Without exception, the submissions of every person in the class have improved immensely since we began. Our stories are so much clearer now (I suspect for the writer as much as for the reader).
I am in awe of Pamela's ability to identify the strengths and the weaknesses of any piece of writing with scalpel-sharp precision. Even better is her skill at finding solutions for the problems too.
I enjoyed the Zoom sessions together. Seeing the people behind the stories. I now have three writing friends that I'm still in regular touch with and we're looking forward to meeting for the first time at the ARW conference in August.
Having completed a number of courses with AWC (serial workshopper here!) and then bringing my story idea to life through the Novel Writing Essentials course, Write your Novel was the next step in the process.
Reviewing the work of others and having your work reviewed by them is invaluable. Reading the tutor’s comments and feedback to others (in addition to your own specific feedback) adds to the learning.
Cathie is incredible. So knowledgeable, practical and her feedback is so well presented (and spot on!) Areas for development were provided in an honest and supportive manner and I loved the recommendations for wider reading.
I enjoyed the combination of learning from the audio content, workshopping and submission of chapters for feedback. Great online, group support.
I finished the draft of the novel I had been thinking about for so long. I navigated through plot and character changes to come to a point where I can now start my subsequent drafts focused on refining and improving through each of the drafts to follow.
Just keep writing. You can't write the start till you know the end so stop re-writing those first few chapters and keep going.
Do it. Give yourself a structure for pushing through and achieve what you've been wanting to do for so long.
Cathie provided excellent detailed feedback and guidance in how to draw more from a piece of writing.
I enjoyed watching my classmates' skills grow and really value their comments and feedback on my manuscript. I feel I have grown as a writer. I can now add more depth to my stories. I have also gained the confidence to share my writing with others.
Go for it. The courses are informative, provide useful and interesting lessons. The tutors are knowledgeable, give fair and valuable feedback and are supportive of your journey as a writer.
I did the Novel Writing Essentials course with Cathie and Plotting and Planning with Kate Forsyth and my idea for a historical novel took shape. Once I had written 20,000 words, I enrolled in this course to complete my novel.
The comments and the reading material suggested by the tutor and collective wisdom of the reading group were extremely useful in shaping my novel.
I am grateful to Cathie as her gentle yet tough love edged me on to do my best and complete the first draft of my novel.
The comments by other participants, the tutor's comments on other drafts (in addition to my draft) and the list of reference books on writing fiction were good. The online audio sessions and course material were good as well.
I liked the pace of the twelve-month course as it gave me time to absorb and apply the principles I learnt through the lessons. This allowed me to do my homework and be prepared with my submissions.
The AWC offers a huge range of courses on writing. I love their courses on writing fiction. If you follow the lessons and listen to all the advice you get from the experts, you will achieve your goal to complete your first draft of your novel.
Thanks to everyone at AWC - the course creators, the course deliverers, the experts, the tutor and the participants. Loved every day of the course.
Cathie was brilliant. She has helped and is helping me create the book I've always wanted.
I enjoyed the feedback and growing from that. And watching my fellow writers grow.
Cathie Tasker is phenomenal.
Cathie was awesome. Always constructive and supportive.
There were many aha moments. In particular, I found the handouts very helpful, especially the descriptions of filter and filler words, tense, show not tell and concrete words. I stuck them on my wall and referred to them often.
You are the only one who can write your novel, but if you want to write it better enrol in the Write Your Novel course. The advice and support of your tutor and other aspiring writers is invaluable.
Pamela was spot on, all the time. Not afraid to put in the punches early, saving a lot of time. How she could have such a good grasp of sixteen novels, given only snippets and a synopsis, was remarkable.
Enjoyable? The anticipation of the daily postings on the website, particularly at the Water Cooler. Satisfying? Seeing everyone's writing improve quickly with practice and direction.
First time writing "full time" and having the product reviewed. Reversed some preconceptions on what good writing is, confirmed some areas of concern in my own writing.
Loved it. Will miss it.
I needed the push to get on with my writing and after completing Novel Writing Essentials just previously I was feeling super inspired.
I learned things I didn't know I needed to learn which was amazing. I am still processing everything, to be honest. I was interested in the craft of writing and this course definitely helped.
Pamela is lovely. Her feedback was accurate and very helpful.
I enjoyed everything I have learned about myself as a writer and about the craft of writing. Also the feedback from other students was fantastic.
I've learned that I need to write myself into the story more. I have a lot to ponder and am excited about it. I am proud of myself that I have completed a draft!! Imperfect, yes but I have done it!!
I would definitely recommend AWC. You will learn SO much, just do it!!
Thank you!! I think you are doing a GREAT job!
I found Pamela's feedback to be enormously helpful. There is no doubting her expertise. I liked the online feedback as well as the written feedback.
I liked the discipline of having to submit segments of writing at regular intervals - and I especially valued the feedback of others.
I have a deeper appreciation of POV (head, heart and body) and of structure. I think, also, that I have a greater appreciation of the need to take the reader on an emotional journey.
The course represents great value for money. It offers some profound insights and is rich in feedback. It also provides opportunities to network with other writers.
I enjoyed the course and am delighted to have a first draft at the end of it.
I didn't think I'd manage to produce the bulk of a novel in the 6 months, but I've come much closer to achieving that goal than I expected to.
Pamela is very knowledgeable about all aspects of writing and publishing, and very committed to transmitting her knowledge to her students. She is very open to all kinds of writing and very encouraging of all participants. Her feedback was always very focussed on specific problems in my writing and gave me a clear path for how to proceed.
I enjoyed the regular feedback from the tutor and the camaraderie of the group - knowing that everyone was struggling with the same things I was.
I've produced more material than I ever have before, and the focussed teaching has improved the quality of my work immensely.
Many thanks to Pamela for the detailed attention she's given to all of us, and her unwavering encouragement.
Angela was great. Kept things real and gave honest feedback. Gave us all an extra one-on-one zoom chat which was really helpful. No complaints at all.
I enjoyed meeting like-minded people and developing relationships with them.
Thanks for everything AWC, you've awakened a beast in me.
I thought Angela was really honest, which is what I wanted. I wanted to be told when my writing wasn't strong versus when it was and because of her honesty I really trusted her. I very much enjoyed her tutoring and she even went above and beyond and had a Zoom meeting with everyone.
I feel confident that I have a first draft of a book which, once polished, I can proudly send to an agent. I feel confident as a writer of fiction. I will never stop writing novels now.
Thank you so much for this gift. I am so grateful that I did this course; it has enriched my life and my skills.
It has been beyond amazing with expert advice from Angela as well as support from fellow classmates. The workshopping was a highlight.
I have noticed a huge difference in how I structure my writing and its flow.
Fantastic course. So pleased to have been part of the course. The AWC are experts who want you to succeed.
This was an exceptionally good course with a very good group of writers. I enjoyed it. Thank you for all the office staff help too. I think the fact I had already completed Short Story Essentials helped me. I have done many of your courses through the years and they are informative and stimulating. But this was the best. Perhaps I will try one more with an unfinished novel waiting in the drawer for final draft. Thank you to you all.
Feedback from Cathie was excellent, encouraging and very informative. She gives such a lot of extra graphs and info sheets. I have downloaded them for future reference. Sometimes it takes a while to absorb all the information and it is good to have this feedback and also the module downloads to do at a later date. I can't praise Cathie enough; she is an excellent tutor. Thank you, Cathie.
I enjoyed the interaction with the other students - they are now good friends - reading their work and seeing how each one progressed. I wish it went longer as it seems as if we could have had a month more to work on the editing and publishing side of things. It would be interesting to know how they get on later so this is a reason to join the Facebook page.
I finished this memoir. It was tough work and emotional to go back and find what I needed to keep, what I needed to add, what needed to be left out. I'm glad it wasn't completed beforehand.
What I had considered just an urge that wouldn't go away, and that kept insisting I needed to write it, had benefit for others. The students loved the story and this was encouragement. Cathie too has said she loves it. One of the men said he couldn't put it down. High praise from a man, I feel.
I am grateful for all the service and help given through the office as well as tutor and audios and written handouts. I have a sense of having achieved something worthwhile. I had three copies printed and bound at Office Works to give to beta readers outside of AWC students and feel proud to have something of worth for them to read, prior to a final print run.
I thoroughly enjoyed the 12 month Write Your Novel course, which I completed during 2020. I finished, re-wrote and polished my YA Thriller manuscript that I'd been struggling with since 2015. I learnt valuable writing tips and techniques, both from tutor Cathie Tasker and from my supportive course mates, through the workshopping element of the program. We now continue to read for each other post course. Highly recommend!
Cathie is an excellent tutor. Her feedback is always clear and to the point. She's not afraid to say when something isn't working. She is excellent at answering questions promptly and with lots of detail and infographics. I felt in safe hands with her.
I enjoyed the camaraderie amongst the group and the chance to read and feedback on other people's work.
I feel I now have a handle on the structure of a novel. My innate knowledge gleaned from years as a reader is solidified with a concrete understanding of the building blocks of structure, POV, characterisation, use of the senses, creating a setting and writing good dialogue. Whereas with this manuscript I have been feeling my way, I feel confident about getting into the next one.
A major learning for me has been using limited third person POV effectively. I had to figure out how to tell a story without head hopping and it's strengthened my manuscript immeasurably.
The AWC provides quality content through professional tutors in an easily accessible way.
Cathie was phenomenal! Fantastic! Fabulous! Inspiring! Honest! It's a wonderful opportunity for writers to work along Cathie Tasker. Her experience in the publishing industry is priceless to any writer. AWC has excellent tutors, but Cathie is in a league of her own. No one comes close. I'm definitely booking more courses with her.
After writing many years of very short texts, I was struggling to write this particular longer text. I was in 'Ice age' mode! This course got me out of it. While I was struggling, it was good to know I was not alone, especially with Cathie at the helm.
I feel positive about the story instead of waking up frustrated about it. Such a BIG relief! When I changed my POV, the ice melted and Spring arrived! Hooray! It's obvious, but I'd dug myself into such a dark place, I'd lost my way.
These courses are a necessary part of the writing process in today's world. I can't imagine a year going by without AWC being part of my writing life.
Thank you, Cathie! Thank you, fellow work shoppers! Thank you AWC!
I loved having Cathie as my tutor. She is kind, insightful, and provides detailed feedback that generally includes helpful resources as well.
I enjoyed swapping submissions, giving and providing feedback. I found this aspect very valuable. Also, I loved hearing from different authors in the audio classes for each module.
When I first started writing, I thought I knew what I was doing. Boy, was I wrong! This course (+ the others I've completed) have opened my eyes and taught me the essential fundamentals of writing that I was missing.
I learned that I am actually a good writer - the feedback I received was amazing and I'll always be thankful that this was my starting point.
Thank you for this course - it's wonderful! HIGHLY recommended. Can't praise these courses enough. I'll definitely be back for more!
I enjoyed the overall format of fortnightly modules, submissions and feedback. I didn’t find the time commitment onerous, despite working four days per week. I think reading other students’ work and giving feedback is a really valuable experience. It was a great experience doing the course in 2020, in the midst of the Melbourne COVID-19 shutdown. It really helped keep me focused and productive.
I really appreciated the 12-month online format. Previously I think there was just a six-month option and I was hesitant to do that given my work commitments. I was able to get my first draft written and do a complete rewrite second draft with this format.
I found Cathie’s feedback to be very measured, sensible and relevant. I liked that she read everyone else’s feedback and acknowledged where other students had given sound advice.
I don’t think my writing style or novel changed much during the course but the course helped keep me motivated to keep writing and get my novel finished. The positive feedback reinforced that I was on the right track.
The courses are well structured and draw on a wide range of writers’ experiences. An online course means that you can be flexible with your time requirements. Committing to a course helps you keep writing come what may. Having your own set of Beta readers is a worthwhile thing. There are a huge variety of programs to choose from. AWC courses are good value for the financial and time commitment.
I had done Novel Writing Essentials with Cathie earlier in the year and was keen to continue studying to take my manuscript to the next level.
I enjoyed meeting other aspiring writers and learning about their stories and forming friendships and a writing tribe.
It helped me form a writing routine that fit around my daily life and I loved how the audio lessons always demonstrated all writers are different. What works for one, doesn't work for others. The 'just keep going, don't stop' mentality. Focus on finishing the first draft so you can go back and fix everything after.
I have recommended you guys! I have a lovely friend doing your picture book course right now! When we were talking about your courses, I shared my experiences with her and encouraged her to go for it.
I'd started a manuscript and did Novel Writing Essentials and told myself if my classmates enjoyed my story I would continue. Everyone seemed to love it and this inspired me to push myself forward and continue.
The support of my classmates and tutor was especially helpful in knuckling down and writing my novel. Knowing someone was going to be reading my work made me accountable and that all spurred me on to finish, and then revise. I feel satisfied that I've finished, but a little sad that I have to fly away and finish the manuscript by myself.
The tutor introduced herself as an expert and explained the various things she'd done and her specialties. This gave her immediate respect; her knowledge of genre conventions and what NOT to do was particularly insightful. Her approach to feedback was very genuine; she told you all the things she liked before hitting you with what wasn't working, and what you needed to work on. I like the approach of finding the positives rather than just telling you what needs fixing.
I enjoyed my classmates' comments and assessments. It was such a diverse mix of age and background and everyone always seemed to have some little nugget of wisdom for me. Also, learning the bits people liked really helped me along, and of course what they disliked, because I have to go away and work on those areas. But it was in examining those areas that made me grow the most.
The final manuscript assessments nearly made me cry simply because I realised my story had made an impact on someone else. People were gaining all sorts of insights and growth from some of my storylines and characters in ways I'd never even imagined.
If you've always wanted to write a book, you need to give yourself a push and upskill yourself. There are techniques and processes you can learn to develop a craft which will get you to a full manuscript. In the past I felt I just wrote without a clear idea of how to do it and hoped I'd have an A-ha moment. The course showed me what I needed to change which I never could have done alone.
Once I could see my work slowly improve with each revision, the ideas started to flow on how I could improve my story. Learning what to exclude by virtue of my classmates' feedback also helped me grow and gave me a stronger awareness of what I needed to include.
The tutor was fabulous. Very knowledgeable and also very generous with her time.
I had completed shorter courses and felt this was a way to really commit to my story. I thought, how can I possibly workshop other student's work if I was unsure about the writing process, but I found out that as a reader I know what I like in a story. I enjoyed the workshopping and feedback.
I am committed to finishing my story.