Friday, June 10, 2011
Monday, March 21, 2011
I am still digesting all Julie's comments - it takes a while for them to sink in and a little longer before they are absorbed across the semi-permeable membrane of my brain.
One thing I will bask in (for a moment) is a comment I've waited three years, many manuscripts and revisions to hear...
"In my opinion, you nailed it!"
This from my advisor Julie about a picture book story I've been working, and reworking...
I am thankful, amazed, and uplifted.
Monday, March 7, 2011
Packet 1: 1 critical essay, 4 picture book manuscripts, annotated bibliography (list of relivant books you have read and brief writer notes for each), online assignments, and a substantiated letter. *keep in mind packet requirements vary by advisor*
I managed to get everything done - not to the standard I would have liked - but done nonetheless.
There was a lot of "Sorry, I have to do my homework..." and sneaking off to my room. I think this is a good thing. For next packet I'm aiming to spread the work out over the 4 weeks rather than live in seclusion the last 2 weeks! Wish me luck.
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
Lecture #1: a brief lecture/discussion on work for hire and other ways to support yourself with your writing.
Graduation of 4th semester students - brief, meaningful, uplifting
All the first semester students had supper together in town. What a wonderful bunch - I love them to pieces! It seems like I've been here for 2 months, not 2 weeks. There is really no other place like VCFA
- I can't wait to get home. I can't wait to start writing.
ps I will blog about - THE SLOG - putting VCFA fab knowledge into practice!!
Lecture #1 Amanda Jenkins: Amazing look into the emotional arc in a story with examples of where it fell short in the Hunger Games books.
Lecture #2 Tim Wynne-Jones: How to build tension and surprise into the plot even if your book is not a thriller a-la-Hunger Games.
Lecture #3 Rita Williams-Garcia: Demonstrated the sequel's continueing plot using the Hunger Games as an example (to the tune of James Brown! Get On Down!)
Grad Lecture #2: What does a character need for us to believe he/she is resilient? Turns out only 3 things (and you will have to come to VCFA to find out...)
Monday, January 17, 2011
Workshoped fellow student's picture book stories - it is wonderful to hear other people's pt of view and interpretations.
Grad Lecture #1 - This was a fab grad lecture on practical strategies for depicting character emotion! It was filled with dos and don'ts (my favorite!)
Did you know VCFA offers scholarships? After your first semester, you can submit to any one of the following categories: picture book, middle grade, YA, and/or critical thesis.
Kid Literary Theory discussion continued over dinner with Tobin Anderson. I had to skip the readings tonight - too tired!!
Sunday, January 16, 2011
Lecture #1 Tobin Anderson: Heavy stuff - literary theory and how it affects and informs our writing
Lecture #2 Shelley Tanaka - Amazing lecture that sampled picture books from around the world offering us a glimpse into how creative and unique they are. The lecture challenged us to educate ourselves on what is being written for kids all around the world - not just in Canada or the States.
Met with Julie one on one. Listened to Grad Assistants, Grads, and student readings - Seriously talented people here (ps: the grad ass. read from their published books!)
*I was told it would take approx. 25hrs/week to complete the work for these packets (I believe it!)
Lecture #1 - Jane Kurtz: Lively talk about the element of surprise across kid lit genres.
Grad Lecture #2 - addressed the "I've got to find my voice" myth very well.
Pizza with the other wonderful 1rst semesters and a What Goes Bump in the Night Party - complete with scrabble games, dance music, and lots of socializing!
Friday, January 14, 2011
Lecture #1 Coe Booth - Coe is hilarious.. from her getto humour to her back-handed power-pt slide comments. She gave fab advice on how to get through the first draft.
Grace Lin gave a very personal talk on how she got into writing and illustrating picture books, writing middle grade and novels. I was touched by her honesty and openness.
Picture Book Panel - a mad rush of 4 short lectures on pb topics.
Faculty Readings: Always Entertaining! Alan Cumyn, Sharon Darrow, Mary Quattlebaum
Everyone is a twitter because students will be assigned an advisor tonight at midnight!! I already know my advisor is Julie Larios (yay! Funny, unbelievably creative, and an amazing poet)
Here's to you, Julie:
L augh with your eyes.
I am ready to play,
E ase into essay.
Thursday, January 13, 2011
Attended a Grad lecture on Reconnecting with Poetry - ouuu, those grads are smart. Great exercises offered to awaken the poet within.
Again, faculty readings: Amanda Jenkins, Martine Leavitt, Uma Kishnaswami, and Grace Lin - Enthralling!!
Wednesday, January 12, 2011
Tuesday, January 11, 2011
Yoga started my day - thanks to a fellow-writer who offers a class every morning. Then it was orientation a-la-new-student, then a-la-campus, followed by a-la-library, and finally a-la-faculty! Feeling a little over-oriented by the end of the day, I listened to Katherine Paterson speak - what a treat!
Sunday, January 9, 2011
Saturday, January 8, 2011
Have a question about VCFA or about a Picture Book problem that has been haunting you? Send it along and I will listen for a possible answer or ask your question of the great brains I encounter!!