Fiction Skills: Read Like a Writer

Read wider, read smarter and find new ways to get your words onto the page

Reading like a writer is different to reading for pleasure or to studying literature. It involves thinking about the craftsmanship and writing techniques authors use to keep readers turning the page. This four-week course, run by our partners at Faber Academy, teaches you how to read and discuss books from a writer’s perspective in order to inform your own work. It also challenges you to experiment with new writers and genres, and to find new ways of engaging readers with your own writing.


Start date: 6 June 2022
Duration: 4 weeks
Skill level: All
Session length: Fortnightly
Sessions: 2
Price: £120 (inc. VAT where applicable)


Fiction Skills: Read Like a Writer is suitable for complete beginners or anyone who’s taken a beginners’ fiction course and wants to broaden their knowledge, explore new skills and develop their writing techniques.

The course is suitable if you:

  • Want to understand how being a better reader can help you improve as a writer
  • Are keen to develop your reading and writing habits
  • Want to understand how to write reader-friendly stories
  • Enjoy learning new skills and experimenting with different approaches to writing
  • Want to join a friendly and supportive group of learners
  • Can dedicate 5-7 hours per week for the duration of the course

Tutor Tom Bromley will introduce you to the reading skills and techniques that will help you understand what makes good writing and how you can apply this to your own work.

Over two sessions, Tom will show you how to read a text more closely, and how to apply this to your own writing, while you work within a supportive community of fellow writers keen to share their experiences with you.

Session 1: Reading like a writer
Being a good reader makes you a better writer. We’ll look at ways of improving your close-reading skills, approaching a text as a writer would, and uncovering craft secrets to use in your own writing. You’ll emerge with greater awareness of your reading and writing habits and a list of priorities to work on.
Session 2: Writing for your reader
A good writer also thinks about their reader. We’ll look at writing with a reader in mind. How can you make text reader-friendly? What are the dos and don’ts of drawing in readers? We’ll look at different ways of engaging readers and giving them space to use their imagination and become really involved in your text. You’ll write a 2,000-word piece to engage your ideal reader. You’ll have the chance to share your work with the group, so you can give each other feedback.

You’ll learn in Faber Academy’s online classroom, which is open 24/7 so you can balance your learning around your work, family and friends. You’ll work in a small group of fellow learners so you can discuss ideas, ask questions and share your writing as you progress through the sessions.

You’ll learn from:

  • Podcasts from Tom Bromley
  • Written guidance from Tom
  • A quiz to assess and broaden your current reading habits
  • Specially selected reading extracts and suggestions for further reading
  • Q&A forum with your tutor to answer your questions
  • Group discussions to help you think about your own reading and writing habits
  • Writing exercises and prompts to help you experiment and practise your own writing, from the first session onward
  • Online discussions with writers in your group and the chance to share and give feedback on each other’s writing

You’ll need:

  • 5-7 hours per week to work through the course
  • A notebook and pen or pencil, if you like to make notes by hand
  • A laptop or computer* with:
    • A reliable broadband internet connection
    • Speakers or headphones
    • The latest version of Google Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer, Edge, or Safari
    • Microsoft Word. If you don’t have this you can download Open Office free
    • Adobe Reader, latest version. Download free
    • QuickTime Player, latest version. Download free

*You can access the course from a tablet or smartphone, but we recommend using a laptop or computer, as this makes it easier to share your work files with your writing group.

Join the Faber Academy alumni

After your course, you can join the online alumni where you’ll meet the growing network of past Faber Academy students. The alumni is a friendly group of writers who support each other as they continue to explore and develop their writing.

Within the online alumni area you can:

  • Rejoin your classmates on a private forum and access an archived version of your course materials and forum posts
  • Meet alumni from other Faber Academy courses and groups and share your work for feedback on our alumni critiquing forum
  • Join in on discussions about reading, writing, editing and ideas on our general discussion forum. This is also where we share news and useful info
  • Retain access to our resources area, which has interesting and informative links
  • Chat with other people online using the alumni area live chatroom. We also host live chats with guest tutors, authors, agents, editors and publishers

Commission a report on your work

If you’d like to receive a personalised, detailed report on your final piece of writing from your course tutor, this is available at an extra cost. You’ll receive detailed written feedback assessing your ideas and writing, plus advice on what steps to take next.

Taking things further

If you'd like to continue on to another Faber Academy course, you'll receive a discount. Please get in touch for more details.

This is a Faber Academy course, so you’ll need to book through their website.

What our students say...

It is so interesting to see each writer’s personal experiences and perspectives coming out in their pieces. I’ve learned that what might seem routine or everyday to you as a writer can appear new and fresh to another reader.


What our students say...

I was impressed with the quality of writing and the commitment and generosity of everyone on the Read Like a Writer course.


What our students say...

I have really enjoyed the course and have felt truly alive while writing – and reading the work of others.


What our students say...

I signed on after reading a piece by James Lee Burke, who said that he learnt more from a short creative writing course than he could ever have by floundering around on his own. That’s definitely true from my point of view.


What our students say...

The exercises are great at getting us to really focus on one particular aspect of writing, and of course it’s making me write every day which is really good.


Ready to start writing?

Price: £120 (inc. VAT where applicable)
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