#1 From Brenda!
In mid-September I spent two full days at the League of Utah Writers’ annual convention. One of the authors who taught mini-classes also gave the Key Note address at the Saturday night dinner and awards event: Johnny Worthen. At that last event something happened I don’t ever remember having seen in that venue (I’d I’ve been an active member of that group since the late ’70s: the ENTIRE audience jumped to its feet and gave a long, loud standing ovation: clapping-loud, yelling-loud!
I cannot give you his asides (which were many), or imitate his delivery (fast, Energetic, funny, touching,
etc. etc., etc.) but I’d like to share a few thoughts from it every now and then. Johnny is a native of Utah, specifically the Holladay and Sandy areas; he earned his Bachelor’s Degree in English Lit, with a minor in Classical Studies, and likes to good-naturedly brag that he “reads Latin.” He’s also added a Masters Degree in American Studies with a film emphasis. He followed this up by saying “With training like this I naturally and inevitably ended up the fast food service industry.” (Appreciative chortling from the audience.)
Among his “dozen other careers,” he claims to have opened a bagel shop in Oregon and made sandwiches for years before “the rains of the Northwest threatened to wash my soul away and I returned to the sand from which I was bred and came home . . . more businesses, more changes. Less rain.”
So my question to you is, what did you REALLY think you would be when you grew up? And what other jobs did you do in the meantime? What job(s) employ you now? How has your life changed in the last three to five years? Is it for better or worse? How can you make it better than “better” now? How (or DO you even) embrace the writer’s life?
Johnny quoted Sharon Olds: “I was a late bloomer. But anyone who blooms at all, ever, is very lucky.”
#2 From Cheryl
I finished! Well, I finished a first draft.
It’s really short (my first drafts always are.)
It’s really bad.
I’ve discovered I overuse the words “just,” “looked,” and “suddenly.” Oh, and of course, “I.”
But there’s something. There are words on the page. I have something to edit, to try to work with.
My message to all of you: Keep going! It will be worth it! Get your butt in that chair and keep it there!
And now, the real work begins!
Using these ten words, write an important scene for your novel. And yes, you can use MORE than these words, these just need to be included. Also yes, you may add an ing and etc, if necessary.
PS We’ll try to have a few clues for next month–that’s right–NaNoWriMo is just around the corner!