A few years ago, I heard that a writers' retreat had sprung up on Doe Branch, just seven miles down the road from our farm.
Cool, I thought and filed the info away in what passes for my brain and pretty much forgot about it. Then, this summer at Wildacres, one of the faculty (Marjorie Hudson, whose ACCIDENTAL BIRDS OF THE CAROLINAS I blogged about a while ago) mentioned that she'd led a workshop there and what a terrific place it was.
Cool, I thought, and pretty much forgot about it.
Then, last week I got an email, asking me to lead a fiction workshop there this October.
Cool, I thought . . . and met with the director to discuss it.
So, this is the offering as seen on the Doe Branch Ink website:
Vicki’s workshop — Jump Start Your Novel — is ideal for writers starting or under way with their first book length project. The workshop follows a proven approach for Vicki and her students of all ages.
JUMP START YOUR NOVEL – The Nuts and Bolts Approach
Whether you have a novel in progress, an idea for a novel, or just the idea that you’d like to write a novel, this is the workshop for you. It was a workshop like this that started Vicki’s writing career (six novels published and counting) and a workshop like this that has resulted in completed novels from a number of her students.
During morning meetings, Vicki will offer guidance in the basics of setting, plot, characterization, and dialogue with practical and cautionary information about seeking an agent, submitting a manuscript, and building a career. There will be some brief in-class writing prompts and there will be short (1-2 pages) assignments (which may incorporate the writer’s work in progress) written outside of class time. These assignments will be discussed during the next day’s workshop. Afternoon and evenings will be free for writing, rest, reflection, or relaxation. Vicki will be available most afternoons for one on one conferences. The text will be the highly acclaimed Don’t Sabotage Your Submission by career manuscript editor Chris Roerden (Bella Rosa books –ISBN 978-1-933523-31-6.)
It really sounds pretty idyllic -- no more than eight workshop participants, meals catered by Zumas -- a quirky coffeeshop/eatery in nearby Marshall, fall in the mountains at what is usually the peak of leaf color, a beautiful, secluded location, lots of free time . . . There could even be a field trip to our farm -- to talk about creating a fictional setting from a real place . .
If any of you are interested, there's much more info HERE about Doe Branch Ink -- and I'll try to answer questions if I know the answers.
This could be the start of something big . . .