Wanting to improve is an admirable quality not many of us possess. Even fewer people are willing to admit that their skills are not where they should be and ask for professional help in their own personal quest to greatness. Writers are no different. Whom do they ask for assistance? Writing courses, of course, and here are a few to get you started. These are just recommendations based on our preference – you know best what suits your style and needs.
Start Writing Fiction
If you’re a fan of SF, fantasy, or crime dramas, you have, no doubt, fantasized a little bit what your own little work of fiction would look like. How to develop your characters? Is there a way to avoid the tropes that border on clichés? How can you make sure that your book is readable? Start Writing Fiction is a free course by FutureLearn that gives you the opportunity to review your own work, as well as that of your classmates. People handling the teaching are novelists and short story writers that already have experience in what you are looking for. While the course is free, there are paid plans that offer more benefits.
Stanford Continuing Studies Creative Writing Track
The name may be a mouthful, but Stanford is one of the most respected institutions in the world. The course covers topics like writing memoirs, poetry, developing your story one scene at a time, and revising your work. Should you register, you will have to choose the areas that you are particularly interested in, as well as set aside the term that suits you most. The help from Stanford does not come cheap, however, so be ready to set aside more than $350 per course.
If you are looking for a way to improve your novel, or to get it started in the first place, look no further. You don’t work with a group, but with a book coach that will track your progress and give you pointers on the subject. All of the sites book coaches were once at least editors, so they have experience in rectifying mistakes. Author Accelerator is the brainchild of Jennie Nash, an author turned book coach. The site occasionally offers workshops.
Figure Out the Genre
Before choosing your online course, you need to figure out what type of writing you want to do. There is a world of difference between a poet, a business writer, a historical novelist, and a fantasy writer. A course that focuses on character development will do nothing for a person that wants to improve their skills in academic writing. There are plenty of sites that offer courses in a plethora of fields, like Udemy, Khan Academy, and Coursera that might already have what you are looking for.