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Thread: Algonkian Writer Conferences / WebDelSol

  1. #1
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Algonkian Writer Conferences / WebDelSol

    Has anyone done one of the Algonkian workshops, or heard anything about them? Did you find your experience to be valuable?

    (http://www.webdelsol.com/Algonkian/)

  2. #2
    jacquieg
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    Algonkian

    I have just been accepted at the conference in December 2006 in Virginia. Their initilal response to me was personal, not a form, and requested more inofrmation. Upon providing that, I was informed of my acceptance.Their website states they accept only 10 people and I am currently thrilled! The syllabus is intensive, and their testimonials from alumni are from known published authors. Does anybody have a pin out there to burst my bubble? I am open to that! I have been unable to find any negative things about them on the internet. Does anybody know anything?

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    Writer Beware Goddess Absolute Sage victoriastrauss's Avatar
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    Also see this thread about the NYC Pitch and Shop workshops, a joint effort between Algonkian and the NY Writers Workshops.

    - Victoria

  5. #5
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    I ought to do an update - I attended the conference and found it very valuable. Micheal Neff really gets into the craft of writing, and he strikes the right balance between the art side and the business side. I took my novel to a new level after the workshop.

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    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin mariaramos85's Avatar
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    Experience with algonkian?

    I registered for an upcoming 5 day algonkian workshop (not the pitch and shop). I was wondering if anyone has any recent experience with algonkian? If you want to be anonymous, you can email me directly:
    mariaramos@fuse.net

    Thanks

  7. #7
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin mariaramos85's Avatar
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    update after Algonkian

    Okay, I went and stayed for two days out of the five. It was not what I was looking for.

    What I was looking for: I have a "finished" lit fiction manuscript in about second draft. I wanted to know know more about the publishing world, and specifically, how my novel fit into it. And I was looking for some manuscript critique.

    What it was: the first few days focused almost entirely on pitch development, and this was done without reading anything the conference attendees wrote. If you were looking for someone to help you talk about your writing, based on the actual manuscript, or help figuring out how to bring out the themes based on your actual writing--forget it. Not offered.

    It was also entirely taught by Michael Neff, the organizer, so it was one person's opinion on what the market wanted to see. It was impossible to tell from the information given ahead of time (no detailed syllabus) that Neff would be doing almost all of the instruction.

    I was looking for specific workshop/input on my writing. This was promised on the last day for a very short time for each person, but was not at all the focus of the entire conference.

    Also, I would buy Neff's novel and read it before signing up for the conference, and then decide for yourself if he has credibility in judging your writing.

    Be clear on what you are signing up for--one person in a small room telling you his version of what the publishing world wants to see. Only one of the four and a half days had any input from anyone else. I also felt the price was very steep for what it was.


    For my situation in life (self employed with two small children), two days was as much as I was willing to give to this situation.

  8. #8
    Girl Detective Stacia Kane's Avatar
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    Thanks for the update, Maria! Sorry your experience wasn't what you'd hoped it would be.

    But we have a lot of great advice here, and after you get to know everyone a bit better you can submit your work to our password-protected Share Your Work forum if you like (password is "vista").

    I honestly don't think I'd be published today if not for AW and everything I learned here.
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  9. #9
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    Hi, I saw this post by Maria Ramos and had to reply.

    I can only say in opening that my experience was completely the opposite. First of all, Neff was the most accomplished expert in the publishing world I've ever run across, and his creds prove that. Second, it was a workshop, a workshop, not a big conference, and thus, had a workshop leader: Neff. No surprises there. Third, the information and study guides given to us before the event began were invaluable and like nothing I've seen at other writer events. Fourth, it wasn't about just pitching in the opening, not at all, the pitch was used to dig into the novel in depth and work on plot, character, theme, and all else. I disagree strongly with Maria Ramos on this one. We did talk about our novel with someone, that was the whole point! Fifth, there was a detailed syllabus, a very detailed syllabus. Sixth, the price was incredibly reasonable because it included a private room for five nights plus two meals per day. Compare this price to something ridiculous like Squaw Valley or other places.

    Unlike Maria, I stayed for the whole time, didn't run out early, and found it was precisely what I was looking for. Oh, and I read Neff's novel and it was fantastic. I agree with her that you should read it.

    That's all. Thanks.

    TL

  10. #10
    New Member; Teach Me About Thick Skin! francisbruno's Avatar
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    I wanted to follow up with my experience attending two of the Algonkian conferences, in fact I believe I was in the same conference that Maria was in as well as the previous NYC pitch and shop.

    I think Michael Neff and the Algonkian conferences provide a great service to writers. Please bear with me on my explanation.

    Michael is plugged in to the publishing and agent community. He is pushing the idea of the "High Concept" novel. The term is not what you think from the name, (at least I didn't understand it until researching) research it. His goal is to provide you with the best possible chance of getting published, plain and simple. He is not there to coddle anyone or tell them what they want to hear. He wants to help mold your idea into something that an editor will buy or an agent will represent.

    This is not the only way to get published. You can take what you wrote and try to sell it to someone, or even self publish. This is the easiest path to get your novel published and provide the most return on your investment of time and effort. Lets face it, the next Harry Potter, Werewolf (wink) or Vampire novel will most likely sell a lot easier or a lot more than a quiet love story set in rural america.

    When I went to the NYC Pitch and Shop in September 2010, I almost left after the first day. I got torn apart with my pitch. I was trying to write a twilightesque novel and it didn't have anything to set it apart, nothing to make an editor stand up and take notice. I decided I had invested my time and money going, so I stuck it through. I met with Michael personally every morning and stayed well into the night talking to him at dinner, absorbing as much as I could. By the end I had honed my novel to the point where it has passed the teenage reader test at a friends school. Without Michaels help, I would still be floundering.

    Michael always makes himself available at the conferences and if you had asked to talk to him, I'm sure he would have made the time. I know one of the other attendees was having some problems and Michael went out of his way to help him. There is a lot of pitch work, but there were two writing assignments and Michael did take time to read a portion of the novels on Sunday prior to departure.

    If you want to read my detailed blog posts of my NYC experience and some of the stuff that went on in Virginia, check out my blog http://www.francisbruno.com

    One other point to the conferences is the camaraderie if you take advantage of it. I met three of my best friends at the two conferences I went to and I miss them every day. In fact when I was stuck in Baltimore one of them put me up for two days until Southwest resumed flights. Thanks April! (And you too Jen, I know you would have driven the 3 hours to help out. Wish I could have visited with you)

    I am looking forward to the 2011 NYC Pitch and Shop to try out my next idea. I personally am looking forward to Michaels comments and I know he won't be any easier on me now than he was the first time I met him.

    -Francis

    P.S. I did a lot of research before I went to the NYC pitch and shop and found almost nothing about it. I saw one bad post and was worried that I had wasted my money, luckily I think I got my money's worth. I am as guilty as the next guy. I am quick to complain and slow to praise.
    Last edited by francisbruno; 02-09-2011 at 12:37 AM. Reason: fixed some bad english (Argh! always editing) Added a bit

  11. #11
    Girl Detective Stacia Kane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TamaraL View Post
    First of all, Neff was the most accomplished expert in the publishing world I've ever run across, and his creds prove that.


    TL

    Is that this Michael Neff, who publishes a small web-only literary magazine, and has had some short stories published by non-paying magazines?


    Quote Originally Posted by francisbruno View Post

    I think Michael Neff and the Algonkian conferences provide a great service to writers. Please bear with me on my explanation.

    Michael is plugged in to the publishing and agent community.

    I'm sure he is, although he himself doesn't have an agent, and he doesn't work in commercial publishing. But I'm still a little confused on how the conference provides better help than, say, AW, where plenty of people offer help and feedback, and many of us have extensive experience in commercial publishing; as in, writing and producing novels which go in bookstores and sell to thousands of people all over the country/world.




    He is pushing the idea of the "High Concept" novel. The term is not what you think from the name, (at least I didn't understand it until researching) research it. His goal is to provide you with the best possible chance of getting published, plain and simple. He is not there to coddle anyone or tell them what they want to hear. He wants to help mold your idea into something that an editor will buy or an agent will represent.

    I think we're all aware of what a high-concept novel is, thanks.

    Mr. Neff's own novel, YEAR OF THE RHINOCEROS, appears to be about a Democrat working in the mid-80s government and realizing that Republicans are evil, and work hard to stamp out and destroy anyone who finds evidence of their foul misdeeds.

    I suppose you could call that high-concept, sure. But I'm curious about the fact that an agent actually doesn't--and didn't--represent this novel, and that it was published by a small non-profit literary press called Red Hen.

    Red Hen's "History" page (under "About Us") says "We offer our authors not only publication and editorial support, but also help in placing their book in their local bookstores as well as help setting up readings and book signings locally and nationally," which mean they have no distribution. That's fine; lots of places don't. It just means the books won't be in stores, so likely won't sell a lot of copies.

    What's troubling, though, is that their Submissions page says that the best way to submit--indeed, it appears to be the only way--is by entering one of their contests.

    Their contests each have an entry fee of $20-$25.

    In other words, you must pay to submit to this house. Again, that is not commercial publishing.


    My point isn't at all that Mr. Neff isn't accomplished, intelligent, and talented; I'm sure he is, and I haven't read any of his work so can't speak to the last. I'm sure he offers plenty of help to new writers at the workshop(s).

    But I'm just a little unsure about how familiar he actually is--how much he really knows about--real, commercial publishing, and how "plugged in" to that world he is, considering he's not actually a part of it.




    This is not the only way to get published. You can take what you wrote and try to sell it to someone, or even self publish. This is the easiest path to get your novel published and provide the most return on your investment of time and effort. Lets face it, the next Harry Potter, Werewolf (wink) or Vampire novel will most likely sell a lot easier or a lot more than a quiet love story set in rural america.
    Not if the quiet love story is well written and interesting, with deeply drawn, complex characters and an exciting story. Novels like that sell all the time; check the Women's Fiction shelves or the Romance shelves if you don't believe me.

    (Oh, and self-publishing absolutely does NOT provide "the most return on your investment of time and effort." The average self-published novel sells 75 copies, thus earning less than a hundred dollars. I've supported my family for two years on my several commercially published novels; that to me is a worthwhile return on my investment, and is certainly way more than had I self-published. Self-publishing is often the best way to guarantee no one ever sees, reads, or hears about your novel.)


    When I went to the NYC Pitch and Shop in September 2010, I almost left after the first day. I got torn apart with my pitch. I was trying to write a twilightesque novel and it didn't have anything to set it apart, nothing to make an editor stand up and take notice. I decided I had invested my time and money going, so I stuck it through. I met with Michael personally every morning and stayed well into the night talking to him at dinner, absorbing as much as I could. By the end I had honed my novel to the point where it has passed the teenage reader test at a friends school. Without Michaels help, I would still be floundering.

    That's great that you found it so helpful and worth the money! Has an agent agreed to represent the novel yet, or has an editor made an offer to publish it?





    Like I said, I really, really don't want to seem like I'm belittling Mr. Neff and/or his accomplishments, and I'm truly glad you had such a good time and felt it was worth the money; I think meeting other writers and establishing friendships, as well as feeling much better about your work, is great! I'm just not sure that if you're looking for help and advice regarding commercial publishing--advance-paying, bookstore-stocking, major-review-getting novel and non-fiction publishing--that Mr. Neff really has the best advice and knowledge regarding that subject, seeing as he has no experience in it that I can see.

    I'm also, I admit, a little concerned/put off by some of the behavior exhibited by people closely associated with him/tactics the workshops use to advertise, and this conference (there's more info about Web Del Sol and its relationship to commercial publishing at that link as well). So I really, really hope you stick around and join our community, you three last posters, rather than just doing a sort of drive-by.
    Last edited by Stacia Kane; 02-09-2011 at 03:39 AM.
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  12. #12
    New Member; Teach Me About Thick Skin! francisbruno's Avatar
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    I don't want to seem to be starting a flame war, so please do not take this as such. In fact a little under a year ago this site provided an opinion that I took to heart after I had signed up for the NYC pitch and shop.

    I'm sure he is, although he himself doesn't have an agent, and he doesn't work in commercial publishing. But I'm still a little confused on how the conference provides better help than, say, AW, where plenty of people offer help and feedback, and many of us have extensive experience in commercial publishing; as in, writing and producing novels which go in bookstores and sell to thousands of people all over the country/world.
    I wouldn't claim that at all. I think input from many sources is a great thing. I'm hoping not to be a drive by poster on this matter as I am starting new in this game and am seeking knowledge wherever I can get it.


    I think we're all aware of what a high-concept novel is, thanks.
    And you may well be, I wasn't. After 20 years as an engineer hating his english classes at school, I decided to try a new thing on the side. I made the mistake of assuming I knew what it was, I was wrong.

    I am not gong to comment on Michaels writing, that is up to an individuals tastes. I also cannot comment on his publishing house. At the conferences he brings in real editors from real publishing houses and real agents.

    I've listened to a lot of writing podcasts. I've heard on some of them that agents or editors rarely buy a book they hear pitched to them. I'm not sure of Michaels hit rate on this, but I'm sure it's not huge simply because of the variables involved. The one thing it does provide is feedback from real agents and editors regarding your idea in a 1-1 setting in most cases.

    Not if the quiet love story is well written and interesting, with deeply drawn, complex characters and an exciting story. Novels like that sell all the time; check the Women's Fiction shelves or the Romance shelves if you don't believe me.
    You are correct. I am not plugged into sales numbers or how well those types of things do.

    (Oh, and self-publishing absolutely does NOT provide "the most return on your investment of time and effort." The average self-published novel sells 75 copies, thus earning less than a hundred dollars. I've supported my family for two years on my several commercially published novels; that to me is a worthwhile return on my investment, and is certainly way more than had I self-published. Self-publishing is often the best way to guarantee no one ever sees, reads, or hears about your novel.)
    Agreed, I was not intending on implying that self publishing was the way to go or that it was successful. I know of only a handful of cases where it worked out.

    That's great that you found it so helpful and worth the money! Has an agent agreed to represent the novel yet, or has an editor made an offer to publish it?
    I am simply relaying my experience. I have an editor that wants to see it and an agent that wants to see it also. I am also fully aware that there is not a high chance that either of them will take it on. That is the nature of the business and I am not deluded. However, the time I spent with the editors have given me insights into my story that I think takes it farther along a (hopefully) successful path.

    Like I said, I really, really don't want to seem like I'm belittling Mr. Neff and/or his accomplishments, and I'm truly glad you had such a good time and felt it was worth the money; I think meeting other writers and establishing friendships, as well as feeling much better about your work, is great! I'm just not sure that if you're looking for help and advice regarding commercial publishing--advance-paying, bookstore-stocking, major-review-getting novel and non-fiction publishing--that Mr. Neff really has the best advice and knowledge regarding that subject, seeing as he has no experience in it that I can see.
    All I can say is that I think you get out what you put into the conference. I think he has insights into the publishing world that I didn't have and through his connections I got even more. Hopefully through this website I'll get even more.

    My only concern is that people should hear the good and bad on the conference before deciding. I wanted to provide my good experience as an offset to the bad one presented. In the end one must make a personal decision based upon all the information provided. In my case, if I had missed out on these conferences, I would be a year behind where I am now IMHO. Perhaps reading this site would have provided everything I needed along with my craft books and podcasts, but I don't think I lost anything by going and I made some really good friends along the way.


    I'm also, I admit, a little concerned/put off by some of the behavior exhibited by people closely associated with him/tactics the workshops use to advertise, and this conference (there's more info about Web Del Sol and its relationship to commercial publishing at that link as well). So I really, really hope you stick around and join our community, you three last posters, rather than just doing a sort of drive-by.
    I'll have to check this out. I haven't looked yet as I wanted to post a quick response. I hope to participate more along the way here.

    -Francis

  13. #13
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    Another "Drive By-er"

    I guess I would fall under the category of a "drive by-er" since this is my first and only post on this forum. It's also my first and only drive by experience, so I'm wearing a bandana; it's pretty exciting.
    I had to stop by, much like my great friend Francis, and leave a few of my own comments and experiences from the Algonkian conferences.
    First of all, as I have said on my own blog, Michael Neff is a god. I mean, sometimes Zeus like and a lot of times more like Hades, but a god nevertheless. I'm not throwing this out willy-nilly, nor would I say I'm even a particular favorite of his since most of the time I wind up driving him more crazy than anything. I'm saying this because I have found his advice, not only to myself, but to countless others, to be completely on the mark. I don't really care if he himself has an agent (mentioned on a previous post) or if Peter Pan's dog was his agent, or if his book was about a purple alien who had his tooth stolen by the Easter bunny, the guy knows his stuff.
    He has been around for a while in the business and has used his knowledge to dedicate himself to helping others rise up from the herd of folks out there wanting to become writers and showing them a way to do it.
    What he says makes sense, even if you might not want it to. He talks about "high concept" and while there are countless novels out there selling that might not be "high concept", those are also about the ninety percent of authors who make about ten percent of the money.
    I have been to both the NYC Pitch and Shop and the Algonkian conference in Virginia. They were both invaluable in their own way.
    The NYC Pitch and Shop gave great insight to what publishers were looking for, which kept me from wasting a good portion of my time writing a story no one wants to buy.
    The Algonkian conference dealt with countless useful topics, from writing dialogue, to pitching agents, to detail. An agent came and broke down the bestseller list, which might sound dumb, but was insightful and from a business perspective and it was a lot of food for thought. This conference also gave a chance for each individual to sit with Michael and have him critique his or her writing. Perhaps people who leave the conference early wouldn't know all of this, SINCE THEY LEFT EARLY.
    In addition, even though the NYC Pitch and Shop had many people, Michael made time for anyone who wanted the extra help. People aren't just numbers to him and while his advice might seem mean or "in your face," he really wants to see all his participants published.
    Francis' comment was right on about meeting people and making friends, like him, some of my favorite people were people I met in New York.
    They have been great sources of brainstorming and collaborating, as well as crying on their shoulders when things don't go right.
    I would suggest these conferences to anyone who wants to get on the right road to publishing. Listen to Michael and go in to the conferences open minded. This is actually what I wrote on the way home from the Pitch Conference in NYC about what I learned:
    I can't:
    ~hope to publish without some serious help along the lines or re-writes, editing, and advice.
    ~expect a story to be published if it's not high concept.
    ~talk all the time. Sometimes I have to shut up and listen.
    I can:
    ~face my biggest fears.
    ~be told "No" and still live through it.
    ~work really hard and be PATIENT. TENACIOUS. DETERMINED. BRILLIANT.
    ~write because I love it and know the difference between "I love this" and "this will sell."
    ~understand that I don't know everything and even the best of us need reality checks.

    In short, I would tell anyone who wants to be a writer to check out this conference. Keep you mouth shut. Learn and listen to the best in the business who know their stuff. I don't let car mechanics come in my room and teach Hamlet, nor do I tell my car mechanic how to fix my transmission. It's the same thing. Sometimes it's awesome to get to be the student, so savor it.

  14. #14
    carpe libri Amarie's Avatar
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    I'll jump in here, and do a non-drive-by post since I've been around here for a couple of years. I went to the Virginia workshop in Nov. of 2006, so I can only speak to what it was then. I don't know if the format has changed. I've also never been to another workshop, so I don't know how they differ. At the time I attended, I knew no other writers, had never done a workshop, nor had I ever even had anyone read my work, except when I entered a couple of chapters in some contests.

    I would say about 70% of the people in my group had completed manuscripts, the rest just had partials. We spent a lot of time working on our pitches, which brought out some of the weaknesses in plots, and there was quite a bit of brainstorming by the whole group on how to strengthen each other's stories. We also had a couple of writing assignments and were encouraged, but not required, to read them aloud to the group for comments. We pitched to two agents (on different days), and they critiqued our pitches. All of this was extremely useful to me.

    It was not to some other participants, for a few different reasons. Michael does stress high-concept, so if a person doesn't want to write that sort of book, it's not the right workshop for them. It wouldn't be right either for people who don't want to change their story substantially. Michael is blunt, and that doesn't work for some either, especially those who haven't faced the amount of rejection we have to deal with in this business. There was not much follow-up, and I don't know if that is still the same.

    I will have to echo one of the posters above who talked about the great camaraderie that developed. Hanging out with other writers in an isolated spot was fabulous. I'm still in touch with two people I met there. I imagine that same enjoyment occurs at other retreats/workshops.

    I didn't agree with all the advice offered there, but I did learn a great deal. I didn't sell the manuscript I was working on at the time, but it led me to write a different one, which did sell. I even credited Michael in the acknowledgements. So at that time, for the stage I was at, it was a good thing. I'm sure other workshops would have been good as well.

  15. #15
    Girl Detective Stacia Kane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by francisbruno View Post
    I don't want to seem to be starting a flame war, so please do not take this as such.
    Nobody's starting any flame wars; you're perfectly free to disagree with anyone you choose, and to post whatever experience(s) you choose.

    To clarify just a couple of other things:



    Agreed, I was not intending on implying that self publishing was the way to go or that it was successful. I know of only a handful of cases where it worked out.
    This is simply something we discuss a lot here on the forum, so we don't generally just ignore a comment like that. It certainly wasn't intended to upset you or make you feel attacked (or to attack anyone else). Nor were any of my other comments.



    I am simply relaying my experience. I have an editor that wants to see it and an agent that wants to see it also. I am also fully aware that there is not a high chance that either of them will take it on. That is the nature of the business and I am not deluded. However, the time I spent with the editors have given me insights into my story that I think takes it farther along a (hopefully) successful path.

    And we appreciate you doing so. My question wasn't intended as some sort of come-uppance, it was simply a question, to see what else might have come out of the conference.


    My only concern is that people should hear the good and bad on the conference before deciding.

    And that's what Bewares is all about.



    I'll have to check this out. I haven't looked yet as I wanted to post a quick response. I hope to participate more along the way here.

    -Francis

    We certainly hope to see more of you around!


    Quote Originally Posted by harrijsh View Post
    I don't really care if he himself has an agent (mentioned on a previous post) or if Peter Pan's dog was his agent, or if his book was about a purple alien who had his tooth stolen by the Easter bunny, the guy knows his stuff.
    He has been around for a while in the business and has used his knowledge to dedicate himself to helping others rise up from the herd of folks out there wanting to become writers and showing them a way to do it.
    There's little point in responding to you since you're a sock puppet/drive-by, but I want to clarify something. I never said Mr. Neff wasn't knowledgeable, savvy, intelligent, etc. In fact I repeatedly mentioned that I wasn't saying that.

    I just have a sort of curiosity, I guess, when I see people claiming to help others do something which they have apparently not done themselves, and when I see people not involved in commercial publishing claiming to be expert on it.

    Mr. Neff may very well be one; I never said he wasn't. I was simply curious, and mentioned it, because the subject hasn't really come up in this thread.


    What he says makes sense, even if you might not want it to.

    Sorry? Why would I not want it to?



    As for the rest of the post...well, again, you're not returning, so why bother? But I will say I'm glad to hear that you, too, had a good experience. That's always nice to hear.
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  16. #16
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    "There's little point in responding to you since you're a sock puppet/drive-by, but I want to clarify something."
    Wow. I might have gotten hurt feelings, but that was really an awesome reply.

    "Sorry? Why would I not want it to?"

    (In reference to why a person might not want to hear what Michael Neff says...)

    As some other posters have mentioned, Michael says what he is thinking and can often seem blunt. This seemed to bother some people while others took the information and used it. Some people don't want to hear that their story doesn't really have a plot, needs a stronger antagonist-protagonist, or isn't high concept. Some people don't want to hear that the story they are working on has already been written...as is seen by the numerous agent blogs who state they are overloaded with stories just like Twilight or Harry Potter.
    It's worth pointing out that even though some (including myself) may not have wanted to hear negatives about their work, in actually listening and acting on those negatives, they have a chance at writing a better and more successful story.

  17. #17
    USA Today Bestselling Author Jamiekswriter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TamaraL View Post
    More from Stacia about her work. I really like this and I'm buying copies so I can see things burn:
    You'll enjoy them. Buy all three of them at once though because once you finish "Unholy Ghosts" you'll need the other two right away.

    http://www.amazon.com/Unholy-Ghosts-.../dp/0345515579

  18. #18
    USA Today Bestselling Author Jamiekswriter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TamaraL View Post
    Get a better hair job, dear.
    That's just nasty, Tamara. Grow up.

  19. #19
    Benefactor Member Cranky's Avatar
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    Locking this temporarily for forum mods to review.
    W.S.F.A. today! (Write Something F***ing Awesome)

    An exceptional poem that you really should read, by AW's own William Haskins:


    Thorn Forest: A Poem In Progress

  20. #20
    Mostly Harmless SuperModerator CaoPaux's Avatar
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    "Tamara", after revealing a level of professionalism all too often displayed by folks with ties to Webdesol, has left the building.

    Keeping thread locked for the time being.
    ICAO
    ---------
    Achievers strive for excellence. Perfectionists drive themselves to extinction. -- A Grapple A Day
    I've never known any trouble that an hour's reading didn't assuage. -- Charles DeSecondat

    II 2016: 2017:

  21. #21
    practical experience, FTW Writer-2-Author's Avatar
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    Talking The San Francisco Write & Pitch Conference

    Hi all,

    I was wondering if anyone has heard of or is planning to attend the San Francisco Write & Pitch Conference coming up the end of July? It looks like it just started last year, but they've had other conferences in various parts of the country through their Algonkian workshops. The website can be viewed here http://writeandpitchconference.com/ I'm curious to find out if anyone else has attended this conference during 2010???

    They made it clear that it's not for the "weak hearted" and to be ready to face the "truth" as to whether or not you have a viable manuscript. I am excited to see if I can pass muster, as they say. They also critique your work before your arrival. I've filled out their "pre-test" and am waiting for their responses.

    I'd love to know if anyone else is planning to go???

    Thanks,
    Robin
    Thanks,
    W2A
    robinolsonfreelancing.com

    If there's a book you really want to read, but it hasn't been written yet, then you must write it. ~Toni Morrison

  22. #22
    slugging through AlwaysJuly's Avatar
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    I hadn't heard of it before. It sounds really cool, hmmm, and I have been meaning to visit San Fran...

  23. #23
    New Member; Teach Me About Thick Skin! francisbruno's Avatar
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    You'll get pro and con on this site certainly; sometimes it can get heated.

    I have been to the NYC pitch and shop and the Virginia Conference held in November (both Algonkian). I felt they were extremely helpful and got me on the right track with my novel. If you'd like to read a play-by-play on both conferences, check out my blog: http://www.francisbruno.com

    You need thick skin for one of their conferences as they don't pull punches. I was ready to leave NYC after the first day, but sticking it through was well worth it.

    If you have general questions about what you might expect, feel free to contact me directly or post here. I can only comment on the other two conferences, I haven't been to the SF one and where I am with my novel, it doesn't make sense for me to go. I will probably go to the NYC conference again later this year as it's closer to where I live.

    Good luck with your writing, whatever your decision.

    -Francis

  24. #24
    practical experience, FTW Writer-2-Author's Avatar
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    Hi Francis,
    I just wanted to say thank you for your encouragement. I read all your posts on your blog regarding the conferences you attended, which are now making me even more excited to attend. Did you have to fill out the "pre-test" work for either of those workshops? Maybe that's just for the write and pitch one. I've filled it out about two weeks ago, I think, but haven't heard anything back yet. Who knows, maybe some of the writers here will be joining me in July!

    Thanks,
    Robin
    Thanks,
    W2A
    robinolsonfreelancing.com

    If there's a book you really want to read, but it hasn't been written yet, then you must write it. ~Toni Morrison

  25. #25
    Girl Detective Stacia Kane's Avatar
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    We have two threads on the Pitch-n-Shop/Algonkian conferences, if you want to get more info:


    http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/...ad.php?t=35783



    http://www.absolutewrite.com/forums/...ad.php?t=11383
    http://www.staciakane.com

    FIVE DOWN, a Downside anthology, available now!
    Four previously published short stories and one brand new novella, together in one volume.

    Click here for more details.


    WRONG WAYS DOWN available now!


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