Certificate in Write Fiction Like a Pro Online Course

Advanced Fiction Writing

Certificate in Write Fiction Like a Pro Online Course

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NZ$299

Save NZ$301 (50%)
OFF RRP NZ$600
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Explore how professional writers use story outlines to structure any type of story

What's the single biggest difference between professional authors and novices? Professionals know how to structure novels and stories for maximum dramatic effect. This course helps you develop the same story structuring skills the pros use. You'll understand how your passion, theme, premise, and characters help you create the structure of your story, and you'll discover how viewpoint, dialogue, pacing, and many other techniques are used to build scenes and move your story from beginning to end.

Each assignment in this course helps you develop your own original novel or story. As you apply each technique, your story will take shape, with a clear path from beginning to end. And whenever you have questions or insights to share, you can join your instructor and classmates in the Discussion Area for some interactive brainstorming! Before you know it, you'll be prepared to ...write fiction like a pro.

 Course Fast Facts:

  • Only 6 weeks to complete this course
  • Approximately only 2 to 4 hours per week of study is required
  • This course is delivered 100% on-line and is accessible 24/7 from any computer or smartphone
  • Instructors lead each course and you will be able to interact with them and ask questions
  • You can study from home or at work at your own pace in your own time
  • You can download printer friendly course material or save for viewing off line
  • You will be awarded a certificate at completion of this course

How to study online course?

Upon enrolment an automated welcome email will be sent to you (please check your junk email inbox if not received as this is an automated email), in order for you to access your online course, which is Available 24/7 on any computer or smart mobile device. New courses start every month to ensure that we have the correct ratio of students to tutors available, please ensure you select a starting date when you go through our shopping cart, at checkout. The course is easy to follow and understand.

Recognition & Accreditation

All students who complete the course receive a certificate of completion with a passing score (for the online assessment) and will be issued a certificate via email.

Other Creative Writing Courses

If Shakespeare is your hero or you’d love to live the lifestyle of JK Rowling, then check out our range of creative writing courses!

Lesson 01 - Story Structure
The name of this course really says it all! For the next six weeks, we'll focus on techniques that professional authors use to write effectively and efficiently and that guarantee a story structure that delivers maximum emotional impact. After all, connecting with your audience is what great writing is all about, right? In this first lesson, we'll explore the idea of story structure, and you'll discover that nearly every piece of fiction that works follows the same fundamental rules. We'll also look at the often misunderstood difference between story and plot, a concept that will be vital throughout the rest of this course.

Lesson 02 - The Dramatic Elements
At the heart of every story are the dramatic elements of passion, theme, character, and premise. Your passion is what drives you to tell your story, and the theme is the underlying message it carries. To convey your theme, you'll create characters who represent that theme—either positively or negatively. Put all of these together and you've got your premise. We'll talk about all of these elements in today's lesson.

Lesson 03 - Character
Character is what story is all about. Without a character, and a change in that character, there can be no story. In this lesson, you'll discover why the best characters are flawed. We'll explore your main character—the protagonist—and the opposition forces of the antagonist. And finally, we'll take a look at the other characters who round out your story.

Lesson 04 - Act 1: Hook, Backstory, and Trigger
Today's is the first of three lessons in which you'll see how to construct a story outline, act by act. In Act 1, you'll learn how to hook your readers. Then you'll fill them in with some character history called backstory. And finally, you'll exit Act 1 with a bang by triggering a traumatic event in the life of your protagonist.

Lesson 05 - Act 2: Crisis, Struggle, and Epiphany
If Act 1 ends with a bang, Act 2 starts with a whimper. Your protagonist begins in crisis, an emotional state brought on by his or her flaw. And because of that flaw, your protagonist will struggle throughout Act 2, as the antagonist delivers setback after setback. Fortunately, at the conclusion of Act 2 your protagonist finally figures out the source of all this emotional distress and how to overcome it.

Lesson 06 - Act 3: Plan, Climax, and Ending
The epiphany that ended Act 2 has prepared your protagonist for triumph in Act 3. Now it's time to devise a plan. The result will be a final confrontation with the antagonist. In this lesson, we'll discuss the best way to arrange the defeat of your antagonist—it's not what you might guess. Then, with that climax behind you, you're ready to tie up loose ends in the ending.

Lesson 07 - The Story Idea
We've accomplished a lot in the last few lessons. By now you should be pretty comfortable with story structure. In the next three lessons, we'll take the concepts you've learned so far and apply them to the development of a real novel. Today we'll begin by using the dramatic elements to create a character, his or her flaw, and then put it all together into a formal story idea.

Lesson 08 - The Story Outline
In this lesson, we'll expand the story idea for a novel into the nine checkpoints of our three-act outline. This is quite a challenge for just one lesson, but we've become pretty expert at this story structuring stuff by now, so let's go!

Lesson 09 - The Long Form
Now that you have your outline—and a beautiful one it is!—it's time for that magical moment when you begin expanding it into the long form. Yikes! The actual novel is about to materialize. We'll begin by inserting markers for the scenes that support and develop the outline. Then you'll start expanding those scenes and threading your theme throughout. This is really writing like a pro!

Lesson 10 - Plan Like a Pro
One of the most important choices an author makes is viewpoint. It affects every aspect of the story—from theme, to pacing, to suspense. In this lesson, we'll explore the three most common viewpoints—omniscient, third-person limited, and first person—and discover their advantages and disadvantages. Then we'll dig into techniques for developing characters and establishing a convincing story logic.

Lesson 11 - Plot Like a Pro
In this lesson, we'll look at techniques for refining your plot and controlling its pace. Then we'll unravel the internal structure of every piece of fiction you've ever read, discovering a structure that I bet you never knew existed. After today, you'll never forget it. It's called scene and sequel.

Lesson 12 - Write Fiction Like a Pro
Now that your novel, play, or screenplay is well underway, it's time to think about polishing the final product. In this lesson, we'll look at some techniques for making your writing sparkle, including tips on dialogue and imagery and how to use them to show, not tell. We'll also see how to establish your own unique voice, paying special attention to the aspects of cadence and musicality. Finally, we'll talk a little about the creative process and your role now that you know how to . . . write like a pro.

Internet access, e-mail, the Microsoft Internet Explorer or Mozilla Firefox Web browser, and the Adobe Flash and PDF plug-ins (two free and simple downloads you obtain at http://www.adobe.com/downloads by clicking Get Adobe Flash Player and Get Adobe Reader).

Customer Reviews


Steve is a student's dream -- attentive, knowledgeable, and able to present course material in a fun and interesting way. He is admirably meticulous in checking the discussion forums and offering comments on student work, even when work is posted days after more recent lessons have been released. A wonderful instructor and a wonderful class -- both highly recommended!

Steve is wonderful. I don't know how he does online what so many instructors can't do in a classroom. The content and pace were beyond expectation. His critiques were always immensely encouraging and right on. Thank you Steve.

This course has energized and motivated me more than I can possibly imagine. I loved every bit of it and I learned so much. I really got a lot out of lesson 5 with sharpening your descriptions and loved the whole lesson on metaphors and similes. One piece I wrote I read to my husband and he asked which book that came out of!! I felt so great. I can't wait to tackle my original novel and apply the things I've learned and also continue on with my second one. I can't thank you enough Steve, and everyone in the course who gives such wonderful feedback!!

Steve Alcorn's courses should be a literal MUST to every single aspiring writer in the entire civilized world. No one should ever go into writing without first mastering the basic fundamentals of construction that he teaches.

Before this class, I had read (and even studied) several books on writing fiction. Although several mentioned scene and one spoke of the importance of emotion, not one of them mentioned scene structure as taught here. Scene & sequel is powerful. I'll be back for Mystery Writing and Write Like a Pro in a few weeks. Thanks Steve.

For six weeks I've been excited, anticipating each lesson. It would be impossible to pick out what the most valuable thing I've learned would be; there are so many. I'm more determined than ever to complete and publish my novel and this class and Write Fiction Like A Pro have given me the confidence and drive I needed!

One of the stories I workshopped with you just won first prize in the National Medical Fiction Writing Competition for Physicians. Your advice and teaching made a huge difference in my writing quality and your support encouraged me to keep going. Now I can keep working on getting that novel published!

I'm glad you encouraged us to go back to our old writing. I found that by applying your techniques to very small sections of the old stories, those sections sprang to life. They improved not simply because of the rewriting techniques, but by virtue of the fact that they were being minutely examined, a task required by the specificity of the exercises. I loved that you provided a technique for getting into that. This class is like giving a knife to a starving man at an oyster roast. I'll be taking your other classes.

I thought I was blocked. After about three of Steve's lessons, I realized that I haven't been blocked, I just plain didn't know enough about the structure of a novel to write one effectively. Now a publisher had asked to see more of my work. Thanks, Mr. Alcorn.

This class was great!!!! I learned so much. I've been writing for a long time and have read countless books on the craft as well as how to get published. In this short period of time I learned more than all of those books put together. It's as though no one wants to tell the real secrets....hmmm. Thanks, Steve, for telling it like it REALLY is and giving me the best advice. I am certain to be published now and will most definitely send you the first autographed copy.

Through well-crafted lessons, expert online instruction and interaction with your tutor, participants in these courses gain valuable knowledge at their convenience. They have the flexibility to study at their own pace combined with enough structure and support to complete the course. And they can access the classroom 24/7 from anywhere with an Internet connection.

New sessions of each course run every month. They last six weeks, with two new lessons being released weekly (for a total of 12). The courses are entirely Web-based with comprehensive lessons, quizzes, and assignments. A dedicated professional instructor facilitates every course; pacing learners, answering questions, giving feedback, and facilitating discussions.

About this Course

Explore how professional writers use story outlines to structure any type of story

What's the single biggest difference between professional authors and novices? Professionals know how to structure novels and stories for maximum dramatic effect. This course helps you develop the same story structuring skills the pros use. You'll understand how your passion, theme, premise, and characters help you create the structure of your story, and you'll discover how viewpoint, dialogue, pacing, and many other techniques are used to build scenes and move your story from beginning to end.

Each assignment in this course helps you develop your own original novel or story. As you apply each technique, your story will take shape, with a clear path from beginning to end. And whenever you have questions or insights to share, you can join your instructor and classmates in the Discussion Area for some interactive brainstorming! Before you know it, you'll be prepared to ...write fiction like a pro.

 Course Fast Facts:

  • Only 6 weeks to complete this course
  • Approximately only 2 to 4 hours per week of study is required
  • This course is delivered 100% on-line and is accessible 24/7 from any computer or smartphone
  • Instructors lead each course and you will be able to interact with them and ask questions
  • You can study from home or at work at your own pace in your own time
  • You can download printer friendly course material or save for viewing off line
  • You will be awarded a certificate at completion of this course

How to study online course?

Upon enrolment an automated welcome email will be sent to you (please check your junk email inbox if not received as this is an automated email), in order for you to access your online course, which is Available 24/7 on any computer or smart mobile device. New courses start every month to ensure that we have the correct ratio of students to tutors available, please ensure you select a starting date when you go through our shopping cart, at checkout. The course is easy to follow and understand.

Recognition & Accreditation

All students who complete the course receive a certificate of completion with a passing score (for the online assessment) and will be issued a certificate via email.

Other Creative Writing Courses

If Shakespeare is your hero or you’d love to live the lifestyle of JK Rowling, then check out our range of creative writing courses!

Lesson 01 - Story Structure
The name of this course really says it all! For the next six weeks, we'll focus on techniques that professional authors use to write effectively and efficiently and that guarantee a story structure that delivers maximum emotional impact. After all, connecting with your audience is what great writing is all about, right? In this first lesson, we'll explore the idea of story structure, and you'll discover that nearly every piece of fiction that works follows the same fundamental rules. We'll also look at the often misunderstood difference between story and plot, a concept that will be vital throughout the rest of this course.

Lesson 02 - The Dramatic Elements
At the heart of every story are the dramatic elements of passion, theme, character, and premise. Your passion is what drives you to tell your story, and the theme is the underlying message it carries. To convey your theme, you'll create characters who represent that theme—either positively or negatively. Put all of these together and you've got your premise. We'll talk about all of these elements in today's lesson.

Lesson 03 - Character
Character is what story is all about. Without a character, and a change in that character, there can be no story. In this lesson, you'll discover why the best characters are flawed. We'll explore your main character—the protagonist—and the opposition forces of the antagonist. And finally, we'll take a look at the other characters who round out your story.

Lesson 04 - Act 1: Hook, Backstory, and Trigger
Today's is the first of three lessons in which you'll see how to construct a story outline, act by act. In Act 1, you'll learn how to hook your readers. Then you'll fill them in with some character history called backstory. And finally, you'll exit Act 1 with a bang by triggering a traumatic event in the life of your protagonist.

Lesson 05 - Act 2: Crisis, Struggle, and Epiphany
If Act 1 ends with a bang, Act 2 starts with a whimper. Your protagonist begins in crisis, an emotional state brought on by his or her flaw. And because of that flaw, your protagonist will struggle throughout Act 2, as the antagonist delivers setback after setback. Fortunately, at the conclusion of Act 2 your protagonist finally figures out the source of all this emotional distress and how to overcome it.

Lesson 06 - Act 3: Plan, Climax, and Ending
The epiphany that ended Act 2 has prepared your protagonist for triumph in Act 3. Now it's time to devise a plan. The result will be a final confrontation with the antagonist. In this lesson, we'll discuss the best way to arrange the defeat of your antagonist—it's not what you might guess. Then, with that climax behind you, you're ready to tie up loose ends in the ending.

Lesson 07 - The Story Idea
We've accomplished a lot in the last few lessons. By now you should be pretty comfortable with story structure. In the next three lessons, we'll take the concepts you've learned so far and apply them to the development of a real novel. Today we'll begin by using the dramatic elements to create a character, his or her flaw, and then put it all together into a formal story idea.

Lesson 08 - The Story Outline
In this lesson, we'll expand the story idea for a novel into the nine checkpoints of our three-act outline. This is quite a challenge for just one lesson, but we've become pretty expert at this story structuring stuff by now, so let's go!

Lesson 09 - The Long Form
Now that you have your outline—and a beautiful one it is!—it's time for that magical moment when you begin expanding it into the long form. Yikes! The actual novel is about to materialize. We'll begin by inserting markers for the scenes that support and develop the outline. Then you'll start expanding those scenes and threading your theme throughout. This is really writing like a pro!

Lesson 10 - Plan Like a Pro
One of the most important choices an author makes is viewpoint. It affects every aspect of the story—from theme, to pacing, to suspense. In this lesson, we'll explore the three most common viewpoints—omniscient, third-person limited, and first person—and discover their advantages and disadvantages. Then we'll dig into techniques for developing characters and establishing a convincing story logic.

Lesson 11 - Plot Like a Pro
In this lesson, we'll look at techniques for refining your plot and controlling its pace. Then we'll unravel the internal structure of every piece of fiction you've ever read, discovering a structure that I bet you never knew existed. After today, you'll never forget it. It's called scene and sequel.

Lesson 12 - Write Fiction Like a Pro
Now that your novel, play, or screenplay is well underway, it's time to think about polishing the final product. In this lesson, we'll look at some techniques for making your writing sparkle, including tips on dialogue and imagery and how to use them to show, not tell. We'll also see how to establish your own unique voice, paying special attention to the aspects of cadence and musicality. Finally, we'll talk a little about the creative process and your role now that you know how to . . . write like a pro.

Internet access, e-mail, the Microsoft Internet Explorer or Mozilla Firefox Web browser, and the Adobe Flash and PDF plug-ins (two free and simple downloads you obtain at http://www.adobe.com/downloads by clicking Get Adobe Flash Player and Get Adobe Reader).

Steve is a student's dream -- attentive, knowledgeable, and able to present course material in a fun and interesting way. He is admirably meticulous in checking the discussion forums and offering comments on student work, even when work is posted days after more recent lessons have been released. A wonderful instructor and a wonderful class -- both highly recommended!

Steve is wonderful. I don't know how he does online what so many instructors can't do in a classroom. The content and pace were beyond expectation. His critiques were always immensely encouraging and right on. Thank you Steve.

This course has energized and motivated me more than I can possibly imagine. I loved every bit of it and I learned so much. I really got a lot out of lesson 5 with sharpening your descriptions and loved the whole lesson on metaphors and similes. One piece I wrote I read to my husband and he asked which book that came out of!! I felt so great. I can't wait to tackle my original novel and apply the things I've learned and also continue on with my second one. I can't thank you enough Steve, and everyone in the course who gives such wonderful feedback!!

Steve Alcorn's courses should be a literal MUST to every single aspiring writer in the entire civilized world. No one should ever go into writing without first mastering the basic fundamentals of construction that he teaches.

Before this class, I had read (and even studied) several books on writing fiction. Although several mentioned scene and one spoke of the importance of emotion, not one of them mentioned scene structure as taught here. Scene & sequel is powerful. I'll be back for Mystery Writing and Write Like a Pro in a few weeks. Thanks Steve.

For six weeks I've been excited, anticipating each lesson. It would be impossible to pick out what the most valuable thing I've learned would be; there are so many. I'm more determined than ever to complete and publish my novel and this class and Write Fiction Like A Pro have given me the confidence and drive I needed!

One of the stories I workshopped with you just won first prize in the National Medical Fiction Writing Competition for Physicians. Your advice and teaching made a huge difference in my writing quality and your support encouraged me to keep going. Now I can keep working on getting that novel published!

I'm glad you encouraged us to go back to our old writing. I found that by applying your techniques to very small sections of the old stories, those sections sprang to life. They improved not simply because of the rewriting techniques, but by virtue of the fact that they were being minutely examined, a task required by the specificity of the exercises. I loved that you provided a technique for getting into that. This class is like giving a knife to a starving man at an oyster roast. I'll be taking your other classes.

I thought I was blocked. After about three of Steve's lessons, I realized that I haven't been blocked, I just plain didn't know enough about the structure of a novel to write one effectively. Now a publisher had asked to see more of my work. Thanks, Mr. Alcorn.

This class was great!!!! I learned so much. I've been writing for a long time and have read countless books on the craft as well as how to get published. In this short period of time I learned more than all of those books put together. It's as though no one wants to tell the real secrets....hmmm. Thanks, Steve, for telling it like it REALLY is and giving me the best advice. I am certain to be published now and will most definitely send you the first autographed copy.

Through well-crafted lessons, expert online instruction and interaction with your tutor, participants in these courses gain valuable knowledge at their convenience. They have the flexibility to study at their own pace combined with enough structure and support to complete the course. And they can access the classroom 24/7 from anywhere with an Internet connection.

New sessions of each course run every month. They last six weeks, with two new lessons being released weekly (for a total of 12). The courses are entirely Web-based with comprehensive lessons, quizzes, and assignments. A dedicated professional instructor facilitates every course; pacing learners, answering questions, giving feedback, and facilitating discussions.

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Now Only NZ$299 Save NZ$301 (50%)
OFF RRP NZ$600
Delivery Method

Online - Certificate of Completion

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Course Summary

Course ID No.: 007WFLAP
Delivery Mode: Online
Course Access: 6 Weeks
Tutor Support: Yes
Time required: 24 Hours
Assessments: Yes
Qualification: Certificate of Completion

Start Dates

This course is available to begin on the following dates

  • 16 October
  • 13 November
  • 11 December
  • 15 January

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