Friday, September 16, 2011

An Evening Of Epic Proportions!

Good evening (though it probably won't be, by the time I'm done posting this), dear readers!

I've just returned from a 2-week hiatus, which I spent visiting family and friends in Ontario... Since a lot of the relationships in my novel are rooted in my real life (with the exception of bits like the one from tonight's reading, of course), I came back with a ton of ideas and hope that they will produce some potentially-publishable sequences.

But, enough about me... Onto the REAL reason for this post!

Tonight marked a new beginning for the Attic Owl reading series. Having had the entire summer off, it was with great pleasure that I joined the other writers- including award-winning author Donna Morrissey- for a beautiful supper at La Teraz. The meal consisted of risotto, asparagus, bread, and pork medallions so soft that they practically melted in my mouth, and was followed by a scrumptious strawberry shortcake for dessert... A big thank-you to Mario and Jackie, for not making us cook for ourselves. :)

Then, the fun part... the reading!

Since public speaking and I don't mix, it was incredibly nerve-wracking to open for someone like Donna... Still, Chapter 2 (M's first part) was well-received, and I managed to stay upright for the entire recitation. Sharing part of my 8-year work-in-progress, which had never been read by anyone but my mom, was a bit like a coming-out party- both liberating and utterly terrifying, all at once.

One thing I did not anticipate, however, was the crowd's reaction. The novel was written for a younger (read: mid-teens to early twenties) audience, and I definitely hadn't thought that a group comprised mostly of older adults would react so viscerally to it... It was very unexpected, though it gave me hope for my future career- if they liked it, then I don't suck at writing... right?

Also worth noting: I received an invitation to read my excerpt at the Moncton Hospital, to a class that is studying the effects of family violence (a major theme in that particular passage) on children and teens. Psychology has always been a passion of mine, so I'm definitely amped-up about that (if the whole writing thing doesn't work out, perhaps I'll even have a future in it). Unexpected, but a great perk... More on that, as the details come in.

*boots ego out of the window closest to the 'pooter*

Of course, Donna really made this event special. She is amazing, on so many levels, and the first real writing role-model I've had who is more than just a name on a cover. Her advice has been invaluable, and she's a great teacher... I feel sorry for those unable to make it to Saturday's workshop, since you're missing out on a fantastic experience.

(FYI: my bookshelf has also just informed me that it's a tremendous honour to have a signed copy of Sylvanus Now on it, alongside Alias Grace and You Comma Idiot, and I agree with it completely).

Yep, I talk to my bookshelf. Clearly, bedtime was a few hours ago...

Sadly, I still have to wake up in the morning and attempt to find a normal, soul-sucking, 9-5 job- preferably something that involves as few human beings as possible (unless they're writers) and doesn't suck... I guess that rules out office dronery, any position that requires me to cook stuff, and everything else. Just thinking about it is exhausting... yawn.

Until Saturday,

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