August 27, 2012

Thinking Like an Editor, a class for writers in Seattle

Over the years that the Clinic has been around, a number of writers who also edit or editors who also write have taken classes in developmental editing. Many writers have said it's helped them think about learning to read their own work for structural issues or to give better feedback to colleagues in writers' groups. But until now I've primarily directed my editing classes at editors. We don't read and respond to our own manuscripts--we practice on other people's. 

This fall I'm going to be trying a small class for writers who want to learn editing skills so as to become better novelists or memoirists. It's not online as most of our classes are, but in-person, at Hugo House, the literary center in Seattle. I've often taught writing classes there, but this will be the first class to focus entirely on prose revision, particularly of long manuscripts.

It's a relatively inexpensive way to study up on methods of self-editing--as well as to learn more about how to work effectively with an outside editor. I'm looking forward to passing on techniques for analyzing  narrative shape, plot and pacing, characterization, dialog, scene, summary and reflection.

The six-week class runs Thursday evenings, 7-9 p.m., October 11-November 15 at Hugo House in Seattle. Please join us or pass the word to writers you know. The class size is limited and registration is going on now.

--Barbara Sjoholm