Just back from the Western Washington SCBWI Fall retreat. Whew. Intensive is right, but with the stellar editors Cheryl Klein and Ruta Rimas headlining, we were well taken care of. Also, many thanks to the the amazing women who organized the weekend: Jolie, Laurie, Kim, & Joni. Hope I didn't miss anyone.
Now back at the keyboard, in my cold office, I'm scrambling to catch up in NaNoWriMo, but it's no big deal. I'm high on all the awesome information absorbed over the weekend. Cheryl and Ruta went over writing basics, then went deeper to really examine what makes an excellent novel. We studied the relationships between and components of PLOT, CHARACTER, and VOICE and how we as writers can use different techniques to make our stories successful.
Big compliments to Cheryl for her repeated encouragement to NOT listen if someone dictates HOW to write, because it is an intensely personal process, and to Ruta for challenging us to experiment with different writing techniques and structures until we find what works best for our story.
And now, back to NaNo.