Category Archives: Clarion West

Writers Not Going to Clarion West – Rejection

Me! 🙂

Survey Says?I thought it was only fair to have a new post about not getting into Clarion West since I’ve been maintaining another post about folks who have…

Nicest Rejection Ever

I have no idea if this is the kind of rejection everyone gets, but I have to say that it is one of the nicest rejections I’ve ever received:

Thank you for applying to the Clarion West Writers Workshop for 2008.

We are sorry to let you know that you were not selected for this year’s class. We had a record number of applicants, and because the workshop can hold only eighteen students we could not find room for all of the promising writers. We realize this is a disappointment, but hope you will apply to Clarion West again in the future, as your work ranked well with our readers.

We wish you the best with your writing and hope you have a productive summer.

Thank you again for your interest in Clarion West.

A big thank you to all of readers and administrators. I can’t even begin to imagine what you went through this year to wade through the massive pile of applications. When Cory shows up, you might want to spank him for posting the deadline on Boing Boing. 🙂

What to do next

I’d by lying if I didn’t say I was disappointed. Of course I am, as is everyone else who didn’t make it. That’s part of game, folks.

So, take a moment to light a candle for your glorious summer plans and then get back to your keyboard. There are more stories to write.

Oh, and you probably spent a lot of time getting your stories ready for the submission, right? Why not submit them for actual publication? After all, they’re already formatted and such. Print and mail, print and mail.

That’s what I did last week.

[Image credits: Kevin Perkins – Flickr]

Writers Going to Clarion West

These happy folks have reported acceptance! Have fun, folks!

I will update this post with more links as I find them. Feel free to post in the comments if you know someone going!

[P.S. No, I haven’t heard about my application. According the Clarion West website, applicants should hear by late March so I expect I’ll be getting my rejection notice any day now. 🙂 ]

Got my rejection! Woo hoo!

My Clarion West Application

Back on January 30th, I wrote a long post about being terrified of Clarion West and workshops in general. The post was designed to get the fear out of my system and make me push forward.

I guess it worked, because I’ve tossed my hat into the ring. My application to Clarion West went out yesterday.

To celebrate, I thought I’d do a quick roundup of some others who are putting their work out there and trying to get in. Best of luck to everyone!!!

Sarah King
Jim Stewart

Why I'm Terrified of Clarion West and Workshops In General

The deadline for Clarion West is approaching quickly (3/1 – 2/1 for $100 off).

This year boasts another super fantastic lineup of instructors for the 25th Anniversary workshop. Check it out.: Paul Park, Mary Rosenblum, Cory Doctorow, Connie Willis, Sheree R. Thomas, and Chuck Palahniuk.

[By the way, I couldn’t help but notice that Chuck Palahniuk has grown quite a mane, despite a rapidly receding hairline. Brother looks good. Maybe there is hope for me yet!] 🙂

For years, I’ve dreamed of attending a workshop like Clarion West. First, there is the chance to meet and work with other writers struggling to make it and serious enough about the process to fork over some serious coin ($3200). Next, there are always fascinating authors and editors on the faculty list (see above). Of course, the idea of actually doing it scares the crap out of me.

Why I’m Terrified of Clarion West and Workshops in General

  1. I’m scared of admitting how much I love speculative fiction – My writing cycle is usually a) fantasy/sci-fi story b) kill self c) serious, existential work d) kill self e) fantasy/sci-fi story… And so on. Kind of crazy, isn’t it?
  2. I’m scared to meet other struggling authors – Even here on the frontier, I occasionally run into a would-be writer. At first, it’s a bit of a thrill but then I realize that we might in fact, well, you know, talk… about writing. My writing? Oh no.
  3. I’m scared to meet published authors (instructors), especially those I admire – See above but scale that by a factor of 10 (to start with). Now, I know this is crazy. Perhaps even crazier than meeting others who are struggling to make it.
  4. I’m scared that people will like my work – Ok, so now we’re really not getting anywhere useful, are we? But really, why on earth would I be scared that someone would like my work? If you ask yourself a question like this, and the answer is “I don’t know” you’re not being honest with yourself. You’re being evasive. Alright, so, I’m afraid that people will like my work because that means I might have a future doing something I enjoy. That means I might have what it takes to make it. This is scary because it is important to me… [I do realize that this makes no sense whatsoever.]
  5. I’m scared that I might be all talk and no action – I spend a lot of time writing about writing an as for doing actual writing (at least of late) the work has been quite sparse. So, what happens when I arrive at Clarion West and nothing happens? I mean, I don’t produce anything (stage fright).
  6. I’m scared to escape from my life for 6 weeks because I might not come back – I don’t mean abandoning my family or anything so silly as that. I just mean that once I really start down the road will I ever come back? Then what happens?
  7. I’m scared that I will have to come back – Well, graduating from a workshop doesn’t mean that you’re anything other than a workshop alumni. It doesn’t mean that you’re suddenly {poof} a published author. It just means that you’ve acquired new skills and honed others under fire. In theory, you are a better writer, but then when you return to your work-a-day world what do you do with your new found knowledge? How do you sleep at night?

Looking over the list, none of it really makes that much sense and yet I’m sure that these are probably the same fears that every writer feels at one point or another (or all at once like me).

Those of you who sort of know me personally are probably scratching your heads right now. I certainly don’t come across as someone who would harbor these sorts of fears. Of course, those of you who know me personally are probably shaking your heads because you know me all too well.

After all, this is the same song and dance I’ve performed for the last 20 years. My shoes are worn through and my blistered feet are cracked and bleeding. Even I can see that.

Perhaps there is nothing left but to cast myself out there and see what happens.

[Via: Boing Boing and Eileen Gunn.]