1. kmlovering
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    kmlovering Senior Member

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    Question about writing courses

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by kmlovering, Jan 20, 2008.

    Hi everyone,

    Just wondering...I am considering taking a writing course. It's going to cost me a grand, but I will have my own personal instructor to critique, and review my work as well as having the support to get some "finished" manuscripts prepared for submission. Have any of you done taken a course like this? My instructor would be my mentor who happens to be a published author. She had had a few books published (romance) which I have not read, as romance novels are really not my thing. Need honest opinions before I commit so please be brutally honest!
     
  2. SeaBreeze
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    SeaBreeze Banned

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    hmm.. gona cost you a grand? First of all- check everything is legit. So many people get ripped off so I woudl strongly suggest that you check everything out- credentials ect. Anyone could easily say they are a published Auther. Make sure you know what you are getting into.

    Other than that, I think it's fantastic and you are an extremely lucky person! I wish you the best of luck and hope it turns out for you. Just keep at it, take everything in and do your best and listen to teh advice you are given. Well done on finding someone to help you with your work :)
     
  3. kmlovering
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    kmlovering Senior Member

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    I know, a lot of money, but they do profess to be members of the BBB, which I have checked out. Not sure about the instructor yet, but still looking. I am already taking college courses, but hell what's one more right? As far as the dream, I just can't stop writing, but what appears to be happening is in mid storyline, I fall. I can't think of where to take the story. I think it's a confidence problem. Ever happen to you?
     
  4. andycerrone
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    andycerrone Member

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    Hey- listen.. that's a big step to take with that much cash riding on one course. I know, it's extremely attractive and the glamor of it will lure you in, but keep in mind if you ARE taking courses, why not take courses at your college? Honestly, the best critique I have gotten is for one of my professors who is unpublished and IMO one of the best poets I have EVER read. I take a class a semester with him, and this semester I have an MFA Manuscript independent study with him, which will be one-on-one work on my writing.

    The purpose of me saying that is you can find a cheaper alternative to what you're suggesting. Besides, being a published author doesn't mean a whole lot these days. Take many paperbacks off the shelf and the strength of the book is not at all in the writing, but rather the subject and the time it came out (I.E. Dan Brown). Learn to have someone critique you after they have proven themselves to be worthy of your money.

    That being said, good luck in the path you take!
     
  5. Bluemouth
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    Bluemouth Contributing Member Contributor

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    If the mentor writes romance will she really be the best choice for the genre you write? Horror, I believe?
     
  6. kmlovering
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    kmlovering Senior Member

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    I hadn't thought of that, you're right, just about anyone with a little money can be published. I will have to look into classes at my school. It's a lot of money, and I am worried about whether it'll be worth it or not. Thank you, you made some very valid points.
     
  7. kmlovering
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    kmlovering Senior Member

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    You know, I am worried about her being a romance author. I don't do romance, and she may not be open to my genre. These are all questions I can ask before I pay so..., now I'm not sure what I'll do. What I do know is I have to learn to write more naturally. I need help, and I may be slightly desperate!
     
  8. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    that is a lot of money and a romance writer won't be able to help you much with other stuff, imo... plus, is she a best-selling author, or a self-published wanna-be?... have you googled her?... or the company offering the course?... did you check it out at preditors & editors and google for feedback from past clients?

    i do all they claim they do and more, for free... and, while i won't help with work that has any violent content, if you want to just learn how to write better, period, we could work on something that won't have any, if you want to give it a try...

    love and hugs, maia
    maia3maia@hotmail.com
     
  9. TWErvin2
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    TWErvin2 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Kmlovering,

    I would have to voice the concern as well that the prospective mentor does not write in your area/genre.

    Second, if you're going to drop that much money in this project, maybe you should take the time to read some of her published work before jumping in. Your writing styles may be at odds, even something minor the POV she specializes in may be a concern.

    Have you checked references? How happy have others been who've shelled out big bucks for mentorships with this author?

    There are freelanced editors and consulting editors who work with major publishing houses who may be available for the same price or a little higher, depending on what your goals are...and that is just it...what are your goals through this mentor ship. What exactly do you hope to learn from the author for the money?

    In the end, you'd better be clear in the contract about what is expected on the author's part and your part. How much time and depth of assistance will be provided?

    Would there be an option for say a trial period...where you might pay 1/10th the fee for service and go on a trial basis. It might be that the author determines she is out of her league (due to genre, your needs compared to what she can provide, etc.) and I am betting that once she has the grand in hand, she'll be very unlikely to give it back...and will muddle through the best she can...which wouldn't be the best for you.

    How long have you been writing? How much progress have you made in that time...what have you done to improve? Is this an attempted shortcut to learning the craft of writing to reach? Is it motivational, such that, "Hey, I've got big money invested in this venture. I'm darn well going to get a couple of good manuscripts out of it."

    I know there are a lot of questions I asked. Only you can answer.

    Personally, I wouldn't spend that kind of money. But in the end, if I were tempted, the real deal breaker for me would be the genre difference. If the author is a good author, and respected in the area...and helps you produce some quality manuscripts for submission...would she be able to put in a good word for you with her agent...to have that individual take a serious and timely look? Or even an editor she's built a relationship with at her house that she might be able to say, "Hey, could you take a look at the first couple of chapters of this author I've been working with." She couldn't even offer to blurb your first novel since it's not even in the genre area.

    Just another bunch of questions and opinion to add to the mix.

    Good luck, and don't give up, whatever your choice.

    Terry
     

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