Online: Zoom

First Things First: Novel Opening Workshop

5 Wednesdays, from 10:30am-1:30pm (EST), starting October 12th.
Online: Zoom
See Map
Level: For Everyone
Adult (18+)
12 seats max

Readers don’t only judge books by their covers, they judge them on their first pages. Whether you're looking to appeal to an agent, editor, or reader, novel openings are key. Readers won’t keep reading “to get to the good stuff.” Those first critical pages should be your good stuff—or maybe your great stuff! In this workshop, we will focus on the first five pages of your novel manuscript. The course will begin with a craft lecture on what the opening of a novel should achieve and then each week that follows, students will read aloud their first five pages and be critiqued on the elements introduced in the craft lecture by both their peers and the instructor. This workshop is designed for intermediate to advanced writers. This workshop will help you identify what’s working and what needs to be further honed to get those first five pages to accurately represent your writing and your novel. A week prior to the course, the instructor will request the first five pages you wish to present via email.

Class Format

This class will take place using Zoom videoconferencing. About 15 minutes before your class is scheduled to begin, you'll receive an email from your instructor with a link to join the class meeting!

Scholarship Information

Thanks to the excellent literary citizenship of our donors, scholarships are available for all GrubStreet classes. To apply, click the gray "APPLY FOR SCHOLARSHIP" button. In order to be considered for a scholarship, you must complete your application at least one week before the start date of a class. Please await our scholarship committee's decision before registering for the class. We cannot hold spots in classes, so the sooner you apply, the better. Scholarships cannot be applied retroactively.

For more more detailed information about GrubStreet scholarships, including how to contribute to scholarship funds for other students, click here.


grubstreet Image
Lori Goldstein
See Bio


  • Generate New Work
  • Craft Lessons
  • In-Class Writing
  • Instructor Feedback
  • Workshop
  • Lecture
  • Writing Homework
  • Computer or Tablet Recommended


  • The Novel

Commitment Level



Need a scholarship?

Learn more
How to Plan, Write, and Develop a Book: Section A
read more