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Back to Creative Writing: The Craft of Character

Creative Writing: The Craft of Character, Wesleyan University

4.5
966 ratings
277 reviews

About this Course

At the center of a good story are the characters in it. In this course aspiring writers will discover how to build and bring to life complex, vivid and unforgettable characters. We will study the choices a writer makes to bring all characters to life on the page, and we will perform written exercises in order to develop a variety of writing and pre-writing techniques, in order to create a variety of characters. We will learn how to use our own life experiences, and the people we know (and how not to!). We will develop inner (thoughts and feelings) and outer (appearance, habits, behavior) lives for our characters and see how that can lead us to richer and more interesting stories. We will breathe life into our characters and let them surprise us....

Top reviews

By SS

Aug 11, 2016

I loved this course! Extremely useful and hands on. The course instructor was really impressive, both informative and empathetic, both arty and to the point. Totally admired her style of instruction.

By ND

Aug 08, 2016

Excellent teaching, be aware the meat of this course is in the interviews. If you read and watch them then the assignments are self-explanatory. The discussion boards were however a disappointment.

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271 Reviews

By Camille Batchelor

Mar 28, 2019

Helpful, but not very much.

By John Lanthier

Mar 25, 2019

I recently completed the 5-course specialization in creative writing. For the most part the course material presented was good, especially the courses on plot, on setting, and on style. The course on characterization was a little vague. From the syllabus, it looked like it would be a good course, but the instructor did not follow the syllabus and was often very unfocussed in her presentation.

The weakness with this specialization is that all the feedback to the writer is provided by peers in the course. This I found very disappointing. Many of the other students were honestly very poor writers, and as a result, the feedback I received on my assignments was very superficial. In addition, rather than being able to learn from reading the writing of others, I found for the most part that the pieces submitted by others were very lacking.

If you take this course, know that it will provide you some good information about writing fiction, but the feedback you receive on your assignments will not help you learn. You will need to find another peer group of writers to help you with that.

By Salma Hazem

Mar 25, 2019

I enjoyed Amy Bloom's teaching style and the way she relayed the message across. It really felt like being with a friend at a coffeeshop, analyzing different parts of books and stories that we've read and commenting on them. It was casual, comfortable, and very informative. The assignments allowed me to experiment and unlock new ways of getting and utilizing inspiration for characters, and for giving my characters a proper and interesting depth.

By

Mar 23, 2019

Estoy verdaderamente agradecida por la oportunidad de desarrollar mis habilidades trabajando en conjunto con personas que compartimos una misma pasión: escribir.

By james reeves

Mar 21, 2019

I see a marked improvement in both my confidence and skill as a writer from each of these classes.

By Frankie White

Mar 08, 2019

Amy Bloom was amazing. I loved her style of teaching. I would absolutely take a class with her again

By Esha Banerjee

Mar 07, 2019

Have learnt many new tricks and Amy Bloom's talks are absolutely wonderful! Thank you so much!

By chris j. bahnsen

Mar 01, 2019

Amy Bloom is such a caring, conscientious, nurturing teacher, who addresses the class (via video camera) as if only speaking to you. There's a kind of intimacy to her teaching style, and her sincerity and expertise at expressing concepts and examples of character craft allowed her teachings to truly "seat" in my mind. Thank you, Amy.

By Thomas Ohrbom

Feb 27, 2019

Not by far as good as the first module (Craft of Plot). This course seemed less planned and structured. The videos were mostly interviews that sort of touched upon the subjects but hardly ever got into detail. The assignments were often vague and harder to understand.

By Polina Kim

Feb 23, 2019

I learned a lot thanks to this course. The teachers are wonderful, and so is the information provided. I can feel my writing improve. Thank you:)