Abbie Emmons vs. Shaw Academy

Writing Tips & Tricks

I recently did a diploma through Shaw Academy in Creative Writing. And for a few years, I have been watching Abbie Emmons on her YouTube channel. I want to share my thoughts on how they compare to each other. I am aware that you don’t get a diploma with watching Abbie but in South Africa, the Shaw Academy diploma means nothing to companies anyway but to me, it means more knowledge and that goes the same for Abbie’s channel.

I wanted to make sure to share my thoughts for those writers out there that might want to know if there’s a difference or for those that can’t afford to do a diploma. If you know me at all, you know that I like to improve my knowledge and I’m big on self-improvement and upskilling yourself. Due to this, I don’t want to turn you away from either Shaw Academy or Abbie Emmons but if you don’t have time for both, then you could see which one I thought is better.

The comparison.

The educator at Shaw Academy is Arlin Bantam. Very well spoken and educated with a friendly voice. A lot that he taught, I have learned from Abbie Emmons already with one difference…I could understand her. Arlin was difficult to understand because he consistently used difficult words that are not used often when talking normally or in normal books. This meant that I had to listen to him with a dictionary and then would lose my place while looking up a word and then having two or three other words to look up while he’s talking.

This meant that I would have to watch the videos again so that I could pause him and look the words up without tripping over myself to get to them all. There were a few things that I learned through them that I hadn’t learned from Abbie but I can count it on my one hand. It was interesting seeing it from his perspective though.

On the other hand, Abbie speaks in a way that you can understand. She gives visuals where possible and explains things in different ways for those that might not have understood the first way that she explained. She uses examples of normal movies and books that everyone reads and not books that most people have not read or even heard of. The fact that I get to see her face when she’s talking to the camera also helps a lot. With Arlin, you never see his face. You only see a photo of him at the beginning of each lesson. It feels impersonal and I had trouble listening to this detached voice.

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For example, when Abbie Emmons explained the 3-Act story structure, I understood it immediately. When I listened to Arlin explain it, even though I knew what it is, he actually managed to confuse me because of the way he explains it. I guess that the only way you would know what I mean is if you go and do the diploma yourself.

I know a lot of big words because I love English and I enjoy increasing my word base but even I found it difficult. My husband and daughter happened to be listening to a lesson once and by the end of the lesson, they asked me what it was about because they didn’t understand him at all. Personally, I think that you should teach people in a way that they will understand. Not every writer knows big words. Not every writer is good at English. That is why there are editors and so forth.

I love listening to Abbie Emmons. She is filled to the brim with knowledge and I have learned A LOT from her channel and it was all for free. You can learn even more from her if you become a patron of hers and you can ask her questions which she answers in videos. It’s a lot more personal with her. I much rather enjoy listening to Abbie Emmons but that is a personal preference.

Have you done the Creative Writing course through Shaw Academy? What did you think? Are you an Abbie Emmons subscriber? Has she helped your writing journey at all? Did Shaw Academy help your writing journey at all?

That’s it from me for now…

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If you would like to increase your knowledge on how to use your writing for profit, then I recommend Elna Cain’s courses and masterclasses. Below are two that are helpful in creating an extra income with writing:


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