Commercial Fiction Masterclass

Fiona’s course is one of a kind. Not only will she let you in on her secrets to creating an accountable writing discipline, but she will teach you how to drive compelling, page-turning commercial fiction and finally, you’ll gain first-hand experience pitching to a real, live publisher!

Tania Farrelly, author of The Eighth Wonder

The 5-day Commercial Fiction Masterclass is designed to propel writers from simply talking about the novel they want to write, to confronting the task, doing the hard yards and finding the courage to submit their manuscript to publishers for consideration. The aim is to offer participants much more than just creative advice.

More than two dozen of Fiona’s Masterclass graduates have signed top line publishing deals after completing her course and applying their learnings.  Many are presently under consideration with the ‘Big Six’ publishers. Read the stories of Masterclassers who have used the week to springboard into publishing contracts here.  Many have moved into e-book contracts and several are emerging as new writers from a self-published background.

All are celebrated.

Fiona’s ‘brag’ shelf is rapidly expanding as her writers move into their third and fourth novels with the major publishers. During 2020 and 2021 alone, Fiona organised for eight writers to pitch in person, submit in writing and be accepted, offered a major contract, by one of the top six publishers in ANZ.

She herself has a shelf of novels that sell around the world and in various translations. In the adult fantasy genre she remains a firm favourite despite admitting that she has no plans to write more speculative fiction. Her children’s fiction has been lauded and her adult crime novels shortlisted. In 2021 her crime novels were optioned for TV by a global media/production company.

It is, however, her adventuresome, historical fiction reaching across the globe – from Istanbul to India, from Cornwall to Tasmania, from the Flinders Ranges to Provence, and from London and Paris – that have captured the widest readership and a solid legion of fans.  Her reputation in the general commercial fiction market is now well established and with more than three dozen novels bearing her name, she has the relevant experience and success to share.

Masterclass Details

Her 5-day Commercial Fiction Masterclass includes guidance on all aspects of producing quality commercial fiction especially for the widest reading audience as well as access to industry experts. It doesn’t matter if you’re a beginner or a writer who has begun his or her journey into crafting novels.  The course resonates at all levels, but participants should not be dismissive of the fundamentals and be prepared to re-hash the essentials of what makes a novel tick commercially.  And for those writers of commercial fiction who have done the writing classes, read the writing books, consider themselves competent writers and yet still find themselves looking for that elusive catalyst that propels them toward publication, this five days of boot-camp has proven itself to be an opportunity for truly understanding what comes next in order to achieve the dream.

Writers across all genres are welcomed, although those pursuing children’s picture books or stories for the very young are encouraged to look for a specific workshop designed for that specialised market.  Anyone working within the YA, New Adult and an Adult market will suit the week well. Unless the intention is to fictionalise, then memoir writers should also look for a different course that is specifically designed to aid the crafting of an autobiography. This course does not suit non-fiction writers.

The inaugural masterclass has been launched for the UK, taking writers worldwide, including Australians and New Zealanders who wish to travel in UK/Europe pre or post masterclass.

Currently held in the beautiful Adelaide Botanic Gardens, the 5-day intensive bootcamp allows for a maximum of 20 attendees and includes morning tea daily, lunch daily, with breaks for lunch and afternoon tea.

Guest speakers are invited, and each 5-day masterclass includes a presentation from one of the country’s top acquisitions publishers. The opportunity to pitch to the publisher is available to each writer.

Every writer will have private time with Fiona to go through his or her work, using a report that Fiona will have prepared from reading a sample of the writer’s work and synopsis.

Got questions? Visit the Commercial Fiction Masterclass FAQ page.


May 2024 (ANZ) – One place remaining

September 2024 (UK) – One place remaining

April 2025 (ANZ) – One third full.  Availability

Book your place or make an enquiry

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What Graduates Have to Say About Masterclass

Fiona McIntosh’s masterclass requires a significant investment in personal commitment – but like all good investments it pays amazing dividends. Fiona gives generously of her extensive experience as a top Australian author. She throws her explosive enthusiasm and energy into ensuring fledgling authors understand the craft of commercial fiction. More importantly, Fiona inspires every one of her apprentices with the confidence that they will see their own name on the bookshelves…

Karen, Western Australia

I can now approach my writing with an organised and achievable method. The idea of writing effective fiction was stripped back and built back up and it’s as though a light has been turned on. The concept of showing and not telling was thoroughly consolidated and after 5 days I am already writing differently. Before Masterclass, I knew I wanted to be an author, but it felt as far away as Mordor; now I feel like my career has begun. Thank you Fiona, it was worth every second for this young writer.

Rebecca, Western Australia

You were truly generous with your information and so real with your advice. From your first sentence you conveyed a genuine interest in setting us on the right path for commercial fiction. Your tips were absolutely invaluable and your advice so from the heart and obviously hard worked for. Thank you, you have inspired and encouraged me and I now have a good start to my novel. The wisdom you gave is very transferrable to other parts of life. Thank you once again for your professional series.

Sarah, Western Australia

Yes, Masterclass is about the writing. But it is also about beyond the writing. You will have contact with industry professionals who share their experience, give you hints, tips and frank advice, and are ultimately, the start of your professional network. You will be amongst people who understand you, the way you think and your goals, people who will become your cheer squad, your shoulder, your troubleshooting comrades. And you get to take it all with you when Masterclass is over, because there is an ever-growing, vibrant online community of alumni to welcome you.

Mel Sargent

To have someone of Fiona’s calibre and experience tell you that she believes you can be a published author is indescribable. She has given me back my confidence as a writer after years of being alone with my “writing demons”. She has made the tough and mysterious road to becoming a published author seem clear and – most importantly – achievable.

M.A, South Australia

The numbers don’t lie! In five days, 19 strangers become a united cohort of writers with a common purpose to be published. Fiona McIntosh has synthesized everything required to be a productive writer to its essence. She has crafted a safe, creative, generous space in which the sheer wackiness of the writing life can be shared, explored and above all challenged! I finished the week with a sense of purpose and the collegial support of other writers, an invaluable resource in the lone marathon of the long-distance writer!

Faith, April 2016 Graduate

This was an eye and mind opening experience in to what it takes to be commercially successful in your writing. Having a boost of hints, lessons, wisdom and experiences of someone who is 10 years and 29 books further down the road from me was a real shot in the arm. Suddenly the vague road from struggling to write a novel to being published and then commercially successful is in sight.”