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"So You Want to be a Columnist"

Instructor: Dr. Wally Eberhard 

Tuesdays: August 12,19, 26, September 2

Hours: 4:00 6:00pm - 8:00 pm

Location: Class will take place in the 1902 OCAF Center building at 34 School Street in Watkinsville.

Class fee: $70 OCAF Members, $80 Non-Members

Opinions? We all have them. Editorial and "op-ed" (the page opposite the editorials in many publications) pieces are designed to stir us up, urge action, help us through life or maybe remind us of the good old days. You've been reading them for years. And, if you learn how to craft such opinions so an editor's eyebrows go up, your work may get published. With a cheap or free website or blog, your opinions can circle the globe. OR you may have expertise in a specific area to share with readers - knitting, genealogy, cooking, travel, for starters.  

This course will walk, talk and write you through the basics of writing columns. Why do we read them? What makes one writer's work more appealing than another? What do editors expect? How do I go about establishing myself as a regular columnist? We'll talk ABOUT doing columns and we'll WRITE at least one with a market in mind.



Dr. Eberhard recently retired from the Grady College Department of Journalism, where he taught a wide variety of writing and editing courses for 30 years. Before that he taught half-time at the University of Wisconsin, while working on a doctorate in mass communication. And before that he taught at Bowling Green (Ohio) State University.

His journalism career covered a decade of experience as a reporter, editor and co-publisher of newspapers and magazines. He holds degrees from Michigan, Bowling Green and Wisconsin. He wrote a weekly column for the newspaper he and his wife owned in Michigan, and his columns are features have appeared in the Athens Banner-Herald, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the Greenville (S.C.) News, St. Petersburg (Fla.) Times, Southern Distinction, Athens Magazine and the UGa alumni magazine.



Please use button below to go to the class Registration form. Once you have completed the form, hit "Calculate", then "Register". After the "Thank you for Registering" page, if you are not then taken to the PayPal payment page please call the OCAF office at 706-769-4565 to arrange payment via credit card. Please also call our office if you are unable to register online for any reason.



Beyond Memoir 

With Poet and Essayist Dana Wildsmith

Focus on the facts of your life to create stories, poems and essays which move beyond merely recording family stories. This class is for you if you have something to say to a larger audience, even if you are not sure how to begin. Learn how to go beyond memoir to saying something of value without being preachy or pedantic. Shape and share your writing with the class. We'll also discuss publication possibilities.

This class is suitable for writers of all levels.

The Beyond Memoir class was a great success and we are talking with Dana about a repeat of the class and possible other Literary classes. Interested? Sign up on our Waiting List below.

danawildsmithdeskAn award-winning Georgia writer, Dana Wildsmith is author of the nonfiction memoir Back to Abnormal: Surviving With An Old Farm In the New South (2010), which references her life on a 150-year-old farm outside Bethlehem, Georgia, and her discomfort with encroaching urban sprawl. She also has written five books of poems with her most recent collection of poetry published in 2013, Christmas in Bethlehem. Additionally her collection of poetry, One Good Hand (2005), was a SIBA Poetry Book of the Year nominee.

Wildsmith has served as artist-in-residence at Devil's Tower National Monument in Wyoming, Grand Canyon National Park in Arizona, and the Island Institute in Sitka, Alaska, and has been a poetry fellow with the South Carolina Academy of Authors. She has taught writing workshops throughout the Southeast and currently English as a Second language at Lanier Technical College in Oakwood, GA. For more information visit

registerInterested in future Literary classes with Dana Wildsmith? Register here for the Waiting List