Can Creative Writing Be Taught

Can Creative Writing Be Taught-45
The reader is not a passive blank slate, reading-and-writing is always a collaborative endeavor!”), I knew writing was something I wanted to do—and that I could be taught how to do it better.I had some faith that, if I could learn to do that, then I could learn about writing and I could learn to teach it.

I’d spent most of my adult life to that point playing and teaching violin for a living.And as a bonus, I learn just as much from editing as I do from being edited, because quite often the issues I see in other people’s manuscripts also pop up in my own.I don’t think there will ever come a time where I’ll be able to say I know all there is to know about writing.Some of us are better or worse at this than others.Frankly, I don’t think I ever got to be very good at it.No one would pick up a violin expecting to be able to play it well the first time they try.No one would expect to build a beautiful cabinet without undertaking a long apprenticeship. I’ve always hated the question, in part because of its passive construction, which omits both students and teachers.It has always seemed to me to imply some abstract learning scenario wherein a generic would-be writer is acted upon by unnamed forces and thereby caused to understand the obscure codes and formulas of creative writing.There’s actually a name for this approach: Transmission Model Learning, wherein the teacher transmits information to a passive student, who memorizes and regurgitates the material until it is learned.While it used to be the dominant approach to teaching, no one really believes in Transmission Model Learning anymore, certainly not in the arts and humanities.


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