Monday, June 6, 2011

Writing Workshop

I have been working on the same WIP for awhile now. I am so completely stuck I am not sure where to go from here. It’s not that I don’t know the plot or the characters who how I want it to end. It’s that I am not sure how to structure it. I don’t know about you but my story ideas come out like…..forgive me….vomit. I start to hear a whisper of a story or a character’s name and then it all goes flying out at me. The problem is trying to catch it all before it floats out into the ether.
In the real world I am a Technology Manager. A computer geek. These skills I have always came easy to me. I have taken classes and learned on the job and I am very confident in my ability.
But with my writing….
I have never taken a writing class. I don’t know if it is necessary but sometimes I wonder if I am doing myself a disservice by not taking some form of class or workshop. Which brings me to my question.
Should I?
Is there a benefit to a writing workshop and if so what is it?
Is it better to take a creative writing course at a college? Or is that a waste of time and money?
There are many purported writing classes and workshops online but which ones are legit?
It’s all very confusing.
Or maybe I am just psyching myself out?  Maybe what I have been doing all along is the correct way and I am just too scared to realize it.
Wow I am pretty deep today….I should wear my glasses and quote Nietzsche  all day.
Anyway what do you think blog friends? Is there a workshop that helped you? Or do you think they are a waste of time and money?

Have a Magical Monday!


Julie Flanders said...

I know how you feel. I sometimes think I have no business saying I want to be a writer when I never took any creative writing courses in college, I don't have an MFA, etc. I've thought about workshops too but I wonder how valuable they are as well. I don't have any suggestions but I will be interested to see what others think as I share your questions!

Andrew Leon said...

I think, in general, writing classes, especially "creative writing" classes, are a waste of money. Many, many (many) successful authors agree with this statement. In fact, one of them (and I think it was Stephen King, although I don't remember for sure), said that writing classes are, basically, a way for writers to make money while they are trying to get published. They're not for the people taking them at all.

There are only two things you need to do. Read (a lot) and write (a lot).

My 2 sense.
(Yes, that's what I meant to say.)

Jennifer Prescott said...

I took a lot of writing workshops and found a lot of them useful--they also helped to build community. At a certain point, however, I decided I was done with all that schooling and was ready to just write. I think you might find some value if you've never taken one, especially if you can find something local.

Muriel said...

I have a confession too. In the real world, I can drive trains and I design Signalling systems. My humble opinion is that you learn from experience, and I have never taken writing classes. Maybe, after all, we should try it. I'll do it if you do it.

Unknown said...

I think it comes down to what you feel is right in the moment. I personally have never taken a writing class. I've written a little over a year and have blogged the same amount of time. The amount of knowledge that is obtained online and in reading several how-to-write books for my genre, grammar and such is so helpful that school is an extra.

Most of the writers that I've met admit that they never went to school for it let alone took a writing class. They met other writers, shared their work, learned from their mistakes and worked hard.

Writing helps you work out the kinks... in general just keep writing.

Great blog, great post! New follower :)

Unknown said...

Well, I have an entire BA in Creative Writing... and I think that doesn't make it any easier! Honestly, taking courses are a fun way to get positive feedback on your WIP. Worth the cost? Who knows, it depends I guess... do you have groups in the area that you could join where you go and give each other writing feedback?

I also have some great books I could recommend. I'll see if I can email them to you.

I guess I'm saying, all that and mine still sometimes comes out like vomit.... :-) (trying to avoid the visual on that one, though)

Liz Schulte's Blog said...

I have taken some creative writing classes in my community and haven't gotten much out of them. Granted I went hoping to find some peers I could exchange my work with and bounce ideas off of and all I got were 80 year old women writing memoirs. :-/
Now what I found that helped me the very most was a writers group and critique partners. I am in one on facebook and joined one locally. It is a larger more diverse group and they will tell you what they think and where you need to improve. Critique partners are great because it is a one on one breaking down of your story and you get the idea of where the reader is at that moment so you know if you are leading them correctly or not.

Blog Design by Use Your Imagination Designs all images from the Alice's Room and Wonderland backgrounds kits by Irene Alexeeva