Online Writing Classes: Enroll Now in Free and Cheap MOOCs

Marylee MacDonald is the author of MONTPELIER TOMORROW, a novel about caregiving and ALS. Her short story collection, BONDS OF LOVE & BLOOD, was a finalist in the Foreword Reviews' INDIEFAB Awards. Her fiction has won Gold and Silver Medals from Readers' Favorites International Book Awards, the Barry Hannah Prize, the Ron Rash Award, and many others.

Online writing classes can save you from a world of hurt. Rejection from agents. Bong letters from publishers. Or, if you’re self-pubbing it, no sales on Amazon. Aspiring writers have passion and desire. However, it’s often hard for a new writers to put their stories into words. So, how do you learn to write? Well, first you study.

In the old days writers learned from older writers or picked apart novels and tried to figure out the craft. Some studied writing in school.

In a 1941 Paris Review interview with Steven Marcus, author Normal Mailer said this:

When I first began to write again at Harvard. I wasn’t very good. I was doing short stories all the time, but I wasn’t good. If there were fifty people in the class, let’s say I was somewhere in the top ten. My teachers thought I was fair, but I don’t believe they ever thought for a moment that I was really talented. Then in the middle of my sophomore year I started getting better. I got on the Harvard Advocate, and that gave me confidence, and about this time I did a couple of fairly good short stories for English A-1, one of which won Story magazine’s college contest for that year. I must say that Robert Gorham Davis, who was my instructor then, picked the story to submit for the contest and was confident it would win.

After World War II, writers took correspondence courses. Newly released from nearly freezing to death in a Siberian gulag, Aleksandr Isayevich Solzhenitsyn, a mathematician by training, took a correspondence course in literature from Moscow University. While working on that course, he wrote his short novel, One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, a book that sent shock waves through post-Stalinist Russia. Solzhenitsyn launched a