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Old 07-22-2013, 11:00 AM
bjh bjh started this thread
 
Location: Memphis - home of the king
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Have you ever gotten any useful benefit from a writing workshop?

Personally, I thought they had limited usefulness, were susceptible to the politics of popularity, and really suffered if the instructor didn't guide them well.

Your thoughts and experiences?
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Old 07-22-2013, 09:42 PM
bjh bjh started this thread
 
Location: Memphis - home of the king
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Really? So few have been to one?
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Old 07-23-2013, 09:16 AM
 
Location: North Idaho
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I've taken writing classes in college. They are good for credits towards graduation, but other than that, they are social. I don't know how valuable for honing writing skills.

I've taken a business writing course in college and it was extremely valuable because basically it was all about grammar and structure. Very useful information for anyone who wants to write.

I've been in writing clubs and they are really fun. You can get someone to listen to your writing and make comments. Not terribly useful because no one wants to hurt your feelings. But they are a lot of fun.

There's a thing in art where there appears to be a belief that any criticism or suggestion will hurt your creativity, when the real truth is that just encouraging the artist to do what feels right does not have good results. Writers and painters and other artists need to learn what the structure of the art is before they can produce good work.
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Old 07-23-2013, 12:04 PM
 
Location: USA
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I've taken several writing workshops plus classes for credit and all have contributed to my writing ability. I think those who think otherwise may not recognize that they learned.
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Old 07-23-2013, 04:54 PM
 
Location: Oregon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bjh View Post
... were susceptible to the politics of popularity,...
'nough said, waste of time.
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Old 07-24-2013, 05:35 AM
 
Location: Near a river
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The kinds of writing workshops I lead are not classes with instruction. They bring writers, whether novice or advanced, together to create a group dynamic in which we write in that space under some time pressure. It's a workshop of experimenting with "on-demand" writing, with no expectations, no competition, just play that often produces great writing. The timing element, and not knowing what you're going to write before you get the particular prompt, is key to uninhibited flow of words. We don't judge the writing, just listen to those who care to read what they wrote. If folks want some structured feedback, they bring in printed manuscripts for everyone. You cannot be taught to write, you can only teach yourself to write. Being with others can help you do that. Of course, if you are motivated to write alone, that works too.
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Old 07-24-2013, 10:41 AM
bjh bjh started this thread
 
Location: Memphis - home of the king
47,273 posts, read 27,457,543 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oregonwoodsmoke View Post
I've taken writing classes in college. They are good for credits towards graduation, but other than that, they are social. I don't know how valuable for honing writing skills.

I've taken a business writing course in college and it was extremely valuable because basically it was all about grammar and structure. Very useful information for anyone who wants to write.

I've been in writing clubs and they are really fun. You can get someone to listen to your writing and make comments. Not terribly useful because no one wants to hurt your feelings. But they are a lot of fun.

There's a thing in art where there appears to be a belief that any criticism or suggestion will hurt your creativity, when the real truth is that just encouraging the artist to do what feels right does not have good results. Writers and painters and other artists need to learn what the structure of the art is before they can produce good work.
Now that you mention it, a technical writing class is probably the best writing class I've ever had.
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Old 07-24-2013, 10:42 AM
bjh bjh started this thread
 
Location: Memphis - home of the king
47,273 posts, read 27,457,543 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newenglandgirl View Post
The kinds of writing workshops I lead are not classes with instruction. They bring writers, whether novice or advanced, together to create a group dynamic in which we write in that space under some time pressure. It's a workshop of experimenting with "on-demand" writing, with no expectations, no competition, just play that often produces great writing. The timing element, and not knowing what you're going to write before you get the particular prompt, is key to uninhibited flow of words. We don't judge the writing, just listen to those who care to read what they wrote. If folks want some structured feedback, they bring in printed manuscripts for everyone. You cannot be taught to write, you can only teach yourself to write. Being with others can help you do that. Of course, if you are motivated to write alone, that works too.
That sounds interesting. That sounds similar to the way I did writing exercises we were given in workshops to do on our own and turn in. I think I learned more from them than from the workshops.
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Old 07-24-2013, 10:45 AM
bjh bjh started this thread
 
Location: Memphis - home of the king
47,273 posts, read 27,457,543 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by knurly View Post
'nough said, waste of time.
The thread or the workshops?
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Old 07-24-2013, 11:08 AM
 
Location: Oregon
122 posts, read 322,132 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bjh View Post
The thread or the workshops?
The workshop. It might have been better if not for one particular person's mean jab.
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