This was my second year teaching at the writer’s workshop Viable Paradise on Martha’s Vineyard, MA. I have no idea how to talk about it. I mean, there’s only so many times you can say, “Holy crap, wow!” before it gets old. But, holy crap, wow.
I can’t mention the students by name, because I’ll leave someone out, and that would be wrong. But, like last year, they were all as geeked about writing process as me. Amazing, amazing week.
Thanks to my roomie, Stevie Chuck, who did several wonderful things (including talking Jenphalian into showing up) capped by swapping rooms at Just The Right Time. Patrick gave a talk about publishing history and its current state that I thought was going to be dull and academic until suddenly it came into a focus with a snap of, “this is why your career is where it is.” And music; fun, fun music. Teresa on exposition was her brilliant self, and then she cured my scurvy. Forever. Jim and Dr. Doyle, who do the parts of this that I could never do, were wonderful throughout. Bear spoke of plotting and a bit more came into focus; I’ll be trying some of it out in my current book. Scott was delightful, and his explanation of plot tomatoes cleared that up wonderfully. Sherwood? It astonishes me how small she is, for having that much knowledge; you’d think she’d need to be bigger to contain it all.
And the staff. Mac makes things work, Bart makes things happen, Chris is the one who is always there when something needs doing. I’m tempted to leave Pippen out, to continue the joke, but I can’t on account of how much work she does (and the fact that she’s utterly adorbz).
But, really, the students made it all magical. There was a moment during a critique session when one of them applied (perfectly) a subtle and nuanced approach learned in a critique the previous day. You could feel the learning taking place. That’s the sort of shit I live for. Well, that and writing. They kind of go together.
Off to Milehicon in Denver this weekend; I wonder if I’ll have come down by then?