Since his first publication in 2005, Brandon Sanderson has become one of the standout fantasy writers of the 21st century, with bestselling stories of his own - notably the Mistborn trilogy and ongoing Stormlight Archive series - and his role in concluding Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time series. But beyond his prolific career and worldbuilding prowess, he is also notable as one of the most accessible and open writers in recent memory with regard to his own writing process, and in his ability to share what he has learned with others. In many ways, his decision to teach the same creative writing course at BYU that he himself took as an undergraduate influenced my resolution to teach several legal writing courses at my alma mater law school - the very same courses that I took as a law student several years ago.
One of the most rewarding aspects of teaching is how the process of teaching others forces you to reexamine your own methods and perceptions, often resulting in new flashes of insight and understanding that not only help you to share what you've learned with others, but also offers a deeper comprehension of the processes underlying your writing, inevitably improving upon it. Watching Brandon's BYU lectures not only gives you a closer look at the mechanics and practicalities of fiction writing, but also a model of how an expert in a field can effectively share his hard-won knowledge and understanding with others.
This series of 2012 lectures is made available through WriteAboutDragons, which is run by Scott Ashton, a former student of Brandon's who wanted to share the "vast quantities of pure gold that issued forth from Brandon's lips every time he opened his mouth." Scott will also be sharing lectures from Brandon's 2013 course, with the first video due on June 1st.