Robert Benson's - Tools of a Writer

Develop a method for a daily, sustained writing routine. Learn techniques and improve your writing process. Wrestle with the challenges of self-doubt and overcoming them. | taught by Robert Benson

Course description


This class takes you through how to write a book. It focuses on the disciplines and techniques for finishing a manuscript, be it fiction or non-fiction. 

It is not a set of tips and tricks, but rather the wisdom of an author who has put in the hours to learn what it truly means to lay one’s heart out on a page. It is practical wisdom from a writer who has published some two dozen books with major publishers over the course of his twenty-five year career.

It is a roadmap to follow, a discipline to practice. Robert has tread that path. He will show you the way.


-Lesson Outlines


Study One: Introduction
Meet Robert and peruse the course objectives.


Study Two: Wandering
Harness and create experiences. Understand the impact of experience on your work.


Study Three: Jury Box
Know your audience.


Study Four: Word Count
Put words on the page every day. Not too many, but do it - every day.


Study Five: Determination
Set reasonable and reachable writing goals.


Study Six: Three Hats
Understand the different roles a writer must play when composing, editing, and selling a book. Learn to keep those roles separate.


Study Seven: Books
Choose your reading wisely. Create a shelf of great books that will influence your writing.


Study Eight: Batting Practice
Practice writing daily to get ready for the Big Show: creating your book.


Study Nine: Sharing Your Work
Be selective about asking for feedback — and from whom you get it. Then put on the editor's hat.


Study Ten: Perspective
Don't become so immersed in your inner writer's world that you forget about the actual one. Get outside. Talk to people. Remember that you're not only a writer; you're a human in the world. Go be one. 


Study Eleven: Closing Thoughts
There is no magic that transforms you into A Writer except for doing the work. Write every day. Finish that book. Along the way, you'll start calling yourself a writer. Because you are one.




Robert Benson
Robert Benson
Writer, speaker, and retreat leader. Alumni of the Academy for Spiritual Formation. Member of the Friends of Silence and of the Poor, an international prayer community

Having grown up in Tennessee, where he still lives, in a family of writers, publishers, and speakers, Robert Benson says that "Words and sentences and stories have mattered most to me for most all my life." For most of his life, he has been a freelance writer and editor. His books are about paying attention to the things that point us to the Sacred in life — known through prayer and liturgy and also through ordinary activities such as baseball, gardening, and travel. He leads retreats and speaks at conferences about prayer and vocation.

Benson is an alumni of the Academy for Spiritual Formation, a two-year program of study and prayer in community. He is a member of The Friends of Silence & of the Poor, an international prayer community. He leads seminars and retreats on prayer, silence, writing, and spirituality.

Course Curriculum

Introductory Interview
19:22
Study One: Introduction
12:45
Study Two: Wandering
10:56
Study Three: Jury Box
08:56
Study Four: Word Count
11:15
Study Five: Determination
11:02
Study Six: Three Hats
08:34
Study Seven: Books
10:02
Study Eight: Batting Practice
11:28
Study Nine: Sharing your work
09:09
Study Ten: Perspective
09:55
Study Eleven: Closing Thoughts
07:07
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