I was offline yesterday because I took the day to attend Don Maass’ workshop up in Westminster, MA. I’ve read the books (of course, and, actually in several versions sometimes) but it was interesting to actually see the exercises put into practice, live and close up, in the classroom setting.
The structure of the day included a worskhop in the morning — this one focused on plot and adding layers and I even took some notes myself for ideas to pass on to clients for recent manuscripts that had been turned in. After a casual lunch during which staff and students mixed and mingled, the students alternatively worked on their “homework assignments” and met with staff for 1/2 hour intensive discussions of their work-in-progress. I eavesdropped on a couple of those held by Lisa Rector of Editing Express while I worked on a client manuscript. Before dinner, I held a general Q&A session with the students, answering a variety of insightful questions about the publishing industry. Dinner was another mix and mingle (and the pulled pork was pretty good). After sitting in on the staff meeting, I wended my way home, arriving pretty darn late and quite sleepy. It was a well-spent day. I learned a lot and it gave me much to think about in terms of intensive workshops versus the more usual conferences with panels and pitch sesssions.
I’ll continue the Agent Manners entries next week. Though it seems like most of the questions I have left are about submissions timing so I might just do a general entry on that topic since it seems to be a question of great interest… and confusion…. Meanwhile, have a good weekend everyone.