Potlatch 15 Taste of Clarion West Writers' Workshops

A Taste of Clarion West

Once again, Potlatch will be holding a short story workshop. Workshops are a great way to get feedback on a story. Perhaps more important, they are a great way to learn about what makes stories succeed and fail in general, through the process of critiquing others' work and comparing your critiques with others'. They're a great way to meet other writers, and work with a couple of professionals in the field. Finally, if you're considering applying for Clarion West they should give you a small inkling of what the Clarion West workshop process is like.

Please check back here for more information, including updates on workshop instructors, and workshop availability status. If you have any questions, email me at the address below.

Journeyman Writers' Workshop

This year for the first time we are experimenting with a Journeyman workshop. We envision it as a tool for recharging and refocusing more advanced writers. Perhaps you have a sale or two but feel as if you've lost steam; maybe you're a Clarion West graduate who's looking to get back to writing after years on other projects, or are just looking to add new tools to your kit. This is the workshop for you, with like-level participants. Since this an experiment we don't know what demand is like. Please let us know as early as possible if you want to participate; this workshop will only be held if there's enough interest.

How To Apply

  1. Complete an SF, Fantasy, or Horror short story (maximum 7500 words). No fragments; no novel chapters; no poetry. One submission per person.
  2. Proofread it carefully. Make sure it represents the best you can do.
  3. Print it out in standard manuscript format (see http://www.sfwa.org/writing/vonda/vonda.htm for more information). Fasten the manuscript with a paper clip.
  4. Write a cover letter with a short (1-2 pages) writer's bio. Have you published before? Have you been to other writer's workshops? Are you part of a writer's group? Are you new to writing? What are your hopes and expectations for writing in the future? Be sure to include your mailing address, and your email address if you have one. Please specify which workshop -- Taste of Clarion West or Journeyman Workshop -- you wish to participate in. If you're interested in the Journeyman workshop, please let me know whether you'd like to participate in the Taste of Clarion West workshop if the Journeyman workshop is not held.
  5. Send the manuscript and cover letter, along with a check or money order for $10 to cover copying and postage, to:
    Potlatch 15 Writers' Workshop
    c/o David D. Levine
    1905 SE 43rd Ave.
    Portland, OR 97215
    Make checks payable to David D. Levine.
    All submissions must be RECEIVED by January 15, 2006.

The Workshop Process

  1. Once all participants are selected, I will send each participant a copy of everyone else's story.
  2. Critique each of the stories. This means to read the story carefully, one or more times, making notes in the manuscript about what makes the story work or not work for you. See http://www.sfwritersworkshop.org/sfwwguide.php for some guidelines on things to think about as you're critiquing.
  3. Write up your critique comments on each story -- one or two pages, typed or neatly handwritten, that sum up your reactions.
  4. Bring your comments and the marked-up manuscripts to the convention.
  5. All the workshop participants, plus two professional writers, get together in a room at the convention and critique each story in turn. Each participant will have three minutes to say what worked and didn't work for them in each story. The person whose story is being critiqued can answer questions, but otherwise does not speak until everyone else has given their critique.

Need More Information?

Contact David Levine at: workshop@potlatch-sf.org.

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