Deirdre Saoirse Moen

Sounds Like Weird

VP: Tuesday

06 October 2004

The morning started with a group grope: I was on the chopping block. My group consisted of Jim MacDonald, Valerie, and Anna Feruglio Dal Dan, who came all the way from Italy. She’d been out ever since Worldcon.

It was great having some people who weren’t familiar with my writing quirks read my work. One of the problems of having a writing group in Silicon Valley is the high average tech level of your typical crtique group member.

Then, the lecture on writing exposition by Teresa Nielsen Hayden.

A few choice quotes:

A book is balanced only when moving.

The audience made analogies to a bicycle, an airplane, and a shark.

The words that you write are not the book the reader experiences.

If readers are nitpicking your scenery, the story is moving too slowly.

She also described a manuscript with lots of odd names, many of which contained accents. “It looked like an explosion in a Selectric factory.”

And, finally, a quote from Ken MacLeod: “History is the trade secret of science fiction.”

After lunch, I was free until the Colloquium, which focused on writing scenes of sex and violence. The primary instructors were Teresa Nielsen Hayden and Jim MacDonald. Great fun and that’s my final answer. Why should I kiss and tell? 🙂

Later, the annual VP tradition of Beer with Billy, but I’m saving that for a separate entry.

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