Gotham Writers and other classes



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  • Gotham Writers and other classes

    I am interested in taking a screenwriting class. I have written a screenplay and I got good feedback from Slamdance, but I know there are some aspects of the craft that you can't learn from books alone. I looked into screenwriting classes at the local universities, but they are only full, not offered in the spring, or conflict with my work schedule.

    But I know that there are some online classes available. I was thinking about taking something like Gotham Writers Workshop, and I wanted to get an opinion on which is better, an online class or in-room instruction. For me, I feel that being in an actual classroom is better for my learning experience, but I also don't want to wait almost an entire year to begin improving my writing skills.

    So please let me know which you think is better and any experiences you've had with online screewriting classes. Thanks!

  • #2
    Hi. I took a screenwriting course in a class room setting at Gotham in NYC. It was helpful but for lack of a better word at this time, not very enlightening.
    My suggestion is if you're going to take a course, take one in a class room setting. There's so much more interaction and feedback you just can't get from an online course. Online courses are essentially just reading, which you can get from a screenwriting web forum or a book.

    Good luck with whatever you choose!


    • #3
      Re: Thanks!

      Hey SueB,
      Thanks for the response. I guess the best thing for me to do is save my money and find a class at a college in my area. Thanks for the advice



      • #4
        Online classes

        I teach online screenwriting courses at a community college that is part of the State University of New York and the SUNY Learning Network.

        The courses are interactive like these message boards. If you'd like more information, please write me privately, at [email protected] (the "l" is a lower case L).

        Of course, I'd be happy to answer questions here also. :-)


        • #5
          Re: Online classes

          I would choose both an L.A. based course and course study in dramatic writing.

          Its important that your information flows from the right sources so that you know early on where to focus your goals and efforts where they will help you the most for the long haul.

          I would argue that the wealth of "how" can be derived from the many excellent books already in the market, many of which are likely mentioned in that thread here.

          The most important thing is to have a clear understanding of what YOU want to accomplish and direct your education from those sources.


          • #6
            Re: Online classes

            Some of the benefits of taking a course are that the participants can get feedback and can network with the other writers (both during the course and after).

            Certainly this same objective could be accomplished by starting or joining a writing group, but I've found that solid groups sometimes develop their roots in the formalized setting of a classroom whether it's on-campus or online.

            So, yes, I'd agree that the "how-to" can be learned from books, but hopefully a course will provide a community of learners (who learn from each other) as well as the basic "how-to".

            And besides, a course can be fun. :-)


            • #7
              Gotham writers

              I took Gotham's sitcom workshop in the classroom and online.. Much better experience online. I had the same instructor (Mort Scharfman) for both. In the classroom there were several setbacks and digressions in the form of other classmates. Very frustrating..The interaction on the web is very impressive. Good luck.