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This blog was featured on 09/11/2019
Choosing the Right Writing Course This Fall
Contributor
Written by
She Writes
September 2019
Contributor
Written by
She Writes
September 2019

School is back in session and as you send your kids off to have their minds filled with knowledge you might be considering some education for yourself.

There are so many options available to writers today. From free webinars to  MasterClasses, in-person conferences to online courses, and craft development to marketing advice, the choices are seemingly endless.

So how do you choose one that is right for you?

We’re going to discuss how to choose a writing class that fits your needs and experience and then we’ll get into some of the best writing classes available in Fall 2019.

Choosing Your Subject

There are a ton of subjects that fit under the umbrella of “writing education.” First you have to decide what sort of writing it is that you do and what stage you’re at in that process.

If you are a science fiction author just getting started on their first novel, you don’t need a course on marketing sci-fi.

What you need is education on world-building, character development, and genre tropes.

On the other hand, if you’ve been working as a copywriter for years and are interested in freelancing, you need education that focuses on business development and client relationships.

Understanding your current position as a writer may seem easy, but a lot of writers jump the gun and seek education that is many steps beyond their immediate focus.

To avoid this issue:

  • Seek out advice from mentors who are where you want to be
  • Create a chronological list of the skills you need to reach your goals
  • Be honest with yourself about the areas where you struggling the most

Social media marketing may be the most interesting subject to you, but understanding the publishing process could be a much more valuable tool if you’ve just finished your manuscript. The subject that is most fun isn’t always going to be the one that is most necessary.

Choosing Your Style

Only you know the way you learn best. Do you need a classroom environment to get into the flow? Are you an amazing multi-tasker who can listen to a lesson while doing laundry?

The bottom line is there is no reason to sign up for any kind of course or workshop or conference if you aren’t going to be in an environment where you engage with the material.

So test some different methods out.

  1. Audio – Listen to podcasts while you drive or cook to see if you can soak up audio-based information.
  2. Visual – Sign up for some free webinars that use video or slides to incorporate visual tips. Do those cues help solidify the content in your mind?
  3. Live – Attend an event at your local library or coffee shop. Does the in-person interaction and fellow students put your mind in the best headspace?

As children, we aren’t given a lot of options when it comes to education. But now, you can tackle lessons in the way it best suits you. With the plethora of options online, you can handpick the method that best fits into your lifestyle and your preferred learning style.

Choosing Your Instructor

Once you know what you want to learn and how you want to learn it you have to decide who will teach it to you. Odds are, there are a lot of instructors delivering lessons on your subject matter. And unless you’re already ingrained into a community, it can be hard to know who is legitimate and who is just regurgitating information in order to make a buck.

How to choose your instructor:

  • See if the people you already admire have any education to offer
  • Sample the free content an instructor offers to see if you enjoy their style
  • Read reviews of the course offering
  • Start small by purchasing a low-priced item before you decide to go all in
  • If your instructor is teaching their first course, read up on their experience to see if their current career is something you aim to achieve

If the instructor has a book, read it. If the instructor has a blog, subscribe to it. If the instructor has a career you admire, follow them on social media.

As you get to know the instructor better as an admirer you’ll start to see the value of what they are offering in a paid course.

Best Fall 2019 Writing Classes

Now that you know how to choose a class, here are some recommendations for places to get started.

She Writes University – This collection of skill-building courses focuses on everything from craft to marketing to querying agents for the writers who are really ready to up-level their career.

  • She Writes University Fall 2019 Semester – Starting September 17, 2019, eight industry-leading authors and professionals will teach courses on a wide range of subjects. This year Taylor Jenkins Reid, Kelly Corrigan, Vanessa Hua and more are a part of the lineup.
  • Marketing and Publishing Courses – She Writes University also offers an ongoing selection of products meant to develop a writer's marketing and publishing knowledge.

#BlogHer19 – If in-person interaction is more your speed, September 18-19 BlogHer will host their annual conference in Brooklyn. This conference features authors, editor-in-chief’s, bloggers and more.

MasterClass – If you prefer to handpick your instructor, MasterClass is always churning out great lessons from industry-leading instructors.

ReedsyLive – Not sure what kind of instructor or instruction you need? Start educating yourself for free with ReedsyLive and get an idea for the subjects that you might need to explore more.

The beauty of the online space is there is education everywhere. The struggle is finding the one that fits you best. Get out there and find the lessons that will develop your writing career!

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