The latest fare of MasterClass (in the writing arena) is Margaret Atwood’s Creative Writing Class. As soon as I saw it I knew I had to have it.
In this class, Margaret Atwood will be showing us how she crafts compelling stories, from historical to speculative fiction. We can expect to follow along and learn her creative process for developing ideas into strong standing novels.
I haven’t been able to start this MasterClass yet, as I am making my way through a number of Holly Lisle classes, but this class is definitely next on my list.
But I wanted to blog about it in case you hadn’t heard about it yet, and to let you know what you can expect.
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I love reading how my favourite and other famous write and schedule their writing time, and learning any tips that they’re happy to give out, even if I do have to pay for them.
That’s why I’m so intrigued about these MasterClass classes. Even if they are not perfect, there is still something to be learnt from listening to and observing such a writer-master.
Of course, my favourite writing classes are by Holly Lisle, but a number of MasterClass classes are on my to-do list, even just to hear my favourite writer speak and share her and his wisdom. (Just in case you’re interested, I’m down to take the Apatow, R.L Stine and Atwood classes!)
Knowing that even if the MasterClass isn’t a perfect training method, how awesome will it be, to be taught by such a master writer as by Margaret Atwood!
Now, the reason I suggest MasterClass isn’t perfect is that from all my research, there are mixed reviews on some of the classes. You will learn more than others from some of them, some being more practical in their lessons, while other’s more theoretical and philosophical. For this reason, if you are even remotely interested in more than one class, I would recommend picking up the All-Access Pass – this way you can watch a wide variety of classes and always find something worthwhile. There are many writing classes available, and include screenwriting, writing for television, creative writing, and writing non-fiction.
- Course: Margaret Atwood Teaches Creative Writing (MasterClass)
- Who’s it For? All Levels.
- Cost: $90 for the single class or All Access Pass (unlimited access) $180 per year
- Duration: 23 Video Lessons (Online), approximately 4 hours long.
- Community: Upload Videos and receive feedback. Select critiques by Atwood herself.
- Guarantee: 30 Day Money Back Guarantee.
- Rating: A tentative 9/10 – from other’s reviews
If you are interested in purchasing this course, please remember that for only $180 per year, you can get the All-Access Pass, and get the other excellent writing MasterClasses by James Patterson, R.L. Stine, Aaron Sorkin, and Judy Blume.
So Why Margaret Atwood?
In her first-ever online class, the author of The Handmaid’s Tale presents an exclusive creating writing class, teaching you how she crafts vivid prose and hooks readers with her timeless approach to storytelling.
Margaret Atwood is an award-winning and prolific author of more than fifty novels, books of poetry, and critical essays. Her novels have been nominated for numerous Booker Prizes and won the Booker Prize for The Blind Assassin in 2000.
This makes Margaret Atwood the perfect creative writing teacher to draw lessons and inspiration from.
I first discovered her at University in English Literature 101. The book was Surfacing, and it was unlike anything I’ve ever read before. Here was a great writer, who wrote speculative fiction which was also literary, whose novels were studied at a College level. I found her then, and have been following her ever since. My favourite are her more speculative novels such as Oryx and Crake, The Year of the Flood, and The Handmaid’s Tale. I even got to see her live one year at the Perth Writer’s Festival, which was a real treat and I learnt a lot just from that short exchange on stage with an interviewer.
I can’t wait to see what she offers up here to us on MasterClass.
What You Get…
100% exclusive video lessons and some of Atwood’s original research materials and notes. Learn at your own pace through your mobile or desktop. These video lessons are said to be of exceptional quality.
The 23 lessons total approximately 4 hours. Each lesson is from 10 – 20 minutes long. Learn exactly how Margaret Atwood crafts vivid prose and hooks readers. Plus she uses her own novels and classics to draw her lessons from.
You’ll receive a Class Workbook, with lesson recaps, assignments, and supplemental materials.
You also have access to the class members area, where you can upload videos and get feedback from others taking the class. It is said that Margaret Atwood will also be critiquing select student work. This is an amazing opportunity, and I wonder how it works if you buy the single class… In theory, you have lifetime access and can retake the class at any time. Does this mean you could keep taking it until Atwood critiques your work? Maybe…?
What does it cost?
- You can pick up the single class for US$90 for lifetime, unlimited access.
- Purchase the All-Access Pass for US$180 per year, and get access to all available MasterClass classes while your subscription is valid. This needs to be paid for each year, but you do get access to all active and new classes.
Check out the Offical MasterClass Trailer below:
What You’ll Be Learning
There are 23 lessons presented, and you can read about the whole list on MasterClass, but here are the few that I am most interested in:
Lesson 2: Getting Started As a Writer
This is where Margaret teaches us how to find our own path, and overcome obstacles like fear. She also shares her own writer’s story and creative process, which I am SO excited to hear:)
Lesson 3: Story and Plot
Learn what makes a strong plot. Atwood recommends you to study myths, fairy tales, and other historical works of literature so that you can use them as building blocks for your stories and novels.
I am very attracted to the workings of plot and story and am intrigued to hear what Atwood has to say about this subject.
As too the original stories found in our myths and fairy tales, our legends and fables. This is an area I draw from too, so I love that Atwood also recommends this.
Lesson 18: Speculative Fiction
In this lesson, Atwood reveals her approach to writing speculative fiction and gives advice on how to generate ideas and build your world.
Lesson 21: The Writer’s Path
In this lesson, Atwood reveals the one book she recommends to all writers, and shares inspirational stories from other writers. I can’t wait to find out what it is. Can anyone enlighten us?
Writing Insights from a Favourite Writer
What I love most about the idea of this class, is that it’s taught by such a revered and prolific writer. Margaret Atwood is a talented writer in both non-fiction and fiction, and a Booker Prize winner at that. She is one of the select writers in this age, that I’d love to learn any tip or trick she has to offer.
I am bound to learn something golden within the lessons, and for this reason alone, I know I need this class
Is It Worth It?
So, although I haven’t taken this class yet, it is Most Definitely on my writing class to do list, once I’ve finished my current Holly Lisle class. I want to be able to give my full attention to this class and devote myself to the lessons, without any distractions.
And while I have heard that some of the MasterClass classes do not give concrete steps in their training, and that some of the classes are rather hit and miss, I have no hesitation in trying out this Margaret Atwood class.
Not only is she a Master in the writing arena, and any insights that I’ll be able to come away with will make the class worthwhile, but MasterClass also has a great refund policy, so if I do not like the class for any reason, I know I am safe, and can receive a full refund within the first 30 days.
I will update this post after I have completed the class with my final thoughts on the MasterClass.
Have you taken the Margaret Atwood MasterClass yet? Are you thinking about taking it? I’d love to hear your thoughts and reviews – please comment below and I’ll reply as soon as I can.
If you are looking for other writing classes, I cannot recommend enough the writing classes by Holly Lisle.
I am currently enrolled in her How to Write Short Stories, How to Write a Novel and How to Think Sideways, and highly recommend them if you are series about your writing and learning how to be a career creative writer.
You can see for yourself with Holly’s Free Flash Fiction Writing Class.