I took this class during the mini intensive weekend and found it really helpful. This was one case where I was able to immediately put to use what I'd learned. I was shocked at how many times I had dialogue tags and action beats in the same sentence. And that was just the first step!
My one suggestion for Kathy, if she decides to teach the class in a longer form, would be to let students post an unedited section from their own writing (at some specified length) and let them use their own work to see what can be tightened. I realize that wasn't practical for a weekend class, but I think cutting our own work would take it to the next level.
Kathy Otten has the patience of Job with all my questions. It comes down to the fact that openings and hooks are unique critters and require lots of practice. I suspect some authors wake up one day, write the perfect opening and hook and say, "By Jove, I've got it!" Jove and I are still huddling on mine. My favorite tip from Kathy was about ending sentences with power words. Too cool and way easier to accomplish (for me) than the opening and hook. Kathy, I must say, you've got me scanning books for opening hooks. I've found some golden nuggets, even sentences buried within the book that would make excellent hooks.I catch myself composing hooks for books I haven't even written! Thanks, Kathy!
This is the second class I've taken with Kathy Otten, and I did so because I loved an earlier class so much. She helps me improve so many details in my writing, whether dialogue or making my characters' emotions come alive without dialogue. Her technique is brilliant and her approach gentle and encouraging for self-doubting newbies like myself. (How long can I call myself a newbie? There must be a timeline...or a category called "old newbies".) Thanks, Kathy Otten for making me feel like I really am a writer. That means the world to me.
Kathy Otten 's class inspired me to want to write again! I love her techniques for using body language to convey emotions. She helped me get rid of long, rambling dialogue by focusing on the body language of my characters. This has tightened my scenes and heightened the emotional effect I was after in the first place. I found Kathy's class when my creative energy was in a low funk. This woman performed CPR on my Muse! I am forever grateful, Kathy! Thank you and thanks to SavvyAuthors for providing such wonderful classes.