“I’d definitely recommend this course to anyone, whether you’re starting from scratch or just need to fine-tune the foundations.”
Emma Bradley describes her experience of WriteMentor’s 6-week WriteMaster course with author Alexandra Sheppard
Tell us a bit about yourself as a writer
Hi everyone! In short, I’m a hyperactive writer with an addiction to fandoms and absolutely no moderation skills. I wrote my first story when I was nine, a whole three A4 pages about a cat and a dog on a staircase. I can imagine the word ‘said’ came up a lot, and I’m guessing the publishing house I posted it to (I can’t remember which one luckily) was not impressed! Now I’m hoping I’ve improved slightly, and tend to focus on writing Young Adult fantasy and Middle Grade historical. At the moment, I’m giving my highwaygirl story yet another once over after being longlisted for the Guppy Open Submissions call (YAY!), I’ve just finished drafting the third book in my Faerie trilogy (YAY!), and I’m battling on with Eglewjld, my Young Adult portal fantasy series (8 books down, 5 to go – please send help, or cookies…)
What made you decide to do WriteMentor’s WriteMaster course at this point in your writing journey?
I wanted to find a course that would help me firm up the foundations of my Faerie trilogy, as well as generate some new ideas, so of course I went straight to WriteMentor. Had a look at the website and basically went ‘ooh, that one’. I saved up for a bit but considering the cost of some of the courses out there, this one was fantastically priced!
In what way has the course helped shaped your writing and/or yourself as a writer?
We delved into a lot of bare bones stuff, like premise, conflict and character agency to help us start building a strong story. There were some issues with the one I was working on during the classes, such as the want/need not being deep enough, and having these explained properly as we were guided through the exercises really made a huge difference. I also gained a lot of tips and tricks from the course material as well every week, plus met a bunch of cool writers!
What was the best piece of writing advice you learned from the course?
That I’m not tormenting my darlings enough! Find out what the main character wants vs. what lesson they really need to learn, discover their fears, then create specific obstacles to really make the reader feel for them. It sounds so simple, but once you get entrenched in writing and attached to various scenes and extraneous characters, that structure can easily be lost. Huge thank you to Alex, and of course WriteMentor, and I’d definitely recommend this course to anyone, whether you’re starting from scratch or just need to fine-tune the foundations.
Ready for WriteMaster?
Author Alexandra Sheppard‘s 6-week WriteMaster course takes you through the main elements to make your Middle Grade or Young Adult novel stand out. Learn craft aspects that will help not only this novel, but every one you write.
Discover our online courses…
From that first spark of a story idea to submitting a polished manuscript to literary agents, WriteMentor’s online courses support children’s writers throughout their writing journey. Advance your craft and gain insights from published authors.