What others say:
I loved the variety of reading material covered and how the exercises were geared to practice specific writing skills highlighted in what we'd read. I also appreciated that there was time given at each lesson for us to ask questions, as well as to express how we'd experienced writing that week's exercise. This is my second Level I course from IWC and I found it also very helpful in stretching my writing, practicing certain skills. Compared to other writing courses I've taken, IWC is much more practical and interactive.
The material was well prepared and well thought out. We read and discussed a wide range of different texts which led to great discussion. Each lesson was purposeful and well valued by each of the participants. The teacher, as always was excellent. She allowed space for people to share their own thoughts and ideas, gave excellent feedback, and demonstrated an awesome subject knowledge. She was never stumped by any question and knew exactly what she was talking about.
I found the teacher's feedback by far the most valuable part of the course. The craft discussions during class were also interesting and educational, but the feedback is where the course shone for me. It gave me new insights into my writing and helped me feel more confident.
I enjoyed the range of material covered and the possibility to respond to prose with poetry. The exercises were clear and I felt inspired to be creative. I loved the international mix of people in the course which really contributed to an atmosphere of mutual respect the teacher created.
All the courses in the Collective have been great, and all teachers have been really good. What I liked about this course was how tailored it was to novel writing, and to allowing us to work on our own projects, but in order to do that well I do feel we needed the 'basics' of Level I and Level II. The courses flow logically from one to the other and build on one another in the techniques explained and used.
I loved everything about this course. It was great to meet a community of fellow writers and the exercises were fun and engaging. I feel like a much stronger writer than I was eight weeks ago.
I am so grateful for IWC. You have provided me with wonderful skills and insights into writing that have added a richness to what I put on paper, and a better command of what creates a readable story. The courses have also contributed to my enjoyment of reading a good book. Great organization that promotes creativity and using one's own voice, while helping to refine everyone's writing so that stories have the best chance to connect with a reader. Many thanks.
I absolutely enjoyed every second of this course, every week the faces of my fellow students became less blurry as I got to read their writings. I loved the fact that we were encouraged to give feedback, as that made me more critical of my own work too! The dynamic is great, the bookshop is dreamy, and while I sat there I felt like a true main character while holding my cup of tea and reading so many ideas in just one evening.
This was my 2nd Level 1 course (as recommended by IWC) and when I finished the first time level 1, I didn't see the point of repeating a level, and now I would gladly recommend people doing it again. I reread my exercises from the first time to compare, when I finished, and I could see how I used the second time to really explore the (different) exercises and get out of my comfort zone. I would tell, the first time you learn, the second time you take risks.
The exercises covered always change from one class to another which also keeps me motivated and keeps me reading and expanding on my style inspiration. It’s essentially not possible to stay in your comfort zone when approaching so many different types of writers. I also appreciate that the writers chosen are from all over the world and not just American/British. The atmosphere is relaxed yet intellectually challenging. I get to learn from the instructor as well as colleagues from their wealth of experience as writers and as readers.
In summary, the primary benefit of this and other courses at IWC is structure: the weekly assignments, the focus on specific techniques and forms, the accountability and camaraderie that students feel toward one another. For me, this structure allows me to orient myself in my exploration of myself as an artist. Without it, one can easily get lost or feel like there is no way to measure progress.
I can't believe how much I've learned about writing and reading during this course. The material and exercises were challenging (in a good way) and incredibly inspiring. I would absolutely recommend this course to a friend! I would tell them that taking a course with the Collective will definitely kickstart their creativity.