This week was the last of term, which means no more Elements of Fiction. I stopped placing my short stories on the blog as I wasn’t sure which two I’d be submitting for coursework- and if your work is found on the Internet after you have submitted it, you can be ‘done’ for self-plagiarising!
So what did this module teach me?
No one is frowned upon for typos and this is important; creative writing isn’t about being meticulous with spelling and grammar. It’s great if you have an eagle eye for errors but these things aren’t as important as a well-told story.
If you are just starting out in the world of creative writing it is far more important to focus on character building and plot development than it is to make sure your apostrophes are in the right place. So don’t let being a perfectionist slow you down. There’s time for that later!
I have learnt the importance of:
- Crafting characters
- Good structure and pacing
- Knowing your theme and how to portray it
- Using symbolism
- Being descriptive but unbiased – show, don’t tell
- Provoking thoughts and emotions in your reader
- Writing good dialogue
The Elements of Fiction module has allowed me to experiment with these things along with genre and finding my ‘style’. Each week we provide feedback on each other’s work and then use it to improve our next pieces.
If you are a keen writer and lacking good resources for feedback I encourage you to join a writers group – constructive criticism is vital for a writers development.
I’m going to miss writing a weekly short story for this module but next term I’ll be writing a feature article every week for the Feature Writing module. Our Paths to Publication module has also come to an end and will be replaced by Planning a Novel – the big one!