Let’s talk about the thousands of courses and books on the market. If we aren’t careful we may learn ourselves onto a blank page. Are Courses and How-to Books helping us or are they a distraction?

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1 Comment

  1. In teaching undergraduate- & graduate-level creative writing courses for years, I was impressed by the wild variation in quality of courses I visited & heard about–taught by unknowns, visitors, known names, regular faculty, the lot of them. Ditto how-to books. A good basic course, if you find one or luck into it, or a good book at the right level can teach you things you’ll never get anywhere without knowing (to write scenes; to manage distance, perspective, & information; to respect your reader’s intelligence). Bad courses, books & workshops can afflict you with somebody else’s style or prejudices, & can delude, confuse, or brutalize you. A good workshop, which is neither indulgent nor cruel, can give you the feedback every writer needs. Creating one is an art in itself, and not everybody who teaches even wants to bother.

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