Amor Fati's picture
Amor Fati from Canada is reading George RR Martin May 1, 2016 - 11:46am

This is something I'd definitely be interested in, given that I was able to find a mentor suitable to my artistic needs. I'll keep checking on LitReactor for that opportunity, thanks

Jose F. Diaz's picture
Jose F. Diaz from Boston is reading Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel May 4, 2016 - 12:08pm

I have an idea: It's a year long free class -----WAIT, wait wait, don't run. Hear me out. Slow it down.

The idea is that we develop a curriculum broken into 12 parts, one for each month. It will run from shitty first draft to final revision. In between, showing v telling, character, plot, setting, hooks, symbolism, metaphors, etc. Each month will be dedicated toward that topic in the slow process toward creating a short story or novel, students choice.

We would need 12 instructors. They wouldn't need to generate content, per se. All they would have to do is go through the craft essays, find the ones to assign to the students, say read these, and post it then walk away. Then, at the end of the month or half way through the month, they spend 2-4-6-8 hours on the site answering questions from the students. They won't read the writing unless they want to.

It would be a good opportunity for instructors teaching classes a month out to interact with people, hint hint. The community gets a bit more structure and something to look forward to at least twice a month. Like little events. "Come and say hello to X, author of X, and X, and X, they will be on from X to X answering all your writing questions ... if any." The internet is fickle brothers and sisters.

So that leaves, finding instructors, a space for this to happen, could be in the online classroom, click to join, simple as that. I'm sure it would be 200 people signed-up and ten people doing anything per the law of the internet.

Maybe at the end of the 12 months, we can hold a little contest, people submit what they wrote, someone, or everyone votes, and the person gets bragging rights for the year, maybe a free class, or discounted one, and a coffee mug and shirt (I need another shirt, mines getting really worn out by the way). It's some incentive to keep trudging.

Anyway, we have the content, the space is set, we just need some instructors to dedicate minimal time and effort, we get to kind of have these moments of touching the stars if you will, and it's something new using what is already here.

AND maybe special guest authors will stop in on the Q&A sessions once out of the year.

There was a dream that was LitReactor. You could only whisper it. Anything more than a whisper and it would vanish, it was so fragile.

Rob's picture
Class Director
Rob from New York City is reading at a fast enough pace it would be cumbersome to update this May 4, 2016 - 12:40pm


I like the intent of this idea, and some of the concepts, but there are a couple of problems off the bat, and a lot of the come down to money. 

This is a lot of work. A lot more work than you would think. I would need to assign a class facilitator to it, and that person would have to volunteer their time. I'd be volunteering my time, as would the guy who works technical support. So you've got three staffers here committing to a year-long project for free.

This is on top of giving away our instructors' content for free, and then asking them to do unpaid work on top of that. I don't believe there's such a thing as "minimal time and effort" here. Someone who takes a day out of their schedule to hang around the site and answer questions is taking time away from something else that might pay the bills. 

I'm not trying to be flip about this, and in a more perfect world where none of us had day jobs and responsibilities and deadlines, it sounds like it could be a great idea. But it would take a lot of people to make this work and I'm not asking them all to work for free. 

The site itself exists in this function. There's plenty of free content. Authors write for us and sometimes just hang out in the forums. They post essays and craft stuff and answer questions, whether in interviews or in the forums. 

That said, I'm happy to mull this over to see if it sparks any ideas. 


Jose F. Diaz's picture
Jose F. Diaz from Boston is reading Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel May 4, 2016 - 1:36pm

I appreciate you taking the time to respond this idea.

And you are absolutely right, nothing is free. And this site does offer tons of amazing content for free.

Perhaps I've been listening to Bernie too long.

I will carry on carrying on. Thank you for your time.

Dwayne's picture
Dwayne from Cincinnati, Ohio (suburbs) is reading books that rotate to often to keep this updated May 15, 2016 - 11:39am

Could it be set up as a separate premium subscription? You can jump in the first of each month with your rough draft and by the end, if you keep it all year, the last month is sending out submission / query letters?

Rob's picture
Class Director
Rob from New York City is reading at a fast enough pace it would be cumbersome to update this May 15, 2016 - 4:28pm

Too many moving parts. Too many man hours. You have to charge a lot of money for stuff like this so that everyone is fairly compensated. 

rachelkramerbussel's picture
rachelkramerbussel from New Jersey is reading Full Catastrophe Living May 16, 2016 - 6:11am

My LitReactor Between the Sheets erotica writing class starts tomorrow and there are 3 spots left. I wanted to make sure those who might be interested knew about it. I've edited over 60 erotica anthologies and written for over 100 of them. It's my seventh time teaching the class and in addition to what's listed on the class page, I also offer exclusive to the class interviews I've done with erotica publishers, editors, literary agents and authors, covering submissions, self-publishing, traditional publishing and more. Many students have gone on to sell stories started in class and while it's not required, I do strongly encourage students to submit their work because there are so many editors looking for new writers in this genre. If you have any questions about the class, feel free to PM me or email me at rachelkb at gmail dot com with "LitReactor" in the subject line.

freshjaclyn's picture
freshjaclyn from Michigan is reading Beautiful You August 29, 2016 - 8:18pm

I definitely would add slightly cheaper classes...I just took Suzy's class and it was awesome (worth the money), but I'll have to limit what I take because of the prices. I could never dream of taking one of the $300 classes. They are just not options for me. 

A week long class is a great amount of time...although I'm sure the instructor has more to share, most of us are working full time jobs and this amount of time seems perfect to better understand concentrated topics.

Rob's picture
Class Director
Rob from New York City is reading at a fast enough pace it would be cumbersome to update this August 30, 2016 - 8:38am

Jaclyn--Pricing classes is pretty tough, which is something I try to be sensitive to. On one hand, the instructors have to be fairly compensated--but at the same time, they have to be reasonable and affordable. Because you're right--it can be an impediment. 

I do my best to provide a strong mix of classes--stuff that's a little shorter, which makes them more cost-friendly. Tobias Carroll's class, starting this week, is a good example, as well as Richard Thomas's classes. John Skipp's is really good, too. 

We don't do a lot of week-long classes, only because it feels like it's TOO short (we've tried a few in the past and they haven't always been that successful) but I'm not opposed to giving the format another try.