YA Fiction Intensive Weekend Course with Patrice Lawrence

Are you passionate about writing fiction with young adult protagonists? This weekend course will give you the motivation you need to develop your knowledge and skills.

During this intensive two-day workshop lead by acclaimed YA author Patrice Lawrence and Steve Tasane, you will broaden your knowledge and develop a range of techniques including:

– The genre and range of books marketed as YA

– Techniques for developing authentic relatable characters and story arcs

– Finding your narrative voice

– Plotting techniques

– The process of finding an agent and submitting to publishers.

What will you do on the course? 

The course will consist of individual and group exercises, discussion and presentations plus plenty of time to write. Participants will gain knowledge about creating and developing characters for the YA market, putting characters into settings and stories, writing compelling beginnings and advice for tackling sensitive issues.

On the Sunday, the poet and YA author, Steve Tasane, will lead a session on ‘The Rhythm of Speech – exploring voice and characterisation’, which will explore writing in character, looking at the pitfalls and myths around how narrative voice works, matched with the importance and power of having a memorable and reliable narrator.

Who is it for?

The course is for people who have already started writing and have an interest in developing their own long form fiction for young people with teenage protagonists. As it is an intensive two-day course, it is not suitable for beginner writers.

Please note that on the Saturday the workshop will begin at 10am and on Sunday it will begin at 11am. It finishes at 4pm on both days.

About Spread the Word’s discounted rates

London Writers Network members receive a 10% discount on Spread the Word’s paid programme of activities, and access to two free specially programmed London Writers Network events a year. You can find out more about the London Writers Network scheme here. If you are a London Writers Network member please login to receive your discount.

To see if you are eligible for a concessionary rate, please take a look at our concessions policy.

Patrice Lawrence

Course Leader


See More

Patrice Lawrence was born in Brighton, brought up in an Italian-Trinidadian family in mid-Sussex and lives in East London with her daughter, partner and Stormageddon, the tabby. Patrice's debut YA novel, Orangeboy (Hodder), was greeted with a critical and prize-winning storm. Indigo Donut (Hodder), Patrice's second novel, met with great reviews, and was Book of the Week in The Times, The Observer and The Sunday Times.

Steve Tasane

Guest speaker


See More

As well as being the author of Blood Donors, Steve Tasane is a performance poet who has featured at Glastonbury Festival, the 100 Club, Latitude and was writer-in-residence at Battersea Dogs Home.

His second YA novel Nobody Saw No One was published by Walker Books in 2015, a gritty, witty modernisation of Oliver Twist, inspired by Steve’s time as writer-in-residence for the Dickens 2012 Bicentennial Celebrations.

His latest, Child I (Faber 2018) is written from the point of view of an unaccompanied 10 year old in a refugee camp.