Category Archives: teaching

Nattering Social Justice Cook: How to Prepare to Protest

If you are one of the many of us going off to protest, to bear witness, to object, then I want you to be prepared. Beforehand: Make sure someone knows you are going, and that they will check in if … Continue reading

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More From Moving from Idea to Draft

Having finished up the big April projects, one of the main things I want to get accomplished this month is getting the on-demand version of the Moving From Idea to Draft online writing class up along with the existing on-demand classes.

This has proven a somewhat monumental task, because the needs of the on-demand version are very different than those of the live class. In the live workshops, which are limited to eight students, everyone comes in with a two-three sentence description of their idea, and we work from there, adapting the material to what they’ve brought into class.

For the on-demand version, I started by trying to identify all the different ways there are into a story, a number that fluctuates in the realm of two dozen, depending on how finely I want to draw distinctions.

What I’ve done with each possible path is identify what it is, what it gives you as a starting point, things you will want to consider, possible pitfalls, next steps for fleshing it out, and a set of exercises (with basic and overachievers’ versions) to help explore the starting point. I finish, in what I am still worried may be an excessively egotistic move, by providing a story of mine that started in that way and some notes on its development from the starting point.
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This Weekend’s Classes: Beginnings & Endings (Saturday) and Character Building Workshop (Sunday)

I’ve still got room in this weekend’s classes, Beginnings & Endings (Saturday morning) and the Character Building workshop (Sunday morning). In the first, I’m going to talk about a number of things, including how to use your beginning to create … Continue reading

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The Latest List of Classes (April/May 2015)

Okay, folks, limited sessions, but a chance for a free one! Because my time is scarce, I’ve picked my favorite classes to teach and limited it to those. In July/August, I’ll start doing extended basic and advanced workshops again. (June … Continue reading

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Teaching and Burnout: Taking a Break

I’ve been teaching online classes for a few years now. They have been awesome and one of the coolest things has been the number of talented writers I’ve had the privilege to work with. However, I’m scheduling a break from teaching during the latter half of 2014, and it’s for a few reasons.

The first and most important is that I can feel a little burnout creeping up around the edges. I’ll be talking in a class and think to myself, “I know I’ve said this before,” and it will be because I have said it before, repeatedly even — but not to that class. I can tell that if I don’t take a break, that feeling is going to drown me.
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How to Critique: Best Practices for Workshopping

Both my Writing F&SF Stories and Advanced workshops offer students a chance to critique and be critiqued. To my mind, the latter is actually more useful, because being forced to articulate one’s position on an aspect of writing can be enlightening and instructive. With that in mind, here’s some best practices for such workshops.
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Classes Through the End of the Year

I’m about to head off to Worldcon Thursday morning but I will shill a bit before departing, because I’d like to get these classes filled up in advance in order to avoid having to beat the bushes at the last … Continue reading

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News about Classes for the Rest of 2012

Please pass this information along to your social networks if you knpow anyone who might be interested in an online class in writing, editing, or social networking for writers. I’ve just been wrestling with my calendar in order to update … Continue reading

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Online Classes for Summer, 2012

It’s a busy summer – highlights include working with Clarion West this summer as well as ArmadilloCon in July, GearCon in August, and WorldCon (along with the release of Near+Far at WorldCon). I’m not scheduling any classes for August in order to be able to focus on the release. Upcoming classes include: a Saturday session of writing F&SF (only a few slots left open there), Editing Basics (about half full at the moment), a Flash workshop (brand new, so it’s wide open for registration) and an online version of the literary techniques in speculative fiction class.
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June Class Registration Opening

I’m ready to take registrations for the June class now, which meets Saturdays, 9:30 am-11 or 11:30 PST, June 9, 23, 30, July 7, 14, 21 (six sessions total). Cost is $249, payable via Paypal. Please drop me a line if you’ve got questions.
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