Believe it or not, there are plenty of opportunities for creative writing courses outside of your local community college or university. Creative writing is a passion that many people share, and bookstores, libraries and other institutions often offer these courses in an attempt to bring writers closer together while they learn.
If you are thinking about brushing up on your creative writing skills, it’s important to choose a creative writing course that fits with your learning style and personality. Not all writers learn the same way, and if you’re going to fork over the money for a creative writing course, you should make sure you’re going to get something from it.
Learning Style #1: You learn best through reading, listening and direct instruction.
If this sounds like your learning style, you would benefit most from a creative writing course that takes place in a classroom situation. An instructor teaches about the different facets of creative writing and you have a textbook from which to glean information. Check out creative writing courses at community colleges and major universities.
Learning Style #2: You learn best when working with a small-to-medium-sized group where you can bounce ideas off each other.
This learning style lends itself to a more informal creative writing course in which you are able to work in groups to solve problems. These types of courses often have curriculum that includes coming up with a story together and maybe even acting it out. Look into taking a creative writing course at your local dramatic arts institution or a creative writing group that meets at a designated place.
Learning Style #3: You learn best when you are given a topic about which to write and then you work through the problems on your own.
If your learning style is more solitary and you like to take a hands-on approach, consider a course in book form that you can take by yourself. You can find these written creative writing courses at Amazon.com and at your local bookstore. It will give you the chance to follow a curriculum at your own pace.
Learning Style #4: You learn best when working on a computer.
If your learning style is geared more toward the technological age, you might best be served with an online creative writing course. You can find these through major universities and through writing websites like AbsoluteWrite.com. This will allow you not only to work on your own, but also to interact with the program on your computer.
Learning Style #5: You learn best through visualizing or listening and you like to work on your own.
If you are more of a visual or audio learner, you might consider a creative writing course on tape. You can choose from courses that are given on video and DVD or you might prefer an audio CD that you can listen to while driving your car or sitting at home.
All of these learning styles are different, but none of them is better than another. With something like creative writing, you’ll only learn if the course facilitates your own personal learning style; otherwise, you’re unlikely to absorb what you hear. You might want to try out a couple of different types of courses just to get a feel for how they work.
If a creative writing course doesn’t really float your boat, you might want to think about creative writing groups. These are informal discussion groups in which members can read their work aloud and solicit critiques from other members. They also discuss tips and advice they want to share and it can be a very nurturing community.