I signed up for the Paris Writers Workshop for inspiration, encouragement, and for technical tips on the craft of writing and publishing. Morning sessions were led by Writer-in-Residence: Mimi Schwartz, author of five books and Professor Emerita in Writing at Richard Stockton College in New Jersey. Afternoon sessions included panel discussions ranging from the Secrets of Getting Published to the latest trends in self-publishing and e-Books.
I have been working on a writing project for a couple of years now. Not just blog posts; something more substantial. The blog has been a warmup, a sandbox to play and to try on the sobriquet of "writer." However, it's relatively easy to scribble down 250 words as I tell stories about my daily life. Even easier if I substitute photos for the proverbial 1000 words. But it requires much more discipline to come up with a manuscript of 80,000 well-chosen, tightly-edited words. I have a plot sketched out on paper, but to bring it alive and to people it with living, breathing characters that you can see and hear is much harder.
How do you put the reader inside a location where they've never been? How can you transform sights and sounds and smells so that the reader can hear the voices in your head, mixing logic and fantasy?
I was thrilled to receive a positive response from an agent during the workshop.
"Call me as soon as it's finished," she said.