The Remarkable Writing Workshop will return this autumn! Drop your name and email below to get notified of the next scheduled session
There’s a lot to being a professional writer.
Deadlines, marketing, content strategy.
But if you want to be a working writer — a professional freelancer, a member of a larger team, or the “chief content officer” for your own business or side project — you have to be able to write.
“Can writing really be taught?”
There’s so much baloney out there about writing being some kind of special activity that has to be granted to you by the Great Talent Fairies.
Sorry, but that’s bullshit.
If playing a musical instrument can be taught, writing can be taught.
Writing is no different from any other art form. You learn the basics, then you learn some advanced skills, then you practice.
And your writing voice emerges organically from that. if you don’t feel you have a strong writing voice yet, the answer is to hone your craft, put some sustained practice in, then get some useful feedback.
If there’s a “magic” ingredient
If there’s a magic ingredient in becoming a stronger writer, it’s useful feedback.
Not brutal, “tear you to shreds” feedback.
And not wishy-washy “everyone is a rock star” feedback.
But concrete, helpful, thoughtful critique, from someone who knows what they’re doing, with suggestions on what you’re doing well and how you can improve.
What we’ll work on
The most important goal of the workshop is to get you into a healthy, manageable daily writing practice. The kind that keeps you moving forward (not too easy), but that you can sustain over a lifetime (not painful or too difficult).
We have daily quick homework that will strengthen your observational muscles, and start to fill your “idea garden” with all kinds of rich topics that you’ll develop into finished pieces.
We’ll also have longer exercises to explore topics and techniques that will help you grow as a writer.
And you’ll have a feedback session with me, where I closely and individually look at your work and give you specific areas of focus for improvement — as well as encouragement about what you’re already doing well. (That’s not just to make you feel good. Often, our fastest opportunity for growth comes from doing more of what we’re already good at.)
You’ll also have the opportunity to buy additional feedback sessions if you choose to, at a highly advantageous rate.
Here’s the workshop schedule
Kickoff Week: Your Daily Practice
In many ways, this is the most important week of the whole workshop. This is when we’ll go through the Why and the How of our daily writing practice. You’ll have specific, manageable daily assignments, as well as longer assignments to work on when you have time.
Week One: Voice and Persona
This week, we’ll work on how to nurture and develop your individual writer’s voice. And we’ll talk about how to balance our privacy with the web’s insatiable demand for “authenticity” and transparency.
Week Two: The Words We Choose
This session will dive deeply into the specific words that make up our writing. We’ll learn how to spot that “perfect” word, as well as how to keep embarrassing errors away.
Week Three: Metaphor and Story
These two powerhouse techniques will help you craft some of your most memorable writing. We’ll talk about how good stories are structured, some often-overlooked elements, and how to tell compelling stories in just a few words.
Week Four: Implementation
I swiped this idea from the wonderful creative productivity expert, Jessica Abel: It’s a week to get caught up with the class! If you’ve had any lessons that you didn’t get enough time to explore, this is your week to dive back in. And if you’re absolutely up to date, you’ll use this week to work on your personal most important writing goal. I’ll be on hand to help with guidance if you need help with this.
Week Five: Detail and Polish
How much is too much? When does “colorful” writing get tedious, overstuffed, or boring? We’ll strive for that balance this week, and learn to create evocative, textured writing without getting goopy or hard to read.
This week, we’ll also talk about editing and “exfoliating” our writing, for that polished professional shine.
Week Six: Structure
Your writing may be gorgeous — but if your structure is weak, you won’t have a compelling piece. This week is all about how to structure your work so it holds together. We’ll focus on capturing and keeping audience attention, and we’ll touch on how to structure your content to serve a larger purpose.
Week Seven: Group Questions
This is your wrap-up week to ask questions, refine your ongoing goals, and make a plan to move forward. I’ll be here to help provide guidance!