Sunday, April 24, 2011

Do You Need A Teacher?

I've been writing my entire life. I love to read; I love to write. And, I don't even know how many times I've said after reading a book, hey, this book stinks I can write better than that! How about you? Come on, you know you've at least thought it even if you didn't say it out loud.

And you know your writing is good, afterall look how many of your friends tell you it is. Look how the writers group rave about your characters. Your sister adores your hero and your mother loves your downtrodden victim and your high school English teacher admires your perfect grammar. So you don't need any advise on writing.

The truth is, maybe you don't really want to be published. After all, then you would be bound with public constraints...deadlines, deadlines, DEADLINES. As it is, you write on your own schedule, live in your own world, dance to your own music. No agent is hounding you for the next chapter when you don't have time to finish it; no publisher is telling you to change your villian's dialog. If you want to hold to your status quo, if you want to spend your days dreaming about being a writer instead of being one, then by all means do so.

But, if you want to be a serious writer, THEN BY ALL MEANS DO SO. Take the steps required to change. Need to schedule time for writing? Get out that planner or add an appointment with self to Outlook. Need to polish a manuscript? Revise, again? Send a query? Find an agent? Sharpen a pencil or buy more printer ink? Do it.

Need to take a writing course? It's hard to turn loose of your hard-earned money. I know. But sometimes we just need a kick in the seat of the pants. I can't tell you how many times I have agaonized over whether or not to take a actually fork out money to have someone tell me how to write.

So, a while back I took the plunge. An author that I read quite often offered writing courses so I checked it out. Holly Lisle. I really like her books; I liked what she had to say about writing; I liked her emails that kept me up-to-date on stuff; I liked her no-nonsense style; I liked that she is an actual, working, published author; so I took the plunge.

I subscribed to How To Think Sideways. And, I have not been disappointed. I like the name of this course and I love the course. Holly Lisle is a font of ideas and energy and commitment to the craft. She's a good teacher, she cares. She continues to write her own books and brings you along for the ride. She shares her success and her struggles. I love everything about being in Holly's "group". I think you will, too. Check her out.

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