Interacting with students and remembering how exciting this all was when it was fresh and new, that’s really valuable as a writer. I had written 13 novels without selling any of them.
If I had looked at those early books of mine that had not turned out very well and said I’m just a terrible writer. My product of my writing time were just these terrible books, I should give up. I would not be here. Usually in a given class there are a handful who are really serious about doing this.
Usually I have one to two who go pro or semi-pro every year. Think about what is this writing time doing for me. How much better am I getting what about my process can I understand better.
Treat it like something that you’re going to dedicate some time to and you’re going to practice with and don’t stress about publication.
Stress getting better at the art. And if you do that, the rest will fall in line. You are the product of your writing time.
The book is a byproduct. Taking the class was extremely helpful for me.
When I took the class the biggest part was seeing a professional writer and saying Okay, this is a real job. Because this person does it as their job and that I think is one of the reasons I keep teaching it.
I want that to be available to as many people as possible.
It helps students who might be in that stage, where they’re already writing pretty well but they’re not sure if this is an actual job and be able to talk to someone who it is their job. Charlie: Yeah that was a big thing for me because I took many creative writing classes at BYU and Brandon’s was the only one who talked about the business side of it.
He’s the only one who talked about taxes. We had a class about taxes. You know. Brandon: Yay! Exciting! Charlie: The only reason I sent out my first query was because he made it a requirement. So that was a huge deal for me.
Brian: I saw what I wanted to be at in x-many years and I reached it. And that was like huge because not a lot of people get to see first hand what they’re going for. There’s not guarantee you can become a writer. But people pretend that it’s this one in ten-thousand sort of thing. That you’re never gonna do this.
Well the year I took the class from Dave, four of the twenty people became professionals in the field. Two editors, two writers. Okay. Every year I’ve taught the class someone has gone on to be a pro.
Usually two people. You can do this.