Monday, February 28, 2011


With today's dependence on the internet, is it any surprise great resources are made available online? The more important question: are you taking advantage of these resources? Fairly cheap, fantastic information, without having to buy a plane ticket.

I took two online courses a couple summers ago. That's pretty much my extent of online learning. So (don't quote me on this, who knows where the future goes) it's probably safe to say I won't be trying to do much more than impart a few words of wisdom on this blog.

Today the topic is pretty open. I want to hear from you. What have been your favorite online resources for writing/learning/etc (other than blogs)? Webinars, classes, phone-in conferences, etc, etc.

This is your opportunity to rave about something great that has helped you.

The reason for my sudden interest in this online stuff? Andrea Hurst is hosting a webinar this Thursday. "Crafting Fiction & Memoir That Sells--An Agent's Point of View." Among some of the great advice you'll get, is about how to make that first page POP. And by signing up she'll even critique the effectiveness of your first page. This is a great opportunity to learn from a great teacher (trust me, I know) and get some hands-on help with the most important part of your ms.

So, while you're out there attending conferences and pouring over writing books, don't forget the resources available from the comfort of your LazyBoy and Snuggie.

So please, now's your turn to impart your wisdom!

Happy writing!


Alison said...

I've taken several classes at SaavyAuthors. Everything from world building to book trailer creation. Most of them have helped. A few were stinkers but that's true for anything. I think what is important is the enthusiasm of the teacher and student though.

Bkloss said...

I don't think the forums set up by Nathan Brasnford would count as 'blogging'. That online community has been an incredible resource for me. Had my query critiqued,learned from others' query critiques, met writing partners, seen advice on things from submissions to writer's name it. It's changed my writing life!

Katie L. Carroll said... has some great resources for writers. They host live events with agents and editors and I "attended" their on-line conference last year, which was really similar to physically attending a writing conference.

Also, Verla Kay's discussion boards are a great source of info for kidlit writers and provide a wonderfully supportive group of writers to share triumphs and woes.

Elena Solodow said...

This isn't a webinar, but for starting writers is excellent. You earn points by critiquing people's work and can post your own work for critique as well. It's where I really learned the basics. Everyone is nice and honest. It's a great community.

Heather said...

One of my favorite online resources are the chats I find on Twitter. For more in depth learning and interacting though I really enjoy the WriteOnCon conference and workshops. Writer's Digest also does a few great workshops that I participate in now and then. I love that your agency is doing this!

Kristine Asselin said...

I took an online course with Writer U ( last spring. Cheap price, good quality. I "met" a good writer friend through it. Priceless. I've never done a webinar. As a writer who writes mostly by gut instinct (my college writing classes were a loooong time ago) taking classes and attending conferences have been a great way for me to hone my writing skills. My crit group and books on craft have been invaluable, too. :)

Kristin Lynn Thetford said...

I have to say that Twitter is an excellent resource - chats, links, info about webinars, conferences, etc. I have also greatly enjoyed the WriteOnCon live chats. The chat tonight with Suzie Townsend and Maria Gomez was amazing (and fun). Also, I enjoy the phone-in conferences. It is great to be able to ask questions in "person" from time to time.

Mart Ramirez said...

Gosh there are so many but my most recent one was a Webinar at SaavyAuthors. I had the honor to take a class from James Scott Bell last year in person. This year he was teaching an editing class at SaavyAuthors. He is such an awesome teacher and person! I enjoyed it very much.

I would LOVE to take Anmdrea's class as well. AS soon as I seen it posted, it intrigued me.

OH, also there are lots of free classes at Romance University. Free is always helpul!

Gina Lamm said...

I have to agree that Twitter is very helpful. I've been wanting to try one of the workshops that RWA chapters conduct via email loop, but I wasn't sure if they were useful. I think that maybe I'll give it a shot. Thanks for the post! Very thought provoking.


Laura Pauling said...

Margie Lawson's online classes are terrific. They cover character's emotions to editing. It's more about the actual writing then plotting.

And congrats to signing my awesome crit partner, Kris. Wish you both the best of luck!

ChristaCarol Jones said...

Agreed on WriteOnCon and Nathan Bransford's forum area. There are also authors like Candy Havens who do workshops via yahoo groups and it's great to have a community and mentor and goals, etc. Twitter has also been very helpful. I've yet to attend an "official" webinar that costs money, mainly because I'm broke (spending money on conferences and workshops I have to drive to...hmm...maybe I need to make a change...) but yes, the usefulness of anything that can grow your brain in a skill as versatile as writing is good in my book. Pun intended.

Unknown said...

I've attended two webinars through Writer's Digest: 1. A query class hosted by Kristin Nelson, and 2. A synopsis course hosted by Chuck Sambuchino.

At first, the webinars seemed kind of pricy, but for the cost I got: 1. Access to the course materials for a year (so as I learned more, I could go back, reflect, and get more out of the lessons later); 2. I was able to submit my query/synopsis for feedback (or as I liked to think of it, "grading").

Not only helped me produce better submissions, but helped my confidence tremendously. Both Kristin and Chuck have some of the course materials on their blog sites for free (including a lot of examples).

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