I wrote this on Sunday after arriving in Taos for the writing workshop that will takeover the next two weeks of my life.
To say I’m anxious would be an understatement. I’m not quite shaking in my boots though because as intense as the workshop will be, I know it’s also the next logical step for a writer in my position. I’m no longer a newbie, but far far far from being an expert, and that’s exactly who this workshop is tailored for.
And you’d be surprised at just how much the knowledge that this is the right time for such a step settles the nerves.
After spending the last week and a half reading other participants’ work, I know that they are all in that in-between place I’m in—with different strengths and weaknesses—and most importantly, with things they can teach me. This is a self-selected bunch of serious writers, and I’m proud to count myself among them.
Add on top of that, two SF legends as our teachers, and there’s no excuse for me not to learn something. A lot of somethings…
I know all this. But still…scary.
As I mentioned in Know Your Genre, I fear I’m not as well read as I should be. Then when Week 1 submissions were expected sooner than I anticipated, I sent out a panicked SOS to my CPs and local group. Of course, everyone was very helpful, and I managed to apply their feedback and suggestions in time to send my work off to the workshop participants. But instead of feeling relieved, it just made everything seem more fraught.
Then there’s the fact that I know no matter how positive a workshop experience could or should be, there’s going to be some hard parts too. People will point out things about me and my writing that’s going to be hard to hear, and sometimes, even worse, harder to fix.
But I guess the whole point of something like this is leaving yourself open to new experiences. Giving yourself every opportunity to learn, and when it’s all over, find ways to adapt and change and better yourself and your craft.
So that’s me for the next two weeks. I look forward to catching up with you when I get back.
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