Improving your Writing - Why Joining A Writing Course is Beneficial.
Hiya, my first hub contact. I shall certainly consider writing about the subject you suggested as it falls into my area of current experience
I took two writing courses (beyond adv comp and such) in college. The first one was alright. The teacher was a TA and not very mature. Was terrible about not reading our work until the last minute. He was a grad student, so I tried to cut him some slack. The other writers had a considerable amount of talent compared to your average writing course. That carried the class. The second one was a disaster. The feedback was word for word repetition of what the instructor said. Everything we read was either about someone's boyfriend or was so disconnected that no one could follow it. The instructor had some superiority issues. I tried to take what she said and put it into practice, but I disagreed with so much of it that I lost respect for her as a writer. My advice is #1 be prepared o drop out. No sense wasting your time if you wind up in the same kind of classes I did, and #2 try to get into an advanced level class. Audit a senior or grad student class if you can.
No writer ever knows everything, despite the god-complex many have about their abilities. Ideally, a writing course lays out new constructs to use in developing ideas. I have appreciated the teachers who were polar opposites of me on style, subject matter, or even format of writing. Those instructors broadened my field of experience and exposure giving me the opportunity to employ the most effective techniques from a variety of backgrounds. That has made me a stronger, more effective writer. Feedback is a valuable part of most writing courses, but even if that isn't the case, exposure to new ideas and methods is always crucial. Without that, I will not grow or improve.
I have taken a few writing courses, thinking that I might learn something from someone who actually made a living writing.
The experiences were all disasters in one way or another and the first course should have tipped me off. The instructor was a complete idiot who hadn't been able to make it as a writer or a critic so had gone into teaching others for, what I considered to be, the sole purpose of ensuring that nobody she came into contact with ever felt they could write either. She spent the entire eight weeks pointing out every single flaw in everyone's writing and pointing to her beautifully MLA formatted work as if it were the Holy Grail, only problem was that it was so sophomoric that insipid that you honestly felt it had to have been written by her 13 year old alter ego.
The experiences didn't get much better than that.
The very best writing advice I have ever received was from on English professor who had been in a soap opera prior to going to college and finding meaningful work (his words, not mine).
The advice was quite simple: write something down!
After having spent several years in college and then several years out of it my belief about writing, and nearly everything else, is that nobody can teach you something you can't learn. Oh, and a good book is far less expensive than taking a course. As far as feedback goes, which is important to a writer, or anyone who endeavors in the creative areas, there are always people out there ready and willing to give you all you'll ever need; after all there are at least 100 critics to every writer!
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