The Watchtower of Destruction: The Ferrett's Journal - Clarion Fallout
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First off, thanks to everyone who offered me congratulations the other day. I'm obviously thrilled, and yet pants-fillingly scared at the same time, for a multitude of reasons. But every opportunity comes sheathed in a glorious wrapper of utter terror.... Or at least it does for me.
People asked, "You'll blog everything you know, right?" and the answer is, sadly, "Probably not." I'm told that Clarion is incredibly work-intensive - not only will I have to write a story a week and revise it, but I'll have to read eighteen other stories and critique them. I'll be obliged to be up at 7:30 every morning to go to class, and then I'll have to do the usual maintenance work on SCG. And then, of course, I assume there will be "getting to know ya" talks from my classmates, and schmooping with my wife back home, whom I will miss terribly, along with a couple of close friends I'll also probably be panging for.
My blogging is something I do in my off time.
(Like today. I have two large essays I want to write, one on coincidence and the other on Bear Stearns, but I a) overslept thanks to a cold and b) have a boatload of work to do for SCG today. All work and no play makes Jack a dull blog.)
I'd love to share in live-time, but I think I shan't have time to live. Plus, blogging about people as I get to know them is always weird, so I think any fanboy squeeing about any author is going to be downplayed if I think they have a shot at reading it and then asking me, "So you really think my breath smells like angels?"
No worries, I will tell you the important lessons and the experience..... But I'll probably be too busy learning them to chronicle them as they happen. (Though I am sorely tempted to offer a special service charge to open up my mad Clarion liveblogging skillz - "Pay me money to offset my tuition and I'll give you access to a friends-only blog that gives you the seminar as I see it, live! It's as close to Clarion as you'll experience without six weeks' off!" - but not only would that be vaguely sleazy, but I might die of exhaustion trying to do it. Could use the cash, though.)
The universe, however, wants me to join Facebook. My friend Eric Meyer did it last week, and it turns out the Clarion 2008-ers now have their own Facebook place where they frolic and dance among themselves. If I don't want to be left out of the summer camp cliques that are already doubtlessly forming, I must hop on-board.
Also, in case you're curious, the other LJ persons I know who are Clarion folk are glorioushubris and kehrli. Dunno how much they'll be blogging, either, but if you're rabid to know about the process you can but try. Also, when they publish their glorious novels I'm sure it'll be announced there, so you might wanna friend 'em now and save the time.
(EDIT: And kehrli has her own webcomic, Moralicide. I really have no idea how they'll be able to tell the difference between the one LJ-bloggin' webcomic writer and the other one. I think it's odd that out of 200 applicants, at least fully one-ninth of the Clarion population will now consist of LJ-totin' comickers.)
|Date:||April 4th, 2008 02:28 pm (UTC)|| |
are you on facebook with your birthname or nickname?
Ferrett Steinmetz. Which I consider to be my "real" name, for what it's worth.
(Yes, I know you found me.)
|Date:||April 4th, 2008 04:22 pm (UTC)|| |
I am addicted to the "pieces of flair" application.
Well, we weren't expecting a live feed.
("And we're now getting back to The Ferrett, who is attending Clarion Writing Workshop in San Diego, and finally found some time to take a break and give us a bit of insight about what he is learning." - "Sorry guys. I have a metric hellalot of work to do. ttyl." - "Thanks. That was The Ferrett, live from San Diego.")
But we sure hope you will provide us an extensive review of what happened and what you learned as soon as you get the chance.
you might want to blog the things you are learning at clarion, just so you have a record of it for later, in case you want to go back and look at your clarion notes a few years from now. And I know you will be taking notes.
I never take notes. I'm awful at it.
I keep 'em in my head, generally.
oh well, good luck then. If you don't take notes, I'm sure you'll be too busy to post. I don't think I've ever heard of the clarion workshop as being fun. It's hard difficult work, and you pay them a lot of money. But worth it.
Actually, the money's reasonable. Not inexpensive, mind you, but considering what people pay for college (and what most people get from college), it's up there.
I tend to take pretty extensive notes (only way I can pay attention in lecture situations) so if my notes are at all readable, I'll probably be posting them under friends-lock on lj each night. Then again, I also tend to take notes in ways that make sense only to me, and I'm definitely not going to have time to translate from Sarah-brain to normal-English.
Hiya! You know Tobias Buckell, so you are clearly awesome (I attended a teen writing workshop called Alpha that he staffs at -- he tried to teach me how to throw a Frisbee, and failed.)
I've friended you.
Well, I dunno if merely meeting him at a con and doing two panels with him counts as being awesome, but I'll take it for now. He was a very easy conversationalist.
I just can't take notes. It gets in my way. I've always envied those who can.
My friend Sophia is going to be there too. <3
Really? Awesome! Hook us up!
I need friends at Clarion! I'm intimidated by new people.
|Date:||April 4th, 2008 04:56 pm (UTC)|| |
Yet witty enough to fake otherwise. Take a flask, you'll be fine *g*
I'm even worse of an introvert when I'm drunk. I'll just have to fake it on pure charm.
|Date:||April 5th, 2008 11:59 am (UTC)|| |
I think you can manage that. The flask is not for courage though - it's for sharing. I thought you said you wanted to be the cool kid at summer camp?
Not quite. What he DID say was he didn't want to be the uncool kid. Granted, being the cool kid is one way not to be the uncool one.
But I think you're right, coming with something to share (booze, cookies, games...) is a good way to befriend new people. And I think he could get along with anybody just by sharing some of his crazy stories.
~smiling broadly for you here~
Serious congratulations, and good luck x
|Date:||April 4th, 2008 03:23 pm (UTC)|| |
From what I understand, it's going to be really hard as it is, so if we don't hear from you for a while, I'll definitely understand. As far as it being too hard, or whatever, don't worry about it: You're there to learn, and you will.
Good luck, this is awesome!
Everyone I've known who's gone to Clarion has basically disappeared from the Internet while they were there. It's that intense.
I'm hoping to go to Clarion West in 2009 or 2010, dependent on 1) them accepting me and 2) me being in a job-space where I can take the time off. #1's harder than #2.
|Date:||April 4th, 2008 04:42 pm (UTC)|| |
I'd want to focus on taking it in, not spilling it out again. What a great opportunity!
|Date:||April 4th, 2008 04:53 pm (UTC)|| |
You'll be deeply missed, but your only obligations while gone are to yourself, your family and your craft. Run with it, man. Fly with it.
Any plans for SoCal gatherings before/after/during?
Depends on the workload. It's supposedly quite gruelling, so though there are a lot of people in the area I'd like to meet up with, I don't know that I'll have the time.
So one week. We'll see after that.
I would think that any lessons would be better with age-- your mind may be blown by a bit of writing advice, but it may be better to figure out what about the context set it up to be mindblowing. Likewise, you may think that some tidbit is useless, but a month after the workshop realize that you've reached it yourself.
|Date:||April 4th, 2008 05:40 pm (UTC)|| |
If the point of the workshop is to do actual writing, I not only expect but insist that you not blog
So will you be coming to your devoted fans at all for assistance with your tuition, or do you have that covered?
You've mentioned the cost twice, so I figured I'd ask. :)
No. We can afford it. It's a hit to the ol' savings, but it's so worth it.
If I was holding a fundraiser, it'd be for others.
Phone posts? Being "That Guy" with the tape recorder memos-to-self?
(I followed you over from kehrli's blog - I got waitlisted, so I'm tracking down the people who got in to say congrats. I'm very excited for all of you.)
Thanks! I'm shaking in my boots.
|Date:||April 5th, 2008 03:44 am (UTC)|| |
I am also terrified and excited about Clarion. My LJ posts during the workshop will probably consist of: "Tired. Writing. Avoiding sunlight."
Seems like the Clarion folks would be somewhat opposed to you doing a blog-dump of everything you're learning there, anyway.