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Creativity coach, writing and creative process instructor, speaker, author of Around the Writer's Block: Using Brain Science to Write the Way You Want (Penguin/Tarcher 2012) and Dancing in the Dragon's Den (Red Wheel Weiser), Teaching Artist at the Loft Literary Center.

To Fight Resistance In-person or Online, That Is the New Question

You have a choice of taking Discover Your Way Around the Writer’s Block as an in-person class at the Loft starting October 30 or as an online class starting February 25.

To take full advantage of having the AWB book available for the first time in either version, I’m revising the class materials and exercises that were included in the former Around the Writer’s Block class. You’ll still develop habits and strategies to move you through the frustration and anxiety of resistance in either class.

Both class options give you the opportunity to hold yourself accountable to your own commitments and to notice and leverage what works for your writing life. Both classes will introduce you to creative polarities (like work and play, self and others, input and output, etc.), a tool you won’t find anywhere else until my next book is published.

So it’s definitely worth taking either class.Which version is better? It depends.

Please cast your vote in a comment: do you think online or in-person classes are better?

Online Flexibility

If you’re not in the Twin Cities Metro or if you can’t attend a class on Tuesdays from 5 to 7 pm, you’ll appreciate flexibility of the online option. If you want unlimited access to the online discussion forums where you, other students and I post questions, comments and observations, the online class has it.

The online AWB class also offers online tracking forms so you can chart your accomplishments with the three habits. I’ll respond to discussion forums, messages, tracking forms and assignments two or three times a week. This means you’ll have more interactions with me throughout the online course than you probably would in the in-person class.

We’ll have weekly check-ins using Moodle’s new phone feature so we’ll be able to hear each other as you check-in. I anticipate this will be a huge improvement over the previous typed chats.

Online classes offer greater flexibility and make classes available to anyone in the country.

But I have to admit I still prefer in-person classes.

We’ll have all the benefits of face-to-face communication when we meet in person.

We only have two hours once a week for 6 weeks (compared to the option to invest as many hours as you want whenever it’s convenient for you for 8 weeks in the online class), but there is something special, magical even, about being in a room with other writers who share your passion and who are working to solve the same problems you face.

The power of a room full of witnesses to celebrate and applaud your accomplishments can’t be duplicated in an online class. There’s a unique energy when everyone in the room is brainstorming or freewriting at the same time. When you have a partner who is listening actively and appreciatively to you, you somehow discover new depths of insight that you won’t find elsewhere.

And we all get to step away from the computer and interact with real live people! I might even bring chocolate rewards to class.

You can register for the in-person version of the class now. Registration for the online class will open in late October or early November. The online class might fill quickly; to guarantee you’re among the first to know when registration opens, Like the AWB Facebook page.

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