Scrivener for Creative Writers
90 minutes, lecture & Q&A
"Jaime shows you how to get started and then build upon that start. Unintimidating the newbie user alone is worth the tuition. Plus she's fun and humorous, and you get to see snippets of her book, which is clearly fascinating and amazingly researched."
When a writing project gets big enough, in length or in scope, a single word processing document just won’t cut it. Writers of complex and researched projects need organization, flexibility, and tools. Sometimes that’s filing systems, or post-it notes, or index cards, or piles and piles of papers. Or it can be all one thing: Scrivener.
Scrivener is a word-processing program designed for authors of all genres, with space to collect and annotate research and notes, draft, organize, and revise. But it is a hefty piece of software, with far more features than any one project requires, or any one person can easily learn. This lecture-based class will provide a tour of the Scrivener features most useful for wrangling research, drafting, feedback, revision, and fact-checking of book-length or otherwise hefty projects. (But Scrivener is not only for books—your humble instructor uses it for everything from fellowship applications to essays to, yes, researching and writing her book.) This class is aimed at fiction and non-fiction writers, and will be most useful for writers incorporating research into their work. Students do not need to purchase Scrivener (or have any familiarity with it) prior to this class; you can use the lecture to decide if it is right for you and your project.
Get an overview of Scrivener’s layout and tools.
Learn how to organize a daunting amount of research and make it accessible as you’re writing.
See the options for big-picture structural revision in Scrivener, and get a sense of when to transition a project to Word or another program.
Figure out if Scrivener will be useful to your work.
From Research to Draft
90 minutes, lecture & Q&A
For essayists, novelists, journalists, and all writers, research is one of the most powerful ways to engage your writing with the world. It gives you facts, inspiration, evidence, and other voices to converse and argue with. But working with research is also daunting, quickly overwhelming our organizational abilities and drowning out our creative vision. How can you work with so many sources and still be in control of the story?
In this lecture-based class, I’ll show you the strategies I use to organize, process, and write from research in book-length and shorter projects. We’ll cover working from books, ebooks, pdfs, interviews, and more. I’ll show you how to process research so key facts and ideas are easily accessible, how to digest and organize what you discover, and how to write from research so it sparks your creativity and helps you unlock new ideas of your own.
Learn new strategies for processing, organizing, and writing from research.
Gain new frameworks for thinking about how research functions in your writing.
See how researching can be part of the brainstorming and idea-generating process.
Learn strategies for juggling multiple sources so you’re freed up to be more productive and creative.
Cheating Your Way to an Expert Writing Process
3 hrs, lecture, exercises, Q&A
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"Jaime was such a great instructor, and created a great atmosphere for discussion, even with being virtual. Such a great concept of including the "science" of writing and applying to creating your own process."
Writing is an art. But it is also skilled work. All too often, we expect great writing to bubble out of us unprompted, as long as we make space for the muse to arrive. But what really makes space for the muse is a whole lot of skills and strategies.
Research shows that expert writers know how to make much of their process automatic, so that their full attention can be on creative generation. But you don’t have to wait for expertise. You can build a process that breaks writing up into small, manageable steps, and in doing so clear space for creativity.
In this one-day intensive for writers of all experience levels, through lecture and individual exercises, you’ll learn about the science of writing development and how you can use that knowledge to build a better writing process for yourself. We’ll talk about working memory, generation vs. assessment, how to quiet your inner critic (or at least tell her to wait her turn), and revision strategies that will make writing better and more enjoyable, every step of the way.
Gain a better understanding of the writing and revision process, and how to make this work less overwhelming and more enjoyable.
Identify the smaller steps of a writing process that will make space for creativity and surprise in your writing.
Practice brainstorming, writing, and revision techniques that you can continue to adapt and apply
"This class changed my perspective on creative writing and motivated me to be braver, bolder, and more creative."
"Jaime brings an energy to each class that always makes me want to push myself to think of new questions and explore new writing techniques."
"Jaime is such a skillful teacher, both in how she puts together a workshop and how she leads it. The content is thoughtful and so helpful."