overlook the obvious when we write. We become obsessed with sentence structure, descriptions, characterisations, world building and plotting instead of looking after the basics.

    What are the basics? Every good story, and this includes essays, short stories, novellas, memoirs, and novels, answers six simple questions. These are:
    1. Who is the story about?
    2. What is the story about?
    3. Where is the story set?
    4. When is the story set?
    5. Why does this story matter?
    6. How does the story unfold?
    This is based on journalism. Every writer of news stories is taught to answer the 5 Ws and the 1 H in the opening paragraph of an article. As writers of fiction, we take a bit longer, but a good story should answer all six. 

    There are other ways to use the six questions in a novel:

    Characters: Answering these six questions about each character will bring them into sharp focus. It helps you to remove unnecessary information and to create a clearly defined purpose for each one.
    • Who is she? 
    • What is her story goal? 
    • Where is she (physically) going? 
    • When will she try to achieve the goal? 
    • Why will she do it? 
    • How will she do it?
    Plotting: These six questions will help you to discover if you have a plot
    • Who is the protagonist and who is the antagonist? 
    • What happens to them in order to start the story?
    • Where does this happen? 
    • When does the story take place? (Create a timeline) 
    • Why do the characters act and react? 
    • How will the story goal be achieved?
    Scenes: It is also a useful technique to use when you write scenes in your novel. Try to answer all six in every scene you write. 

    Happy writing, everyone!

    If you want to learn how to write a book, join our Writers Write course in Johannesburg. 

     by Amanda Patterson. Follow her on PinterestFacebook,  Google+,  Tumblr  and Twitter. 

    If you enjoyed this post, read:

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    Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate

    9 Anti-Social Fictional Characters We Can't Forget


    Having an anti-social personality disorder does not mean that your character is unsociable. It means that they are indifferent to what others think of them.

    They violate and disregard the rights of others and they do not believe that the rules of society apply to them. Characters with anti-social personality disorders frighten us because they lack empathy.They are formidable enemies, and a great resource for writers when creating villains who show no remorse, no guilt, and no shame.

    Remember that not all people with anti-social personality disorder are psychopaths or sociopaths, but every psychopath and every sociopath has an anti-social personality disorder.

    As writers, we often use sociopaths or psychopaths as antagonists in our novels. Here are nine examples:
    1. Tom Ripley from The Talented Mr Ripley by Patricia Highsmith. Tom will do anything to maintain his fraudulent life of luxury. He is an expert at forgery and deception, and he does not mind murdering anyone who threatens to reveal his true identity.
    2. The Jackal from The Day of the Jackal by Frederick Forsyth. The assassin known only as 'The Jackal' is hired to kill Charles de Gaulle, the President of France. He is a chameleon who plans his mission meticulously, evading capture, mercilessly killing anyone who stands in his way.
    3. Patrick Bateman from American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis. Patrick is a stylish investment banker with the meanest of streaks. He tortures, kills and mutilates his way through the book. This detached killer never shows any emotion or remorse.
    4. Tyler Durden from Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk. Tyler, along with the narrator, is the founder of Fight Club. He launches Project Mayhem, commiting violent attacks on consumerism. He is magnetic, unhinged, lethal, and demands blind obedience from his followers. In a terrible twist, we find out that Tyler is really a projection of the narrator.
    5. Anton Chigurh from No Country For Old Men by Cormac McCarthy. Anton is a relentless, cold-blooded assassin who enjoys his job. He kills almost everyone he meets, occasionally allowing a coin toss to decide their fate. He is devoid of compassion and immune to pain. He is terrifying.
    6. Casanova from Kiss the Girls by James Patterson. Casanova is a serial killer who 'collects' beautiful, intelligent young women. He keeps them captive in an underground harem, where he rapes and eventually murders them.
    7. Alex DeLarge from A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess. Alex is pure evil. When he isn't killing, torturing, raping and destroying, he relaxes by fantasising about more violence.
    8. The Joker from Batman. The Joker is a vicious, calculating, psychopathic killer who is responsible for numerous tragedies in Batman's life. He is a criminal mastermind with a warped sense of humour and zero empathy.
    9. Hannibal Lecter from Red Dragon and The Silence of the Lambs by Thomas Harris. Hannibal is a cultured, charming man - a psychiatrist who loves good books, music, wine and food. His favourite dish is human flesh.

    The best thing about having a strong antagonist is that you have to create an equally strong protagonist to confront and defeat him.

    Who is your favourite anti-social fictional character?

    Join us for Writers Write - How to write a book - and make sure you're creating a compelling crazy villain.

     by Amanda Patterson. Follow her on  Pinterest,  FacebookGoogle+,  Tumblr  and Twitter.  

    If you enjoyed this post, you will want to read:
    1. Personality Disorders - DSM-5 Resource for Writers
    2. Personality Disorders - A writer's resource
    3. Eight Personality Disorders - Illustrated

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    Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate

    If John Green feels like fraud, how am I supposed to cope?


    Apparently John Green feels like a fraud all the time. Now, am I the only one who had a bit of a WTF flip-out? Because seriously, this list came out last week: John made $26 million this year, topping his first time appearance last year, when the poor guy only made $9 million.

    And this from the man who had me in tears and made me write this post: Do you ever feel like the author of the book you are reading is trying to kill you? I love The Fault In Our Stars. I have made no secret of this and John Green is awesome. And I have to admit it makes me feel better that he feels overwhelmed and intimidated. It reminds me that these feelings aren’t going to go away. 

    There are many kinds of fears we face as writers. Fear of failure, fear of running dry, fear of having only one book, and also fear of success. Personally, fear of success hasn’t been a problem for me and I’ll be honest, it’s a fear I am willing to confront. Especially with an odd $26 million in my back pocket.

    Under Pressure
    1. But can you imagine the kind of pressure John Green is under? I wanted to stop writing after I read the book, because it was just that good.
    2. Imagine how JK Rowling felt writing the last book of the Harry Potter series. And then she wrote The Casual Vacancy, which wasn’t as well received as she had hoped, so she resorted to a pseudonym for her next book.   
    3. Do you want to be George RR Martin, right now? With people clamouring to know who is going to die next? Once again, I admit I’ll be willing to give it a go, but he must be bashing his head on a desk somewhere. He even tweeted in 2014: EVERY TIME I GET ASKED WHEN WILL THE NEXT BOOK BE FINISHED, I KILL A STARK. So please stop asking him. We are running out of Starks.
    I listen to aspiring writers worrying about their writing every week. Fear is a constant. As soon as you conquer the one, the next one lines up. 

    My advice

    And what do I tell the students? Shut-up and write! The only thing you can do to overcome these fears is to have something on the page. John says: 'The only way through it for me is to take pleasure in the process of writing, or to find value in it. Even when I suck. Even when there’s no way anything I’m writing will ever see the light of day. The act of trying to write for an audience must feel valuable in and of itself, or else I am doomed.'

    John Green has written five books, JK Rowling even more, and they keep writing. If you stop, or don’t start, the fear will overwhelm you. Blank pages are scary. John also says: 'I still don’t feel like I know how to write a novel, and at this point I doubt I ever will.' (We have a course for that, John.) 

    But, if you need help, ask for it. Go on a course or join a reputable, supportive writers’ group. It helps if you don’t feel so alone. Face whatever it is that is stopping you and karate-chop it out of the way. Don't use lack of time as an excuse. Real writers make time, because there will never be enough time or the prefect time. 

    Shut-up and write!

    Lots of love,
    Your most supportive, loving and nurturing writing teacher,
    Mia 

    If you want to learn how to write a book, join our Writers Write course in Johannesburg.

    Photograph

     by Mia Botha

    If you enjoyed this post, you will love:

    1. 14 Points To Consider Before You Write The Ending
    2. Seven Ways Blogging Improves Your Writing
    3. Six Reasons To Use A Sub-Plot

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      Writers Write offers the best writing courses in South Africa. Writers Write - Write to communicate