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Wednesday, September 26, 2012

F2K Free Fiction Writing Course

We started another session of F2K a week ago, and today, the first lesson was posted.  Due to computer problems, mostly connectivity, I had to ask a fellow mentor to post my assignment for me.  But, it is working better now, so hopefully, the problem was just a temporary glitch.

F2K has been around since before 2000, and is growing by leaps and bounds.  I don't know how many students we have this year, but we have nine classrooms this session, and each mentor had over 60 students sign up to participate.  Of course, we usually lose a few for various reasons.  Some forget they signed up, some get lost in cyberspace and can't find the link after they accidentally delete the email registering them for the class.  Some just change their minds, and some let life get in the way.  

Some of those who drop out return again in another session.  We have three to four sessions a year, with one starting in January or February, one in May or thereabouts, and one in the fall.  We are currently in the fall session (obviously) and it will run for seven weeks.

The first week is always Orientation Week.  That's where the students mill around and get acquainted with the site and each other.  They ask a ton of questions and always get an answer from either another returning classmate or a mentor.  We pride ourselves on never leaving any post an "orphan."

We are, just today, starting the second week, and our first Lesson has been posted.  The activity is always crazy and busy.  Many of our students are return students, and so they already know the ropes.  They are a huge  help in answering questions fielded from the brand new beginning students.

I enjoy the first lesson, which is about re-introducing ourselves through the eyes of one of our characters.  This can be very entertaining, very sad, and sometimes, very original.  I've seen inanimate objects be the characters doing the introductions.  It opens up an entirely unique perspective on the objects lying around us.

If you love to write, whether it be in a blog, letters to family members, or newspaper journalism, this course can help you to open up your creativity another notch.  It's entirely free, unless you sign up for the mentor support edition, then there is a modest fee attached.

The difference between the two editions is that with the free session, the mentors offer feedback only on the first other words, this week's lesson only.  From that point on, the peers offer feedback to each other.  The mentors are always on the scene, monitoring and answering questions and offering comments, but not the line by line feedback that will be received in the Mentored Support Edition every week, every lesson.

It's too late to sign up for this session, but if you are interested, let me know and I can give you more specific information on how to sign up for the next session that will probably start in January, 2013.

It's not unusual for students to return for 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and more times.  It's just that much fun. Sometimes the students morph, just as I did, from student to intern, to mentor.  Our labors are all volunteer.  We get the satisfaction of helping writers to be better writers.  That may not sound like much to the uninformed, but to those of us who have done it, it's very addictive.

Let me know if you are interested.  I'd love to get  you started on your way to a writing career.