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Writer's Retreat

Tonight kicks off the Writer's Retreat with Beth Meacham, scarlettina, alg, and 30 other writers, agents, and editors, with a dinner and drinks.

Each of the writers attending the Retreat submitted the first 20 pages of their book to writersweekend. I posted a locked entry about the beginner I read earlier. Over lunch today I finished reading the fifth and final manuscript, and it was my favorite of the bunch, a traditional fantasy with a great hook and an engaging POV character. I'm debating what to say to strengthen the manuscript, and how to encourage the writer to continue his or her good habits. It's much easier to critique someone who already has mastered most of the craft than it was to critique the raw amateur.

Oddly enough, I've assumed that most of the anonymous manuscripts I've read and critiqued are by women — only one makes me think it might have been written by a man. It's a guessing game, and I look forward to meeting some of the authors in person tomorrow.

Meeting the editors and agent will be more formal, as I expect they'll do some lecturing, Q&A, and structured talks. Meeting Mrs. Meacham will probably turn me into a fannish idiot: she has edited many of my favorite authors, including Tim Powers, Judith Tarr, Greg Bear, Sheri Tepper, and Jack Vance. Is it possible to be a editing fanboy?


Nov. 12th, 2005 01:20 am (UTC)
Can I be your fanboy?
Nov. 12th, 2005 01:25 am (UTC)
You can be my fangirl, cuz I am a pretty good editor, after all.

Wait... why are we having this conversation on TMK's LJ? ;D
Nov. 12th, 2005 01:32 am (UTC)
Because I'm his fanboy, too.
Nov. 12th, 2005 01:39 am (UTC)
Yeah. Me too.

Sorry, the_monkey_king, but you're cool and well-known in da biz... so sometimes its hard to not fanboy those times when we hang out. ;)
Nov. 12th, 2005 02:07 am (UTC)
Everybody does it. We elevate people based on their work, which is fine, but we forget they are people, somehow.

The last time for me was when I met William Gibson. I managed a "hello" and a "thank you for signing" and not much more. I was just too freaked out. The Father of Cyberpunk! Right there! Kinda skinny!
Nov. 12th, 2005 07:15 am (UTC)
I've met Gibson a few times. I have just about every book he's done signed at my regular bookstore here in town, which was nearly the first place he *ever* signed. I never manage more than a few words.

Here's a funny anecdote about him: he's been known to go for late-night Dairy Queen near my old high school.
Nov. 13th, 2005 04:02 am (UTC)
(3rd try, OMG my brain) (this one will work, I promise)
I behaved very well with Connie Willis, but that's because my gigantic fangirling out episode with actor Ray Wise during the popularity of "Twin Peaks" embarrassed me so much that I swore never again.

While I'm here... are you and shellyinseattle game for the November 20th pre-birthday bash at Marrakesh?

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