Writer Toolkit

Take courses on craft, industry and life as a writer. Whether you’re starting out, mid-career or established, our NZSA Writer Toolkit has something for everyone. Available to do in your own time, on your phone, tablet, ipad or computer.

Writer Toolkit – what is it?

The Writer Toolkit is our new professional development offering, with multiple courses released throughout 2022. Our Toolkit is an online learning platform that offers writers a wide range of courses on writing and the writing life by our leading authors and industry professionals. All sessions are comprise of static content you can work through alone, or with your writing group or regional hub meeting. Each course contains notes, exercises, and suggestions for further reading on the topics.


Pricing options for each NZSA Writer Toolkit course, starts at $15 for NZSA members – with discount options for CSC holders, and pricing for NZSA member writing groups, non-members, and non-member writing groups also.

Writer Toolkit site

Writer Toolkit courses available now

Writing Action – the emotional and dramatic moment – with Paula Morris

Create compelling action with Paula Morris

In fiction, scenes are shaped by consciousness (the emotional moment) and action (the dramatic moment). Sometimes, in drafts of novels and stories, we can lose sight of one or the other. This course offers close reading of excerpts from published work to explore how to build and sustain rich, vivid scenes.

Course content
  • Identify what creates rich, vivid scenes.
  • Identify how POV affects description.

By the end of this course, you will understand how to build and sustain rich, vivid scenes in your work of fiction.

Enrol / find out more about this course

Learn How to Successfully Self-Publish with Steff Green

In Successful Self-Publishing, USA Today bestselling indie author Steff Green shows you how to tell your story, find your readers, and build an author brand. Steff shares her tips and tricks for making a living as a successful self-published writer. This course is geared towards writers who want to earn from their self-publishing.

Course content

By the end of this course, you will understand how to establish yourself as a self-published author and:

  • identify your goals and aspirations
  • understand what self-published books sell and how you earn royalties
  • understand what readers want.
  • learn about your different self-publishing options including ebooks, paperbacks, hardcovers, and audio
  • editing, cover art and formatting your book for publication and
  • techniques for marketing your book.
Enrol / find out more about this course

Memoir: Telling Your Story with Caroline Barron

Figuring out how to tell your story is the most challenging aspect of memoir writing. In this course, Caroline looks at memoir basics (what memoir is and isn’t, the role of point of view, ethics and permissions, universal themes, and the road to publication). However, the secret sauce of this workshop is the detailed look at the role of time in memoir—where on the timeline you are standing to tell your story—plus how to tackle the one biggest issue she sees in clients’ work: story structure. Caroline will take you through five structures to lay over your work to help you decide which is best to carry your story.

Course content

By the end of this course, you will understand the process of creating and publishing a memoir, including:

  • Elements of memoir
  • Point of view
  • Tense
  • How to use time
  • Theme
  • Two types of memoir
  • Five structures of memoir
  • Next steps and editing
  • Permissions
  • Writing as therapy
  • The road to publication
Enrol / find out more about this course


Learn about POV (point of view) with Paula Morris

In this short course, award-winning writer and teacher Paula Morris will guide you through the demands, contradictions and limitations of point of view as it relates to fiction, although the topics discussed are relevant to creative non-fiction as well.

Course content

  • What is POV
  • Demands of POV
  • Constraints of POV
  • 1st person narrative

By the end of this course, you will understand the fundamental elements of POV and how it could be applied to your fiction or creative non-fiction project.

Enrol / find out more about this course

Storybuilding: Strategies and exercises to build solid foundations with Mandy Hager

In this one-hour course, award-winning writer and teacher Mandy Hager will guide you through the foundations of storybuilding to help you kickstart your novel, memoir or other long-form project.

Course content

  • Understanding the story’s power
  • Structure of story
  • Psychology of story
  • Refining story
  • Building character
Enrol / find out more about this course



Guide to using NZSA Writer Toolkit – PDF document

Short video guide – stepping you through the sign up process

We are grateful to these organisations for their support: