In this article, you will learn about what is creative writing, how it differs from other forms of traditional English writing, and how you can improve your creative writing skills. Every one of us at a certain point might have wanted to write about something creative. This is a thought which crosses everyone’s mind at some point in their lives. Creative writing is all about using your point of view, imagination, and ideas to narrate a story or an event. Hence, to help you with this, we have listed the best creative writing courses in Edinburgh.
Many of us may have an innate passion for writing and want to enter the field of creative writing. This article will help you in clearing all your doubts about how to start writing, how to properly express one’s thoughts, how to write something original and imaginative, and how to develop the structure of a story. Here we will look into some of the best creative writing courses in Edinburgh.
What is Creative Writing and What Are Its Many Elements?
Creative writing usually means writing creatively using your imagination and ideas and taking your perspective on a particular subject. You can use your ideas, thoughts, and emotions to highlight a particular content or a theme. You can take a completely different perspective on a particular subject or an event that many previous writers may have missed out on.
It is usually considered as something completely different from other forms of traditional writing like business writing, academic writing, journalistic writing, or technical writing. One of the basic differences between creative writing and other forms of writing is the primary purpose behind it. For other forms of writing, the chief purpose is to give information about a matter.
But the primary purpose behind creative writing is to inspire, entertain and enlighten the reader. The main elements in creative writing are narration, plot development, character development, craft, dialogue, conflict, setting, tone, etc. It can be both fictional and non-fictional. Some of the main forms of creative writing are:
- Fiction: short stories, novels, etc.
- Non Fiction: personal or journalistic essays/compositions.
- Graphic Novels
Some of the Main Elements of Creative Writing Are Discussed Below:
Plot: The plot is the most important part of a story, writers have to use their imagination and perspective to develop a unique plot. The plot is where your entire story is centered around, and having an interesting plot can greatly influence your reader.
Character Development: Character development means how your characters evolve and change during the story. Readers should be able to understand and attach themselves to the main character.
Visual Description: Visual description is how you depict the surroundings where the story is taking place. The writing should be able to induce vivid imagery in the reader’s mind.
Point of View: Point of view tells us from whose perspective the story has been narrated. Mostly in creative writing, the first person’s point of view is taken.
Emotional Impact: It is a very important part of your story development. The reader has to get emotionally connected with the basic plot or with the main character of your story.
To Get Started in the Process of Creative Writing You Have To:
Read a Lot: You must develop the habit of reading a lot, not only fictional pieces but also non-fictional pieces as well. Most creative writers get their inspiration and ideas from the legendary authors of their fields. You can read according to your taste in the genres.
Start Writing: You must develop the habit of writing daily; you can start by keeping a diary where you write about how your day went or any ideas that popped into your head.
Using Literary Devices: To become an efficient writer, you have to learn how to use various literary devices such as similes, metaphors, rhymes, symbolism, etc.
Attend a Creative Writing Course: If you are a beginner in the field, then you can attend a creative writing course. You will get the opportunity to collaborate and share your ideas with your peers and learn from them.
Before planning to enroll in any creative writing courses in Edinburgh, let’s ask an important question, can creative writing be learned?
Can Creative Writing Be Learned Through a Course?
Creativity is said to be a natural and inborn talent, and the same can be said about writing. In this regard, some people are innately more talented than others, but with enough practice, you can surely learn how to become a better writer. Even if you have all the ingredients of a talented writer, you may still have no or very vague idea about some of the important aspects of creative writing like creating characters, plotting, dialogues, etc.
And it is these aspects that can be learned and practiced. Writing too has a craft behind it, which has its rules and these rules can be learned or taught. While some courses focus more on the technical aspects like editing, others focus on more creative aspects like using imagination and out-of-the-box ideas.
Off course to become a distinguished writer, you have to work hard, it needs passion, dedication, and patience. These qualities cannot be taught or learned through a course though.
Here are some of the top-ranked Online Creative Writing Courses
Top Jobs for Creative Writers
Some of the common job roles for creative writers are mentioned below, remember that it is not mandatory to have a degree in creative writing to enter into these fields.
- Content/Article Writers: Content or article writers can typically write about any topics like travel, sports, entertainment, education, food, and health to name a few. You have to know the basics of SEO and how to write for your target audience. They usually write for websites, dailies, magazines, etc.
- Copywriting: Copywriters write for mainly advertisements and other marketing functions. Their main job is to write catchy and engaging tag lines, product descriptions, and other publicity letters with the aim of motivating the reader to take an action such as a purchase or attending an event, etc.
- Social Media Specialist: Social Media Specialists handle the social media account of either an individual, business, or organization. They write engaging content to engage and interact with the audience. They have to respond to the audience’s comments and they look after their brand image on social media platforms.
- Authors: An author may choose to write in fiction or non-fiction categories. In the non-fictional part, he can write about biographies, memoirs, historical accounts, etc. In the fictional segment, he can write short stories, novels, novellas, poems, plays, screenplays, etc. Once their work is published, they are called Authors.
- Bloggers: Bloggers usually write in an informal, dairy-styled format. They can also use photographs and other content media, they write in a way to engage and promote a conversation with the audience. They make use of basic SEO practices and it is usually used for the promotion of products or services.
- Writing Tutor: A writing tutor helps students and aspiring writers improve their writing skills. They help students with their writing techniques, reading skills, comprehension, etc., by giving them regular feedback and one-to-one mentoring.
- Public Relations Manager: A public relations manager is a communication professional tasked with handling the reputation of an organization or an Institution. They usually engage in writing press releases, articles for newsletters, preparing speeches for organizational leaders, and for managing advertisements and marketing materials. Their main aim is to nurture a positive relationship with the media. To work as a public relations manager, a degree in Public Relations, Journalism, Marketing, or a similar degree is required.
- Copy Editors: The main responsibilities of a copyeditor are to make sure that the content is clear, consistent, and without any grammatical errors. They usually work for marketing, advertisement teams, and publishing companies.
- Freelance Writer: A freelance writer writes about a variety of topics for their clients. They usually write press releases, magazine articles, blog posts, brochures, marketing emails, newsletters, etc.
- Scriptwriters: Scriptwriters write scripts for movies or TV series. Here they collaborate with the director, producers, and actors to produce scripts that engage the audience and keep them interested in the narration of a story.
Now let’s take a look at the leading creative writing courses in Edinburgh.
The Top 10 Creative Writing Courses in Edinburgh
1. IIM SKILLS
IIM SKILLS is a premium online learning platform that provides professional courses at an affordable rate to its students. For the students who are curious about creative writing courses in Edinburgh, it is advisable to join their content writing course that is delivered with a creative approach. IIM SKILLS provides a fully bundled writing course that covers all content and creative writing elements. Joining IIM SKILLS can be your first step towards launching an illustrious career in the field of writing.
The Main Highlights of the Content Writing Course Provided by IIM SKILLS Are:
- The course can be attended online.
- It is a one-month program with three months of Internship (optional) attached to the course.
- They have their placement cell which provides full support for your freelancing career as well.
- They provide free tools priced around 371 British Pound.
- They provide lifetime technical and consulting support.
- You will get a chance to publish your first E-Book on platforms like Kindle and Google Books.
- Government-recognized certification.
- Preparation for Certifications like Hubspot content marketing and Test of Legal English Centre Cambridge (TOLES).
Their Syllabus Covers the Following Topics:
- Introduction to Content Writing: Here you will learn various content writing techniques, creating content for B2B and B2C markets.
- Creative Writing: Starting your creative writing journey, writing for both fiction and non-fiction, writing short stories, poems, and dialogues.
- Digital Content: Learn about 30 types of writings like copywriting, video scripts, article writing, blogging, Press releases, product descriptions, writing for social media, Emailers, brochures, and flyers to name a few.
- How to Market Your Content: This module teaches you how to sell your content writing services, target the right audience, etc.
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2. Scottish Universities International Summer School
The Scottish Universities International Summer School (SUISS) offers creative writing courses in Edinburgh during the months of July and August annually. They have a 4 weeks program that offers a specialized course in improving the writing skill in fiction, poetry, and drama. The participants can attend lectures about Modernism and Contemporary literature to develop their critical appraisal.
The Main Features of the Course Are:
- Workshop Seminars: SUISS organizes writing seminars for the students.
- Author-led Masterclasses: Students get an opportunity to interact with distinguished British writers in distinctive discussions and activities.
- Lectures: students can attend lectures about Modernism and Contemporary literature.
- Individual Mentoring Sessions: Students receive an individual mentoring session of about half-hour per week.
- Publishing Lecture: Students will get lectures about the crucial aspects of the publishing industry.
- Editorial Groups: Students can discuss their works with their peers in interactive and informal surroundings, keeping with their shared interests.
- Northern Light: Students will get a chance to get published in their biennial publication.
3. Centre for Open Learning, The University of Edinburgh
The University of Edinburgh offers both in-person and online creative writing courses in Edinburgh for their students. Their course is split into three terms, and from each term, students can choose the topics they are interested in. Term 1 (September to December 2022), covers the subsequent topics:
Writing Audio Drama for Radio and Podcasts, screenwriting1: An Introduction for writing for Film and TV, writing that story, writing for publication, writing young adult fiction, fiction workshop, poetry in practice, short story writing, etc.
Please visit their website for more detailed information regarding their extensive creative writing course.
4. Screen Academy Scotland
The Screen Academy Scotland offers a MA in Creative Writing Course together with Edinburgh Napier University and Edinburgh College of Art. The main focus of the course is on the Fiction genre, with an emphasis on science fiction, fantasy, crime, and horror. They also specialize in comics, graphics novels, and Young adult fiction.
Students can apply for both MA full-time or MA part-time creative writing courses. Students will be able to learn both commercial and experimental fiction writing. Some other highlights of the program are you will get Masterclass feedback and 10 hours of individual editorial mentoring.
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5. Write Here Academy
Write Here Academy offers the best quality; affordable online creative writing courses in Edinburgh for their students. It is a seven-week course, with one-to-one tutorials and weekly workshops. The maximum capacity is limited to 15 and it is allocated on a first come first serve basis. The course is open to both those who want to start writing a book and those who are in the process of writing.
Their course is taught by published authors and professional editors with frequent visits from literary agents and publishers. Their online course will help you in writing your novels and making it more strong thus improving the chances of your work getting published.
Coursera is a prestigious US-based online course provider in a variety of fields. They have tied up with many prestigious universities around the globe. Students who are looking to learn through creative writing courses in Edinburgh can choose from their list of creative writing courses. They offer a variety of online courses on their platform for aspiring creative writers.
Some of Their Main Courses Are:
Creative Writing in Collaboration With Wesleyan University: This course specializes in three major creative writing genres that are short stories, narrative essays, and memoirs.
Write Your First Novel in Collaboration with Michigan State University: This course teaches you how to write a novel by the end of a course.
Good With Words in Collaboration With the University of Michigan: Some of the main features of the course are learning how to use syntax, how to add subtlety to your sentences and how to expertly use punctuations, and how to complete your projects within deadlines.
Creative Writing, How to Craft a Plot in Collaboration With Wesleyan University: This course mainly focuses on the most important and demanding aspect of writing a plot, how to keep it moving and engage with your audience.
To know more about their extensive courses in creative writing, please visit their website.
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7. Gotham Writers
Gotham Writers is a New York-based writing institution, they have been teaching creative writing since 1993. They offer their courses in online mode as well. Those who are interested in learning creative writing courses in Edinburgh can learn from their prestigious institute as well. Their course covers all the major categories in creative writing such as:
- Fiction: Here you can learn about fiction writing, novel writing, children’s book writing, mystery, science fiction, romance writing, etc.
- Non-fiction: It covers the topics like Memoir writing, Feature article writing, essay, and opinion writing, travel writing, personal essay writing, humor writing, etc.
- Scriptwriting: It covers modules like screenwriting, writing for TV, writing for a play, writing for a documentary and video games, etc.
- Comedy, Poetry, and Song: Here you can learn about humor writing, poetry writing, songwriting, stand-up comedy writing, etc.
8. Reedsy Online Learning Courses
Reedsy Learning was founded in 2014 by Emmanuel Nataf, Ricardo Fayet, Vincent Durand, and Matt Cobb. Since then, they have vastly grown their business in the field of writing and they frequently collaborate with editors, designers, and marketers who feature regularly on New York Times bestseller lists. Those who are interested in learning creative writing courses in Edinburgh can choose their learning platform.
They offer a Free Ten-day Course on a Variety of Writing Topics Like:
- How to Write Exciting Fantasy Fiction: Here you will learn how to write a good story, how to build a world around the characters, decide which Point of view to use in your story, and learn all about publishing options.
- Turning Up The Heat in Romance: Here you will learn what are the conventions in erotic writings, how to create sexual tension, etc.
- Writing an Irresistible Romance: This module teaches you the traits of a strong romantic character, creating conflict in a romance, using tropes and keeping them fresh, how to invest in secondary characters, etc.
They have about 18 courses to choose from, please visit their website to get more detailed information about their various courses.
9. edX Courses
edX is also an online learning platform like Coursera and Udemy which offers courses on almost all academic subjects. They offer their courses in various categories like Micro Bachelors Programs, Micro Masters Programs, Bachelor’s Degree, and Master’s Degree. Those looking to enroll in creative writing courses in Edinburgh should check their program.
Their creative writing program offers many courses like How to write a Novel, writing for Entertainment Industry, writing for stage, comedy, and poetry writing. And some detailed courses such as English Composition about stories, English composition about poems, English Composition about Plays, etc.
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10. Udemy Courses
Udemy offers various creative writing courses on its online learning platforms. Students willing to learn creative writing courses in Edinburgh can choose from their online platform as well. Some of the main creative courses listed in their platforms are:
A Complete Creative Writing Course That Covers All the Genres: The main highlights of the course are learning to write in your unique voice, how to use various writing techniques, you will get publishing opportunities, and assignments to target your writing skills.
The Foundations of Fiction Writing: Here you can learn the foundations of fictional writing, how to write unique and engaging dialogues, how to create authentic and believable characters, and how to create authentic and realistic settings for your story.
Creative, Book Writing with Punctuations: This course deals with topics like writing essays, and paragraphs with the correct usage of punctuation, writing non-fiction books, learn how self-publish your book on Amazon.
Writing That Moves: This course teaches how to write a novel that keeps the audience engaged, mastering the important elements of writing a commercially successful novel.
You can visit their website for learning more about their online creative writing courses.
Q1. What are some of the essential skills required to become a creative writer?
Ans. Some of the most essential skills needed for creative writing are a passion for writing, vivid imagination, how to come up with an original idea, having a point of view, good language and vocabulary, and good reading skills. These skills are more innate and come from within. While some other important skills like creating characters, structuring a story or play, dialogues, plotting, etc., can be learned and practiced.
Q2. Can we learn creative writing through a course?
Ans: To become a successful creative writer, you need some innate talents and creativity within you. Some of its main aspects like imagination, passion, ideas, patience, and a taste for literature cannot be learned just by attending a course. But some of its important crafts like building the structure of the plot, its characters, the style of writing, visual descriptions, etc. can be learned and with much practice, one can become a better writer.
Q3. What are some of the career paths one can take in the field of creative writing?
Ans: A creative writer can work as an Author, copywriter, blogger, freelance writer, scriptwriter, social media manager, content writer, writing tutor, marketing specialist, copy editor/proofreader, etc.
Q4. Is it a good idea to enroll in any creative writing courses in Edinburgh?
Ans: The short answer is yes; it is advisable to join creative writing courses in Edinburgh. It will teach you the craft of writing long novels and stories, provided you have a burning passion and desire to write and become a prominent writer.