The skills of storytelling with Alan Moore

Downing Ventures' portfolio company, BBC Maestro, has announced a brand new, inspiring course for budding writers everywhere. 

Step into the inimitable and encyclopaedic mind of ‘one of the most significant fiction writers in English’ and discover the art of storytelling. Alan Moore’s BBC Maestro writing course offers a rare opportunity to learn from a true titan of the industry who has worked across a wealth of genres and media. Storytelling shares unfiltered advice and unique insight from a true writing purist who values art, writing and story over everything else. Delve into Moore’s personal writing journey and learn how, after 40 years, he continues to inspire his own imagination. Alan Moore is one of the world’s greatest living writers and has received eight Eisner Awards, six Harvey Awards, and three National Comics Awards.

While a blank page can be daunting for the aspiring and established alike, Moore arms viewers with the four weapons needed to become a better writer. The multifaceted skill of storytelling is examined through his creative lens and presented through six distinct parts: Origins, Language, Story, Cast and Setting, A Variety of Forms, and Progressive Writing. Fans of Moore’s prolific backlist will delight in his lessons dedicated to Comic Cuts, Character, and Inventive Language. For those seeking to broaden their skillset to include cross-genre techniques and a deeper understanding of character creation, Moore’s lessons also offer expert advice on texture, biographical research, and unreliable narrators.

“Storytelling, and writing, is not one discipline. It’s thirty or forty separate subjects all in one horrifying collision. You will have to learn about character, stories and landscapes, how to present place and period, how to inspire your imagination and then order it into a coherent plot. These and dozens of other things are what I hope to be teaching you in this course.”

Spanning over six hours, Storytelling explores the irresistible idea that writing is for everyone and, as Moore notes, not just for me and people with my amazing haircut Advice on how to read with an analytical eye and develop a unique worldview quickly builds and grows into a sprawling celebration of everything storytelling has to offer. Moore explores last line reveals, how wordplay can spark synapses, both timing and time travel, and the all-important question of who would win in a fight between Hemingway and Baudelaire.

Storytelling is the latest addition to BBC Maestro's list of online writing courses and is the ideal supplement to any writer’s toolkit. It consists of 33 lessons and is designed for viewers to learn at their own pace. Moore’s lessons are accompanied by extensive course notes filled with his own musings, reading recommendations, and practical exercises to help sharpen individual storytelling skills. Storytelling will help viewers understand the importance of omnivorous reading, training their ‘literary ear’, and handing the pen to their own characters.

“You should remember that a writer can change the world. Think of the books that have completely changed human history. See yourself in that light. Because if you are a writer, then you are having an effect on human history. And the entirety of the human future.”

Previous praise for Alan Moore

“One of the most significant fiction writers in English... The pioneer of serious superheroes, [Moore] has transformed the genre over 40 years of rebellious invention” - The Guardian

“Britain’s finest author of comics...feted as the Orson Welles of comic books." - The Times

“Alan Moore changed the way we think about superheroes [in] emotionally and intellectually complex masterpieces of genre deconstruction.” - Vulture

“Alan Moore is one of the industry’s biggest names" -  Deadline

“Utterly brilliant” - Neil Gaiman

Find out more about Downing Ventures here. Or if you would like to enrol in Alan Moore's course, click here.

About Alan Moore

Alan Moore, born in Northampton in 1953, is a writer, performer, recording artist, activist and magician. His comic book work includes From Hell ( with Eddie Campbell and The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (for which he won a Bram Stoker Award in 2 000) with Kevin O’Neill. He has worked with director Mitch Jenkins on the Show Pieces cycle of short films and on the feature film The Show, while his novels include Voice of the Fire ( and his epic Jerusalem ( His short story collection Illuminations and his Long London series of novels are forthcoming from Bloomsbury. He lives in Northampton with his wife and collaborator Melinda Gebbie.

About BBC Maestro

BBC Maestro launched in October 2020 to phenomenal success. The first four courses attracted more than one million people to the service, with thousands signing up to learn from their favourite Maestro. Whether you are a novice or an amateur enthusiast, BBC Maestro allows you to indulge in your area of passion from the comfort of your own home and learn from the experts. Each course is beautifully filmed in 4K and offers several hours of content, broken down into 20 to 40 easily digested lessons accompanied by downloadable course notes filled with hints, tips and a breakdown of each course. Alan Moore is the latest Maestro, joining Malorie Blackman, Julia Donaldson, Line of Duty creator Jed Mercurio, David Walliams, Gary Barlow, Marco Pierre White, Vineet Bhatia, Pierre Koffmann, Richard Bertinet and Peter Jones and coming soon are Mark Ronson, Doreen Lawrence, Sir Tim Rice and more all imparting wisdom, expertise and industry secrets.

BBC Maestro taps into the fast-growing space of e-learning because of the way technology has revolutionised teaching and learning, lessons no longer must be confined to the classroom. In 2020, the number of people using online learning videos rose dramatically, with an estimated 200 million users worldwide. The global ‘Mass Open Online Courses’ market size is expected to increase from $3.9 billion in 2018 to $20.8 billion by 2023.

BBC Maestro is a commercial platform developed and operated by Maestro Media Ltd under licence from BBC Studios Distribution Ltd. BBC is a trademark of the British Broadcasting Corporation and is used under license.

Date published:

31 Mar 2022

Practice area: