Viable Paradise 21 and More

by Jonathan 0 Comments

On Saturday, I’ll be heading up to Viable Paradise 21 on Martha’s Vineyard. When I got accepted back in July the feeling was unlike anything I’d ever experienced. That said, the workshop seemed a long way off.

Now it’s almost here and I have mixed emotions. Of course there’s the part of me that can’t wait. Then there’s a part of me that wants to keep it in the future indefinitely so I can always have it to look forward to. Ultimately it doesn’t matter either way. I must wait and it will come to pass. What I do while I’m there and after will ultimately define the experience. A week of immersion in all things writing is an amazing gift. Did I mention I can’t wait?

In the meantime I’ve been working on a couple of short stories and percolating ideas for still more. I’m toying with the idea of doing NaNoWriMo for the first time to hammer out the bones of a new novel. I’ll need to nail down some serious prep work if I want to make that happen.

I’ve been reading a ton of short stories this year and it’s been awesome. Digging into Paragons, Apex Magazine, The Weird, Worlds Best Science Fiction and Fantasy, Clarkesworld and more, I’m loving the form, where in the past I found myself ambivalent.

From a writing standpoint, as I mentioned in an earlier post, short stories have been a great test kitchen for story ideas while forcing me to use language more efficiently, to fully form story lines, and to layer in subtext. Another benefit is being able to finish stories and get them out on submission while moving on to the next one.

I’ve also worked through several novels in the past months including The Big Short, The Lies of Locke Lamora, Range of Ghosts, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, Hammers on Bone, and Signal to Noise. I just fired up A Star Called Henry last night. So far so good.

I reckon the next time I check will be after Viable Paradise 21. Can’t wait to dig in and report back.


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