Category Archives: teaching

Class Notes – Week Two

We talked last week about story shapes and arcs as well as what gets set up in the beginning of a story. This week we talked about characters and dialogue, and how the first shapes the story. One of the … Continue reading

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Things learned from teaching online so far…

Things learned from teaching online so far: 1) Checking all the tech stuff ahead of time really pays off.2) The nigh-paralyzing sensation of being on video wears off and is gone by the second time.3) The chat window is super … Continue reading

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Class Notes from Writing Fantasy and Science Fiction Stories – Week One

I’ll be posting notes after each Wednesday session, which all three classes can use to ask questions about or comment on what we covered. I encourage the students to hop into the discussion here, but it’s also open to the public.
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Latest On Classes

A couple of people have moved from the Wednesday night one to the Thursday one, so there’s a couple of openings in each. Saturdays are full up. I’ll send out the introductory e-mail Monday morning with class info and a … Continue reading

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Class Status

The classes have filled up quickly and I’m going through things today and writing up the first e-mail. Because so many people had problems with East Coast timing, I’m going to open up one more workshop, on Thursday evenings, at … Continue reading

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News: Offering an Online Workshop

Several people have been asking if I’d offer an online workshop and I’ve been thinking about how best to do that. So here goes. Please spread the word of this however you can. If I don’t get at least 3 students for a workshop, I’ll cancel it. Continue reading

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Looking at Description: Dorothy Dunnett

A series that I come back to repeatedly is Dorothy Dunnett’s marvelous six-volume series The Lymond Chronicles. Dunnett has two strengths: dialogue and its accompanying actions as well as a descriptive gift that I am bitterly envious of. Right now I’m working my way through the books for a third or fourth time, and I’m midway through Book 3, The Disorderly Knights. Continue reading

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What I’m Teaching At Bellevue College, Summer 2011

I’ll be teaching two classes at Bellevue College this summer. The first is a one day workshop called Sudden Fiction, in which we’ll be talking about and writing several examples of flash fiction. The second is the Blogging and Social Networking 101 class, which runs two sessions. Continue reading

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Class Notes From Writing Fantasy and Science Fiction

We’re coming up on the end of the Writing Fantasy & Science Fiction class I teach at Bellevue College. Tonight’s the next to last session. In earlier sessions we’ve talked about the writing process, story parts and mechanics, delivering information, characters, description, and worldbuilding. A number of past blog posts have come out of those classes: 5 Things to Do in Your First 3 Paragraphs, Active Verbs, Foreshadowing and Establishing Conflict, Plotting and Re-plotting Stories, Three Strategies for Snaring the Senses, Three Things that End a Story Well, Using Random Tools Like Stumbleupon For Rewriting, and Why Titles Matter. Continue reading

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Teaching Blogging

WIth Trailmeme, the central metaphor is “trails” of links, which you can annotate. So I’ve used the outline from my Blogging class to collect my Delicious links on the topic. Here is the Blogging 101 “trail”. A cool feature of Trailmeme is the ability to discuss links – please feel free to make suggestions and/or forward the link along. Continue reading

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