Writing for children and young adults with Catherine Johnson

Ref: SWE32997

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About this course

This course is suitable for those starting out or wanting to explore writing for children. Over the weekend, learn how to generate ideas, characters, and maybe even new worlds, for readers from 7 years old to young adult.

Course Description

If you have ever wanted to write for the most discerning and demanding of readers, then this might be the course for you. Often, the most memorable stories, the characters that stick, are those we encounter as childen. This course will offer you a chance to create your own worlds, to explore and develop your writing for children.

Through workshops and practical exercises, we will create characters that come alive and discover ways to enliven and invigorate our writing. We will look at a range of techniques to strengthen our writing and build confidence in our storytelling, including beginnings, dialogue, point of view and age ranges. There will also be a look at the current market, and this course is suitable for those interested in writing for 7-9 years, Middle Grade and Young Adults.

The aim is that you will go home with a notebook stuffed full of ideas and possibilities.


Arrival Day - this is the first date listed above

Courses start early evening. Residential students to arrive from 4pm, non-residential students to arrive by 6.45pm.

6.45pm: Welcome, followed by dinner (included).

8 - 9pm: First teaching session, attendance is essential.

Daily timetable

Classes 9.15 - 5pm, lunch is included.

From 6.30pm: Dinner (included for residential students).

Evening working - students may have access to workshops until 9pm, but only with their tutor's permission and provided any health and safety guidelines are observed.

Last day

Classes 9.15am - 3pm, lunch is included.

Residential students are to vacate their rooms by 10am please.

(This timetable is for courses of more than one day in length. The tutor may make slight variations)

Course Materials

What students need to bring

  • Notebook and pen or laptop

Additional information

Please wear appropriate clothing/aprons for the workshop or studio, this includes stout covered footwear (no sandals or open toes).


Catherine Johnson

Catherine is an award-winning author of 25 books for young readers. Several of her books have been nominated for the Carnegie Prize, and she has won the Young Quills Award for Historical Fiction with Sawbones in 2013 and the Little Rebels Prize with Freedom in 2019. 


Residential option available. Find out accommodation costs and how to book here.

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