Writing Wrongs

September 30, 2006

Let me catch my breath.

I’ve just returned from a writing workshop with Jennifer Crusie and Bob Mayer, and if you read their blog, He Wrote, She Wrote, it was kind of like that. The bad news is they’ll be shutting down that blog at the end of the year.

The good news is they’re starting a new one, based on their writing workshop, that will last for the entire year (2007). So. If you can’t see them in person, you can take their workshop virtually. I think it will be worth it.

The Midwest Fiction Writers do a great job with their Harvest workshops. Breakfast and lunch are included along with gratis books. Everyone attending received on of Jenny’s. I got the hardcover of Bet Me. I bought Bob’s The Novelist Writer’s Toolkit, even though I think I own the first edition. But I wanted him to sign something too. So yes, I got to breathe in the rarified combined air of Crusie and Mayer. I feel smarter already. Poor Jenny had a cold, but she was still in fine form.

Some random things that Jenny or Bob said that struck me:

No one goes into a bookstore, opens a book to the first page, and hopes it sucks.

Surprise is not suspense. Caring about the characters creates suspense.

The antagonist is the person, who, if removed from the story, will cause the conflict to collapse.

Readers are ducks. (This was my personal favorite. Maybe I’ll explain it later.)

Charity Tahmaseb wrote at 5:18 p.m.