Monday, 13 December 2021

Crafting Crime is here!

I'm truly delighted to announce the launch of Crafting Crime, an online course for crime writers which I've put together in conjunction with the editorial consultancy Fiction Feedback, run by Dea Parkin, and Competitive Edge Advertising and Marketing. We have a website which gives lots of information about the course. If you're interested in writing a crime novel (or hoping to identify a special gift for someone!), do take a look at the introductory video on the home page, which gives an idea of how the course works. You can sign up at

I've been working on the course materials for much of this year. The main inspiration sprang from the writing workshops I've been conducting up and down the country for several years now, most recently at Torquay during the International Agatha Christie Festival. I've really enjoyed the connection with aspiring writers. Even when I did an online workshop earlier this year for Wirral Libraries/Comma Press, inevitably with less of an immediate connection to the participants, I still found it motivating. And just as motivation is important for inexperienced writers, so it's important for anyone seeking to pass on a range of tips and ideas, as well as practical information about the writing life.

Another source of inspiration came from working on Howdunit with so many wonderful writers - a great experience. A well-established training organisation approached me to write a crime writing course for them, and although our thinking was different, when I talked to Dea about creating a course, it was plain that her approach was very much in tune with mine. Her skills and experience is also complementary, especially in the crucial field of critiquing manuscripts. 

We wanted to fill a gap in the market, getting away from the constraints of the classroom and presenting material in a flexible way, with downloadable materials and podcasts, which participants can access whenever they want over a six-month period. And the aim is not only to help with creativity, story structure and writing techniques, but also to give people a realistic and practical understanding of the writer's life, trying to help equip them for the ups and the downs. 

A great many wonderful crime writers from around the world - along with literary agents and British and American publishers - have been generous enough to share their thoughts for the benefit of course participants. There are all sorts of supplementary materials - research notes, sample outlines, editorial tips, and so on, to accompany the main course modules, which themselves run to a total of over 60,000 words. Rhian Waller of Gladstone's Library kindly recorded our podcasts. So there's plenty to get your teeth into. 

Every single person who signs up for the course will be able to submit the start of their novel and a synopsis within six months and receive a professional critique from Fiction Feedback (full details on the website). That critique covers the first part of the manuscript (up to 8000 words) plus a synopsis of up to 1000 words, and this is a major feature of the course. With luck, a number of those who take part will go on to enjoy illustrious careers as crime writers. And if that happens, Dea and I will be absolutely thrilled. 


Heidi Wilson said...

Where does one go to sign up?

Martin Edwards said...

Thanks for asking, Heidi. Go to and you can sign up there. Hope you enjoy the course as well as finding it informative.