I came back to Portland yesterday from the Writers Weekend in Moclips, Washington, and my wife returned from Indiana, so life is familiar again now.
I had a great time up in Moclips at the Ocean Crest Resort, and will blog in more detail about the experience of the Writers Weekend. Took part in workshops, socialized a bit, went for walks and runs on the beach, and even got to see Hell’s Belles (all-girl AC/DC cover band) at the nearby casino. The most fun, probably, was meeting and talking to a great variety of cool, fun and interesting writers of fiction.
The “writer gurus,” Jay Lake and David Levine both did a great job as critique group leaders, and David performed double-duty with a series of three presentations, including his “Mission to Mars” (see a more hurried version of an earlier presentation on YouTube here). Big thanks to Jay and David for their efforts, and also to Karen Junker who not only organized the event, but put up with a writer swarm filling her cabin for most of the long weekend.
I’ll say more in a subsequent blog post about some of the people I met, and specific things we did. The biggest surprise, to me at least, was the overall very high quality of the critiques given. I figured a lot of people would give other people’s stories a shallow reading and a careless critique, but everyone seemed to dig in, read the stories closely and think about them carefully, and make a sincere, good-faith effort to help each other improve the work. I look forward to staying in touch with many of the writers I met. Overall it was great fun, both stimulating and challenging, and something I’d recommend. So if you missed out on going to this year’s Writers Weekend and you’re considering going next year, I’d say it’s definitely worthwhile.