Online Creative Writing Courses, Ideas, and Inspiration

Welcome to CWN, where you'll find creative writing courses, ideas, prompts, free online classes, and step-by-step guides to writing fiction, poetry, and drama.

CWN was created by writing teachers as a free service to provide a supportive and friendly place for authors and poets at all stages in their writing lives.

  Free Fiction Writing Course: ENDLESS STORY IDEAS

This free 3-day online writing course will show you techniques to find new creative writing ideas whenever you need them.


Need some motivation to get started? Here are five good reasons to write:

Write...

1) to express yourself.

Share the best of yourself. Cut through the small talk and the chatter to what's important; express the secret feelings and perceptions that don't fit into polite conversation. Show your personal vision of the world, which is unique.

2) to entertain yourself.

Writing is a challenge, an adventure. When you're in the thick of it, you can feel thoroughly absorbed. Write to add color, excitement, and meaning to your days.

3) to keep yourself company.

You never have to feel lonely as long as you can write. Writing is a conversation -- with yourself, with your future reader, with the books that have inspired you. You can also create characters who come alive in your imagination.

4) to live other lives.

In real life, there are limits. In your writing, you can be anyone or anything. You can try on different lives, become a different person for a while, transport yourself to another place or time.

5) to touch other people.

Offer your writing as a gift to others. Your writing can move people, make them feel intense emotions, keep them up all night passionately turning pages. You can create characters to keep them company. You can make their lives richer and more beautiful.

Getting started

Use the menu at the top to find exactly what you need for your writing; including:

  • hundreds of creative writing ideas, story starters, and poetry prompts
  • step-by-step guides on how to write a story, poem, novel, and more.
  • free downloadable creative writing tools, including story planning worksheets and character profiling questionnaires.
  • online creative writing courses that you can complete from home.
  • tips and techniques to make your writing more powerful, hold your readers’ attention, and take their breath away.
Don’t forget to join Creative Writing Now's free e-mail group, and we’ll send you more inspiration straight to your inbox.

Online Creative Writing Courses

Below are some of our online creative writing courses. You'll find a complete list of courses in our Writer's Shop.

*FREE*: Endless Story Ideas


Learn techniques to help you generate new creative writing ideas and inspiration whenever you need them.

This 3-day e-mail course is currently available for free.

Sign up here

Story Structure


In this 8-week course, you'll learn how to develop story ideas into plots and how to structure a successful story from beginning to end.

You'll also create a detailed story plan that you can use as a road map for your own stories and novels.

Click here for details

Essentials of Poetry Writing


In this 8-week course, you'll learn essential techniques for writing powerful poetry.

You'll learn to write poems that work on more than one level at the same time, poems that create an intense mood or atmosphere, poems that show your readers new ways of looking at the world.

Click here for details

Bringing Characters to Life


Learn how to create 3-dimensional characters and bring them to life in the reader's imagination.

If you can make people care about your characters, they'll care about your stories. This 8-week e-mail course will show you how.

Click here for details

Irresistible Fiction


Make your stories impossible to put down.

This 8-week e-mail course will show you how to write fiction that builds excitement, curiosity, and suspense. Our most popular course!

Click here for details

Through Your Character's Eyes


In this 8-week course on narrative viewpoint, you'll learn how to pull readers deep inside your characters and your stories. Discover techniques to make readers feel like they're actually living your stories instead of just reading them.

Click here for details

Essentials of Fiction Writing


This 7-week e-mail course covers all the essential elements of fiction writing.

Learn how to give readers that wonderful "lost in a book" feeling, create characters that feel real and develop plots your readers will care about.

This course is currently not accepting new students. Sign up for the waiting list to be notified when it opens again.

Description Writing Secrets


Learn how to make your fiction more vivid and real.

This 8-week e-mail course will show you description-writing techniques to improve almost every aspect of a story, from character and plot to setting and mood.

This course is currently not accepting new students. Sign up for the waiting list to be notified when it opens again.

Mystery Writing


This 8-week course will take you step-by-step through the process of writing a successful mystery story or novel.

You'll discover techniques that make mystery writing much easier, as you create a vivid story world and a plot full of clues, twists, and surprises.

This course is currently not accepting new students. Sign up for the waiting list to be notified when it opens again.

*FREE*: Endless Story Ideas

Learn techniques to help you generate new creative writing ideas and inspiration whenever you need them.

This 3-day e-mail course is currently available for free.

Sign up here

Story Structure

In this 8-week course, you'll learn how to develop story ideas into plots and how to structure a successful story from beginning to end.

You'll also create a detailed story plan that you can use as a road map for your own stories and novels.

Click here for details

Essentials of Poetry Writing

In this 8-week course, you'll learn essential techniques for writing powerful poetry.

You'll learn to write poems that work on more than one level at the same time, poems that create an intense mood or atmosphere, poems that show your readers new ways of looking at the world.

Click here for details

Irresistible Fiction

Make your stories impossible to put down.

This 8-week e-mail course will show you how to write fiction that builds excitement, curiosity, and suspense. Our most popular course!

Click here for details

Bringing Characters to Life

Learn how to create 3-dimensional characters and bring them to life in the reader's imagination.

If you can make people care about your characters, they'll care about your stories. This 8-week e-mail course will show you how.

Click here for details

Through Your Character's Eyes

In this 8-week course on narrative viewpoint, you'll learn how to pull readers deep inside your characters and your stories. Discover techniques to make readers feel like they're actually living your stories instead of just reading them.

Click here for details

Essentials of Fiction Writing

This 7-week e-mail course covers all the essential elements of fiction writing.

Learn how to give readers that wonderful "lost in a book" feeling, create characters that feel real and develop plots your readers will care about.

This course is currently not accepting new students. Sign up for the waiting list to be notified when it opens again.

Description Writing Secrets

Learn how to make your fiction more vivid and real.

This 8-week e-mail course will show you description-writing techniques to improve almost every aspect of a story, from character and plot to setting and mood.

This course is currently not accepting new students. Sign up for the waiting list to be notified when it opens again.

Mystery Writing

This 8-week course will take you step-by-step through the process of writing a successful mystery story or novel.

You'll discover techniques that make mystery writing much easier, as you create a vivid story world and a plot full of clues, twists, and surprises.

This course is currently not accepting new students. Sign up for the waiting list to be notified when it opens again.


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