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Writing a Novel

Richard Skinner

The essential companion for your writing life. Writing a Novel is not a set of instructions: it is a way of thinking, a conversation, a relationship in itself.

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A novel is a relationship, a place outside of time where both reader and writer are challenged and validated, stretched and rewarded.

Richard Skinner believes it is your duty as a novelist to bring your whole self to the page; to find your story, not force it; to meet your reader in a spirit of openness.

In Writing a Novel he offers up frameworks, strategies and stimuli to help you meet that duty, drawing on his deep experience as one of the UK’s leading creative writing teachers. He covers the essentials – narrators, character, setting – with charm and rigour. But Writing a Novel is not a set of instructions: it is a way of thinking, a conversation, a relationship in itself.

Critic Reviews

Inspiring . . . connects writers to themselves at the deepest level.

S. J. Watson
Critic Reviews

'If you’re burning to write a novel, this guide will fan the flames and help you discover your true talent.’

Laline Paull
Critic Reviews

‘Richard Skinner is an enlightened and liberating teacher. Writing a Novel is a must for all who want to write and for those who already are. My copy is always on my desk.’

Renee Knight
Critic Reviews

‘Skinner has a singular gift for communicating the magic and machinations of writing. This clear and generous book will help any writer find their way to telling their stories.’

Lydia Ruffles
Critic Reviews

'Skinner’s elegant prose is restrained and increasingly hypnotic.' (on The Mirror)

Financial Times
Critic Reviews

'There are tinges of the uncanny, strains of the gothic, to both stories. In each there are corridors and locked doors it would be best not to pry into. Skinner’s prose has the strangely contradictory quality of being so clear and crystalline that you feel it must be hiding something. It’s an effect that is, like the settings of both these highly unusual tales, creepingly claustrophobic.' (on The Velvet Gentleman)

Daily Telegraph

Richard Skinner is a novelist, poet and critic. His most recent book, The Mirror, was described as ‘beautifully written . . . immersive . . . captivating’ by the Guardian. As Director of the Fiction Programme at Faber Academy, he created the flagship ‘Writing a Novel’ six-month course in 2009 and since then has helped hundreds of writers find their…

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Richard Skinner