Powerful Fiction Techniques is designed for passionate writers. Teens who’ve taken Passion for Fiction or who have a work of fiction “in progress” are welcome in this class.

Designed for high school students who are passionate about fiction and are ready to explore revision techniques deeply, Powerful Fiction Techniques offers a fun exploration into the foundational skills of rewriting.

Some might nickname this class Revision Boot Camp (minus any yelling, running, or pushups…we promise!), while others may liken it to the training sessions that come before a marathon, or the scale and etude practice that leads to a major musical performance. Akin to the skill building that pushups, sprints, and scales provide, revision is the finesse work that leads to artful writing. We call this class powerful because it beefs up writing and revision muscles, encouraging growth as each student studies a story from new perspectives.

Come experience what revision can do to pages of words. Discover the liberation and joy of reworking a short piece of writing through numerous variations, including:

  • Setting changes
  • A variety of narrative styles
  • Playing with point of view and voice
  • Character development
  • Exploration of the five senses
  • Language experimentation
  • Focusing on beginnings and endings

We meet your kids where they are, starting with their personal writing goals. They have the option to generate new material from an existing story, start from scratch with a new idea, or approach each week as a blank slate. Each week includes two writing assignments:

  • A prompt that asks the student to explore their characters and story in a new way
  • A technique exercise that encourages a re-thinking (and re-writing) of the earlier prompt.

You should know—at Brave Writer®, we don’t just care about the writing. We also care deeply about the writer. Writing can be a solitary process! This class doubles as a hangout for a community of teen writers. Students are given space to support each other and have the conversations that mimic a ‘real-life’ teen writing group. This class tends to be full of friendly, intense writers who care about their own progress as well as their peers’. Our coach is an instant mentor and ally—investing in each plot line, story idea, or sensory detail. Diving deep into the work of imagination is the name of the game in this encouraging, growth-promoting four-week class.

Think this class is just for future fiction authors? Here’s a little secret:

When it comes time to tackle academic writing, kids who have been doing any kind of active writing make this transition seamlessly. They have so much to say, so many words to draw on, so many ideas and insights...and they brim with confidence to make strong choices in their writing. Consider fiction writing essential preparation for writing a persuasive argument, timed SAT essay, or college admissions paper.

If your teen writer has been wishing someone would help take his or her fiction to the next level, this class is for your passionate writer of fiction or budding novelist!

For more information about how the classes are run, please read about online classes.

To explore our Brave Writer® classroom, click here to access a sample class.

Brave Writer® online classes are specially designed with the busy homeschooling parent in mind.

Class Structure Overview #

  • Class is held in a private discussion board with 20-25 other participants.
  • Class is asynchronous—you log in when it is convenient for you each day of the week at no specific time of day.
  • It is text-based—no video.
  • Student writing assignments are posted in a text box, published to the classroom, and all students are able to read student writing.
  • Class is a writing workshop format, with all coaching feedback available to be read by all families.
  • Class work, student writing, and coaching feedback can be downloaded and saved in a PDF format.

Class Length and Time #

Classes last anywhere from three to six weeks. We offer courses that address a specific writing need so that you can take the ones that suit your family throughout the school year. Short class sessions enable you to work around family vacations, out-of-town swim meets, recovering from wisdom teeth removal, and visits from grandparents. We operate on the quarter system, including a summer session. Our most popular classes repeat each quarter, while others are seasonal.

We operate "asynchronously" (which means that the discussion is not live, but that posted information remains available to you in your time zone at your convenience). Instructors check the classroom throughout the day to answer questions and give feedback on writing. Writing is done at home and then typed into the classroom, and shared with both the instructor and other classmates. You're not required to be online at any specific time of the day. We have students from all over the world participating in our classes so "live" discussion is impossible. Instead, the online classroom enables the instructor to post information and assignments when it is convenient to the instructor. Then, when it is convenient for you, you come to the classroom and read the latest postings.

Private Classroom Space #

Our classes meet in a customized online classroom, designed specifically to meet the needs of Brave Writer®. Only registered students and the instructor have access to the classroom to ensure your privacy. Assignments and reading materials are posted by Brave Writer® instructors each week (no additional supply fees necessary, unless otherwise indicated). Either you (homeschooling parent) or your child (homeschooling student) will visit the classroom daily at your convenience to read helpful information about the current topic or to find the writing assignment.

Instructor feedback to student writing is offered for all participants to read. Writing questions are welcomed and encouraged! That's the point of class. We aim to give you immediate support as you face writing obstacles.

Safe Community #

Brave Writer® takes seriously the need for encouragement and emotional safety in writing. No student is ever at risk of being humiliated or mistreated. All online dialogue is respectful and supportive of your child's process. This is the core of Brave Writer® philosophy. You can read about Brave Writer® values here.

What makes our program especially unique in the world of online education is that we value a corporate experience. Rather than teaching your child in a tutorial format, we prefer students to have the opportunity to both publish their work for an audience (other students) and also to have the chance to read other student writing. In no other setting is this possible. Schools-in-buildings rarely have students read each other's work. Homeschooled children are rarely in a classroom environment to begin with, so the opportunity to read peer-writing is nil.

Our classes provide an utterly unique experience in the world of writing instruction. Since most writers grow through emulation of good writing, it is a real advantage to Brave Writer® kids to get the chance to read the writing of their fellow home-educated peers. They love it! They get to examine and internalize other ways of writing, analyzing and expressing ideas similar to their own. They have the chance to validate and cheer on their peers. And of course, the best part of all is that they receive the praise and affirmation of kids just like them.

Not only that, all instructor feedback is posted to the classroom for all students to read. That means your kids get the benefit of instructor comments on many papers, not just their own. We've noted that this style of instruction is especially effective and hope you'll agree!

To explore our Brave Writer® classroom, click here to access a sample class.