Account Login

Arvon Friends Writing Tips and Exercises

Find writing tips and exercises from our Arvon tutors here, to develop your craft and inspire your imagination. Each writing tip comes with a related writing exercise, and a new tip and exercise are added every fortnight.

You will need to become an Arvon Friend to view the full content.

Select from:

Writing Tips

Don’t talk down to younger readers

Genre: Fiction, Writing for Children & YA

Don’t think that all children want to hear about is fluffy bunnies, naughty elves and lessons to be learned. Some do, of course, depending on their age, but what matters most is giving them a story they can believe in. And in order to do that, you need to re...

Steve Voake

Writing Exercises

Developing a character

Genre: Fiction, Writing for Children & YA

Imagine that there is a young character in your mind, waiting to step forward and tell you their story. You might have an idea of their age, whether they are male or female, perhaps some sense of what they look like. The following series of questions will help...

Steve Voake

Writing Tips

What is a scene?

Genre: Non-Fiction & Life Writing

Novelists are always told to show, not tell. They are also told to ‘write in scenes’ which means broadly the same thing. But do memoir writers also need to follow this advice? Yes, absolutely. A memoir will not work well if it only really has one c...

Alice Jolly

Writing Exercises

Developing a scene

Genre: Non-Fiction & Life Writing

If you are already writing a memoir, look through the work you have done to date and see where the scenes are. Pick out one of these scenes – or something which is not currently written as a scene but should perhaps be re-written as one. If you are just ...

Alice Jolly

Writing Exercises

Narrative – Cause and Effect

Genre: Fiction

Try to bear in mind that the story of your character/s – your plot or narrative – moves forward due to cause and effect. Something happens which causes your character to make a choice and take an action (according to their motivation and character), which ...

Jane Harris

Writing Tips

Character-Driven Narrative

Genre: Fiction

People tend to think about plot as though it’s something separate from character, with characters moving forward from plot-point to plot-point. In fact, character and plot are inextricably linked. Narrative (or story, or plot, whatever you prefer to call it)...

Jane Harris

Writing Tips

Finish Before The End

Genre: Theatre

I always find that finishing my working day before I’ve ran out of ideas is a great help. Imagine you’re writing your scene/s, you’ve planned and thought what is going to happen, how the scene will start, who will be in it, how it will end, perhaps you...

Ishy Din

Writing Exercises

Bringing Dramatic Action Into A Scene

Genre: Theatre

The purpose of this exercise is to help us bring dramatic action to our scenes. Firstly we should examine what we mean by Dramatic Action? Dramatic Action is the tactics a character is using to achieve his or her goals. There will be the overarching goal of wh...

Ishy Din

Load More...