To my horror, Jemaine Clement and Bret McKenzie, two of the funniest men around have decided to quickly to end the magnificent “Flight of the Conchords”. I guess the guys either had enough or thought the show has run its course. Still, not only was it incredibly funny, it had some brilliant music, that was incredibly funny at the same time.
One of such songs during the second season was their “disco hit”, “Too Many Dicks (On the Dance Floor)”. I’m sure the guys didn’t have just the dance floor in mind when too much competition and crowding was concerned. I don’t know whether they had the crowd created in the writing and freelance writing courses floating online, but they certainly should have.
There it currently seems the rules of “having enough” and “something running its course” do not apply. It seems that practically everybody is running some writing course or other. My email inbox is flooded daily by up to 10-15 offers of writing courses in some shape or other. Personally, I’m presented with a dilemma, where do you draw a line?
On one hand, you never know enough. There’s always something you should or need to learn or inform yourself about. On the other hand, there’s so much repeating, some “professors” seem to offer absolutely the same thing, some may be even copying one from the other. Let's not even mention some exorbitant prices asked, where obviously the higher price should immediately mean higher quality. And usually, it is the beginner freelancers who need quality courses the most who cannot pay them.
So it is certain that you do need a course or courses, even if you have a university degree in writing, journalism or similar. Each profession has its specifics and practical instructions are a must, particularly the basic, ‘starter” ones. But even with those basic courses, you maybe need one or two, otherwise you will get the feeling the dogs have when they are chasing their tail.
Then there are specific skills. There we get into the really expensive terrain, and you have to be picky and know exactly what you want and what suits you the best. An extra specific skill would come in handy, but so would some cash to pay for it.
And choosing them? Sometimes, if you’re uncertain, maybe the golden rule of the thumb (left or right, your choice too) and common sense judgment will help. Basically, if they are offering too much, or have a too aggressive approach, skip them. As The Concords said, there are too many dicks on the dance floor anyway.