It’s true! One of you lucky little Sydney-based so-and-so’s is going to get a free ticket to Write Right, Australia’s most bestest crash-course for them people what want to make betterer writing! I spoke with the principal of Write Right about how you can get your hands on that free ticket and then start making millions of dollars as a paid professional writer! It’s the best! I just bought another Porsche!
Who are you, where are you from, and what is this giveaway you speak of?
I’m Penny Modra, from The Good Copy–which is a writing school based in Melbourne–and we’re running our Write Right course in Sydney on 30 November. That’s what we’re giving away: an enrolment valued at $275.
What will happen at the course and how long does it go for?
It goes for four hours: 1pm to 5pm. Our tagline for the course is ‘Why is writing hard? When is it good? Who does it well, and how?’. I know this sounds like a lot to cover in four hours, but basically we look at the principles of good writing and some tactics (technical and non-technical) for improving the experience—of doing it and of reading it.
So, if I came to your thing and was a really bad writer, would I become Mark Twain?
Oh man I’ve got to think about this one… Mark Twain hated adverbs, and we do teach the pitfalls of adverbs… I mean, we ask that question: what is bad writing? Part of the idea of the course is just thinking about that for four hours. No-one, underneath it all, is a ‘really bad writer’. All they are is bad at getting their ideas over the bridge—or bad at realising there’s a bridge to get over. We start with EB White: ‘When you say something, make sure you have said it. The chances of your having said it are only fair.’
What things will you be covering at the course?
Well, we start with some practical, on-the-page editing tactics. ‘Prune it out, clean it up, make the point.’ It’s a Joan Didion–inspired slash-and-burn approach. But then we look at the other things that can go wrong with writing. Often these can’t be fixed with an on-the-page edit, because they’re about the planning, the audience, the ideas (or the lack of ideas), the eye contact. Basically, we cover the technical approach and, as Denis Denuto would say, the vibe of the thing.
It’s the constitution, it’s Mabo, it’s the vibe.
Yeah that’s it. It’s the vibe.
Will there be refreshments at the course?
There will be various pastries, fruit (e.g., strawberries, grapes), coffee, tea and water.
And what if I need to go to the toilet, will there be somewhere for that?
I’m not sure, but there is a ten-minute break so you can have a look around. Duh. Yes, Jason, there is a toilet.
How many plies can we expect the paper in said toilet be?
I’ll email the venue and ask. They do have chairs, lights, a front door, and other things we’ll need.
Excellent. How do you win this giveaway?
People should email firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line ‘I want to come to your writing thing’. We’ll draw the winner at random and contact them.
Where will this event that includes refreshments and a toilet be held?
It will be on Friday 30 November, 1–5pm at the Golden Age Cinema, 80 Commonwealth Street, Surry Hills.
Thanks for talking with me today, Penny Modra.
For enrolments and course information, click on THIS BIT.