Often the quickest and most effective route to learning how to do something well is learning what not to do. In my years of working with novelists and short story writers, I’ve noticed a pattern of mistakes in the manuscripts that have crossed my desk. Once you become aware of them, you’re that much closer to avoiding these easy-to-slip-into traps in your own writing, and therefore well on your way to crafting engaging pieces of fiction. We’ll discuss these common trouble spots in detail, as well as how to avoid them and how to make your work stronger in their absence. We’ll also tackle some writing exercises that can you can use time and time again at your desk.
Did you win a second or third prize in last year's El Paso Writers' League contest? Then we want you to come to the September 8 meeting and read one of your entries. We know you put a lot of hard work into your writing, and you deserve the public kudos.
Of course, the 8th is also this year's contest deadline. Note that there has always been a rule against resubmitting work that's won any prize in the past. This year we'll be enforcing that rule. So if you did win 2nd or 3rd place, by all means use the judge's comments to improve it, but please don't submit it again. Submit something new.
Finally, make sure you don't confuse your stuff with anyone else's. There's so much we all download from the Internet that we can forget whose work belongs to whom. So, just as a general precaution we'll ask you to confirm that you're submitting fresh, new material.
El Paso Writers' League September Meeting - Saturday, September 8, 2:00-4:00 p.m., Dorris Van Doren Library, 551 Redd Road.
During contest package turn-in: All of you who won second or third place with one or more entries in the 2011contest will have the opportunity to read one of those entries to the membership. If you won a number of 2nd and 3rd places, please pick out your favorite and bring it to read. Also, if you felt that the judge's comments were helpful, you may share those with everyone.