August 25, 2009

How to Cope with a Writing Workshop

I had my first Advanced Fiction Workshop this week, and I think I'll keep going. Our first assignment is people-watching, which I need to do more of. This class will be good for me. Looking at the assignments, I can see that there's a lot that I would never do on my own.

We'll be writing a short short story (2-3 pages--yikes!) every WEEK for the first half of the semester.

I'm intimidated. Getting a full story in three pages is just plain scary. Not to mention the fact that I need to come up with a new story idea on a weekly basis...

ON TOP OF revising and rewriting Shadow Bound AND planning and writing my phantom novel.

Our last day of class is November 30th. How inconvenient. This means crunch time falls right in line with NaNoWriMo. I'll definitely have my hands full.

But it's worth it. I'll grow as a writer and I'll get to use some techniques from Think Sideways. In the first month of the course, we're taught to "summon lightning", or a story idea. I did it, but I wasn't looking for a new story idea at the time. Now I'll get to put it to good use. :)

There's also a later lesson on using "spies" -- basically, people who know more about what you're writing than you do. For example, I ask a doctor about hospital procedures so my writing is more authentic. Well, guess what? One of our assignments is to write a story that requires research and an interview. Nice how that works out.

1 comment:

Olivia said...

on short short story: think of it as the literary post card. You don't have to tell the whole story, you're just giving a snap shot. Short shorts are kinda tough, but haiku in poetry...

You're doing national novel writing month too? Awesome!

Great place for writing exercises: Making Shapely Fiction by Stern...could be a writing course by itself.

Oh, and love the quotes...My writing desk has a glass top and I put quotes I like under the glass...I printed the quotes, there's several I'm going to add...

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