Continuing Education April

How’s your April going? Mine has turned into “continuing education” month. I’m not sure how it came to be, but I am taking three online courses this month!

I was fortunate enough to get into Barbara Samuels’s voice class. I’ve heard about this class for so long that I was anxious to find out what all the hub-bub was about. But honestly, I was also curious about “voice”. I had always equated “voice” with “style”, thinking these two words were interchangeable. Then, one of the first things Barbara said was…think of “voice” as a potato and “style” like French Fries. Well, that one threw me. I’m thinking a lot these days about potatoes and french fries. It’s early in the course. Our week two assignment came out yesterday – three different writing exercises. One is to name your favorite 25 things…not just name them, describe them for the reader…make the reader experience your reaction to these things. Believe it or not, I’m having trouble coming up with 25 things that don’t involve food! LOL

I’m also taking CJ Lyons’ “Chasing the Muse” class through RWA KOD. It’s a voice class also, and strangely, the two classes are complimenting each other well. CJ’s class isn’t as write intensive as Barbara’s voice class, but the information in both has been excellent.

The third online course is “Creating Psychic Characters” by Mary O’Gara. I’ve never written a paranormal or psychic character. I’ve got one beating to get out of my head, but until I get a good handle on her psychic abilities, she has to stay there. This is a fun and interesting class. She has given the class fantastic references for use now and in the future.

At the first of the month (or actually March 31), DSRA member Sheila Covey and I made a quick run down to Dallas to take Margie Lawson’s Empowering Character Emotions. WOW. What a workshop. If anyone gets a chance to take this one, DO. I think I may have taken home more “use immediately” information in that one day than some conferences where I go for two days. I’ve posted some pictures on my website from that day.

So, what have you done lately to improve your craft?