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The McGowan Method

Have you always felt you have a novel in you? You've come to the right page. I've been teaching this craft for more than ten years, including running the UK's first ever MA in crime writing for five years. At least fifteen of my former students or mentees are now successfully published. 


I've run many popular workshops for the Faber Academy, National Centre for Writing, Arvon Foundation, Guardian Masterclasses, Spread the Word, Skyros, Chalk the Sun, Queen's University Belfast, the Noirwich Crime Writing Festival, and plenty more. Below are some of the topics I cover, but I'm always interested to collaborate on something new. Please get in touch if you'd like to find out more.

  • ​Creating Suspense

  • Writing Crime Fiction

  • Just get on with it! How to finish your book

  • What is a story? The nature of story and plot

  • Working with viewpoint and character 

  • Dialogue 

  • How to Get Published 

  • Dealing with blocks and barriers


Guest Lectures & Talks

Whether it's at a festival, university, or online, I love talking about writing. Recently I guested on the National Centre for Writing podcast, but I've also appeared at festivals including Cheltenham, Belfast, Harrogate, Capital Crime, FIL Guadalajara, Bristol Crimefest, Crawley Wordfest, Henley, Get Writing, Festival of Writing, Alfriston, and many more. Drop me a line if you'd like to book a lecture or talk.



I love chatting with other authors, publishers and writing aficionados! I'm an experienced chair and have interviewed other authors many times. Please feel free to get in touch if you'd like me to chair or speak on your panel.


What's been said...

"Claire is an expert in crime writing and her guidance and encouragement has been invaluable. Her editorial feedback on my novel was spot-on and enabled me to make changes that improved my book." — Ruth Heald

"Thank you for your course today – it was a real insightful day and very helpful." — Course attendee

"Just wanted to drop you a quick line to say how much I enjoyed your masterclass last Sunday. It has given me much to think about, and the incentive to work on my book." — Masterclass attendee

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