Aaron Sorkin MasterClass Assessment: Will This Assist You Grasp Script Writing?
I am always looking for new ways to improve my writing. As an author and businessman, learning and improving the tools that keep me in business is a high priority on my daily task list. If you don't grow, you will eventually stagnate. And nobody can afford to stagnate in the writing business.
It can be difficult to find reliable sources and learning tools that make sense for authors. Searching through the wealth of online information is. . . Frustrating to say the least. Everyone has an opinion, from your Aunt Joan to the authors in your Facebook groups. So who should you trust?
A professional. Someone who has experience and a proven track record. A person who can share their experiences and knowledge.
This is where MasterClass comes in.
Before we start, I want to share a few quick notes. First, I'm an author, not a screenwriter, and that's how I'm going to rate this course.
Second, some of the links in this review are affiliate links. These help me finance my coffee so that I can continue to write and share with you what I have learned. Above all, they didn't influence my opinion in this review.
Now we come to the review.
What is MasterClass and how much does it cost?
MasterClass is a website with online courses from leading experts in various fields. When I first saw an ad for MasterClass, I was excited – who doesn't want to learn tennis from Serena Williams or how to write short stories about Joyce Carol Oates?
Each course takes place online and the curriculum is created by the expert who teaches it. They usually last between 2 and 5 hours and contain individual class videos that you can watch at any time after purchasing the course.
MasterClass offers two pricing options:
- You can purchase each individual course for $ 90.
- You can purchase an all-access pass for all courses for $ 180 a year or $ 15 a month.
You can also give courses to your friends. There are a variety of writing-only courses (twelve at the time of this writing) that I believe are worth the all-access pass. However, MasterClass is not just for authors.
Now MasterClass has some amazing offers. There are courses from Gordon Ramsey, Christina Aguilera, Neil Gaiman and James Patterson (who happens to be the most successful author in the world). I really wanted to focus on improving my dialogue. And I thought, what could be nicer than learning from a fantastic, award-winning screenwriter?
That's why I chose Aaron Sorkins MasterClass.
Check out Aaron Sorkins MasterClass here. Now we come to what works and what doesn't.
Who's Aaron Sorkin?
Aaron Sorkin is an Oscar winner, director, producer and playwright. If you saw A Few Good Men and despised Jack Nicholson's character Jessup, you can thank Mr. Sorkin for it.
Who could forget this exciting exchange?
Aaron Sorkin has worked on everything from the west wing to the social network to moneyball. His experience as a screenwriter is profound. That's why I chose him for this review and to learn from it as an author. We all need to improve our dialogue if we want readers to keep coming back to our books.
Check out some of his credentials in the screenshot I took below.
Do you benefit from the course?
Before we look at the meat and potatoes of this review, we should mention who this course is best for. The short answer is: writer. In particular fiction authors.
It is aimed at screenwriters or playwrights, but if you look at the timetable, you will find that novelists can benefit a lot from this. Some broader topics include storytelling ideas, character development, exploring properly, building good writing habits, and understanding storylines.
All of these topics should be translated fairly well for novelists in all genres of fiction.
However, the jury will not be there until we have looked at the course content and information from our seriously overqualified teacher.
My review of Aaron Sorkins MasterClass
Aaron Sorkins writing course includes:
- 35 lessons, including but not limited to topics such as: tinkering with story ideas, creating characters, story rules, storylines, writing west wing workshops, writing scenes and writing habits. Each of these classes is available to you at any time once you have paid for access.
- Classes last 4 to 25 minutes each.
- A class workbook.
- A couple of good men screenplay.
- Steve Jobs continuity and spotting list.
- The screenplay of the social network.
- A community of like-minded writers who learn with you.
That's a lot of information for $ 90 or $ 15 a month.
Click here to learn more about the content of the MasterClass.
What I loved about Aaron Sorkins MasterClass
Let me count how much I loved the content of this course. Oh wait, I can't. It was all great. Yes, yes.
- Price. You get more than what you pay for, no matter how you cut it with this MasterClass. This class alone is worth the subscription. There are thirty five lessons of information and I was inspired by everyone.
- ALL lessons. Each lesson had valuable, actionable information that improved my writing and even my opinion about storytelling. It teaches you how to write stories that the audience actively participates in to keep them busy. That's exactly what you need as an author. I found the lessons “Writing habits” and “Developing characters” particularly instructive. My favorite was the lesson "Writing Fascinating Dialogues" because I really wanted to.
- The scripts. Uhhh. . . Who doesn't want current copies of award-winning screenplays to be published? This was a pleasant surprise for me when I bought the course for the first time. I was excited about the prospect of going through it.
- The western wing Writing room. In a series of eight amazing lessons, Aaron Sorkin sits down with screenwriting students and plans to "break" the first episode of season five of The West Wing. Basically breaking something means figuring out the beginning, middle and end of the whole story in your head. It was fascinating to experience and incredibly informative.
- Aaron Sorkins sense of humor. I found Aaron to be a fantastic teacher, easy to hear, and obviously knowledgeable about what he was teaching. It was funny too! Nothing sells me more than humor, and his funny style made it easy to be attentive. You need that from a teacher.
- The pitch lesson. Telling your story is critical for screenwriters and writers. We pose in different ways and for different people, but the essentials are the same. In one of the lessons, Mr. Sorkin actually goes into how to set up your story or idea and what questions you can expect afterwards.
Overall, this is a thorough online writing course. It's well thought out and covers questions you didn't even know you had.
What I didn't love
There were very few things I didn't like about the course. I think I just had one major problem with that and that was the community area. It wasn't as intuitive as I would have liked. It was quite stiff and difficult to communicate with other students in the course.
I would have preferred a Facebook or Slack group (although I know this is not possible).
But that's a little complaint.
Don't get me wrong, there is a community where you can exchange ideas, but it is in the format of a forum. It wasn't bad in itself, but it was the only thing I didn't like so much about this course.
My conclusion: is Aaron Sorkins MasterClass right for you?
The wealth of knowledge presented in the course far outweighs all minor setbacks. I can only recommend this MasterClass to aspiring or experienced writers who want to improve. We can all learn from a master script writer.
The price is worth it, and you can repeat the course, return to the videos at any time, and speak to a number of other authors who will go through the course and complete the lesson with you.
Ready for Aaron Sorkins MasterClass and Master Screenwriting?
Click here to login
The MasterClass is informative and fun. And it gave me the motivation to get up and write in the morning. Let's face it, we all go through periods of helplessness or demotivation, and Mr. Sorkin does that in the classroom too.
What are you waiting for if you're interested in improving your skills as a writer, not just a screenwriter? Listen.
Did you take Aaron Sorkins MasterClass? What did you think? Let us know in the comments.
It is your turn to practice your writing spirit. The format is up to you – write a prose scene like a novel or a short story or a screenplay scene, your own script for a successful TV show.
Regardless of the format chosen, the focus is the same: this scene is dialog-heavy.
Your request: A character has just received bad news and it is up to him to forward it to another person. Perhaps you are a reporter in a news agency or a presidential employee or a parent who shares something unpleasant with his spouse.
Take fifteen minutes to write. When you're done, share your practice in the comments section and leave feedback for your co-writers.