Sunday, January 7, 2018

Free College-Level Creative Writing Course Offered on Cousera

I’m both writer and die-hard exerciser. However, cardio bores me. Sure, I love running outdoors. I dig the scenery (trees, clouds, animals, etc) breathing in the big-sky and soaking up rays. These satiate my sensual-mind. However, these pleasures do little to keep my thinking-mind from chattering, like a wild monkey, telling me “You’re wasting time.” 

To chill my skeptical monkey-mind, I ‘read’ several dozen non-fiction books per year while running. What can I say? I'm easy to dupe. I’ve been an info freak since at least college, so just give me a book. Further,  since most successful authors counsel aspirants to read everything they can, audiobooks turn running from a passive into a work-related activity.

Cool. Win-win. The perfect solution it seems. 

Not so fast. Problem is winter cramps my style. Lord knows I cannot run here in Cleveland through most of the winter. The roads can be icy and treacherous. And it’s cold. For instance, we’ve experienced below-zero Fahrenheit temperatures (that’s below -18 Celsius for non-Americans) for the past two weeks. And try as I might, the lack of visual/ sense stimulus makes it impossible for me to listen to audiobooks on the treadmill. So my only alternative has been to watch the boob-tube, an unattractive option.

While looking for a remedy, I stumbled upon an online college-level creative writing course the Wesleyan University offers on Coursera that feeds two passions at once: writing and exercising. I fire up the laptop before starting the treadmill, get cardo, get sense input AND learn, warm and comfy at home. 

See the course links below.

Caveat: Coursera is a business. They make money by getting people to subscribe and pay. However, Wesleyan allows you to audit the course for free... at least for now (January 2018). Just ignore their big-type "free trial," which will end up costing your $20 a month. And hunt for the "audit for free" link at the bottom of the pop-up box.  

That said, Coursera’s been a huge find. They offer courses on many things writers will find helpful. For instance, I’ve noticed that many, if not most, covers on self-published books are bad, and Cal Arts offers a free course on graphic design.

That said, have these courses tamed my mind? Too early to say, but learning during cardio seems an investment, better than engaging in a time-drain, like watching The Voice and Seinfeld reruns. 

Links to the Wesleyan University Creative Writing Course: 



PS. I am in not affiliated with Coursera. If you click on a link and sign up, I get nothing. I am just sharing since I agree with AA when they preach we only get to keep what we have by giving it away.  


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