Are correspondence courses that promise to help you become a successful writer any good or are they a waste of time?

Convener(s): Paul Whitlock

Participants: Paul Whitlock, Li, Steven, plus a white-haired man who “bumblebeed” by. 

Summary of discussion, conclusions and/or recommendations:

Li mentioned the importance of getting feedback about your own work and only accepting feedback that you feel comfortable with.  Negative feedback can also be useful.  It is important to find a course that is right for you.

A passerby suggested the Open University as a possibility, but said that no course could deliver personal success: “No-one can help you become a successful writer.”

Steven shared his experience of doing a cartooning course and how he had been impressed by the personal touch shown by his tutor, including handwritten comments and drawings.  We briefly discussed the home-study courses offered by the Writers Bureau website. 

Convener’s conclusion:

The response to this issue was rather limited.  I had hoped to speak to people with first-hand experience of these writing courses, who could advise me of any pitfalls. However, I need to do further research and make my own decision.