Midwest Writers is a nonprofit and officially Midwest Writers Workshop INC. and we have expanded our programs to offer more than our annual summer workshop.
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Available Courses:

[1] It’s Time to Start Your Novel is a 4-week course taught by Cathy DayThis course is for everyone who ever thought, “I think I might have a novel inside me.” Understand though: you will not “write a novel” in this course–you will prepare yourself to start (or re-start) one. You’ll learn a great deal about your process without having to fret about the quality of your work. You’ll generate a lot of writing about the novel you want to write, get to know your characters, learn to think in terms of scenes not sentences, and make some crucial early decisions about point of view and structure that will save you a lot of time down the road.

At the end of the course, you’ll be ready and excited and poised to start writing your novel.

What This Course Specifically Teaches

  • intense focus on the writing process and on developing a writing regimen
  • writing assignments which will help you gather material, develop your plot, and get to know your characters
  • practice creating an outline or storyboard of your book
  • analysis of a novel that will serve as a model

The course is broken down into four big-picture units. Each unit offers a series of mini-lessons (about 5 to 10 minutes each) that build on each other. It will take you about four full hours to go through all of the instruction. You can pause to write when inspired and review the material on your own. Lessons are presented as audio-visual lectures that you can watch on any device (video/screencast).

[2] The Building Blocks of a Great Novel is a 6-unit course taught by Dianne Drake (includes manuscript evaluation!). The goal of this course is not to teach you HOW to write your novel, but to help you discover all the key elements common to every great novel – elements that will make your novel great, too!

  • Choosing Your Genre
  • Goal, Motivation & Conflict
  • Defining Your Point of View
  • Finding Your Voice
  • Creating Your Characters
  • Dialogue, Narrative & Exposition

What the Course Includes:

  • Instructional sections that you can read on your own time, at your own convenience. This Prezi format is not a live presentation, and new lessons will not “drip” at various intervals during the course. Once you have registered, the entire course will be available to you, to access at any time you wish.
  • Assignments for completion at your own pace—designed to help you put what you learn into action.
  • Q&A time through a private Facebook forum designed especially for this course, plus discussions and handouts
  • AND each student will receive A FREE MANUSCRIPT EVALUATION AT THE END OF THE COURSE. Translated to mean 10 pages of a manuscript critique along with one deep editing pass.

[3] Word Play ~ a 4-unit course taught by Liz Whiteacre, presents focused writing exercises that explore diction and figurative language choices, which help us develop voice in our stories, essays, and poems. Always available!

Who this Course Will Help:

Word Play is a short, low-stakes course designed to help you take a break from bigger projects and take some time to play with language. It presents focused writing exercises that explore diction and figurative language choices, which help us develop voice in our stories, essays, and poems.

Writers of all levels and intentions are encouraged to join these focused word-based exercises, honing language skills and developing new ones that will support the writing they do in any genre. Many prompts may become prewriting for new projects or help you revise projects already in the works.

What this Course Includes:

You will receive weekly video lectures, writing exercises and recommended readings, and access to the Word Play Facebook community where you might share questions, excerpts of your writing, your responses to reflection questions, etc.

The four units offer three language-based exercises each week, so you may tailor your experience to your needs and schedule. Each lesson also offers suggestions for further reading on related topics, which you can chose to do while you work on exercises during the class or chose to save for the future.

Course material is presented English, but writers are encouraged to experiment with other languages they know as they compose.

 

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