Monday morning, I had the pleasure of once again teaching a writing course at Washington Academy, one of the oldest and most prestigious High Schools in the United States. Last year, I also taught "The Mysteries and Trials of Freelance Writing" during their "Artsfest" in April, and it was a great experience. This year, it was all freshman in the class, a small group of attentive and talented pupils. They handled the material well, came up with some great ideas during the different writing phases of the course, and I hope they came away with some useful knowledge that they'll be able to apply in the future.
During the course, I introduced them to the fundamental concepts of marketing fiction. They wrote brief story plots, query letters, and received tips and tricks of the trade that I've learned through trial and error over the years. Of course, we didn't have a lot of time to draft fresh material, but considering they only had 20 minutes or so for their plots and query letters, they were quite excellent. Over time, when they have time, I expect they'll be capable of mastering the art of the submission process.
|George S. Counts|
Whenever I teach one of these courses, I get a taste of what could have been. Though it's always a little nerve-wracking, and I tend to be nervous, there is a certain thrill to teaching a course. If I did it every day, I imagine it would be second nature. I suppose I inherited that from my father's side of the family, where teaching is practically the family business (many thanks to my great-grandfather, George Sylvester Counts).
It's not often that I get the opportunity to share my wealth of knowledge with receptive students. The experience is always welcome.