I don't know about you, but I generally feel I need all the help I can get :)
When I go on school visits, and even teach writing workshops to kids, I always tell them that writing is a process. Nobody gets it right the first time. Revising and editing are part of the game.
Learning to write is also a process. I'm sure there are lots of people out there who are truly masters of the craft, but I don't feel like I'm one of them just yet. Although I have a number of books published, I still feel like I'm learning. My writing can always get better.
Whether you're published already or not, if you feel like you have things to learn, or areas you could improve on, one great option is a writing course.
There are lots of them out there. I can personally speak for those offered by the Institute of Children's Literature and Jordan Rosenfeld, both of which are available online.
If you'd like something more "real" (i.e. an actual physical class that you go to and see other people!) I can also highly recommend The ABCs of Writing or Children. Here's the info if you're interested:
The ABCs of Writing for Children will be offered again at Merritt Bookstore, Front Street, Millbrook, NY, on Tuesday afternoons from 1 – 3 p.m. Class will meet once a week for 6 weeks Dates: April 5, April 12, (skipping April 19), April 26, May 3, May 10, May 17 CLASS INSTRUCTORS: Karen Kaufman Orloff – ex-magazine editor and author of four picture books (I WANNA IGUANA, I WANNA NEW ROOM, IF MOM HAD THREE ARMS, TALK, OSCAR, PLEASE!) and a regular columnist for “The Poughkeepsie Journal” Della Ross Ferreri: Author of two picture books (STAR OF THE SHOW, HOW WILL I EVER SLEEP IN THIS BED?), and two beginning readers (PICNIC ON THE SIDEWALK, HEY! YOU’RE EATING MY HOMEWORK!) plus numerous poems/articles in children’s magazines Class will cover: • How to get ideas • How to structure a story • Writing in different genres, including rhyme • Creating great characters • First drafts and re-writing • Writing effective query letters • Submitting to publishers In addition, there will be: • Manuscript critiques • In-class writing exercises • Ample Q & A time CLASS FEE: $150 Small, intimate class setting. Informal atmosphere. NOTE: YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE AN ILLUSTRATOR TO WRITE CHILDREN”S BOOKS! For more information, contact Karen (firstname.lastname@example.org/ 845-896-8038)
The only drawback with Karen and Della's class is that you have to live within driving distance of Millbrook, NY (or have a private jet - but I'm thinking most of us aren't quite there yet :))
Have any of you taken courses? If so, please share them and tell us how your experience was and whether you'd recommend them!