I've done two Writing Workout courses and really enjoy the Zoom format. I've definitely seen improvement in my writing. It's brought back my joy of writing.
It's wonderful working with everyone's stories, and especially wonderful to be able to connect with remote writers during lockdown. Zoom has meant I get to be in Pamela's classes even though I'm in Melbourne.
I love being part of the Zoom classes. It's been great connecting with writers from around the country. We can cheer each other on, and have wonderful discussions that would not happen if we were mainly communicating via text.
Bernadette provided an environment of warmth that encouraged each of us equally and strength to continue exploring the writing exercises regardless of the level of our writing skills.
The Zoom interaction delivered so many helpful tips from Bernadette and my fellow writers.
The 'aha' moment was when I found scenes appearing before me as a result of the exercises.
I found AWC to be a genuinely supportive environment and will take another class with them.
I was looking for a way to consistently practise my creative writing skills, although I was not ready to commit to writing a novel. I had some good feedback on this course from other people on the AWC Graduates Facebook page which made me realise that this was exactly what I was looking for.
Bernadette was great to work with, and her experience in the publishing industry really shone through in the feedback she gave us. Her feedback was always helpful, supportive and she always left me with something to think about.
I loved reading everyone's work each fortnight and watching their stories develop each session.
I created a character in Week 2 which I developed over the course and had great feedback about him and his story from Bernadette and my fellow students. I am currently working on developing his story into a novel. Bernadette also helped to foster some self-belief in my ability which has inspired me to keep going. The reaction I had to my Week 2 submission made me realise that I could actually do this!
This is my second course through AWC (not including MOJO Month) and I have loved both of them. I have learned so much both from the tutors and other students and it has helped me to hone my skills and grow my confidence.
If you are thinking about enrolling in Writing Workout, just do it! You won't regret it!
This is a magical course. Please keep it on the curriculum. :) It's a gem.
This format is great online. Pamela was a great teacher who encouraged us to develop good workshopping and writing skills. It was wonderful to be part of a group that would cheer for you and your characters and also give constructive feedback to make your better.
Pamela is an excellent teacher! She provided an excellent framework so we could all achieve, no matter what stage we were at.
The workshopping was brilliant: take a small excerpt of writing and say what you like and what confuses you. This has changed the way I look at my own writing and the way I can give feedback to others.
I am now able to take an idea and look at it from 'what do I like, what is confusing' and be less critical and perfectionist at the first draft stage. This makes achieving a first draft so much more achievable.
I needed to develop a writing habit and brush up on some technical skills. I also enrolled in Mojo so my writing habit has definitely been re-established. A combination of prompts from both courses has enabled me to write a draft story outline for the novel I've been working on in pieces for years. Very happy that I can now 'start in earnest' to write it.
Pamela's feedback was constructive and practical and she was very encouraging, tailoring her comments to the different skill levels of the participants. She was also quite inspiring with her talk of all of her projects. Made me understand that inspiration could come from almost anywhere.
Good group of people, well moderated course, feel like I honed some long-abandoned skills and I felt my confidence returning. Finally.
I'm now confident enough to 'write my novel' and am seriously considering in enrolling in that course. Whatever happens, I feel like I'm on an unstoppable path now after years of procrastination and being stuck in 'imposter syndrome'.
Being with like-minded people is inspiring - this is a way to develop a writing habit and find your way into whatever project you've had 'on the shelf'. The course is extremely motivating because you are accountable to the group. And the tuition is invaluable.
1. More people in Australia need to learn to write;
2. It's fun. An open forum to come up with ideas and not always be shut down;
3. It's encouraging. People say nice things to you. And when you encourage them, they act like your opinion is important. That's encouraging.
4. When life gets tough, write. It's cathartic. Netflix ruins your eyes and your sleep. Writing heals your heart. So, learn to write right.
The tutor was incredibly encouraging. Even when I made mistakes, she encouraged me to see that a mistake in one area is not a mistake all through. Further, she recognised my lack of experience and was very gentle.
I enjoyed reading other people’s stuff. I hope they hurry up and write their book, because I can't wait to read them.
I'm starting to write every day. I have been encouraged to think that what I write is interesting or readable. I have also been encouraged to think that maybe, one day, I could write a novel that gets published.
I'm doing the course again.
I wanted to focus on getting a better understanding of my writing strengths and weaknesses and gaining some options to improve these. I was also interested in learning how to make better use of key aspects of writing, such as POV, character building, scenes and pace and structure.
I was only slightly concerned that I might not have had time to fulfil all the requirements of the course but, as it turned out, I was easily able to fit it into my schedule.
I enjoyed gaining additional knowledge and skills about writing, learning more about what I can do and what I can do better, being encouraged to write more or to try something new, and interacting with other writers (the social aspect).
The module on pace and structure was, for me, an eye opener. I've always written 'by the seat of my pants' rather than plan a story out before I begin. I can see the enormous value in putting effort into even a sketchy plan at the start. This does not, as I've often worried, mean that there is no room for flexibility. Instead, it seems to allow for more possibilities in the development of a story as it's so much clearer what the story is about and aims to do, and where it's heading.
I would most certainly recommend the Australian Writers Centre to a friend or colleague. I'd probably tell them that you offer a wide range of courses that will appeal to writers of all levels, interests and ambitions. While there are many courses out there, your courses are not only easily accessible, but also very well worthwhile doing if someone is serious about writing.
A big thank you for a great experience!
What attracted me to this course was the fact that this was a workout. The exercises that kept me interested were just as helpful as the Zoom sessions where I got to interact with Stephen, Pamela, and other amazing writers.
Before enrolling in the course I had lost my... 'MOJO' so to say. I couldn't get myself to write, create the whole concept of a novel, despite my many ideas, felt daunting, unachievable.
Both Stephen and Pamela were lovely and insightful. They were attentive to the needs of the class and gave amazing feedback.
I enjoyed the Zoom sessions where I got to sit down with others who shared my passion for writing and storytelling all working together to help each other improve.
I'm writing my novel now! I've just enrolled in the Scrivener Course because I've invested in the software and am compiling my resources to try and bring my ideas to life.
If you have a million ideas in your head but are too scared/insecure about doing something about them, come to AWC. They have the toolkit that you need to develop that unsure desire into a plan of action.
Pamela was fantastic, I could listen to her talk about writing for days! I learnt so much about all the topics covered by taking on board her feedback about all of our assignments.
I loved the Zoom classes and hearing the feedback from Pamela and my fellow students. I learnt so much from reading and commenting on everyone’s assignments.
I started Writing Workout with a vague idea for a book and through doing all the exercises I was able to finish the course with a solid outline to continue on with. For me, this course was invaluable.
There’s a huge amount involved in writing a fabulous book! But I’m now much closer to doing that than I was before I started this course in November. I enjoyed it so much that I’m thinking about doing it again.
Just a HUGE thank you to Pamela... she was absolutely fantastic!
Pamela is lovely and very knowledgeable having published 32 books. Her feedback was very helpful and her insights have allowed me to think more deeply about where my story is going.
I enjoyed the ability to have a published author comment on my work and to have the group comment/workshop the ideas. The group were lovely and I'm hoping that a few will continue on together.
The course has made me feel that is a lot I don't know but rather than getting caught up in all of that - I know that I need to get a first draft written so that is what I will concentrate on now.
Pamela, as will all the tutors I have had with AWC to date, exceeded my expectations. She was friendly, approachable and encouraging. She helped us refine our work as well as troubleshoot along the way. I will miss Pamela as well as my classmates.
I enjoyed the Zoom experience, added bonus, no travel time. Being able to attend the classes from home, even when my life was at its most chaotic was a real bonus. In addition, being able to discuss our work in real time and with a shared screen was immensely helpful.
I am now more confident to take on a novel.
Don't just think about it. Do it! Whatever you want to write, AWC will have a course to help you on your journey. Take one, take two... it will be the best thing you ever did for your writing and most importantly the best money ever spent in your pursuit of writing.
Thank you, Pamela for a wonderful course, and thank you to my classmates whose thoughts and opinions I value.
I learnt a lot about different aspects of writing. I have done some other AWC courses and my first one, Creative Writing Stage 1, was with Pamela. This course seemed to bring a lot of my previous learning together.
I definitely enjoyed the workshopping with others and feedback from Pamela. The Zoom meetings were a great way to do this.
I have gained the skills and confidence to get out of my own way and just sit down and write what I want to write. I realise it will be a lot of hard work, drafting and redrafting, but I have gained skills which will help me write a novel and get published. I lacked the belief in myself before.
If writing is your dream, AWC can teach you the skills, give you the confidence and inspiration to write. Thank you. I feel closer to my lifelong dream of being a writer than I ever have.
The Writing Workout course with Pamela (I've done it twice!) has been my favourite so far for many reasons - I really enjoyed the animated Zoom class atmosphere and I benefited greatly not only from the live feedback on my own assignments, but on those of my classmates. I really recommend this course.
Pamela has a marvellous capacity for communicating writing technique in a spontaneous manner. She's lively and interesting, and has incredible knowledge and skill.
I particularly liked being able to use the writing I'm working on as homework for the class.
The tutors at the Australian Writers' Centre are all proven authors themselves, so the courses are sound and practical. Pamela is a treasure.
Pamela is such a gift. Her ability to hone and polish made our work way better than it was and I will always be grateful for her constant encouragement.
I enjoyed the feeling of being part of a group. I believe that everyone in the group has improved in our writing and has a far clearer understanding of our story. I know I certainly do.
Thank you for the opportunity to do this. It's made a huge difference to my writing and they were two hours every fortnight I've really looked forward to. I'm going to miss it.
Bernadette was awesome. Respectful. Encouraging but honest. Knowledgeable. Great!!!
I enjoyed meeting a diverse range of writers. Learning to give and receive feedback. Great advice.
The exercises are fantastic. They really made us think about things we do instinctively and unpacking the process gives us a tool kit for when we are stuck. Bernadette was awesome in pointing that out. So that was a revelation. When you are in the learning craft phase it is so easy to be overwhelmed - trying to remember everything. So the notion of writing with your creative brain, but falling back on craft when you need to dig deep really cleared my mind for me. I can seeeeeee!
Honestly, great theory and like minds ... what’s not to love???
I'd just finished Mojo month and wanted to take the next step. I liked the theme and opportunity to be part of a group. Having fortnightly sessions also seemed easy to fit into my schedule.
I loved it.
The tutor was brilliant. I felt comfortable from the first session and she was so encouraging and knowledgeable. I thought she facilitated our online sessions well so that we all had a chance to speak and engage with each other.
I enjoyed the workshopping with the group. I learnt so much from the process and had a lot of fun. I looked forward to our sessions each fortnight.
Thank you, it was wonderful and I hope my group keeps in contact.
I liked the idea of being part of a group and hearing the feedback from my classmates. It felt a bit daunting at first but I wanted to stretch myself out of my comfort zone by responding to and hearing from, others.
Bernadette was a great tutor, and I found her feedback very encouraging and helpful. And she had a great way of telling us if something needed improvement without us being left with the feeling that we’d failed.
I enjoyed the diversity of each module, and being pushed where some of the exercises were hard to grasp. Also the Zoom interaction.
Being enrolled in the courses that I have over the last few months have been exactly what I’ve needed to help me have creative focus during a very difficult year personally.
Bernadette was very welcoming and knowledgeable, and her feedback was honest in heplping me to become a better writer.
Whilst I'm normally shy, this course bought me out of my shell a little more, being able to discuss writing with my fellow students. At the time, it was daunting to critique other students' work and have them critique mine, but as we went along I found that it made me look at my writing in a different way.
It has enabled me to think of the different areas we studied in a different way. Before the course, I didn't put much thought into the pace and structure of my novel but now I know how important it is.
I would say that it helped my writing, and I enjoyed how the other students interpreted the writing exercises.
Most of all I had fun. By the end of the course, I didn't want it to end! Now to find the next chapter of my writing career.
I really liked the Zoom meetings. Bernadette was a great tutor and host and I much enjoyed the interaction with my fellow students.
Very professional and experienced. It was clear that Bernadette has been working in the literary scene for a long time and her remarks and questions were always insightful and useful.
I most enjoyed the interaction with everyone on Zoom. We laughed a lot and shared a lot. It was a nice group and everyone was very generous and made an effort to deliver honest and useful feedback to other participants.
I feel like I’ve made progress in my writing. I also have a better idea of how to go forward with my stories, especially regarding their structure! I even hope to publish one short story I submitted for this course.
I am a fan of AWC anyway and have recommended the centre to a few people already. I would tell them that the Writing Workout was the perfect thing to do to keep writing.
A big thank you and till next time :)
Bernadette was a fantastic tutor, making everyone feel welcome and valued. She was knowledgeable, encouraging and gave valuable feedback. The workshopping proved to be enjoyable.
It has giving me more confidence to move forwards.
I thought Bernadette an excellent tutor. I enjoyed sharing work with the other members of the group. Learning about different concepts. How powerful the written word is on the consciousness of the writer; how writing engages the intelligence and the emotional aspects of the writer. How important it is to use language appropriate to the character depicted.
I would encourage aspiring writers to enrol in the courses offered by Australian Writers' Centre. I really enjoyed being part of the class.
I loved working with the group and Bernadette! Bernadette was kind, firm, and a great instructor. I loved working with her and hope I get to work with her in the future.
I loved the ability to workshop with the other participants, even if it was on Zoom rather than in a classroom. The course ended up with 5-6 participants who showed up regularly which was the perfect amount.
It got me on the path of creativity again.
I'd never done workshop / critique type work before. That was daunting. I was nervous about whether my writing was good, because I wanted it to be good. I was worried about critiquing other people's work.
Bernadette is an excellent teacher / facilitator. She is very patient and engaging. She only inspires, even when critiquing. It was a pleasure working with her.
It was a great, intimate group of people to work with. I enjoyed it more than I expected to.
It has given me confidence that I should proceed with writing a publishable novel.
I wanted some constructive one-on-one feedback on writing and the fact that it was face-to-face via Zoom basically sealed the deal for me.
I thought Bernadette was great. Her feedback was constructive and honest but at the same time encouraging.
Having the face-to-face interaction with the other participants allowed for a much freer conversational environment than the standard online format.
It has given me a little more self-confidence in my writing and allowed me to entertain the thought that I may actually have the ability to at least write short stories, if not the 'great Australian novel'. Everybody has a different viewpoint. Writing and reading are very subjective and what appeals to one person, doesn't necessarily have to appeal to another.
Give it a go. The feedback you get from fellow writers is invaluable and the tutors are great.
I enjoy the stimulation of your courses, and this one being fortnightly seemed not too onerous while I'm busy writing my novel.
The way Pamela structured this course was excellent - I learned as much from hearing her critique other people's assignments as I did from hearing my own. Pamela's ability to see and clearly communicate the faults in or suggestions for a piece of writing, and do it quickly, was excellent. She allocated her time between all the students equally so that no one felt left out.
Pamela sprinkles her assessments with absolute gems which hopefully I'll remember the next time I'm tempted to make the same mistake. I learned to trust the reader to fill in the blanks.
The Australian Writers' Centre tutors are not only highly successful authors, but they're able to communicate the 'how' of writing. Thank you for such well-organised, well-staffed courses. The Zoom platform is brilliant.
Pamela is very knowledgeable and went to a lot of trouble to give feedback to each student which was relevant to the individual but also translatable to everyone in the group.
The regular technical exercises, set time for Zoom meeting each fortnight, no need to have a story underway. The discussion of broader points of technique. It's made me come up with a story.
Pamela saying we all have the ability to write a story, but we have to sit down and do it.
Well-organised and knowledgeable teaching leading to tangible improvement.
The Zoom meetings each fortnight were excellent and really helped me to learn. Having helpful comments made about everyone’s writing in a Zoom format - much more useful than just written feedback.
It got me going so I am going to write that book. That it’s ok to keep learning and I can write no matter how good or not so good I might be.
I looked forward to the course each fortnight.
I absolutely loved it. Pamela is a fantastic teacher and mentor. She is patient and gives you constructive feedback that is useful. The exercises, the teacher and classmates. I have some tools to start writing my novel.
In the last section, the exercises enabled me to summarise my story in a way that pulls out the key elements. I will find that very useful in planning future stories. Can't wait for Part B!
I thought the course sounded like the boost I was needing to improve my writing.
The tutor was great and I was given the help I required. I enjoyed the opportunity to interact with other people to gain feedback.
Do not hesitate to enrol in a course. There are plenty of opportunities.
This is the best writing course I have done (and there have been a few); all those skills the previous courses taught actually coalesced into something so practical I actually felt myself improving.
Pamela is a gift. Her ability to identify how something works, why it works, how to make it work better is just amazing. Even better were the incidental gems she dropped along the way that gave the most brilliant insights into writing.
The Zoom format had the group of students developing a real rapport and interest in each other's work as well as the immediate feedback that could be shared between the students and Pamela.
I feel I might actually have a book in me after all. That a book is not written in one draft and that it is okay to not get it absolutely perfect first time.
Do it. Just do it. Even if you never do write The Book simply giving yourself permission to put words out there is a bonus.
Pamela is very knowledgeable and gives a lot of valuable feedback which I really appreciated. I love how direct she is. It's what I wanted.
Creative Writing Stage 1 really impacted my writing and this course drove home even more the concepts that I learned in CW1.
I am extremely impressed with how well the whole system is put together, how much thought has gone into the system, I have seen a lot of online trainings and none of them compare to how well you have put this together.
And that is not even giving the content what it is due. The content is excellent, it is well presented, the whole system is solid.