Creative Writing: The Novel MA
- Course Content
- Special Features
- Entry Criteria
Postgraduate Loans: From 1 August 2016, students who live in England will be able to apply for a Postgraduate Loan in academic year 2016/17 of up to £10,000. Find out more
About the Course
We designed the Creative Writing: The Novel MA quite simply to teach everything we think a new novelist ought to know.
It combines a focus on the skills of writing full-length fiction with a clear-eyed exploration of the publishing process and related creative fields.
The programme is designed around the core activity of producing a major prose fiction project, which can be a novel fragment with synopsis, a novella or a collection of short stories, of publishable quality and produced in a marketable form.
This MA has attracted considerable interest among publishers and literary agents, many of whom participate actively in the programme.
All applications should include a sample of writing.
AimsThe Internship Programme offers a unique opportunity in a Creative Writing Master's programme for you not only to understand the role that the creative industries play in shaping a writing career but actually to participate in these fields.
Programme Convenor: Matt Thorne
You will take four taught modules including at least one industry-oriented module and then you will be able to work one to one with a tutor to prepare your dissertation of between 20,000 and 40,000 words.
The MA consists of both compulsory and optional modules, a typical selection can be found below. Modules can vary from year to year, but these offer a good idea of what we teach.
Elements of Fiction
In this module you will analyse and explore the different elements of fiction. Each week the teaching session will begin with a discussion by one of your lecturers on a specific aspect of fiction writing. You will then divide into workshop groups and continue to explore the topic in presentations and seminar discussion of the books set the previous week. After a short break, the students will respond to each others’ writing in a workshop setting.
Planning a Novel
In this module we will study different approaches to planning and structuring a novel together with the advanced writing techniques which are particularly important in specific genres of fiction. We normally adapt the content of this module to the specific interests of each year's group. You will be able to try each genre in turn and will continue to discuss your writing in workshop groups.
Paths to Publication
In this module you will study and learn to understand the creative industries through which authors reach their readers. These industries are changing very rapidly so this module also emphasizes the process of change and prepares you to become part of this ongoing process. We will also examine the strategies which authors have used successfully to navigate the creative industries and we will hear industry professionals give their view of authors and the way they market their writing. We believe that this is the best possible help we can offer you to get your novel published.
After the taught section of the module, we will organise short work placements for students in these industries. Students will then share their experiences through their assessed presentations, in order to build up a comprehensive picture of the entire process. If you are not interested or are unable to take up a placement, you may choose to deliver a presentation on an individual company within the creative industries instead.
- Writers at Work
- Features and Screenwriting
You will be able to work one-to-one with your dissertation tutor to write a novel extract of up to 40,000 words and a related a critical commentary.
- You will be taught by leading writers.
- The course is career oriented and focused on current professional practice.
- Our West London campus allows maximum contact with the arts in the capital.
- The Curtis Brown Prize, worth £1,500, is awarded annually to a student from the MA programme in Creative Writing: The Novel. The winner is chosen by senior agents at Curtis Brown, the leading literary and talent agency, from amongst those students who achieve an A or A* grade for their dissertation. Curtis Brown may also, at their discretion, make an offer of representation to the winner.
At Brunel we provide many opportunities and experiences within your degree programme and beyond – work-based learning, professional support services, volunteering, mentoring, sports, arts, clubs, societies, and much, much more – and we encourage you to make the most of them, so that you can make the most of yourself.
UK/EU students: £7,300 full-time; £3,650 part-time
International students: £15,400 full-time; £7,700 part-time
UK/EU students can opt to pay in six equal monthly instalments: the first instalment is payable on enrolment and the remaining five by Direct Debit or credit/debit card.
Overseas students can opt to pay in two instalments: 60% on enrolment, and 40% in January for students who commence their course in September (or the remaining 40% in March for selected courses that start in January).
Fees quoted are per annum and are subject to an annual increase.
- A UK first or second class (2:1) UK honours degree or equivalent internationally recognised qualification. Other qualifications and relevant professional or practical experience will be assessed on an individual basis.
- Usually, applicants to this programme who do not have a degree in English or Creative Writing have taken courses such as those offered by the Open University or the Arvon Foundation or have attended private writing workshops. You should be able to show that you have developed your writing and your understanding of literature through private study.
- A sample of your fiction writing between two and five thousand words which you feel demonstrates appropriate ability and commitment will be required at application stage.
- Applicants may be invited to an interview.
Entry criteria are subject to review and change each academic year.
International and EU Entry Requirements
If your country or institution is not listed or if you are not sure whether your institution is eligible, please contact Admissions
This information is for guidance only by Brunel University London and by meeting the academic requirements does not guarantee entry for our courses as applications are assessed on case-by-case basis.
English Language Requirements
- IELTS: 7.5 (min 7W, 7L, 7R, 7S)
- Pearson: 73 (64 in all subscores)
- BrunELT: 75% (min 70% in all areas)
Brunel University London strongly recommends that if you will require a Tier 4 visa, you sit your IELTS test at a test centre that has been approved by UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) as being a provider of a Secure English Language Test (SELT). Not all test centres have this status. The University can accept IELTS (with the required scores) taken at any official test centre or other English Language qualifications we accept as meeting our main award entry requirements.
However, if you wish to undertake a Pre-sessional English course to further improve your English prior to the start of your degree course, you must sit the test at an approved SELT provider. This is because you will only be able to apply for a Tier 4 student visa to undertake a Pre-sessional English course if you hold a SELT from a UKVI approved test centre. Find out more information about it.
Brunel also offers our own BrunELT English Test and accepts a range of other language courses. We also have Pre-sessional English language courses for students who do not meet these requirements, or who wish to improve their English.
Our International Pathways and Language Centre offers a number of foundation and pre-masters courses to provide you with the academic skills required for your chosen course.