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Scott Lax Blog

Does Education in Writing Matter?

If you are a writer, or aspiring writer, you may need someone to tell you something you will not hear in the Academy (higher education): You do not need a masters degree, a PhD, or any degree to be a good or great writer.

You need to read, study, and write. Degrees have nothing to do with it. Some of the worst writing being published right now is from writers who are well-connected through their academic contacts.

Don't let this discourage you or fool you. Read the great writers, figure out what they do; read books on writing; workshop your writing; and have humility. Writing is not like engineering, which, beyond basic engineering, requires heavy duty education: it's an art and craft and requires devotion and practice. You can do it if you really want to.

MFA programs in writing are expensive and sometimes taught by those who can't do, but rather teach. Not all, but many. If you really want to be a writer, here is my one sentence advice for you: Be a writer. And don't let the academics and their trends get you down.  Read More