The Maass effect – awesome

To workshop or not to workshop? Wait, is that the question? It is? Really?

Okay then, here’s my answer.

WORKSHOP. FOR PETE’S SAKE WORKSHOP. I can say that with authority CAPS because I now have one in the can *smuggy smile* jk, it’s a regular smile.

I just got back from the Windy City RWA Chapter 8-hour master class/workshop “Writing 21st Century Fiction” with literary agent and author Donald Maass. That’s also the title of one of his books.

Instead of being exhausted I am exhilarated. What fun! What knowledge gained!  And even though Seabiscuit is on TV (a most excellent movie) I rushed home to put his tips to work on my manuscript due back to my publisher, Red Moon Romance, in, let me see, omigod, DAYS (I will be revising until my fingers cramp, Cori, I swear, right after this).

(I forgot to tell you guys. I am officially an author with Red Moon Romance. Yippee! First book, Skye Falling, comes out later this year. Double Yippee!! Now back to my regularly scheduled blog post)

It helped that Mr. Maass is a great speaker – a funny, blunt New Yorker who thinks his pizza is better than ours here in Chicago, HAHAHA fool – but it’s his decades in the business that made everyone in the crowded room sit up, shut up, and take copious notes.

He talked about trends in the business (mermaid novels are a thing and overdone? Are you kidding me? But yes, it is apparently a thing). We brought our WIPs and picked apart our scenes using his techniques.  He talked about writers shying away from the truth in their writing and about how the internal feelings of our characters are too often neglected in favor of a faster pace and why taking your protagonist to the point of despair resonates with readers.  And so much more. Hours and hours more.

It was fan-freaking-tastic layered with awesome and just a hint of jiggly joy to be immersed in the craft of writing being guided by a master.

Although I don’t have any comparisons to make as this was my first “event” I think the women of Windy City RWA did a fantastic job. If there were any glitches (aside from a few microphone burps) they went unnoticed by me. Even the food was great. I met lots of interesting writers, nearly all women, who wrote contemporary romance, paranormals, thrillers, comedies, mysteries, and historicals. That was awesome.

Whee! I cannot wait to dig into my novel. Thanks, Mr. Maass! Thanks, Windy City RWA. You guys were my first and all that follow will be compared to you  🙂