So you’ve been humming along on your book—yay, you!—when suddenly you hit a wall. What do you do next? Turn off the computer and . . .
- Binge-watch Brooklyn 99?
- Eat a Crown Burger and thank your lucky stars that someone invented pastrami?
- Do a load of laundry? Or two? Or twenty?
If you picked any of these answers—or came up with one of your own–you’re not alone. All of us who write have had the experience of feeling stuck. And if you’re in that place, consider signing up for WIFYR’s trouble-shooting class—a week-long workshop that helps you generate ways to address your manuscript’s problem.
Students will be asked to do the following things before the conference begins:
*Provide class members and instructor (me) with a synopsis of the novel—what it’s about and where it’s going.
*Provide class members and instructor (me again!) with the first 15-20 pages of the manuscripts.
*Provide (see above) a self-diagnosis—a quick statement of what you’re struggling with. For example, you may be having a hard time moving the story forward. Or you feel like your dialogue is wooden. Or your characters are boring. You get the idea.
*Provide up to fifteen pages of a section in the manuscript where we see this problem highlighted.
Additionally students must be willing to revise (and by “revise” I mean “rewrite”) a portion of one another’s trouble spots in an effort to help us all think outside of our manuscripts’ boxes.
Students must also be willing to read a number of YA novels (list to follow) that successfully deal with the issues raised by class members.
And, finally, students must be willing to ply me with cold cans of Dr. Pepper. Cans. Not bottles. Also. Cold.
Ann (A. E.) Cannon was born in Salt Lake City but grew up in Provo, Utah where she attended public schools and graduated from Brigham Young University. When Ann was six, she was hospitalized for kidney disease and missed a year of school, which turned out to be a blessing in disguise. She became an avid reader and gained a life-long interest in books written for young readers. While in graduate school, Ann took an adolescent literature class that changed her life. She began writing novels for young adults and eventually won the Delacorte Press Prize for CAL CAMERON BY DAY, SPIDER-MAN BY NIGHT.Since then she has published thirteen more books, including CHARLOTTE’S ROSE and (mostly recently) SOPHIE’S FISH. Ann has also published feature articles in local and national magazines and currently writes a weekly column for The Salt Lake Tribune (www.sltrib.com).
She and her husband, Ken, are the parents of five sons and have welcomed three daughters-in-law and two granddaughters into the family. Ann and Ken live in Salt Lake City with two dogs, two cats, two parakeets, and one parrot. Visit her on facebook or on her blog at http://anncannon.blogspot.com/.