The Michael Perry workshop was this morning.
I think I was worried that he would have us do some writing, and then read our work aloud. Which seems silly in retrospect, especially since I’m not exactly shy about sharing the things I write (hence this blog). But blogging to strangers (who I’ll likely never meet) and writing to peers in a Fiction Writing class is different than writing to famous authors.
Even if they’re Michael Perry and utterly approachable. (See below).
Here are some of the notes I jotted down during the workshop. I didn’t take meticulous notes, as I kept getting caught up in the stories he was telling, but this is what I managed:
1. Learn about writer’s rights: copyrights, etc.
2. Self-publishing requires promotion: sell books at craft shows, events, etc. Take down names of buyers, send postcards to those people when you publish something else.
3. While in the editing process: make a little booklet out of one of your chapters. Staple pages together, and carry it with you to mark up while you’re in a deer stand, in a waiting room, etc.
4. Key to creative non-fiction: get your facts straight!
5. The only power you have over your reader is trust.
6. Choose words for their taste over their meaning (Dylan Thomas).
7. Read what you’re trying to write.
8. Work at writing every day.