In this day and age, students can learn just about any skill from the comfort of their home. Online writing courses are a great way for writers and aspiring writers to learn, practice, and gain guidance for their writing careers and passions. Below, we’ve included online creative writing courses, as well as courses to advance your writing career.
How Can an Online Writing Course Help You?
Online writing courses are a great way to get past writer’s block, get inspired, gain new skills, hone existing skills, create an effective writing schedule, and even network for publishing.
Whether you’re learning from seasoned published authors or just creating a set schedule to write with a group, online writing courses can help take your writing to the next level.
How to Choose an Online Writing Course
Establish your writing goals
Before choosing an online writing course, ask yourself what you would like to gain from the experience. Do you need a creative writing group to keep you accountable to setting aside writing time each week? Do you need help writing a novel or TV show? Do you need tips for freelance writing as a career? Set yourself a goal so that you can find the course that works just for you.
Decide on a budget
Now that you know what you need, decide how much you are able or willing to spend on the course. There are plenty of free writing courses out there, but it’s also possible that you’re looking to invest in your writing career or require accreditation.
Make a schedule
Decide whether you would like to take a course on your own time and pace, or whether you would like to sit with a group of writers at a set time each week or month. Your writing goals may help you decide how often you would like to work on the course, and what type of course works for your goals and existing schedule.
Best Online Writing Courses
Below is a list of some of the best online writing courses you can take right now. They are organized into two categories: creative writing courses and freelance writing courses.
Creative Writing/Fiction Courses
1. Gotham Writers Workshop
Gotham Writers offers many different kinds of writing courses: fiction, non-fiction, scriptwriting, comedy, poetry, song writing, etc. They also offer courses for business development and essential writing skills. These courses are not free, so this is a good option for you if you’re looking to invest in an intensive, or even one-on-one, course.
Gotham Writers offers 10-week programs, and makes it easier to create a personalized schedule by offering a choice between online format, live Zoom classes, and in-person classes.
Coursera offers a treasure-trove of free online classes from leading universities around the world. Many of their classes are free to attend, and include the option to pay for a certificate of completion. There are no hidden fees or locked content when you opt to take a free class, so Coursera is definitely a good choice if you don’t have the money to invest in writing programs, or even if you just want to check out a course before committing.
Coursera’s writing courses include basic writing and composition, journalism, fiction and creative writing, business writing, and more. You can try your hand at anything from memoir writing and poetry to grant writing and academic writing.
Udemy offers professional courses for affordable prices. You can find a writing course that is perfect for you writing goals for as little as $15. Udemy sells by course instead of a membership fee, so you can just pay for the course that you want to take.
Some writing course examples include “Ninja Writing: The Four Levels of Writing Mastery” or “Better Business Writing Skills.” Udemy also gives the option of gifting a course, which is a great and affordable gift for the people in your life who love learning new skills.
Masterclass offers courses from leading authors, artists, and professionals who would otherwise be inaccessible. Students pay for a yearly membership (around $180) which includes free access to all the courses offered on the platform. Each course includes videos, downloadable PDFs or worksheets, and community forums. All the courses are taken at your own pace, and can even be downloaded for offline access, so it’s a great option if you’re on the go.
Writing courses include instruction from authors like James Patterson, Margaret Atwood, R.L. Stine, and Judy Bloom on fiction writing; music artists like Alicia Keys or St. Vincent on songwriting; writers like Shonda Rhimes or Aaron Sorkin on TV and screenwriting; and plenty more. The good thing is, you can pay for a membership and access all of these at once.
5. The Novelry
The Novelry is an online writing school geared toward writing and completing a book. Their popular course “The Book in a Year” is a year-long program which takes writers from the very beginning all the way to the finishing line of their projects. Bestselling authors act as tutors and guides, and The Novelry sends your completed work to publishers at the end of the program.
This program is great for anyone who is serious about publishing their work and needs invaluable guidance and support from the publishing world. Other programs include 45 lessons and costs start at around $180. You can also purchase The Book in a Year program for around $2,000.
Similar to Masterclass, CreativeLive features successful writers, bloggers, and internet personalities as teachers. The classes are recorded in a live studio/classroom, which allows for student participation and questions. The short lessons are easy to digest and follow, as they are usually 5-15 minutes long.
7. Self-Publishing School
Self-Publishing School is geared toward self-publishing books on Amazon, and it’s a great choice for anyone who plans on self-publishing but needs some guidance.
Writer and entrepreneur Chandler Bolt opens his course several times a year, so students need to join his mailing list to receive updates on upcoming classes. The course costs $697.
Freelance Writing Courses
1. Come Write With Us
Come Write With Us focuses on freelancing and how to make a full-time salary as a freelance writer. The nine-module course teaches students how to create a freelance schedule, a personal brand, website, rates, publishing pitches, and more. Students can enroll and complete the course at any time, and the cost is $197.
2. Freelance University
Freelance University includes 80+ courses for members. Instructors teach students how to manage a freelance writing business, including aspects of social media, web design, content management, and more. They provide instant access, skill certifications, and income-building classes for anyone who wants to build their own freelancing business. Membership costs $67/month or $597/year (which saves 3 months).
3. Accelerated Program For Six-Figure Copywriting
This self-paced course on Udemy is geared toward bloggers, freelance writers, and copywriters who want to improve their business and writing skills. As a writer, copywriting is an important tool for anyone looking to make a living from their writing, and this accelerated program is one of the more popular copywriting courses out there. The full course costs $497.
4. Freedom Machine
With Freedom Machine, mentor Jon Morrow teaches students how to make a nice living off of writing. The course is geared toward freelance writers, bloggers, and even entrepreneurs. The full course costs $2,000, but the first classes are given for free, so you can try it out for yourself and see if it’s worth the investment.
Online writing courses can be a great first step to a writing career, or a boost for getting past writer’s block on your big project. Online creative writing courses can also just be to invest in your hobbies and talents, and infuse more creativity into your day-to-day life. Whether you’re starting a career or just browsing, there’s a great course for everyone.