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

4.7
stars
4,318 ratings

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

LB

Nov 15, 2018

Great information about plot and scene structure. The information about revision was entirely new to me - thank you! The exercises were good and difficult in a good way that helped me hone my writing.

DA

Nov 30, 2016

Great course to take as the first step in the sequence of the "Creative Writing" certification. Exercises are fun, professor provides useful methodology, load is manageable for someone with a day job.

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76 - 100 of 1,459 Reviews for Creative Writing: The Craft of Plot

By Rochelle S

Aug 20, 2016

Didn't pay to unlock the assignments but still enjoyed it. Lecturer explains points clearly and gives examples from familiar literature. Even if you aren't an aspiring (or struggling) writer, you'll still learn a lot about the structure of good storytelling. Ever wondered why movies and novels seem to follow the same pattern, yet it always works? You'll find out here. Great course. My only regret is that assignment reviews are locked until you pay for them. It would've been nice if only the capstone project required payment.

By David S

May 4, 2018

Retired from a career as writer and occasional editor of technical and non-fiction articles, memos and magazines, fiction writing has for four decades presented an insurmountable obstacle against which I have repeatedly failed to achieve the least understanding... until Wesleyan University offered Creative Writing: The Craft of the Plot. Regardless of my love of fiction, taken both in print and audio, I have never understood the structure underlying the classics and modern works I so adore UNTIL this course. Thank You!

By Tania Y K R V

Feb 5, 2020

If you are a natural writer but still find yourself stuck in hesitation or lack of confidence, this course will help you and encourage you to go deeper into your capacities to challenge yourself and get the best out of those images you are still unsure how to put up into words and share with others. I loved this course, and I urge you to join it and start polishing those ideas wandering in your mind, put your heart and effort to get the best from each insight, and you'll discover the beauty you can produce into a story.

By Dayzzel B

Mar 21, 2017

I love this course. This is the first time I have ever attended a Creative Writing course in University level and the first course I took here in Coursera. The lecture delivery was outstanding, and the content is very essential, very helpful for people looking to find structure in writing. I have re-written a piece I wrote based on the knowledge I learned from this course, and indeed, my re-write is so much better than the original re-write I did. People who have been informally writing will benefit so much from this.

By Nathaniel C

Aug 16, 2021

I got a lot out of this course actually...I did find myself thinking that there should be levels. Perhaps students could selfidentify and be grouped by writing ability. The idea being that then students could be more likely to recieve at least some of their feedback from peers at a similar level or better. It would also be great if Mr. Skyhorse and other faculty were able to provide feedback from time to time. I recognise that these suggestions may not be feasible from a resource standpoint, but...in an ideal world.

By Anna A

Sep 23, 2016

The course materials are really useful as they are not just oversimplified guidelines, but practical skills that I can really utilize in my writing. The constraints in every writing assignment gave me new inspirations as I must come up with something that fits into the constraints. I especially like the interviews with other writers, which are included as part of the course materials. They serve to give me another perspective on the same matter discussed by the teacher and hence to stimulate my own thoughts on it.

By Veony V

Jun 14, 2020

This course really helps me jumpstart my passion for writing. The knowledge given by the lecturer is so valuable. Be it the 5 structures, the 21-points checklist, etc. I will always keep it in my mind every time I write a story. The peer-graded assignment is so exciting as I can read others' story and learn to give constructive feedback that I can even use for myself. Other than that, I gain more confidence in my English and finally brave enough to let people read my story. I'm really grateful for this course!

By sarath k

Jul 28, 2021

As a writer, at times in some of my works, I used to feel that there is something wrong and not structured. And at other times reading the work gave me satisfaction for how good it is. But I could never put my finger on the reason why it was bad or good. This course helped me realize them. For beginners this course will be great start, teaching them how to do it right. For learners, this will be an eye-opener course. Apart from at times dull review from the peers, the course is fantastic. Highly recommended.

By Inés K

Dec 30, 2018

The course was very interesting, gave me a lot of ideas, and helped me to see my way to trying to write something longer. The one thing I found not so good was the 'shop-talk' with the instructors of the other creative writing classes. There was too much repetition (if you do all these classes). It would be more interesting to hear OTHER people, writers, and also editors (another point of view).

Also, for ALL these classes, I'd appreciate more tasks. The tasks are interesting and help, so more would be great.

By Isabelle S

Mar 25, 2018

The Craft of Plot course is exactly what I was looking for to help my ceative writing. The lessons are clear and easy to understand, there’s real concrete advice with concrete example, the assignments are relevant and fun, and Brando is a great teacher. As someone has written lots of stories, some of the advice seemed obvious at first, but when I put it into practice in the assignments I realised I had lots to learn. Would definitely recommend this course to anyone intereested in storytelling or writing!

By Susan C

Mar 23, 2022

​The lessons are straight to the point and easy to understand. The writing prompts challenge us to apply the points learned through the lessons. I enjoyed the challenge and honing my skills in crafting plot in my writing. This course has helped me improve how I write and how I read the work of others. I highly recommend it to anyone who is seeking to take their writing to the next level by going back to the basics. That's what it is, right? Mastery comes from the constant return to the basics.

By Sheiron S

Mar 9, 2016

Besides an engaging instructor (Brandon Skyhorse), the modules' content is accessible for nascent writers. Moreover, I enjoy the shop talk series with authors. These lectures cum interviews show a fulfilling, intimate view of writing lives. I feel more confident in my writing and have been a better, more critical reader of others' work, especially my own. I recommend this course to anyone who needs to brush up on their creative writing skills and for those who want to start from a clean slate.

By Amanda P S

Sep 1, 2018

Os cursos da especialização em Creative Writing estão me ajudando bastante a desenvolver meu processo de escrita! As atividades foram interessantes, as entrevistas com os professores são super bacanas e eu gostei bastante de conhecer um pouco da história dos meus colegas de classe. Com certeza, não teria acesso a um curso tão bom e acessível na cidade em que moro.

Por fim, gostaria de agradecer ao Coursera pelo auxílio financeiro. Obrigada por acreditarem em mim e me darem essa oportunidade!

By Divya M B

Mar 17, 2016

Agradezco mucho haber tenido la oportunidad de participar de esta primera parte del curso, que ha resultado ser mejor de lo que imaginé. Es un curso de gran contenido, explicado de forma muy clara y sencilla. A lo largo de este mes he notado una gran mejoría en la forma en que ordeno mis ideas, en el desarrollo de la creatividad, en el manejo de la disciplina, etc. Deseo continuar con este curso hasta el final y lo recomiendo a todos aquellos interesados en el arte de la creación literaria.

By Jack H

Feb 12, 2018

I enjoyed this course immensely, even though it continually interrupted my favorite pastime of being out in the freezing wind and sleet while repeatedly digging out my walks and driveways after a series of delightful snow and ice storms. I liked the lecture-clips. I think that the expertise of the instructors comes through in their presentations. I intend to sign up for the remaining courses once I get finished shoveling snow. It's one of the "main" reasons people move to Maine

~Jack Hayes

By Peter Q

Aug 26, 2018

This course has lots of information to help you structure your writing and good tips to make it engaging - the rest is up to you. Good assignments that make the theoretical parts practical. I really enjoyed the rating of other participants, it makes you really look for the elements and helps to distinguish them is your own writing. Getting feedback from other participants was very rewarding and useful - they did a great job of making me conscious of areas that need improvement.

By Anna B

May 16, 2016

i recommend this course , an excellent introduction for an aspiring writer or anyone interested in litterature as it explains and decomposes thorougly the mechanics of plot , thru very alive ideos and sharing of experienced writers , i enjoyed the submissions which taught me disciplin and structure . This experience helped broaden my horizon , i learned a lot from the peer rewiew also , this first module convinced me to go on and complete the full course. Thank you

By Max S

Mar 12, 2016

The course was pretty easy to learn, but the assignments were challenging, which is the best combination of theory and practice in my opinion. Although I didn't have enough time to dive into discussions and get to know with the community, I'd recommend this course to anyone who's making his first steps in creative writing. It will teach you how to limit yourself in your writing, be consize and yet create stories that are both entertaining and thought provoking.

By Roger P

Feb 14, 2022

This course makes for a gentle entrance into the world of creative writing. It is organized, easy to follow, and the assignments are fun. I feel as though I really learned the basic of plot and I look forward to starting the module on Character next. Also, I am thankful for the "review" process that comes with these assignments. A Rubrik is used to help students critique in a friendly, focused manner. And it just feels good to encourage others. It's fun. RGP

By Nancy J

Aug 24, 2018

A great way to discover the basics of plot! I feel these are the key ingredients of plot development distilled down into four excellent and information-packed units. I liked the blend of an instruction video, examples in common literature and interviews with other professors. Most of the assignments tied back well to the content and helped you put into practice what you're learning along the way. I am hoping to take additional classes in this series. Thanks!

By Victoria

Nov 22, 2017

It's really useful to get feedback from peers. It's like having your readers on hand. I've struggled to understand what readers want. Although I know that all fiction writing is niched; I think I've failed to understand some of the fundamentals of good writing. And that's a big statement for me to make as I have a PhD in literary studies, specialising in theory, and I work as an academic in this field from time to time. It's practical and it works!

By Vandana K

Sep 20, 2019

I found this course very useful especially the writing assignments. You start with small assignments which don't seem so difficult and you move on to longer pieces as you practice. The best part is that your co-learners review your work and give you honest feedback which helps you see your writing more objectively. I recommend this course to anyone who has been planning to write fiction for a long time. The course serves as a good starting point.

By Suyash G

Jun 1, 2020

This course is absolutely amazing. All you need as a pre-requisite is the interest in fiction writing. This is a very basic course that tells you so much about fiction writing. I was interested in writing fiction, and this course helped me a lot. The instructor is absolutely brilliant, and this course offers various key insights into the structure of fiction. Even if you are remotely interested in fiction writing, you should try out this course.

By Roni K

Aug 11, 2020

Very simple and easy to follow instructions. The use of videos with the written scripts available for reading means anyone can follow through the assignment properly. You can take your time with assignments while notifications remind you of deadlines to keep you on track. Fellow students give feedback, therefore the stress (at least in my case) was lessened; peers grading each other seems to go easier on the stress. Overall, wonderful course :)

By Natalia G

Sep 28, 2017

Thank you. This was very helpful in getting me unstuck in the novel I am writing. There's still a lot for me to practice but this helped me massively! I hope I do get to finish and publish my novel. And when I do, I would love to thank you guys and Brando in my acknowledgments. This is a great course because plot is my ultimate weakness. This helped me understand the basics and helped me have a better concept for my novel. Thank you again!