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Writing Character & Plot with Hannah Kent and Rebecca Starford

Everything you need to know about balancing action with characterisation

Characters are the beating heart of all stories, but what makes some characters more compelling than others? How do you create a unique voice for your narrator or protagonist? And how exactly do character and plot intersect?

This workshop will explore the initial stages of generating ideas and look at how to develop backstory, motives, voice and personality in your characters. We’ll also discuss and practice a variety of devices - including dialogue, point of view, character interaction, description and narration - that can be used to avoid exposition.

You’ll learn:
  • Strategies to create well-developed, complex characters
  • Techniques and approaches to crafting engaging storylines
  • How to balance action with characterisation
  • How to inject ‘movement’ into a scene
  • How plot can open up a story and its characters to new and exciting possibilities

KYD Members receive a 10% discount on this course and all other KYD workshops. Become a member here, or contact [email protected] for more information.

Want to buy a workshop for a friend? Purchase a gift voucher here.


Your Instructor


Hannah Kent & Rebecca Starford
Hannah Kent & Rebecca Starford

Hannah Kent is the co-founder and publishing director of Kill Your Darlings. Her debut novel, Burial Rites (2013), has been translated into thirty languages and was shortlisted for the Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction, the Stella Prize, the Guardian First Book Award, and the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award. It won the ABIA Literary Fiction Book of the Year and the Indie Awards Debut Fiction Book of the Year, amongst others. Hannah’s second novel, The Good People (2016) was shortlisted for the Walter Scott Prize for Historical Fiction, the Queensland Literary Awards and the Readings Prize for New Australian Fiction. It is being adapted for film by Aquarius Productions.

Rebecca Starford is the co-founder and publishing director of Kill Your Darlings. Her debut memoir, Bad Behaviour (Allen & Unwin), was published in 2015 and is currently in development with Matchbox Pictures. Rebecca is a former editor at Text Publishing, and has worked for Affirm Press and Australian Book Review. Her writing has appeared in the Guardian, Age, and Weekend Australian. She is a PhD candidate at the University of Queensland and is currently working on her second book.


Course Curriculum



Frequently Asked Questions


When does the course start and finish?
The course starts now and never ends! It is a completely self-paced online course - you decide when you start and when you finish. We encourage you to approach this material not just as lessons to be finished once and for all, but also as a collection of resources to which you can return time and again.
How long do I have access to the course?
Forever! After enrolling, you have unlimited lifetime access to this course - across any and all devices you own.
Does the teacher provide feedback?
No. If you are interested in receiving feedback on your project, we encourage you to check out KYD's Manuscript Assessment Service: https://killyourdarlings.com.au/shop/manuscript-assessments/
What if I decide the course isn’t right for me?
We offer a 30 day money-back guarantee. If you are unsatisfied with your purchase, contact us in the first 30 days and we will give you a full refund.
How do I access my course?
All our online workshops are hosted at workshops.killyourdarlings.com.au, via the Teachable platform. You can access your workshop by logging in at that link, or by following the link in your welcome email when you enrol. Please note that as the Teachable platform is a separate website to KYD you will need to create a new account, and will not be able to use your KYD login details.
I'm a KYD member. How do I receive my 10% discount?
Click on 'Enrol in course for $149'. Enter the coupon code that was emailed to you when you became a KYD member at checkout, underneath the tutor's photo.
What if I have another question?
You can email us at [email protected] and we'll be happy to help!

Get started now!