Online Inspiration by Steph Beth Nickel

Shh, I have a secret to tell you.

Wait for it.

I am an extrovert.

I know. I know. You’re shocked.

Despite the fact that this is apparent to anyone who has known me for, say, five minutes or so, I have only recently realized that I enjoy listening to a series of podcasts with the same host because I feel as if I know the person and we’re visiting out in cyberspace. “Hanging out” with fellow writers and other industry pros gets my mojo flowing and it inspires me to write.

As you will see, I’m also drawn to online courses—even without audio.

Today I want to share a number of resources I have found helpful. I would like to add a disclaimer, however. Not all of these resources reflect a Christian worldview. You will want to proceed with caution if you choose to check them out.

The Creative Penn

I can’t remember when I first came across “The Creative Penn” website and podcast, but the site overflows with insightful information by entrepreneur and author Joanna Penn. As of yet, I haven’t read any of her books, but I have listened to a number of the podcasts.

Mark Dawson’s Self Publishing Formula

I first encountered bestselling author Mark Dawson on The Creative Penn podcast. Because I’m seriously considering becoming a hybrid publisher, I find the information on the Self Publishing Formula website extremely helpful.

I’ve also applied to become a beta reader for the course that will be released later this year. Even if I’m not chosen, I will still learn lots from the podcasts and blog posts on the site.

How to Write a Great Novel Online Course

Oh, the joys of Groupon! The is the second course I’ve taken from Industrial Scripts. While I wouldn’t be inclined to pay full price, they are worth far more than I paid. I motored through almost 30 percent of the course and then forgot to go back to it. It’s now on my To Do list. (Remember what I said about being drawn to online courses? Well, I almost bought this one twice. Thank goodness for companies with integrity.)

Write Adult Fiction Course

This was another Groupon find. Now, I did go ahead and purchase the book that includes all the online lessons. To get credit for completing the course, students have to take the module tests online. The course includes a lot of great information, much of which I didn’t know before. You may want to keep an eye out and see if Groupon offers this discount again. You can check out the course here.

Compel Training

Compel is the teaching arm of Proverbs 31 Ministries. In addition to all the wonderful content on the website, there are Facebook groups for making more personal connections. I belong to one of the iron groups. We critique one another’s work and discuss what we’re learning on the website. I have been a member for several months but am really only beginning to scratch the surface of what’s available to members.

Faith-Pump Fridays

Christian authors Rhonda Rhea and Beth Duewel host an interactive weekly discussion of a chapter from one of Rhonda’s books. Currently, we are going through Espresso Your Faith. (Rhonda has a thing for coffee.) Faith-Pump Fridays is one of the highlights of my week.

There is absolutely no pressure to buy the books. Each question is a standalone mini study with lots of wonderful back and forth.

There is no pressure to participate in the online discussion either. If you would rather just read the threads under each post, that’s perfectly fine … and perhaps, a little more comfortable for all you introverts out there.

I haven’t taken the following online courses, but I’ve been tempted.

Masterclasses

You can find James Patterson’s course here and Aaron Sorkin’s course here.

As you likely know, James Patterson is a very prolific fiction author. And if you’re a TV watcher, you may recognize Aaron Sorkin’s name. He was a writer for The West Wing, a series I feel had some of the most incredible writing (and delivery) I’ve ever witnessed. I came away from several episodes thinking, “I could never write like that.”

Ted Dekker’s Course

“The Creative Way” isn’t cheap, but I’m sure it includes a lot of great information. “Class size” is limited and enrollment isn’t always open. Currently, there are nine days left to sign up for the upcoming session.

Brenda and Stephanie 2Steph Beth Nickel is the coauthor of Paralympian Deborah L. Willows’ memoir, Living Beyond My Circumstances, published by Castle Quay Books. They are currently working on a follow-up book, Still Living Beyond My Circumstances. Among other things, Steph is a freelance writer and editor. You can connect with her at stephbethnickel@gmail.com … on her Facebook author page … or on Twitter (Photo Credit of Steph and the fun-loving Brenda J. Wood: Belinda Burston)

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