Continuing Education For The Writer

by Catherine L. Tully

Catherine L. TullyAlthough freelance writers are self-employed and don’t have to take continuing education courses as part of the job–I’m going to argue that it is still a good idea. It never hurts to expand your knowledge base and it is always helpful to network a bit.

What type of class? Well, now that is entirely up to you. You can take something to enhance a strength you have (for example, if you are a fab blogger you might want to take an advanced WordPress class) – or you can brush up on an area where you are weak (perhaps using Photoshop or learning basic HTML skills?). It isn’t going to hurt you, and it certainly can help.

I would also recommend talking with your accountant to see if you can write off the cost of such a class, plus any materials that you buy for it.

Here are some places you can look for classes that might be useful:

  • Your local park district or community center
  • An area community college
  • Recreation centers
  • The library

As for ideas on what to take? There are plenty of things to choose from. Here are some that I would think could be of use to writers in the digital age:

  • Photoshop
  • Adobe Acrobat
  • Basic investing (to plan for your finances in the future)
  • MS Word
  • MS Excel
  • WordPress
  • Grammar refreshers
  • An advanced writing course
  • A fiction writing class

There are many other choices–just grab a catalogue from one of the area facilities and flip through to see what is offered in your community.

Many professionals in many different career fields take continuing education classes to expand their knowledge base and stay sharp. Why should we be any different?

Have you ever taken a class to enrich your writing life? If so, we’d love to hear about it!