If you’re looking to learn how to write fiction, Amy Tan is one of the most well-regarded authors out there.
She’s written several novels including ‘The Joy Luck Club’ and The ‘Bonesetter’s Daughter’, both of which were turned into films starring Annette Bening and Michelle Yeoh respectively.
Amy Tan’s Masterclass video course costs $15 per month and includes access to a library of videos where Amy Tan teaches fiction to everything from character development to plot.
Let’s take a look at Amy Tan Masterclass review and find what’s interesting in it!
Amy Tan is one of America’s most beloved authors. Infinitely interesting, Tan didn’t always want to write novels. In fact, she spent much of her life working in journalism.
As a young woman, Tan worked as a journalist in Hong Kong, where she met many of the people who would later become central figures in her fiction. After returning to California, Tan pursued a master’s degree in English Literature from San Jose State University.
While studying at university Tan began to realize that she wanted to try something different—something creative. She enrolled in a graduate program in creative writing at UCLA and eventually received her MFA in Creative Writing from UC Riverside.
Her work was featured in the New york times bestseller list.
In this MasterClass, fiction author Amy Tan teaches you about her creative process, including how she prepares for each book, why she chooses certain words over others, and how she creates characters.
She shares some of her favorite books, movies, music, and art, and explains how they influence her work on human nature.
You’ll learn about the different stages of a novel, and how to identify the voice of each character. You’ll discover how to use research to help you write fiction, and how to make sure every word counts.
Finally, you’ll see how Amy Tan uses other creative outlets to inspire her writing, like painting and drawing, and how she tackles research, fiction memory and imagination, and structure.
Lessons 1 & 2
In Lesson One, Tan introduces herself and explains why she wants to teach you about fiction writing. She also gives you some pointers on what you can expect from her lessons.
In Lesson Two, Tan discusses the importance of finding your voice as a fiction writer. You’ll learn how to find your personal style and start developing your unique voice.
Lessons 3 & 4
In lesson 3, Tan teaches you about the relationship between truth and imagination. She explains why we are drawn to idealistic stories and what makes us believe in them.
You’ll also learn how to avoid sounding contrived and how to write authentically.
Finally, she shares her “Courtroom Theory,” which helps any good writer understand how to structure their story and how to make their scenes come alive.
In the 4th lesson, Tan takes us through some of her tips for research. She starts off by explaining why it’s important to do research, what type of research she does, and how she goes about doing it.
Then, she gives some tips for making sure you’re getting the best information possible. Finally, she explains the pros and cons of different types of research.
Lessons 5 – 7
Lesson 5 focuses on the opening of a story. The opening is often the most important part of a story because it sets up the entire book. If you’re writing fiction, it tells readers what sort of story you’re telling.
If you’re writing nonfiction, it gives editors and publishers a sense of where the book is heading.
In the lesson, 6&7 Tan focuses specifically on how to use a narrative point to tell a story.
You’ll learn about narrative points of view, including third-person omniscient, second-person limited, first-person plural, and first-person singular, as well as how each one changes the way readers experience your work.
Additionally, she shares her philosophy on how to write better characters and offers some advice on how to bring those characters to life. Finally, she provides tips on how to use universal truths in your writing.
Lessons 8 & 9
In Lesson 7, you learned how to choose the best words to tell stories. In this lesson, you’ll discover how to use those words effectively.
Firstly, you’ll look at how to write with rhythm. Then, you’ll look at some ways to connect words together to form a cohesive narrative. Finally, you’ll take a closer look at how words can add texture to the prose.
Chapter 9 focuses on the revision process. The revision process starts well before you submit your manuscript.
Once you’ve written down everything you want to include, you can go back over the text and edit out anything that doesn’t fit.
You can add any additional information that you forgot to mention earlier. After revising, you can read it again and make sure you haven’t missed anything important. If you still feel something is missing or needs improvement, you can find another way to express it.
The lesson discusses what to do after the final draft such as looking for ways to make it better. For instance, you might change the names of people or places, or want to rephrase sentences to avoid repetition.
You can also use this phase to check for spelling mistakes, grammar errors, typos, and inconsistencies. In addition, you should make sure each paragraph flows smoothly and logically.
Finally, the lesson highlights the importance of proofreading your work one more time.
Lessons 10 & 11
Lesson 10 talks about Tan’s three companions – her dog, cat, and husband and then lesson 11 focuses on some ways to deal with writer’s block. It covers different types of blocks, and what causes them.
You’ll discover some practical advice on how to overcome writer’s block, and keep yourself motivated.
Lessons 12 – 13
In these chapters, Tan talks about the challenges she faced while adapting ‘The Joy Luck Club’ into a film script.
She shares some of the lessons she learned along the way, including how to effectively translate from book to screen, keep the “soul” of your book in a different medium, develop relationships with screenwriters and filmmakers, and how deal with rejection letters.
In her final lesson, Tan shares her thoughts on writing voice and effective endings. She begins by explaining why it’s important to avoid the obvious and offers up several examples of common plot devices used in books and films.
Then, she provides some tips for creating a satisfying ending.
Who Is The Course Good For?
This course is designed for beginners, intermediate and experienced writers alike. You’ll learn how to structure your story, how to build tension, how to make your character believable and relatable, how to craft compelling beginnings with dialogue, and much more.
You’ll also receive weekly assignments where you’ll work on improving your storytelling techniques and learning about the art of fiction writing.
The Amy Tan masterclass is a great resource for anyone who wants to improve their skills as a novelist or start on the road of creative writing.
In addition to providing helpful insights into the world of fiction writing, Tan teaches you how to create characters that readers can connect with.
Tan’s approachable style makes this course easy to follow and understand. By the end of the course, you’ll have gained valuable insight into the creative process, and be able to apply those skills to your own writing projects. Well worth the investment of time and money.