Clarion Applications are OPEN!
February 6, 2013
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The Clarion Writers Workshop changed my life and my career. For six weeks I lived on the UCSD campus in La Jolla, interacting mostly with the seventeen other students there and the six wonderful professional writers who’d come in to lead our workshops (and the support staff of Clarion, who are amazing). We read about a hundred of each other’s stories in six weeks and had to come up with something smart-sounding to say about each one. We each wrote (more or less) six stories in six weeks. And we talked more about writing, about the craft of it and the ideas behind it, about the direction of science fiction and fantasy, about the current trends and the history, than probably I have at any other time in my life.
There is something magical about being immersed in a world full of people like you and yet not like you. Every one of my classmates is a talented writer who wants more than anything to tell his or her stories to the world, and yet the things we want to tell stories about are often vastly different. Some of us love literary fiction, some of us love horror, some of us love action and adventure, some fantasy, some science fiction. But those classmates are still close to me, a support network for writing that has been really amazing over the past couple years. We’re going through many of the same struggles, and sharing our disappointments is often more helpful than sharing our triumphs (though it is awesome every time I get a “New sale!” letter, and our class is generating a lot of those–go Narwolves!).
And Clarion gave me the tools and confidence to send my stories out there myself. I had a story published in Apex last year and have a few more out on the market now. I’d sent out maybe a total of three or four stories to magazines, and gotten rejected, and given up. I understand a lot better now that rejections happen to everyone, a lot, and the type of rejection can tell you a lot–there is such a thing as a good rejection.
So if writing is what you want to do with your life, apply to Clarion. Those six weeks are one of the best investments you can make.
(Cover created with the Pulp-O-Mizer.)