My strength, maybe even my muse, has always been found in the classroom. If I have to write a 10 page paper on the War of 1812 and it’s due in two weeks, I’m on it. I’ll spend 13 days doing research and making notes, but in that last day, I’ll pull together a 12 page paper complete with bibliography and bar graphs.
I have three hours to write 500 words comparing/contrasting Shakespeare and Chaucer? No problem.
But I suck at leisure writing. By leisure writing, I’m referring to writing in my free time, monitored by no one but my inner critic. I always imagine myself sitting by the beach with my laptop, churning out page after page, but without a deadline of some sort, I struggle to get it off the ground. I’m an instant gratification girl and, let’s face it, writing a book is NOT an instant gratification activity. Not in the same way as, say, running to the store and buying a doughnut.
I need the structure that a class, workshop, or conference provides. I need deadlines.
But even more than that, I crave the energy I get from writing classes. Spending a weekend at a writing conference, surrounded by people of like mind, recharges my batteries. I can take that magical energy home with me and it keeps me focused for several months.
But as with most flames, this candle burns out and I need to replace it with a new one.
Sadly, the writing conference I attended last October with SCWW is not happening this year. It might not happen next year either. As disappointing as this is, it may have turned out to be a blessing, because it has forced me to look elsewhere for the inspiration I need.
I found it with The Writer’s Workshop in Asheville, North Carolina. It’s further away from my home, so my ability to attend workshops will be fairly limited. But this October, I’m going to what may be the perfect workshop for me. They are offering a one day workshop called “Writing Historical Fiction.” Instead of a conference full of workshops that, while inspiring, aren’t directly applicable to what I’m working on, I can zone right in on getting the specific help I need.
You know what they say about when one door closes…
I registered for the class last week and booked my hotel room yesterday.
Bring on the writing pixie dust!