Writing on the Red Cedar

“They’re just not serious about writing,” was my super-judgmental and not-very-insightful perspective on people who talked about writing, maybe even went to writing-related events, but didn’t actually, you know, write.  No new short stories.  No energy for reworking stuff in the hopper.  How hard can it be to churn out 500 words a day?  If you watch one TV show a night, you should be able to write something every day.

I should be writing here!

I should be writing here!

Oh, but now the shoe’s on the other foot.  Because in 2014, here are the number of words I wrote, fiction-wise:  Zero.  And here are the number of times I took my current work-in-progress out of the drawer:  Zero.   And here are ALL the things I did to set myself up for writing:  One.  Yep, one.  I registered for Write on the Red Cedar.

Write on the Red Cedar is sponsored by the Capital City Writers Association (of which I am a member but have done, wait for it… zero!).  It kicks off with a cocktail party on Friday night and then Saturday is dedicated to education that accomplishes two goals:  1. Helps writers improve their writing and 2. Gets them motivated!

“This,” I told myself, “this will ensure that I get my act together.”  Surely I will regain my focus, with January 16, 2015 looming.

And loom it did!  And now the day is today and dang it, I’m excited.  My good friend Addy Whitehouse is driving up from Skokie to spend the weekend and hit the conference with me.  She has, I assure you, written thousands and thousands of words this year.  She is kicking butt.

Don Maass

Don Maass

We also signed up for the four-hour post-conference hands-on workshop with uber-agent Donald Maass, author of Writing the Breakout Novel, and other helpful writing books.  I will share that I am petrified, petrified, of Don Maass.  He read my first mystery eons ago and passed, although he did say some sorta nice things.  But I will put on my big girl pants and go because the chance to learn something fabulous is, well, fabulous.  Did I say I was petrified?

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