I’m in Oregon, having completed the first of two weekend workshops, which will bookend five days of a writing retreat. We studied story structure, which I thought I mostly knew, but apparently my definition of “story structure” was much, much more limited than I realized… Not nearly the level of epiphany as the Marketing Workshop last year, but hoo boy, did I have some light bulbs go off! Definitely some new tools for my writer’s toolbox, as they say. And at least one new short story idea I’m quite chuffed about.
I flew up on Thursday and met up with Leslie, Cindie, and Dave. Traffic was horrid, so we stopped for a late lunch/early dinner at a hole-in-the-wall Mexican place before really getting on the road. Still more traffic (a huge thanks to Leslie for driving through that with great skill and calmness!), but finally it thinned out, and finally we were in Lincoln City.
That night we hung out with a few other folks who’d come in early, as well as Dean, Steve, and Chris, before Leslie, Chris, and I repaired to our room to polish off a couple bottles of wine. (Dean stopped by to drop something off for Leslie and stayed for ages to chat, and also showed off his bartending skills by pouring us wine. Hee.)
Leslie and I are rooming together, and that’s proving to be a blast. We’ve known each other through a number of workshops, and while I had a pretty good sense that we’d get along well, I’m delighted just how comfortably we room together. Especially since her bed is in the living room of the cabin, and my bedroom doesn’t have a door, just a beaded curtain. (Groovy, man.)
We’ve managed to walk on the beach several times, which is always a highlight. The round trip takes 45-60 minutes and includes a nice uphill on the way back; we plan to have glutes of steel by the time we leave…
Originally I was going to just have a writing retreat for the five days between the two workshops, but after experiencing the Story Structure workshop and talking to Dean, I’ve decided to do a one-on-one session with him to work on some advanced structure issues. I’m not yet sure what my precise issue is, but I trust we’ll find it and he’ll beat it out of me with a club (or at least some hardcore assignments).
Now, however, I must dash: I have to finish a scene on PUM and get it off to Teresa before I meet with Dean to get tonight’s assignment, and I’d also like to maybe work on a short story if I have time. I still have a bunch of stuff to bring ya’ll up to speed on, though, like how my reading went, and some very very very exciting news about Ken!