Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Is a Creative Writing Class Worth It?

Labor Day weekend was a busy place around my old farmhouse. My husband and I undertook the task of tearing off more than one-hundred years' worth of siding and replacing it with concrete siding. We've been doing all the work ourselves, and it's turned out to be a huge labor of love, and sore muscles, and near tragedies. Several weeks ago my spouse made a poor judgment call, and discovered the hard way that his aging body doesn't mend quite as quickly as it used to. He also learned that climbing to the second floor level to remove siding, without arranging for someone to hold the ladder, is not the smartest choice. Fortunately, we don't think he broke anything of major importance, although his right arm hasn't recovered fully as of this date.

We hope to finish the siding by the end of this month, and then we can move on to the next project. We are in desperate need of a second bathroom, but we will be calling in some professional help with this one. We're also waiting for a professional to come out to seal and stain our new deck. We hope the drought breaks soon so that we actually have something green to enjoy while we sit on our new deck in the evenings. 

I did leave my husband to his task on Monday, to make a quick trip up to a local college. I had been invited to speak to a small class on mass communication. It was an opportunity for some young adults to learn a few details about epublishing, and affording me a bit of experience in public speaking in a relaxed, informal atmosphere. 

The class was very impressive. They were respectful, attentive, and asked pertinent questions while expressing interest in the answers I provided. Their questions revealed that they had given thought to the information they were seeking, and not simply a way to pass the time so they could get to their next class. It's been many years since I spent time in a classroom, and the experience made me miss those days. Then the instructor invited me to stay for lunch, and we had an engaging conversation that made me wish even more that I was once again part of that life.

So now I'm looking into a creative writing class. I've never been a part of one, even though I've always known that it would probably be a helpful addition to my education. It's hard to go back to a college campus and not feel that tug.

What I could use from any of you reading this, is some information. If you've participated in a creative writing course, what did you gain from it? If you're a writer, did it further your career? Was it a total waste of time, or did it help you in unexpected ways? I'd really like to know before I invest the time and funds.

Thanks so much for stopping by. I'm currently in the middle of Kepler's Dream. Haven't made a final decision on it yet, but the characters are quite interesting.

Happy Reading.



Missy Frye said...

I took two creative writing classes in college and they helped me in so many ways, I can't describe them all. I had been a closet writer for years, but the classes taught me basics of writing as well as how to deal with critiques (both good and bad). I also learned to trust my own instincts.

Of course, every class is different and what you get out of it depends on the instructor and the classmates.

Cordelia Dinsmore said...

Thanks, Missy. I can't imagine it not being helpful, but it's been a long time since I've been in a classroom environment. Seems like a lot of pressure.

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