Home Writing Courses

The other day I was looking at writing courses online, either as purely online courses or as distance learning ones. I found a few interesting things, but the main one that sparked my interest was by the Writers Bureau. It was described as a Comprehensive Creative Writing Course. I was wondering if anyone had ever taken this course, or knew anyone who had, and whether it was something worth doing. I would appreciate any comments about the usefulness and efficacy of this course. It looks interesting at first glance but I haven’t investigated fully yet. It doesn’t seem too expensive which is a major consideration. However, since expense can only really be decided in terms of value, I suppose whether or not it is expensive depends upon the extent of its value to me.

If anyone has experience of this or other, relatively cheap, courses I would be most interested. I often find that I work better with some guidance, especially in the early days of a new interest or pursuit, as this is. I like the structure of following courses to learn the basics of things, and I find you often learn a lot of things quickly that would take you some time to learn by trial and error yourself.

Do other people like to take courses? I have taken a number of Open University courses, in a number of areas, purely for the sake of interest and have always enjoyed them. I always think that there is something new to learn, whatever your stage of development, however much you feel you know about a subject or field.

12 thoughts on “Home Writing Courses

  1. I never have,but I have a friend who has been taking creative writing courses on-line or through groups for years. I see her post about the projects and deadlines all the time. It seems like she’s having fun and it’s teaching her how to focus on her writing.


  2. I actually did take an online/mail course for writing children’s literature. I thought it was wonderful and the prompts they gave me were very encouraging and thoughtful. I landed my first publishing job during that time and I felt that diploma had a lot to do with my success. There are so many to choose from, my advice would be to type the name of the school into the browser and find a page where people who have gone there are talking about it, separate from the actual page the school itself hosts. Gather some honest opinions from others who have been there and done that. Good luck Julian!


    • Thanks for your comment Ionia. It is nice to hear that other people have taken this route. I have always responded well to more structured learning, whether that is an online course, or writing myself lists of things to learn and do. I am pretty sure that I am going to follow this route, so thanks for your advice.


  3. I tried doing some Holly Lisle stuff, online and on my own via downloads. I couldn’t get to any writing. I was working on a great novel idea and wanted more structure and guidance to add flesh to it and “do it right,” but I found all I was doing was the going to school part of this project. All the character development and plotting, etc. I wasn’t really writing per se, and now I have just put the whole pile of notecards and flowcharts aside. It really got me stuck –though her methods are fantastic and she has wonderful advice and results– it’s just not for everyone. Clearly, not for me. It wasn’t organic enough, maybe? So I’ll have to kind of start from scratch with my great idea and let the story flow, then go back and fix whatever will be missing or wrong, later.


    • As you say, they are not for everyone. I think I tend to get on well with the structured approach that a course often provides. Hopefully you will find another way to achieve your goals. Thanks for commenting.


  4. I like taking courses – I prefer ‘live’ classes, like evening or weekend ones although I have done online courses too.
    Right now I am using a book to do daily writing exercises (which I post on my site ‘five minutes a day’) but eventually I would like to take a creative writing class or workshop.


    • Thanks for posting. I enjoy taking courses too, and like you have used books filled with exercises on occasion. I like the structure that following courses gives me. I hope you get the chance to take the creative writing class or workshop that you want.


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