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Which is better for a writer: a college education, or a variety of experiences?

Beginning Writer's Answer Bookedited by Jane Friedman

If your goal is to obtain a staff job at a publication or with a publisher, a college degree is a near must. Creative writing programs, too, can be extremely valuable; they force you to write and they include regular criticism by professors and peers. On the other hand, the habits (and even rules) learned while writing for an academic degree may have to be broken before you can produce a salable book or magazine article.

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Most creative writers—those with MFA degrees and without—claim that experience trumps education, as nothing can be a substitute for experience. As Virgil said, “Trust one who has gone through it.” But even if you live a rather humdrum existence, you can usually find material for your writing simply by exercising your imagination. Emily Dickinson, for example, created perceptive poetry though her lifestyle was, by most modern standards, frightfully dull.

Brian Andrews and Jeffrey Wilson: On the Power of Creative Teamwork

Brian Andrews and Jeffrey Wilson: On the Power of Creative Teamwork

Authors Brian Andrews and Jeffrey Wilson discuss the benefits of working as co-authors and the process of writing the newest Presidential Agent novel, Rogue Asset.

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writer's digest wd presents

WD Presents: 4 WDU Courses, an Upcoming Webinar, Submission Deadline for Your Favorite Writing Websites, and More!

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How To Find the Right Professional Editor for Your Writing

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It's not enough to know when your manuscript is ready for a professional edit—it's knowing who is the right fit to do the editing. Here, Tiffany Yates Martin discusses how to find the right professional editor for your writing.

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In this week’s round up brought to us by Script magazine, read an intimate interview with Verve Literary Agent and Partner David Boxerbaum about the state of the spec market, the relationship between a writer and agent, and more!

Writing Mistakes Writers Make: Ending Your Story Too Soon

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The Writer's Digest team has witnessed many writing mistakes over the years, so we started this series to help identify them for other writers (along with correction strategies). This week's writing mistake is ending your story too soon.

FightWrite™: Fight Scenes with Magic

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In this post, trained fighter and author Carla Hoch explores the process of writing fight scenes with magic—how to make the unbelievable believable, how limitations bring us closer to our characters, and more.