Week 5. Ellen Datlow gave us an editor’s perspective, including: information about markets, the importance of the first read (you can only read a story for the first time once), and insights into working with an editor on revisions. Ellen was great both for her perspective on writing and for being a wonderfully fun person to hang out with. Writing-wise, this week was a particularly stressful week for me, I didn’t get the idea for what I wanted to write until mid-week (which wasn’t entirely unusual for me), AND the idea was pretty complicated so it took me a couple of days to work out all the details before I could actually start writing.

Week 6 – Vernor Vinge faced the challenge of coming into the workshop fresh when we students were all exhausted, but he met the challenge admirably. Vernor was our hard SF instructor, and the breadth and depth of his science knowledge is absolutely astounding. Add to that the fact that he is a genuinely sweet and nice person, and we could not have had a better instructor for our last week.

The dynamic of week 6 was very odd, because for the first time in the workshop I found myself without a writing deadline (I turned in on Sunday, so the entire 6th week I didn’t write). I spent as much time as possible hanging out with my classmates, and the week was tinged with sadness because I knew at the end of the week we’d have to say goodbye. On Friday we did our last round of crits and then that night we had our last party. We left the house in ones and twos starting Friday night. I left near the end (since I live locally I didn’t have a flight to catch) because I wanted to stay with everyone as long as possible.

Overall, the workshop was intense, but good. I’m grateful to have had the opportunity to attend, and hope that I will be able to make use of what I’ve learned. Later, I’ll post a summary of the experience as a whole, and (if I can think of anything useful) some advice for people considering the workshop.

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