from The Open University
Alternatively you can skip the navigation by pressing 'Enter'.
BBC Inside Science: Peat, citizen science and the Higgs BosonThursday, 3rd September 2015 16:30 - BBC Radio 4This week on BBC Inside Science: peat restoration, CERN memoirs and citizen science. Read more: BBC Inside Science: Peat, citizen science and the Higgs Boson
BBC Inside Science: Peat, citizen science and the Higgs BosonThursday, 3rd September 2015 21:00 -
BBC Inside Science: Peat, citizen science and the Higgs BosonThursday, 3rd September 2015 21:00 - BBC Radio 4
Are our kids tough enough? Chinese school: Episode ThreeFriday, 4th September 2015 00:45 - BBC Two
The ascent of woman: CivilisationAvailable until Saturday, 3rd October 2015 00:15The first episode of The ascent of woman explores how early civilisations dealt with the status of women and the... Read more: The ascent of woman: Civilisation
Canals: The Making of a Nation: EngineeringAvailable until Friday, 2nd October 2015 01:50
More or Less: Chinese market crash, e-cigarettes and runnersAvailable for over a year
The world’s busiest railway 2015 – Mumbai Railway: Episode 1Available until Tuesday, 29th September 2015 19:00
Have we got Wonga wrong? A defence of payday loansThe case against payday lenders has been made solidly over the last few years, and some have... Read more: Have we got Wonga wrong? A defence of payday loans
OpenLearn Live: 3rd September 2015Gangs of four - and more free learning across the day from The Open University and beyond. Read more: OpenLearn Live: 3rd September 2015
Studying religionThis free course, Studying religion, will give you an opportunity to think about some of the key... Try: Studying religion now
Forensic psychologyDiscover how psychology can help obtain evidence from eyewitnesses in police investigations and... Try: Forensic psychology now
Start writing fiction
Have you always wanted to write, but never quite had the courage to start? This free...
Have you always wanted to write, but never quite had the courage to start? This free course, Start writing fiction, will give you an insight into how authors create their characters and settings. You will also be able to look at the different genres for fiction.
After studying this course, you should be able to:
- identify strengths and weaknesses as a writer of fiction;
- develop a general awareness of fiction writing;
- develop a basic vocabulary to discuss fiction.
- Current section: Introduction
- Learning outcomes
- 1 Character
- 2 Setting
- 3 Genre
- 4 Conclusion
- Keep on learning
Study this free course
Enrol to access the full course, get recognition for the skills you learn and track your progress. Make your learning visible!
Start writing fiction
This free course looks at how characters might be drawn and how setting is established. It works on the different levels of characterisation, from flat to round, and how character and place interact. It also works on the effect of genre and how genre can be used.
The main teaching material in this course is taken from an existing publication,The Fiction Writer's Workshop by Josip Novakovich (1995).
Novakovich is an award-winning writer (of short stories mainly), who teaches fiction writing at the University of Cincinnati. His chapters on ‘Character’ and ‘Setting’ are included within this course. I'll indicate when you should read these extracts and I'll also outline the listening and writing activities that accompany them.
This course is split into the following sections:
This OpenLearn course provides a sample of
The Open University is conducting a survey investigating how people use the free educational content on our OpenLearn website. The aim is to provide a better free learning experience for everyone. So if you have 10 minutes to spare, we’d be delighted if you could take part and tell us what you think
Please note this will take you out of OpenLearn, we suggest you open this in a new tab by right clicking on the link and choosing ‘Open Link in new Tab’.
This is an extract from an Open University course which is no longer available to new students. If you found this interesting you could explore more free Creative Writing courses or view the range of currently available OU Creative Writing courses.
Copyright & revisions
Originally published: Monday, 27th July 2015
Last updated on: Monday, 27th July 2015
- Creative-Commons: The Open University is proud to release this free course under a Creative Commons licence. However, any third-party materials featured within it are used with permission and are not ours to give away. These materials are not subject to the Creative Commons licence. See terms and conditions. Full details can be found in the Acknowledgements section.
- This site has Copy Reuse Tracking enabled - see our FAQs for more information.
If you enjoyed this, why not follow a feed to find out when we have new things like it? Choose an RSS feed from the list below. (Don't know what to do with RSS feeds?)
Remember, you can also make your own, personal feed by combining tags from around OpenLearn.