Online: Zoom

Nuts and Bolts of Novel Planning: Oh, What a Character!

Friday, May 6th, from 10:00am-1:00pm (EST).
Online: Zoom
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Level: For Everyone
Adult (18+)
12 seats max
Only 4 spots left!

When creating stories, many writers focus on what happens without enough consideration as to the why. And that why is all about character. What does your character want? Why do they want it? What are they willing to sacrifice to get it? Novel planning begins with answering these character-focused questions. The key is ensuring your character has clear goals, both tangibly and emotionally. This lecture-driven seminar focuses on techniques to create characters who feel real, with motivations, desires, wants, and needs. Students will explore how characters are actually a novel-writing secret weapon and how to wield them for the most effective results in their stories. Students will leave with a key understanding: characters drive the plot, not the other way around.

This course can be taken alone or in conjunction with the seminar Nuts and Bolts of Novel Planning: Story Beats.

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.

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Lori Goldstein
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Previous Students Say

  • Inspired Me to Write More
  • "Lots of Practical Tips"
  • "Very Well-Organized"
  • "Inundated with Great Info"


  • In-Class Writing
  • Instructor Feedback
  • Workshop
  • Lecture
  • In-Class Reading
  • Class Discussion


  • The Novel

Commitment Level



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