With thanks to the folks who responded to our survey, we are pleased to announce that 2021 will be the year of workshops here at Keuka Writes!
We hope this will give all of you who participate an opportunity to work through one or more complete pieces, start to finish, and wind up with a product of which you are truly proud. We would absolutely love it if some of the pieces that develop end up destined for a future issue of Bluff & Vine, but that won’t be a requirement; you can bring anything you wish to work on, with no requirements as to setting or theme.
Workshops—virtual for the time being—will be conducted monthly, with participation limited to those who submit work. During the virtual event, Alex and Bethany and the other participating writers will offer constructive criticism.
A reminder that constructive criticism can sometimes be blunt but should never be unkind, and should focus much more on content than mechanics; this won’t be a copy editing club, but rather a true opportunity to hone your work.
If you intend to participate in the process, we ask that you submit pages for review at least a week ahead of our meetings. Don’t be shy, don’t be afraid, don’t be nervous—everyone’s work will be raw! The point is to improve. And so we all shall. (There’s also no obligation to stick with one piece indefinitely. If you get as far as you can with a story in three months and feel like it’s finished, then you can start another one. Same idea if something’s just not working—you are allowed to abandon a piece and move on, no harm.)
We should also mention that while we love our poets, this workshop will be focused on prose; the two are just too different for us to work on them in tandem. We are also best equipped to handle fiction, though fiction-like media, such as creative memoir, should fit in well. If you want to workshop anything further off that path, we’ll give it our best shot, but we hope you understand if we aren’t able to be as helpful the further a piece strays from fiction. (If you’re unsure if the piece you’d like to workshop will be feasible for this group, contact us in advance with a description and we’ll try to determine whether we can work with it.)
To be added to our email list, participate in a workshop, and submit material, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’re excited to continue sharing, learning, and writing with all of you!