Friday, October 13, 2006

Galas and Workshops and other “events” in a writer’s life

There comes a time when one must “dress up” and at least pretend to be a grown-up. I’m very fortunate, I think in that those times don’t come around that often for me. I’m not real big on “social chit-chat” or initiating conversations with strangers. Like most writers I know, at heart I’m an introvert and am drained, not energized by crowds.

There are a few exceptions to that rule. One is getting together to talk about or learn about writing, the other is being with good friends or family (though sometimes one really should take a break from one’s family).

The last weekend in September was definitely one of those occasions. The Midwest Fiction Writers, a chapter of Romance Writers of America celebrated our 25th Anniversary…and boy, did we celebrate. How about a “Gala” dinner on a beautiful Minnesota evening with music, fabulous food, Barbara Samuel as the guest speaker and a raffle with a chance to sit at Barbara’s table or Bob Mayer’s table or Jenny Crusie’s table…

Yes, we were star-studded…Rosemary Heim, Lois Greiman, Susan Kay Law, Connie Brockway, Kathleen Eagle, Wendy Rosnau, Tate Halloway, Helen Brenna, and I’m sure I missed a few others…names you’ve seen on the bookshelf at your favorite bookstore…they were there looking glamorous. The aspiring writers of the chapter were there as well…including yours truly (and some friends).

On Saturday morning, bright and early, 100(+/- a few) people showed up to catch Bob Mayer & Jenny Crusie – “Living the Dream” – in their MUST-SEE/HEAR workshop for writers. They covered it all – and they did it in tag-team fashion – with humor, examples from their collaboration and from their own works as well as from popular movies and TV shows. Bob & Jenny managed to break down the “how-to” so that it makes sense, so that anyone who really wants to can follow and improve their own writing.

Yes, there are times when one should dress up and pay attention to the wisdom others are sharing…who knows what you will learn.

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