Thursday, May 29, 2014

Writers! Retreat!

So July 5th will mark my first foray into a semi-credible circle of actual, factual authors.
Yeah, I'm talking about a writer's workshop, where I'll be going to meet with other like minded people
to critique and get critiqued.
So that'll be fun.

Wildacres, up near Spruce Pine, NC, is where it's at. From the photographs on the website
it looks like a relaxingly bucolic spot, all secluded back in the woodsy Blue Ridge mountains the way it is. It sounds like it could be the ultimate getaway...or like the lead in to a horror story...

"Ah, Wildacres: t'was an immense and scenic structure, ringed by bountiful green grounds of which each individual shrub had its own transportive hypnotic quality about it. Set high and alone upon the forested mount, seasoned and aspiring writers alike flocked there in droves, ready with their proverbial pens in hand, and their all too keen sensibilities regarding the observe-interpret-report methodology, that is most basest in the author, quite sharp. But, amidst the luring calm of the green trees, there lurked a presence, a visage waiting in the unspoilt woodland warrens, waiting for the lights to fade acceptably and thus for its chance to aggressively ingress upon those that tread atop its wild domain..."

I've been reading Lovecraft recently, so I'm ready for anything. But, in the slim off-chance that some crawling chaos born of hellish stars that drive men made by their mere appearance does NOT show up to crash the party, Wildacres looks to be promising, and a very helpful and meditative experience.

I'm mean for Chrissakes, they've got a sketch comedy show where those in attendance of the workshop get in groups and, with props and costumes, perform like it's Saturday Night in New York. If that doesn't blare fun-in-a-bun on its face, it's hard to imagine anything that does.

I submitted an excerpt from one of my novels, The Boys are Dying, in the (duh) novel class, and so now it's just a matter of marking X's on a calendar until it's time to make that drive up to Spruce Pine and see what the wide, wide world of writing is really, truly all about.

It'd be apish to try and lie and say I'm not nervous. Most likely the words would bubble like rabid foam in my mouth and I'd fall to the floor, quite confused and overloaded. The fact is, I'm pretty damn well near past nervous, graduated to fearful. I realize there's no rationale behind it, but it's mechanical: I get skittish when the thought of wholesale critiquing of my work gets brought up.

The best thing to do, I guess, is to relate to myself every day, like a Muslim prayer, that it's for the good of the mission, and that that old adage about "get as many eyes on it as you can," isn't just piss being swept up and thrown away through raging and indifferent hurricane winds.

Rereading these last few paragraphs (yes, I stop mid-writing, reread, and make meta-comments on what was just written), I'm kind of laughing. It's silly to even suggest I'm THAT worked up over the whole thing. It'll be fun. It'll be insightful. And, if anything, it'll build character.

Let's do it.

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