Revise and Refine Your Novel (Intermediate/Advanced)

Monday 17 June
£ 300.00

Learn to self-edit your manuscript with a critical eye in this online tutored writing course with Santanu Bhattacharya, author of ‘One Small Voice’.

You have a finished first draft of your novel, but what do you do next? This short course on refining and revising your novel will help you overcome one of the most difficult hurdles a writer can face: how to edit your own work. You’ll learn how to read your own work with a critical, outside eye, and you’ll create a checklist that you can follow throughout the editing of your manuscript.

This eight-week course is designed for writers with a finished manuscript. Santanu will read up to 3,500 words of your writing, and at the end of the course you will have a 1-1 tutorial with him to discuss your writing and potential next steps.

Start date

Monday 17 June





8 weeks (please see course schedule below)




Course programme

Week one – Introduction

In the first week of the course, you will attend a live, online introductory session (via Zoom). You will meet your course mates and Santanu will give an overview of the course structure and materials, before moving on to a discussion on how to read your own writing with the eyes of an outsider. On the course platform you’ll begin to work through some writing exercises focusing on mood.


Week two – Plot

We’ll be focusing on plot this week and we’ll start to examine the central threads that hold your narrative together. You’ll work through exercises and reading material on the course platform to guide you, and you’ll spend time polishing a 500 word excerpt from your novel.


Week three – Language

In this week you’ll submit your 500 word excerpt to your tutor for their feedback. On the course platform you’ll be focusing on language – if plot is the scaffolding then words are the bricks that construct your novel and you’ll be looking at these on a granular level.


Week four – Pace

You’ll receive your feedback on your 500 word excerpt and you’ll use this to begin polishing a longer 3000 word excerpt. On the course platform you’ll focus on pacing your novel and you’ll be encouraged to read through sections of your writing to analyse the pace of your narrative.


Week five – Finalising

In this week you’ll be looking at the final checks you need to do before you submit your work to an agent or publisher. You’ll form a personal checklist that you can use against your writing for this and future writing projects. You’ll also be applying this to your 3000 word excerpt.


Week six – Polish

In the final week you will be polishing your excerpt using everything you’ve learnt in the course before you submit it to your tutor for personal feedback.


Week seven – Feedback

Santanu will spend the next week reading and returning your 3,000-word excerpt with feedback.


Week eight – Tutorial

In the final week of the course, you will have a 1-1 tutorial with Santanu to discuss his feedback and next steps.

Live sessions

There will be two live sessions for this course, which will take place over Zoom.

Zoom one: Tuesday 18 June, 6.30pm BST

Zoom two: Bookable one-to-ones on w/c Monday 5 August

Santanu Bhattacharya


Santanu Bhattacharya is the author of One Small Voice (Fig Tree), which was chosen as an Observer Best Debut Novel for 2023, and has been shortlisted for the Author’s Club Best First Novel Award. He is the winner of the Desmond Elliott Prize Residency, the Mo Siewcharran Prize, the Life Writing Prize, and a London Writers’ Award. His second novel Deviants will be published in 2025. He grew up in India, and now lives in London.

Why study with National Centre for Writing?

National Centre for Writing has been supporting writers to develop their craft for over 25 years. Our online tutored courses are developed in partnership with University of East Anglia, home to the prestigious School of Literature, Drama and Creative Writing, which boasts award-winning alumni including Kazuo Ishiguro, Ian McEwan and Anne Enright. Our course tutors are all published writers, many of whom have studied or taught at UEA themselves.


While there are many online courses available to you across the world, ours are unique in offering:

  • One-to-one feedback on up to two assignments, directly from your course tutor
  • A tailored learning experience with 15 students maximum
  • Flexibility to progress through the course anywhere, any time
  • Support and structure to develop a writing routine
  • Skills and knowledge to improve the craft of writing
  • Confidence in your ability as a writer
  • Opportunity to join our NCW Alumni, an international network of like-minded writers and translators.

How it works


We have partnered with digital learning platform Teachable to host our self-paced courses. The platform is accessible across a range of devices, simple to use, and does not require any specialist equipment.

We want to make sure that you get the most out of our tutored online courses and feel confident that you’re choosing the right course. Each course contains a mixture of teaching content, reading to prompt discussion, writing exercises for you to hone your skills, and group and one-to-one feedback.

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Got a question?

If you still have questions, get in touch with the learning team by email [email protected] or phone (+44) 01603 877177 between our working hours of 9am – 5pm BST, Monday to Friday. We’re here to help!

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