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Viable Paradise XV -- Decompression

               Have you ever seen a kid stuff so much food in his mouth that he can't chew anymore? (We grown-ups never do this, of course.) That is how my brain feels right now. Viable Paradise XV has stuffed my head so full that my ability to parse it has slowed to a crawl. As @waynsdeepkimchi said, it was like summer camp for grown ups. It was also a graduate-level seminar. Oh yeah, and it was a writing workshop: a mind-bending look at my work, and a romp through the work of twenty-seven other amazing writers.
               I feel like I've jumped home while still handcuffed to VP. The Andrea-shaped hole that I left at home does not quite fit me anymore, and I am not strong enough to lift the VP experience and bring it back with me in one piece. So, first, I have to let my aching arm heal a bit (it hurts to jump while handcuffed). Then I need to start bringing VP into my life a little at a time.
               As I prepped for the workshop, I searched the web for the advice of previous VPs. Here is my contribution to that store of knowledge:
Don't be Afraid.
Don't be afraid to apply -- you are worth it.
Don't be afraid to say hi to the interesting person on the ferry or plane -- they may be on their way to VP too, and they may become a great friend.
Don't be afraid of the instructors -- they do not think your work is awful or you would not be on the island.
Don't be afraid of your fellow students -- they are in the same boat, and they want to help you.
Take a deep breath and say, "Just because someone else's writing is brilliant does not mean that my writing stinks."
It may take me months or years to synthesize all that I learned this past week, but I am making myself a promise: Vartaren's Heir will be ready for beta reading by Christmas. Hold me to that, ok guys?


( 8 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 16th, 2011 05:42 pm (UTC)
Christmas it is! (And yes, "Be brave" is one of my things to carry forwards.)
Oct. 16th, 2011 06:00 pm (UTC)
Be Brave -- I like that better. Positive commands are so much more powerful than negative ones.
Oct. 16th, 2011 07:07 pm (UTC)
Yes! (You weren't there for the conversation where Fran said, "You do ren faire, don't you?" and Steve Gould said, "Really? You need to talk to Brust, he's a rennie!"-- which totally explains his awesome coat-- and then there was a conversation about how awesome a good street cast can be.)

One of the first rules of improv is to use the phrase "yes, and..." rather than contradicting something that your fellow performer has just invented. I think this is the same thing: if you start with a positive world-expanding/motivating goal, you don't have to start with the step back to redefine where you're going.
Oct. 17th, 2011 12:48 am (UTC)
Oct. 18th, 2011 03:03 am (UTC)
Your advice is wise.

And if you're looking for beta readers come Christmas, I'm volunteering. :)
Oct. 18th, 2011 12:34 pm (UTC)
Oct. 18th, 2011 12:48 pm (UTC)
I'll hold you to it, and put my hand up as a reader if you need one. :-)
Oct. 18th, 2011 01:07 pm (UTC)
Have I mentioned lately that I have the bestest friends?
( 8 comments — Leave a comment )



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