Friday, January 06, 2006

Zed and I visit the writers' group at Borders

Zed and I read this article in the Chapel Hill News about Nancy Peacock's free writing workshops at Border's bookstore. It sounded like it would fit right in with the Artist's Way experiment and my resolution to "get out more" so I convinced Zed to come with me to scope it out last night.

I was prescient and got us there early so we could get places at the table. Later arrivals pulled up chairs in orderly radii. Eventually there were about forty aspiring writers in attendance!

Zed and a girl with pink hair were the youngest while the eldest were perhaps in their eighties. We had poets; published and unpublished novel writers; a professor transitioning from academic articles to science fiction; survivors of all ilks doing therapeutic pieces; travel writers; journallers; and lookers-on.

For the first prompt, Peacock read us Billy Collins' poem "Some Days" (which I blogged in September) and gave us this title: "A Miniature World." We then spent fifteen minutes writing. No stopping and no editing allowed.

A few of the bolder or more forward attendees then read their pieces. Brief, complimentary comments followed.

The second prompt was: "TV makes [fill in the blank] look easy."

What I learned at the workshop:
  • lots of people write worse than I do;

  • lots of people write stuff their friends are tired of listening to;

  • lots of people write better than I do;

  • I have been blogging so long that my responses sounded like blog entries and it's time to do something different.
Well, next time I'll try something different. I will go again.

After the second prompt, Zed scooted off to talk to the girl with pink hair. It turns out he took her on a date in eighth grade (well, I took them since he was too young to drive). I invited her to have dinner with us afterwards and she was fun: sweet, enthusiastic, giggly, and an appreciative audience for the recreational bickering Zed and I have refined to an exquisite shtick over the years.

We had so much fun, I was almost (but not quite) late getting home for the beginning of Alborada.

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At 2:38 PM, Blogger kenju said...

So THAT"S what you call it....recreational bickering...LOL
Mr. kenju and I do this all the time. My kids call us "The Bickersons".

The writer's workshop[ sound like fun. Is CHapel HIll the only place they have them?

At 5:04 PM, Blogger melinama said...

Hmm, as far as I know Nancy Peacock is only doing this in Chapel Hill, but there are writers' workshops EVERYWHERE. Maybe check listings in your paper... ?

At 4:12 AM, Blogger AJ said...

Y-you mean there are OTHER forms of writing besides blog entries?

Wow Melinama...I learn something new everytime I visit here!


I'm sure the "lots of people" who write better than you were in the vast minority... :)

Cute story...

At 5:12 AM, Blogger Badaunt said...

What a nice way to kick off your 'must get out more' resolution.

(And what's wrong with blog entries, anyway?:-)


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