Why You Shouldn’t Pay For Writing Courses (And The One Reason Why You Should)

Sometimes, it’s tempting to outsource our learning to others, to let them tell us how to write. I know that because I’ve done it too.

I had enrolled in a distance-learning programme many moons ago, when the internet wasn’t as developed and when the learning material would come in the form of snail mail.

“Get paid at the end of the course or you get your money back!” That was their promise. Surely, it was a win-win, right?

Nope.

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How Writing Short Stories Can Improve Your Novel Writing Skills (And Writing In General)

String lights clumped up in the middle of a novel

Before we begin, I’d just like to announce my cyberpunk short’s acceptance into the Fish Eats Lion Redux anthology which, for me, puts the rad into my trad-publishing ambitions.

I’m pretty proud of this piece, since Singaporeans were given priority for acceptance, and here I am, a random Malaysian, just trying to belong among the other talented writers from across the Causeway.

Maybe I’ve finally paid my dues. They say you need to get your first million words down before you get to the good stuff. Or maybe I just got lucky.

Either way, here’s a totally scientific (and totally not anecdotal or anything) post about why short-story writing would benefit the novelist, even if they don’t plan to pursue the genre.

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The Biggest Lesson That Teaching Has Taught Me

An old school pic of a teacher in sweater and tie standing in front of a blackboard

It’s finally over. I’ve just finished mentoring for a year-long programme on mobile journalism, and boy has it been a trip.

For one, impostor syndrome was hitting hard, as my bulk of experience in lifestyle, marketing, and fiction felt out of place among the other mentors, who were powerhouses in journalism and news reporting.

But the good outweighed the bad, and I’ve now come out of this programme having learned more about myself as an educator, and you know what? I actually think I suck. A lot.

Don’t believe me? Let me convince you.

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Here’s Why I’m Using This Boring And Uninformative Title

A woman in glasses staring out the window with a bored look

Hoo boy, are you in for a treat today.

You’re probably wondering why you’re here, or if this post is going to be a waste of time. Let me tell you in advance that yes, you could very well waste ten minutes of your life here (or however long it takes for you to read 1,000 words), or you could have the ten funnest minutes.

I don’t know which it’ll be. The only way to find out is to read on.

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