Orson Scott Card’s Writing Workshop

IMG_0856 (480x640)It’s almost 10 o’clock on a Tuesday night and I just wrapped up attending OSC’s Writing Workshop.  I think I’ll have a lot to share/discuss over the coming week(s) as I process what I learned there, but I wanted to say now that it was an excellent experience.

Exhausting.  (As you can tell from my lack of making the picture and the text line up nicely, although I just cheated by adding this.  Haha.)

And I’m not even one of the “lucky” baker’s dozen that are staying on for the Bootcamp that stretches over the rest of the week.

(I put lucky in quotes there because yesterday I was in class or interacting on our assignment from 9 am to 11 pm and today was a 9 to 9 day.  And those folks have four more days of this?  Wow.  Props to them.  I’ll be sleeping in and relaxing tomorrow while they try to crank out a full short story.)

Like I said, I’m sure that I’ll have far more to post on what I learned going forward, but I just wanted to get this post up while it was still fresh in my mind and before I got distracted by something else.  (‘Cause, ya know, that happens sometimes.)

I would definitely recommend the workshop to anyone who writes fiction and isn’t regularly making professional sales.  I think (and this is my purely subjective, uninformed opinion) that it’s a valuable class for anyone from the most raw beginner to that level.

I had read his Characters & Viewpoint as well as the SFF writing binder that he wrote for Writer’s Digest and he did cover a lot of that in class, but it was worth it to hear it again and to be able to ask follow-up questions live and in person.

So, someone who wasn’t familiar with viewpoints or his MICE structure would have learned about them for the first time in the class and someone who already was, like me, would be able to deepen or refresh their understanding.

I figure if you’re regularly making sales then you’ve figured out most of what the class teaches already.  (And he did say in class that if someone sends him a submission to the Bootcamp and he thinks it’s flawless that he’ll request the rest of the story and did at least once buy the story and refuse to let that person “waste” their money on coming to the class.)

Obviously, I was familiar with his approach on some of this before and it’s one of the reasons I chose his class.  I liked the way he discussed show vs. tell in the Characters & Viewpoint book.  And I also liked the fact that he’s not a butt in chair every single day of your life writer and a break the rules if that’s what you need to do kind of guy.  Which is what works for me.

So, I may be biased in that sense because I sought out a writer whose approach to writing resonated with my own.  But, honestly, that’s what I needed because that’s the way I write.  (Turns out he’s also an INFP, so that could have something to do with it.)

If that’s not you, if you need rigid structure and absolutes, then this wouldn’t be the class for you.  Because he’s not your kind of writer.  His class isn’t a step-by-step “how to write a successful story every time” class.  (And if anyone offers you that, well, I have some ocean front property in Arizona I’d love to sell you, too…)

Anyway.  It’s late.  Just wanted to mention it now.  I assume if you put up with reading my crap here and you’re in that range that the class might be a good choice for you, too.

(Oh.  And if anyone from the class happens to stumble across this blog, I was the obnoxious one.  Haha.)

(Also, the picture above is from Uinta National Forest–I happened to wander my way there on Sunday when I had half a day to kill.  It was fun.  Nothing like a road that’s almost too narrow to fit two cars across.)




About M. H. Lee

M.H. Lee is a speculative fiction writer currently residing in Colorado whose stories are sometimes dark, sometimes funny, sometimes darkly funny, but hopefully always thought-provoking and entertaining.
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