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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Creative Writing: The Craft of Plot by Wesleyan University

4.7
stars
3,853 ratings
1,287 reviews

About the Course

In this course aspiring writers will be introduced to perhaps the most elemental and often the most challenging element of story: plot. We will learn what keeps it moving, how it manipulates our feelings, expectations, and desires. We will examine the choices storytellers make to snag our imaginations, drag them into a fictional world, and keep them there. We will learn how to outline and structure a plot, discuss narrative arc, pacing and reversals and reveal the inevitable surprise: connecting the beginning, middle and end....

Top reviews

BM
Nov 4, 2019

The course was informative on how to build, structure and develop the plot of our own stories. It was also very helpful in guiding us through the editing process. A useful course for aspiring writers.

SD
Jul 13, 2020

It seems easy at the start; give it a week or two and you will be very surprised -- with yourself and your reaction to the feedback.\n\nThe instructions are easy to follow, the insights are priceless.

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1026 - 1050 of 1,265 Reviews for Creative Writing: The Craft of Plot

By Jorge C R C

Aug 4, 2020

The only reason I don't give it a 5-star rating is that I would like some kind of interaction with the mentor-professor of the course. Besides, there were a lot of foul play scenarios when expecting a review of my assignments: often received answers from students stating that they had reviewed my assignments but they actually didn't, tricking you into believing you were one step closer to achieve revisions, other than that, I love the course

By Anete W

Dec 9, 2020

The course really helped me learn more about creative writing and how to organise my thoughts and ideas on paper. I liked that we were able to read the works of our fellow learners and learn from each other. I would have liked if somebody from the University (teaching staff) had also evaluated my work, not only other people who have signed up for the course. That would have been even more valuable for me and my future writing.

By Kaveh V

Mar 6, 2016

While this course was interesting, it seemed very light. There was only about 10 or so minutes of 'content' a week, plus some interviews (which were very interesting, but didn't feel as though they taught too much). The assignments were all good except for the third one about the physical object. It was a weird prompt and not in a good way.

I would recommend this course, but I'd also love to see it expanded a bit.

By Sarah L

Sep 7, 2020

Get back to the basics with this course! An excellent foundation and a good reminder of what may have been learned in school many years ago. The work is only peer reviewed, so the feedback was hit and miss. Some of the co-learners lacked basic English language skills, so reading the material and feedback submitted was a bit more challenging. Overall, if you are looking to hone up your skills, take this class!

By Deleted A

Apr 11, 2019

This course was good for giving me ideas about how to write and develop a plot for writing. It was also good for connecting me with people who could read my writing and give feedback. I'm not sure that should be considered an actual full college course, but it was definitely helpful. I have more confidence now and I am currently taking the second course in the Creative Writing specialization.

By Siddharth G

Sep 18, 2018

It is well structured course, and allows students to have better understanding of the core concepts that play out in writing. Moreover, this course would be more helpful if they provide feedback tailored to each student's essay. While having students asses each other helps improve their writing style, the personal feedback from a professional can highlight points that other may have overlooked.

By Becky C

Aug 2, 2017

Great lectures; excellent springboard for crafting scenes and plots. Good practice with the concept of "show, don't tell." Peer review is a great way to keep cost down, but can be difficult because it's possible to finish the course so quickly. In the last two weeks it was difficult to find a peer reviewer and it seemed like many of the more skilled writers in the class had already moved on.

By Varun U

Aug 7, 2019

The course helped me learn to apply some structure to my writing, which I felt I was lacking before. However, the motivation behind the rules that were set down in the lectures and assignments were not made clear, in my opinion. I would love to see more bad examples showcased, for instance, where the writer has flouted some/all rules of writing a good plot, and how it affects the reader.

By Umair N

Nov 6, 2017

This course was great, the coursework and professor included. The only thing that cost this course one start from me was that the peers are mostly not qualified for this type of work, and considering this is a peer graded course, if there are errors in your writing, maybe you should take a course on English grammar and vocabulary rather than an advanced creative writing specialization.

By Dorothea A

May 23, 2017

As a new creative writer, I learned several new things and appreciated the clarity of the videos. However, I was disappointed that there was no instructor interaction. I understand these are enormous classes and perhaps I was expecting too much as this is my first experience with this type of course. Feedback from other writers was usually spot on and better as the class progressed.

By Namrota B

May 17, 2020

The Course material was really good and also the instructor. What was also excellent was the examples used throughout the course to make the student understand the material. Excellent course. I am giving four starts because, there needs to be a slight change in the review system as not all peers give out reviews properly and if that problem is fixed somehow, it will be a great course.

By Rajorshi M

May 9, 2018

This course should be taken by everyone to flex their creative muscles, because the inspiration to write may strike anytime, but not being able to transcribe those thoughts will wreak havoc in your psyche. This course has a lot of good discussions with a lot of pointers to improve one's current writing pattern, no matter the level.

Thanks Brando!

It was pleasure auditing this course.

By Amanda K

Apr 12, 2016

A good introductory course designed to be effective for people of a basic background and beginning skill level. As a course from Wesleyan I was hoping for something a little more robust or actually at a college-level, so I was a little disappointed at how rudimentary this course was. Still, I did learn some new things about plot and would recommend for the new or beginning writer.

By thomas b b

Jul 2, 2020

I very much enjoyed the guidance and video direction. However, I am not comfortable evaluating other writers, and I would like direct feedback from the instructor. Still, this exercise was much more valuable that the local writing conference I attended which was more trade show than collaborative experience. I will continue with this model for the rest of the program.

By Arianna V S

Apr 21, 2020

It's definitely a course that will give you a general idea and structure of several elements you include on your writing daily, but perhaps don't even notice. It's for sure helped me get a better grip on the base of plotting and organizing ideas. All in all, a fun, easy course to try if you're looking to better your writing and complement your technique with new methods!

By Kristina T

Jan 22, 2017

I really enjoyed the taped lectures and thought the assignments paired nicely. I'd like if Coursera set up a interactive element to the online learning environment such as a live chat with the instructor once a week and perhaps a live forum area with a set meeting time for the students. I've taken other online classes that have had these and found them extremely useful.

By Krista

May 23, 2017

The course is great, I've been meaning to learn how to write for ages and it's so easy with this course. Love the assignments and feel like it really pushes me to keep up the skills learned. The only thing I would wish for is comments from the organisers or even that we could see what was said about our texts as it's really hard to improve without proper feedback.

By Michele D

Jan 4, 2021

I just wish there was some review by the instructor(s) and hope that will happen with the capstone. While some of the peer reviewers were very helpful and gave constructive criticism, others answered the questions with one-word answers. Another said I had not followed the instructions although it was clear that I did as confirmed by the other two reviewers.

By Khari-Leigh M

Dec 3, 2020

I think it’s a great course as it has truly given me a lot of foundation knowledge and would recommend anyone to do it. My only downfall is that I do think the last two talks which are in Week 4 weren’t as substantially informative as the previous weeks, so maybe we could remove one and include another lecture there. Otherwise great stuff!

By Mike P

Nov 9, 2016

I think Skyhorse was very good. His instructions are clear. A little too heavy on Harry Potter references.

The theory on the 5 act helped frame the work. This class inspired me to take all 5 courses.

I wish is passion for writing would come thru a little stronger. It would also be nice to have more instructor feedback vs peer reviews.

By Ivelina H

Feb 1, 2021

The course is amazing! Brando Skyhorse explains everything perfectly! Our assignments are extremely interesting and challenging. I give 4 of 5 stars because I would've loved it if our assignments were reviewed by a professional writer as well. Some of the reviews I got were "yes" and "very good" which are not constructive criticism.

By Camille B

Jan 31, 2019

I learned a few things that I will definitely be using. The course was easy to follow and entertaining. The knowledge won't turn you into a great writer overnight but it is a good foundation. The requirements of the assignments were at times unclear but the process of reviewing your peers teaches the learner a lot. Good course.

By Sridhar I

Feb 27, 2017

I'd rate any course as 4+, at the end of which I can learn something tangible. This course introduced me to basic structure of story telling. The assignment was fun and the explanation was simple enough.

The best part was that the author explained concepts using Harry Potter and not some arcane book that I might not have read.

By Monika C B

Feb 22, 2016

This is a very good course, but I would have expected transcripts of the talks as well. I have done a few coursera courses and the supplementary materials here are minimal. Also, in the week 4, it is confusing to have the video transcript in the assigment section - very unclear whether that's a part of the assigment or not.

By Sarah H

Nov 30, 2020

The videos were excellent.

I would have liked to learn about a successful novel that deviates from the ABDCE structure. I can see that as beginners, we are best off keeping to the classic structure, but it would be interesting to have an example of a great novel that illustrates a variation on the classic structure.