Thursday, June 16, 2011

Catching Up

Hello. For those of you who have forgotten me, my name’s Clint and I am occasionally spotted on this blog.

There’s a lot to go over because I’ve been away so long. But you’ll be glad to know that Amy and I are finally beginning to settle into this whole being married thing. Yesterday we worked out transportation to give me an extra work hour everyday before I head to the college, so I’m hoping that will result in more frequent blog posts. If so, you may thank Amy for it.

Last week I spent six days in St. George at a writing workshop held by Dave Wolverton. For those who don’t recognize the name, he’s a multi-time NYT best-seller with loads of experience in just about every corner of the publishing and entertainment industry: publishing short and long fiction, editing, marketing, video games, movies, you name it. I’ve thought about taking a class from him, largely because of his knowledge of the business, for several years now. But when I learned that last week’s class would likely be the last he taught for several years (he’s committed to working as a producer in Hollywood in addition to producing his own NYT best-selling Runelord franchise), I decided it was now or never. I decided now.

The class was great. Met a lot of cool people and devoted writers (the cool people and devoted writers are the same, in this case, which always makes me happy). See a class photo here. In the mornings we had lectures about craft and the business; afternoons were for critiquing and discussion; evenings were spent on writing assignments, group analysis of movies, and trying to recuperate for the next day. I had a chance to talk with Dave a bit about current business conditions, which given the nature of those conditions wasn’t very fun but was very helpful. So if any of you get a chance to study with Dave, I suggest you take it. He has a stronger track record of students earning publishing success than any other person I know.

Other things to catch up on:

  • I am three chapters (I think) away from finishing my latest novel. I wanted to be done with the rough draft by April, which means I’m way behind, but I’m trying to cut myself some slack. I did just get married and move and all that stuff. With things settling in at home, I hope to be finished in two weeks. I will then do a happy dance. No photos.
  • As I write, I am still shopping my two latest novels to agents and editors. One is my middle grade fantasy about a little girl who becomes leader of the UN for magical creatures; the other is my Asian ghost story, which I describe as a Korean-American version of The Lovely Bones as written by the tandem of Sara Zarr and Laurie Halse Anderson. Someone once told me she couldn’t picture that until she read the first chapter or two, when she decided, yup, that’s exactly what it is. I showed snippets to a Korean student of mine yesterday and she got a huge kick out of it. And yes, she did tell me that the phonetic spellings of Korean language are well translated. So if you’re an agent or editor, buy these books. They’re good, and one of them can even teach you to speak Korean.
  • The NBA finals are apparently over with the Dallas Mavericks proving that good really goes triumph over evil (being the Miami Heat). As you might imagine from my recent activity (or lack of such) on this blog, I didn’t have time to watch a single second of the finals. But I am glad to know that the Heat lost. I don’t like the Heat. May they have a torturous summer of penance for their braggartism.
  • Amy tells me that there is a chalk art festival this weekend in SLC. I’ve never been to a chalk art festival, so I’m looking forward to the experience. I’m especially looking forward to it as we will go together and I won’t be juggling a student, my writing or some else’s for that matter, or doing anything to move or make a moved into place livable. I’ll just be looking at chalk art, and it will be awesome!

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