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Tag Archives: online workshop
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.
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.
I’ve just updated the class page, but I wanted to call out something new I’m trying, one hour “conversation” classes. In each of them, we’ll drill down to a specific aspect of writing or the business of writing. Here’s the upcoming ones:
Last night we had the final session of the Writing Fantasy and Science Fiction class, which is the session where we talk about everything except writing: stuff like going to conventions, and how to submit stories, and how to treat editors and what about audio markets and all that sort of thing. And I’d meant to include a section about plotting stories, because I’d taught a new class the day before, the Moving Your Story From Idea to Finished Draft class, and as often happens had come up with some new things to say about stories from thinking about one specific aspect, but there just wasn’t enough time. So I want to talk a little bit about it in a blog post.
I have openings fill in some upcoming classes, so I wanted to tout them a bit. You can find the permanent class list here.
All of the classes are taught online, using Google hangouts. For optimal experience, it’s best to have a computer with a WebCam, but in a pinch audio only capability will still allow you to participate.
Unlike the Writing Fantasy and Science Fiction Stories class, we are not focusing on one of the basics each week, like characters, plot, or world building. Instead, I am trying to let the class drive itself where it can. My hope is that everyone, by the end of class, has not just been critiqued a couple of times, but has a better sense of their writerly process and how to make it more efficient, more confidence in finishing stuff and getting it sent out, and new ways of moving story from idea to finished draft.
I’m in the process of planning my next round of classes, and I’d like some input.
People have requested something to take after the Writing F&SF Stories class, and I’ve been thinking about a masterclass/workshop. This would rely primarily on workshopping stories from students and would only be open to advanced students.
I’m glad I’ve got enough students for the Editing 101 online class that starts tonight, but I’d love a couple more. Mention reading this when you mail me about the class and I’ll give you a special deal. 😉
So what do we do and who is the class aimed at?
The class is aimed both at writers who want to learn to edit their work better as well as editors who want to hone their skills and learn about it as a career path.
Tonight’s the final session of the recent Thursday F&SF class, and it’s the one labelled in my notes as “Everything Else.” All the career stuff, the mechanics of submissions, how to schmooze at conventions, foreign reprints, agents, etc. Here’s the rough outline from my notes.