Notes from my Open Book Short Story Workshop

I hosted a workshop on short story writing at this year’s Open Book Festival. Some of the greatest writers in the world are known for their short stories – Edgar Allen Poe, Ernest Hemingway, Franz Kafka, Nadine Gordimer – and South Africa is home to some of the best.

I love short stories, writing and reading them, and wanted to share some tips for aspiring writers.

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Open Book Festival: RSVP for my Short Story Workshop

The Open Book Festival takes place from 6-10 September at the beautiful Fugard Theatre in Cape Town.

I’ll be hosting a free workshop on short story writing at this year’s festival which is open to anyone, whether you’re a beginner, experienced writer or simply love short stories and want to know more about the craft.
I’ll be giving a brief introduction to short story writing, offering tips and advice, reading excerpts from some of the country’s top storytellers, and inviting attendees to take part in writing exercises designed to sharpen their skills.
I’ve run two previous workshops for the festival, one on Writing for Young Adults with Cat Hellisen and Sarah Lotz and another on Worldbuilding with Cat and Zimkhitha Mlanzeli.

This year I have another special guest lined up.

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Open Book Festival: Worldbuilding workshop

21 September 2015

My YA masterclass returned to Open Book again this year and to my absolute delight, was one of the first events to sell out. Last time we tackled How to write a YA novel, so this year I decided to narrow the focus a little bit.

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How to write a YA novel in 3 minutes

13 September 2013

Cat Hellisen, Sarah Lotz and I hosted our first Young Adult masterclass at the Open Book festival on Wednesday 11 September 2013.

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Why YA?

5 February 2013

Whenever I’m out and about, trying to sell books or talking to kids about pursuing a career in writing, the question inevitably arises about why I write YA.

I’ve made it pretty clear in the past that I didn’t specifically set out to write YA. My first novel had young people in it, and as a result, became branded as YA. To be honest I had never even heard the term before then, but rather assumed that books marketed towards the teen market were simply that – teen books. I grew up devouring L.J Smith and R.L Stine after all. I had no idea they were called YA.

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