no certificate
- OR -
with CEU Certificate*
Start Right Now!
Taking multiple courses? Save with our platinum program.

Course Description

From character and plot-conflict development to infusing a unique style and specialized writing techniques, the steps to writing a novel--while not utterly impossible--do require a dedicated, disciplined approach.


By committing to the steps outlined within this course, aspiring (and even experienced) novelists can find the structure they need to create a well-crafted manuscript, one they will be proud to shop to potential agents and publishers.


While some creative types may balk at the idea of adhering to a framework, the truth is that following such guidelines actually frees up writers to focus on the genesis and flow of ideas as opposed to be bogged down by the myriad of format and publishing style particulars.


That is why we have provided you with insights into how, from start to finish, you can develop the varying elements of your novel: characters, plotlines, setting, tone, conflict, climax, and 'resolution denouement'. Labeled as dramatic construction, every novel ought to have a foundation in these basic principles.


Plus, we will help take you one step further by offering you the specifics as to what is required to submit your completed work to potential agents and publishers. With an end goal in mind, this will help inspire you to actually finish your novel.


Outfitted with both practical and creative writers' tools, there is no reason you can not successfully write a novel and get it published.


If indeed you are truly committed and willing to invest the necessary time and effort to put your literary skills to the test, there should be nothing, absolutely nothing, stopping you from producing memorable prose.


Course Requirements

At least a high school reading and writing educational level is required.

Course Goals

Students will learn:

Ø  The history of the novel

Ø  The do's and don'ts about writing schedules and motivation

Ø  The different forms, methods and development for writing novels.

Ø  Factors to selecting a specific genre

Ø  The four points of view an author can use

Ø  Manuscript formatting

Ø  How to use a storyboarding

Ø  How to form a synopsis

Ø  The five elements that are crucial to writing a novel

Ø  The phases to go through when you develop your characters

Ø  How to establish a plot and conflicts

Ø  The different types of plot structures

Ø  Factors to setting a scene

Ø  Style and Tone

Ø  How to build tension that leads to a climax

Ø  How to place critical scenes 

Ø  The cause and effect acts that are critical to a novel's plot

Ø  The importance of dialogue and how to make it realistic.

Ø  Imagery, style, illusions and symbolism in writing

Ø  How to write a conclusion

Ø  How to proofread your writing

Ø  How to submit your work for publishing

Course Materials

All course materials will be online and no outside purchases will be required.

Grading Policy

The course consists of twenty-six lessons. At the end of each lesson will be at least one writing  assignment and a lesson review quiz based on the lesson material. A percentage grade will be given based on point accumulation.

Course Topics

·         Lesson 1: Definition of a Novel

·         Lesson 2: Work Philosophy

·         Lesson 3: Novel Writing Methods

·         Lesson 4: Selecting a Specific Class

·         Lesson 5: Selecting a Specific Genre

·         Lesson 6: Selecting a Point of View (POV)

·         Lesson 7: Manuscript Formatting

·         Lesson 8: Storyboarding

·         Lesson 9: Synopsis Formation

·         Lesson 10: Five Elements Involved in Fiction Writing

·         Lesson 11: Building Character Development

·         Lesson 12: Plot/Conflict Development

·         Lesson 13: More on Plot

·         Lesson 14: Setting and Theme

·         Lesson 15: Style and Tone

·         Lesson 16: Climax Building

·         Lesson 17: Critical Scenes

·         Lesson 18: Cause & Effect

·         Lesson 19: Dialogue

·         Lesson 20: Illustrative Details/Exposition

·         Lesson 21: Inclusion and Occlusion

·         Lesson 22: Writing a Conclusion

·         Lesson 23: Polishing of Prose

·         Lesson 24: Checklist of Questions

·         Lesson 25: Publish or Peril: Getting Ready to Submit

·         Lesson 26: Writing a Novel: Final Take Aways

Learning Outcomes

By successfully completing this course, students will be able to:
  • Define what a novel is.
  • Describe working philosophy.
  • Know novel writing methods.
  • Select a specific class to write about.
  • Select a specific genre to write about.
  • Select a Point of View (POV).
  • Know manuscript formatting.
  • Create a storyboard.
  • Define the synopsis.
  • Know five elements involved in fiction writing.
  • Describe building character development.
  • Describe plot/conflict development.
  • Know plot requirements.
  • Create the setting, theme, style and tone.
  • Create climax. Identify critical scenes. Recognize cause and effect.
  • Create proper dialog and illustrative details.
  • Write a conclusion. Edit and revise. Publish the work, and
  • Demonstrate mastery of lesson content at levels of 70% or higher.

Assessment Guide

Assessment Points
Your Novel15
Lesson 1 Assignment5
Lesson 1 Exam10
Lesson 2 Assignment5
Lesson 2 Exam10
Lesson 3 Assignment10
Lesson 3 Exam9
Lesson 4 Assignment10
Lesson 4 Exam9
Lesson 5 Assignment10
Lesson 5 Exam10
Lesson 6 Exam10
Lesson 7 Assignment5
Lesson 7 Exam5
Lesson 8 Assignment10
Lesson 8 Exam10
Lesson 9 Assignment10
Lesson 9 Exam9
Lesson 10 Assignment20
Lesson 10 Exam10
Lesson 11 Assignment20
Lesson 11 Exam10
Lesson 12 Assignment20
Lesson 12 Exam10
Lesson 13 Assignment20
Lesson 13 Exam10
Lesson 14 Assignment20
Lesson 14 Exam10
Lesson 15 Assignment20
Lesson 15 Exam9
Lesson 16 Assignment20
Lesson 16 Exam10
Lesson 17 Assignment20
Lesson 17 Exam10
Lesson 18 Assignment20
Lesson 18 Exam9
Lesson 19 Assignment20
Lesson 19 Exam10
Lesson 20 Assignment20
Lesson 20 Exam8
Lesson 21 Assignment20
Lesson 21 Exam10
Lesson 22 Assignment20
Lesson 22 Exam10
Assignment 23A10
Lesson 23 Assignment20
Lesson 23 Exam10
Lesson 24 Assignment20
Lesson 24 Exam10
Lesson 25 Assignment20
Lesson 25 Exam8
Final Assignment20
Lesson 26 Assignment25
Total Points:691

Related Articles