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Editing Fiction


15 August 2011 (Mon)
9.00am – 5.00pm

Civil Service College
31 North Buona Vista Road

Course Fee: $280.00

This is a past course. View upcoming courses.

Improving Expression, Clarifying Ideas and Tightening Structure

The techniques and the territory of fiction editing differ from those of non-fiction but fiction writers need editors for the same reasons as any writers.

Fiction editing means developing the judgement and confidence to identify the strengths and weaknesses in a manuscript and to suggest options when characterisation lacks depth, descriptions are clichéd or you discover a plot hole.

Putting Creative Writing Through a Litmus Test of Critical Reading

Editing fiction covers more than consistency, spelling and grammar. It involves the judgement and confidence to identify the strengths and weaknesses in a manuscript. We will look at matters of style and structure, including:

  • tone, voice and register
  • point of view and sentence variation
  • characterisation, plot, pace and dialogue.

Pinpoint Problems with Style and Narrative Development

The exercises in the workshop use realistic sample texts that take you through some of the most commonly encountered difficulties in fiction drafts. You’ll consider:

  • when a rule is made to be broken
  • the most common flaws found in fiction manuscripts.
  • the pleasures and benefits of a positive relationship between editor and fiction writer


Editors looking to progress in their careers need to know more than the rules of punctuation and grammar. This stimulating workshop looks at the issues and problems that confront editors who work or want to work at a more advanced level. 

This workshop is designed for experienced editors who wish to expand their fiction editing skills.

About the Trainer: Pamela Hewitt

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Pamela Hewitt is a qualified trainer who has developed and presented programmes on editing and writing for universities, vocational educational colleges, writers’ centres and societies of editors around Australia and internationally. She has also developed online editing courses on professional editing and editing for writers.

Pamela became an Accredited Editor in 2008, one of Australia’s inaugural accredited editors. She has been an active member of societies of editors and writers’ centres, presenting papers and speeches at all national editing conferences as well as at writers’ festivals, including the Sydney Writers’ Festival, the ACT Word Festival, Style Council and the National Literary Awards. Pamela was a member of the Institute of Professional Editors’ National Working Group on Accreditation and co-convenor of the National Working Group on Education, Training and Mentoring.

In more than twenty years as an editor, Pamela has worked in-house and freelance across the industry in a career spanning academic, educational and trade publishing. Although she concentrates on fiction and non-fiction book editing, Pamela has also edited scholarly journals, websites, poetry and oral history projects. She publishes widely on professional editing and writing.

Other professional initiatives include publishing The Fine Print, an independent online editing journal, and conducting five national surveys of editors. She is currently investigating ways that editors can survive and thrive in the era of the eBook and the app.

Registration Details

Registration is on a first-come-first-served basis and workshop fees must be paid before the workshop. If the minimum number of participants is not met for the class, the organisers will inform all participants about possible postponement and cancellation, two weeks before the workshop date.

Cancellation & Substitution

The workshop can be cancelled or postponed two weeks before the workshop date if the minimum number of participants is not met. Participants will be fully refunded for workshops cancelled by us.

Participants who are unable to attend a workshop they have registered for are to inform us of the reason two weeks before the workshop date. They will be fully refunded in the event of extenuating and mitigating circumstances (E.g. illness, bereavement, accidents) . Those who inform us up to five (5) working days before the workshop date will receive a 50% refund. Participants can also attend another course at the same value within the same year.

Upon registration, you are deemed to have read and understood the cancellation, withdrawal and substitution policy and accept the terms contained therein.