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Structuring A Novel



Jennifer Down




It’s often said that the first chapter, page, or even paragraph of your manuscript is vital—and it’s true. But what happens next? Structure is a crucial element of any successful narrative, regardless of form or genre. Whether you’re using a familiar narrative shape or trying something more experimental, the architecture of your story touches every other element of craft, from dialogue to pace. So how do you know if the shape you’re making is the right one? How do we write stories that grip the reader from the first sentences, and keep them spellbound until the last page?
A photo of Jennifer Down.


You can find details of how Covid-19 restrictions will affect the workshop here. You are encouraged to wear a mask in the workshop space. The Wheeler Centre’s policy is that close contacts should not attend the building. If you are a close contact of somebody with Covid-19, or have Covid-19 symptoms yourself, please do not attend; please contact [email protected] to arrange a refund in this situation.

You Will Learn:

  • The importance of strong narrative structure
  • Different ways to imagine and describe structure—and apply it to your wok
  • How to craft a memorable beginning for your narrative
  • How to keep a reader with you until the end
  • How to get comfortable with your own writing process, and use it to your advantage

About the Tutor:

Jennifer Down is the author of two novels – Bodies of Light and Our Magic Hour – and one short story collection, Pulse Points, which was awarded the Readings Prize for New Australian Fiction. She was named a Sydney Morning Herald Best Young Australian Novelist in 2017 and 2018 consecutively.

Not a Member?

Members of Writers Victoria receive up to 37% off the full price of our workshops, seminars and courses. In addition, members have access to a range of other discounts and opportunities and receive a subscription to 'The Victorian Writer' magazine. Memberships start from just $50. Find out more about becoming a member here.

Cancellation Policy


176 Little Lonsdale Street
3000 Australia


Phone: (03) 9917 8463
Email: [email protected]

Registration for this event ended on 14 October 2022 - 4:00
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