October 11, 2011

Thanks for the Musefire, Holly

It broke my heart when I heard this, but Holly Lisle is going to close the doors to her writing classes to new students. These online courses changed my life and put my writing on the right path. I owe so much to her, but she's pursuing her true passion: writing fiction. I completely understand.

Holly has put so much of herself into helping other writers find their passion. She taught us how to dig into ourselves, find what we love, and transform it into stories we could be proud of. She called the course How to Think Sideways.

Then Holly realized that most people don't know how to simply "revise a novel" until it becomes what the writer intended it to be. She'd written so many novels (35 at the time, I believe), revision was second nature to her. So she analyzed her process and broke it down into lessons to make an even better class (in my opinion) called How to Revise Your Novel.

I thought I knew how to revise. I was wrong. Even now, as I try to describe the excitement of turning my book into what I hoped it would be, I fall short. You know when you watch a movie trailer and, even if it's for a movie you've already seen, it gets you so pumped that you suddenly feel like to HAVE to watch that movie? Going through How to Revise Your Novel is like that.

Holly, you've done incredible things for the writing community. You helped change me as a writer and as a person. The aha! moments were priceless, but there were moments that were even better.

So Holly, if you're reading this, I want you to know: because of your classes, I wrote dialogue that made me laugh, stories that made me dance for joy, and hints to my readers that literally made my hands itch with anticipation.

Thank you.


Prue said...

The news about Holly gave me something approaching a kick in the teeth! What a shock - as much change often is. But Holly's courses will still be available on Kindle etc and in print. The forums will still exist and Holly says she'll be posting there.

I guess what I will miss is the courses she has not yet written, and may never write.

But knowing Holly nothing is set in tablets of stone! She's very good at taking stock of where she is and changing direction. Something we all need to do more, I think :)

I feel very fortunate in having found her courses, and with them so many interesting people who make up the valuable on-line writing community, and who are dedicated to good writing. I'm not leaving the forums. I hope you don't either. And I hope we get to see more of Holly and her wisdom there.

I love that - each person sharing their way of looking at things and passing it on to those who then pass it, and their own wisdom on. Like ripples in a pool.

Anne Lyle said...

I don't blame Holly one bit for wanting to go back to writing fiction - that's why her courses are so good in the first place. She has the storytelling experience, as well as the gift of analysing her own process and passing it on.

As I say in the acknowledgements of my soon-to-be-published novel, my manuscript would probably still be languishing in revision Hell if it hadn't been for Holly's courses. I can't recommend them enough, in whatever form they continue to be available.

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