Rosie’s Book Review Team #RBRT Back To Creative Writing School By Bridget Whelan @agoodconfession #bookreview

Today’s team review comes from Alison, she blogs at

Rosie's Book Review team 1

Alison chose to read and review Back To Creative Writing School by Bridget Whelan


Back to Creative Writing School – Bridget Whelan

The advent of self-publishing means that everyone can be a writer. Everyone can publish a book. But does that mean that everyone should? And is writing a skill that can be taught?

I don’t think it can. I think that an ability to write is a bit like an ability to paint. Or to sing. Anyone can (and probably should) have a go, but it doesn’t mean that, by following rules and conventions and going to classes, you can learn to do it well.

So if writing is a talent rather than a skill that can be learned, then is there a place for a book like this?

I think that there is. If writing is a talent, it can still be honed. And it should be honed. And the exercises in this upbeat, entertaining and easy to read book will certainly help to do that. There is so much wonderful advice here on aspects like planning, characterisation, plot, writing humour, writing horror, point of view; the list goes on. And the exercises are easy to follow and interesting and fun to do.

If you’re someone who thinks they can write and wants to have a go, then this book is a great place to start. And if you’re a writer who wants to brush up on their skills, or if you are having trouble with a particular aspect of your writing, then there are plenty of exercises in this book to help you.

There are a few things that I don’t necessarily subscribe to – for example, I’ve never felt the need or the inclination to go into my characters’ back stories , likes and dislikes etc. to the extent that is recommended here. But I know that a lot of writers find that helpful. That aside, this book is a great buy for aspiring and established writers alike.

4 out of 5 stars

Find a copy here from or

12 thoughts on “Rosie’s Book Review Team #RBRT Back To Creative Writing School By Bridget Whelan @agoodconfession #bookreview

  1. Alison, are you sure you’re not me?? I always agree with your reviews! No, of course not everyone can write, any more than everyone can paint, act, sing or draw. But I, too, was pleasantly surprised by this book. It gave me a few things to think about – I believe anything creative is an ongoing learning process which is never complete, and that you should always be open to ways in which you can improve.

    I agree with the ‘character background’ stuff, too – I think you either know your character or you don’t. But yes, we’re all different. It’s definitely worth buying, this one.


  2. I’ve got this and have been meaning to review it (I’ll get there yet!) Your review, Alison, says all I thought about the book as well. The one thing I always say about ‘teaching’ creative writing is that we can be given the building blocks of every genre. I asked Bridget if she minded if I used some of the exercises in my classes and she very generously said yes. Everyone has enjoyed them so far. Review coming up shortly from me, Bridget – with thanks.


Comments are closed.