Posts Tagged ‘writing workshops’

Whistler Readers and Writers FestivalI recently attended the Whistler Readers and Writers Festival. With a full range of workshops to choose from, it seemed like a good expense. Although, having to be there by 8am on a Saturday morning was less than ideal.

So my friend and I (both aspiring writers) agreed to meet at 6am on a dark street corner where we would hopefully find a co-op car to drive up the Sea-to-Sky. Thankfully she was organized because I showed up to a lovely warm, bright orange Toyota Yaris a few minutes late, minus the coffee, with sopping wet hair.  

Already a bit nervous at the fact that my dear English friend would not only be driving the route to Whistler for the first time, but had hardly ever driven on our side of the road, I buckled up and braced myself for a wild ride.

We got stuck behind what must have been an early morning seniors Porsche driving club just outside of Squamish, but thankfully they turned off for their Tim Horton’s and we cruised the rest of the way to Creekside in Whistler.

For $25 a session, the workshop schedule covered everything from Characters in Action to How to Write a One-Page Screenplay to Trimming the Fat.

My first session on pitching to magazines in a cold economic climate was useful in explaining how to get the most from one article by re-writing it, re-formatting it and re-printing it in different types of publications. The instructor also covered supporting materials for online publishing, such as the podcast, slide shows, video clips, sound bites and so forth. The one point that stood out in my mind was the necessity for writers to have a blog to not only provide a link to potential editors for showcasing sample work, but for the ongoing download of thoughts, stories and other creative dabblings. It was something that had already been on my radar, but after this session, it went to the top of my list.

Hence, this blog.

My other noteworthy session was on turning ideas into children’s television/cartoon scripts. Already working on a children’s adventure story with an environmental conservation type theme, I was looking forward to presenting my idea. I didn’t have to worry about getting an opportunity to speak directly to the instructor, as there was only one other writer in the session. The three of us spent the afternoon sitting around a table chatting about the ins and outs of writing scripts, finding agents, and the tight-knit community that can either help you along or put a wrench in your plans if you don’t play nice. I came out of the session with the personal email address of the instructor to send a script to once I have it ready for outside eyes, so she can help get it to where it needs to go.

That alone was worth the $25.

Don’t miss the Whistler Readers and Writers Festival next year: http://www.theviciouscircle.ca/retreat/index.php

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