Professional development for writers

Today I’m writing this blog post while sitting in Panera, scarfing down one of their delicious souffles.  Why am I at Panera at 10:00 on a Monday?  Why am I not at work?

Professional development.


Today is the first day of new teacher training for my district.  As a contract employee, I thought I had to go but none of the stuff covered today pertains to me, so I headed to breakfast instead (where I’m currently taking a break from writing my syllabus, so yes, I technically am working).  Tomorrow and Wednesday, however, I’ll be in meetings most of the day, learning about resources the district provides as well as getting tips from veteran teachers and administrators.  Professional development is an integral part of a teacher’s career; while it’s theoretically possible to become an awesome teacher all by yourself, it’s a lot easier to learn from what others have done.

The same is true with writers.  In addition to reading various newsletters and websites about writing (Daily Writing Tips and Bubble Cow are two good ones that immediately spring to mind) as well as various blogs (check my blogroll to the left), I also participate in several forums (Scribophile and Authonomy are the best) with other writers.  And I just enrolled in a 3-week master writing class, taught by a published author/writing teacher, that focuses intensively on novel writing and polishing.  Plus I read as much as I can fit in – stories in journals and websites I’d like to submit to, stuff in the genres I’m writing in, random stuff that catches my eye, etc, etc.

We’re all in this together.  What are some useful resources you turn to in order to become a better writer?

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