Saturday afternoon I had the pleasure of joining a pack of other students, including one of my favorite people, S.W. Sondheimer, in Cat Rambo’s (virtual) Academy for Wayward Writers to attend Ann Leckie’s class: To Space Opera and Beyond. I love Space Opera. I love reading it, and watching it, and learning about. A few times I tipped the very edge of my toe into it and wrote some very short fiction in the genre, but I was hungry to learn the things I might need to know if I wanted to dive deeper into the space pool.
For two hours, Ann talked about her writing process, exploring with us the ways she goes about developing and creating unique cultures, crafting drama, whipping up characters readers can relate to, and then she spoke some about how she quiets the voice that tells her the words she’s writing aren’t good enough. I enjoyed my time in Ann’s class, and by the end of it I certainly wish it’d lasted longer because she is a wealth of thoughtful information.
The cool thing is, The Rambo Academy for Wayward Writers hosts a number of interesting classes, exploring everything from transitioning from writing fanfiction to creating your own worlds (taught by Seanan Mcguire) to the art of world building (with Fran Wilde). Cat also offers a learn-at-your-own-pace option, which allows you to move through the course material as you have the time to do so.
No matter one’s level as a writer, attending courses and workshops and retreats never gets old. It’s always useful to bounce your ideas off of other writers, to share your work in that type of environment, but let’s face it: It’s not always easy to find time to put on real pants and go outside to some venue to attend a class or workshop. Cat Rambo brings the classes right to you, and you don’t have to tell any of the other students you’re wearing pajama pants under your desk if you don’t want to.
So, if you’re looking for an opportunity to expand your writerly horizons, and learn a thing or two from some seasoned writers who know a variety of techniques and genres and are willing to share their wisdom, check it out! I know I am eager to check out a few of the other classes hosted in the upcoming months.