Like most writers I know, I’m a little insecure about my writing. A part of me worries that I’ve been writing drivel all these years and that one of these days, people are going to find me out.
So, I study the craft in hopes that I will improve, and grow. Problem is, I’m an intuitive writer, a seat-of-the-pants writer. I’m no good at analyzing my own work or methods. And I’m a terrible judge of what I’ve written.
So I read books on writing, read blogs on writing and take writing workshops in hopes that some of what I learn will filter down into my subconscious, where the “boys in the basement” can do the heavy lifting when needed.
My next workshop is in April. I’m going back to Lincoln City for an in-person workshop organized by WMG Publishing and taught by Kristine Kathryn Rusch. I’m very excited about this workshop for several reasons:
- I will learn something new. This one, How to Write Fantasy in all Forms, will be an intensive writing workshop on the various techniques used in the fantasy genre. I write fantasies as well as mysteries and sometimes, I merge the two genres. I know I will leave with some good short stories and a dozen ideas for novels and other short stories. Kristine Rusch is a great instructor and she always inspires me to do some of my best writing.
Many of the WMG workshops have migrated online, and I have to admit that I like the online format a lot. One of the recent workshops I’ve taken was Writing with Depth, one of the best writing workshops I’ve ever taken. So, yeah, online workshops rock. But there are serious advantages to an in-person workshop that aren’t available online. For instance:
- I will be surrounded by like-minded students, about 25 of them, many of whom I’ve met before in other WMG workshops. I learn almost as much from my fellow students as I do from the instructors. These are all professional writers who want to improve their craft. My kind of people. The informal chats, the lunches, the laughing, the sharing of resources, tips, experiences, the discovery of new friends… that’s hard to get with an online workshop.
- The workshop will be held at the WMG offices in Lincoln City, Oregon. The WMG staff make themselves available to the students for advice on promotion, audio books, cover design… anything and everything to do with professional publishing. It’s an extremely valuable “perk.”
- And finally, did I mention that the workshop takes place in Lincoln City, Oregon? Right on the coast? Every time I go there for a workshop, I stay at the Historic Anchor Inn, which is a two-minute walk from the beach. The Anchor is a funky little hotel with a seaside theme and wonderful staff. Every time I go there, I’m welcomed with a hug and a smile. I mean, can you beat that?
How about you, fellow writers? Any favourite workshops you like to attend?