Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Tales from the Writing Practicum

Last night was the weekly meeting of the Writing Practicum -- a group that I facilitate for writers who are interested in taking their writing to a new level and pushing for publication.

I am so proud of our members. They consistently produce and work at improving their craft. Their experience and styles vary greatly, but they are all improving and making great progress. I couldn't be happier for them.

For instance …

This past week, JoAnn took the plunge and started up a brand-new blog with the intention of developing a “Michigan Coffee Snitch” platform.

JoAnn is following Barbara's lead. Barbara began her Never a Barbie blog in October.

In the past month, Kelly got two new bylines!

In the past month, both Kelly and I wrote over 50,000 words and became NaNoWriMo winners.

In the past month, MaryLou signed up for NaNo and got a great jump on her brand-new novel project.

Bob is developing a series of young-reader chapter books...

Mary and Geri continue to work on their memoirs...

Janey continues to press onward with the first draft of her historical adventure / romance...

And we all are actively cheering each other on.

Writer’s Wish List

This month, Practicum members are encouraged to identify their goals for 2010 – both regular writing goals (word count, chapter completion) AND publication goals (number of new bylines, agent acquisition, platform development, publication acceptance).

Written goals keep us accountable and push us to be productive. I'm a big fan of them...

In addition to our critiques of works in progress, last night's meeting included discussion of the following:

* Harlequin's ejection from the RWA, MWA, and SFWA because of its newly launched vanity press.

* If you can type you can make a movie with your characters. (Kelly made one about Amber and Daniel, her NaNo novel heroine and hero, eating Indian food!)

* More thoughts on developing a writer's platform.

* (Last night was "Hooks and Intros" night.) Reasons why readers stop reading.

* Twitter chats for writers.

* And how to evaluate a Literary Agent.

All of this is accomplished with much laughter, digression, tangential movie and book references, comments on chicken curry, discussion of family moles, and dream casting.

So much to read. So much to write. So little time... I am eternally grateful to the Practicum for providing a much needed anchor / support group / creative outlet in the middle of my busy week.


RedHeadedQuilter said...

We couldn't do it without you Ami. You're awesome!

Ami Hendrickson said...

Oooh -- warm fuzzies! I feel like a sock in a dryer! ;)