Outline for online writing class

Workshop Outline

Session One: Getting Started
Creative nonfiction; Descriptive writing; Using detail in your writing
Writing Assignment: A 500-word description of a public place—and the actions of the people in it—as though you were crafting a larger story about this place.

Session Two: Real-life Characters
An introduction to interviewing; Using quotes; Paraphrasing & summary; Adding description to interview material
Writing Assignment: A short “profile” of a real person, based on an interview (maximum 500 words). For a subject, you can use a friend or family member, or someone else you have reasonably easy access to (your boss, a local small businessperson, your minister, etc.). Use a combination of description, and quotes to portray not just the substance of the interview, but some aspect of the subject’s personality as well.

Session Three: Making Your Point—Logically
Structure & organization; Beginnings, middles and ends
Writing Assignment: Select a topic of your choice and write an opening (with an appropriate hook and lead), a summary of the body of the piece, and an ending (with an appropriate concluding device)—maximum 750 words.

Session Four: Style, Part I—Unity & Rhythm
Unity of viewpoint; Unity of pronoun; Unity of place; Unity of time; Rhythm and pacing
Writing Assignment: A complete article or essay on the topic of your choice, concentrating on the use of the stylistic techniques covered in this session (maximum 1,000 words).

Session Five: Style, Part II—Voice & Tone
Using an appropriate voice; How tone complements voice; Finding your voice
Writing Assignment: Put all of the piece together to write the first draft of an article, collection of related essays or other short pieces, or a chapter of a nonfiction book (maximum 2,500 words total).

Session Six: Polishing Your Prose
Drafts; Revision
Writing Assignment: An article, collection of related essays or other short pieces, or a chapter of a nonfiction book (maximum 2,500 words total). You may revise and rewrite the piece(es) you submitted for Session Five, based on the feedback you’ve received, or you may submit new work.

Posted by Michael L Umphrey on 06/30 at 08:54 AM
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©2005 Montana Heritage Project

For students publishing on Heritage Online

My name is Katherine Mitchell and I’m the editor of Heritage Education, a print magazine, and Heritage Online, a website.

I’m glad that you’re letting me work with you on your paper. It’s exciting to publish work by a new writer.

Editing can be a chore—even difficult—but you’ll be pleased with the results. So will everyone who visits our website. If you decide to see this process to the end, your paper will be published on our home page so thousands of people from around the world can read it.

To post and edit your paper, you’ll have to register on Heritage Online (www.montanaheritageproject.org). Go to the site and click Register which is at the top of the right column. To register, just fill in the boxes (Note: for your screen name, use your full name with initial caps, such as Mary Jones or Robert Smith).

Once you’re registered and your membership is activated, you’ll need to post your paper. To post, click on Publish, choose the blog you want to post in (Editing Work Space), and fill in the text boxes. Please remember to Submit your essay before you Preview it or you may lose it. While we’re editing your essay, you’ll Update your post before you Preview it or you may lose your edits. Anytime you want to view your essay as it really looks on the web, use this link: www.montanaheritageproject.org/index.php/edit.

After your paper is posted, I’ll do an initial edit. The comments/changes will be there for you to see. You can either make the changes by clicking on Comments at the end of your post and typing them in the text box or you can make them directly to your paper by clicking on Publish, Edit, and then clicking on the title of your essay.

For some essays, the online editing process is too cumbersome, so we may work together by faxing or mailing the essay back and forth.

As with every other publication, we work under a deadline. So once I comment on or make changes to your paper, you’ll have three days to make the necessary changes. If I don’t hear from you within three days, I’ll remove your paper from the site and your essay will not be published. Of course, if there are unusual circumstances that keep you from getting back to me, we’ll see what we can work out.

We may go through the above process several times but, once we’re done, your paper will be published and, once it’s published, you’ll be paid.

I would ask that you try not to get discouraged during this sometimes frustrating process. All writers, from novices to professionals, have editors and all writing is edited.

I look forward to working with you.

Posted by Katherine Mitchell on 04/21 at 02:31 PM
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©2005 Montana Heritage Project

Student writing guidelines

Here’s information on payment rates, a link to our publishing contract, and basic information about writing for Heritage Online and Heritage Education.

Posted by Michael L Umphrey on 04/20 at 09:54 PM
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©2005 Montana Heritage Project
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