Tag Archives: Coursera

Realism in Writing Goals

Reality Check aheadOK, I have an admission. Although I did enroll in Coursera’s Science Fiction and Fantasy course with the University of Michigan. I’m realising that it’s one commitment too far, there are simply not enough hours in the day for me to do this, my blog, my novel and all the other extra-cirricular activities that I am involved in. It’s one thing too many, lest all the balls that I am juggling come tumbling down.

The reading list is great (and I think it I will follow it), the course materials are great, but enrolling late and trying to launch myself into it was a little optimistic. I think that I will definitely enroll into another course where I have prepared myself  timetable-wise. In fact, Online Games: Literature, New Media, and Narrative, a Coursera course with Vanderbilt University which starts in the summer looks particularly entertaining (one of the classes is held in the LOTR MMORPG), but I digress…

Progress with writing 4&20

As far as crafting long-form fiction goes, I am a slow writer. I spend hours agonising over every word and phrase. Constantly fact-checking and looking for better suited synonyms to make my writing just so. Although I would say that overall my standard of writing is fairly good, there isn’t very much of it and to put it frankly, a snail would easily outpace me.

Blog-assisted inspiration

I’ve been blogging for just under 2 weeks, and I really feel that it is helping me. Helping to give me focus in my writing. I have been in a writing slump for nearly half a year: I set aside my novel 4&20 and my fairy tale fantasy world, and they’ve been gathering dust in a shadowy corner. Although I have not yet added anything to my word count for Four and Twenty Blackbirds, it has been foremost in my thoughts this past fortnight. I have been world building and developing my characters, something that I have not done in an age. I’ve also signed up for a drop-in writing class this Thursday with the very awesome Anne Aylor, which I really think will help get my proverbial ink flowing.

100-Word story: jeffrey archer short story challenge

On other fronts, I have finished my 100-word story for the Jeffrey Archer Short Story Challenge, entitled FreeCycle. I will be going over it with my writing group WLWG on Wednesday, and will post it here after submitting it to the competition.

Happy writing, one and all.


Free Coursera Course: Fantasy and Science Fiction

After finishing my second degree at law school, I swore to myself that I would never go back to university. Famous last words. As per the famed wisdom of Henri the Pigeon, from An American Tail, Never say Never, whatever you do…

Although my BF is impassioned about studying, the underground academic that he is, I did not think my passions lay there. That is until I took a closer look at at Coursera, which provides 9 FREE college level writing and literature courses. Most even come with a certificate when you finish them.

shhhhh-quiet-everyone-study-wallpaperCoursera is a social entrepreneurship company that partners with the top universities in the world to offer courses online for anyone to take, for free. Through this, they hope to give everyone access to the world-class education that has so far been available only to a select few.

The course which caught my eye is one called Fantasy and Science Fiction: The Human Mind, Our Modern World with Eric Rabkin, provided by the University of Michigan. It started on the 22nd January and is 11 weeks long, but I reckon that I can catch up. I am really quite excited about it. It shouldn’t be surprising, but to me when it comes to studying, it is:  it’s strange that, when it’s something that you’re truly passionate about, it doesn’t seem like work.

I’ll keep  you updated on my progress.