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Shahrukh Husain published following The Novel Studio

Having written screenplays, non-fiction and retellings of traditional tales and myths, Shah Husain was already an accomplished writer prior to embarking on The Novel Studio, but wanted to turn her attention to her novel, “I’d wanted to write novels since I was a child and this course came highly recommended. Friends whose work I knew and respected attended the course and praised it.”

by Emily Pedder

“Although I’d had several books published and many screenplays commissioned, I learned a lot from the exchange of views from tutors as well as fellow students. Concern was expressed at the interview about how it would be to have an experienced writer on the register – but I said that my agenda was to get as much feedback as I could, to learn what was on offer and have the leisure to think about my work. I benefitted hugely from the guidance of the tutors and input of my fellow would-be novelists.”

The Novel Studio gave Shah the chance to dedicate a year to writing her novel, something she wouldn’t have had time for otherwise, “Having worked on the novel regularly for three terms I was determined to complete it. It was picked up by the first publisher it went to – Pan Macmillan’s Picador imprint. I loved the structure and enjoyed the teaching of the course. It was well pitched and I enjoyed the community atmosphere in the group which (former course director) Alison Burns and (current course director) Emily Pedder promoted brilliantly.”

Since completing The Novel Studio and publishing her book, A Restless Wind, Shah has gained further success in writing for television, “I’m on my way with the novel-writing and I’m now branching out into writing TV series. I’ve had two original proposals and one major adaptation accepted. Maybe I could come back and teach a course on writing for TV. If time allowed it!

“I’d really recommend the course to anyone thinking seriously about getting kick-started into novel writing. If you’ve got on the course, you can assume you’ve already got the talent – the course will supply you in buckets with the tools to succeed.”

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