This is why you registered for Crossroads

This is why you registered for Crossroads

You come for the classes and the comraderie. If you’re a returning Crossroader, you already expect to have a good time, learn a bunch and leave inspired to write more. Well, here’s a run-down with (almost all) our workshops coming up this weekend. We dare you not to be excited!     List of 2013 Crossroads Workshops   25 Steps to Being A Traditionally Published Author, Even Lazier Edition Delilah Dawson Instead of reading my 7,000-word guide to getting a traditional publishing deal, come listen to me talk about it–and answer the questions you’re afraid to ask. From finishing your first draft to getting an agent to what happens after your book is on the shelf, it’s possible to sell a book without having an MFA, a friend in publishing, or a reality TV show. Hint: it involves a lot of hard work.   Anatomy of a Book Emilie P. Bush Whether you plan to self publish or enter a deal with a commercial publisher, knowing your gutter from your half title page is important. Topics include publishing terms, an up-close and personal look at what a book interior SHOULD look like and the basic “rules” of layout.   Digital Storytelling Tim Regan-Porter Should you write differently for digital media? If so, how? What tools are best for telling a compelling story? This panel will address a variety of issues in writing for the web, tablets, and mobile.   Fiction Writing Tips Cate Noble Deconstructing story: the elements of compelling fiction, with tips for nurturing your writer’s soul.   Freelancing is Out; Entrepreurism is In Kristin Luna At one...
Scholarship Sponsors, Radio Spots and Billboards, Oh My!

Scholarship Sponsors, Radio Spots and Billboards, Oh My!

Thanks to a huge boost of support from the local community, this has been a stellar week in Crossroadsland! WMUM, Macon’s GPB station, is running a new promo for the 5th annual Crossroads Writers Conference. Click here to listen to the Crossroads Stereo Promo. The next day, Lamar Advertising gave the conference space on one of its digital billboards overlooking Watson Boulevard so our buddies in Warner Robins will know what’s up. And in great news for writers-in-need, we picked up two more scholarship sponsors from story-loving organizations and businesses. The first comes from Historic Macon, whose hard work has preserved the gorgeous historic housing stock that makes our city so unique. Their crown jewel is the Sidney Lanier Cottage, where Macon’s famed poet was born and where you’ll now find the Lanier Center for Literary Arts. So it’s only appropriate that they want to sponsor a budding poet with a Storyteller Deluxe scholarship in honor of ol’ Sidney Lanier. We’re also able to give away another Pen & Paper scholarship thanks to the generosity of the Law Office of J. Michael Cranford, who is also helping support Authors’ Avenue on Friday, October 4 in downtown Macon. This one goes to a writer-in-need, doesn’t matter where you live or whether you’re a student. And if you’ve already applied for a scholarship, you’ll be considered for this one too. No need to reapply. To apply for either scholarship, you need to go to this form and answer all of our unreasonable questions! Click here. Now, you’re probably wondering about those other scholarships. Who won those? Well, our anonymous donor has picked two...
Last weekend for the Pen & Paper giveaway, sponsored by MGSC

Last weekend for the Pen & Paper giveaway, sponsored by MGSC

Time is running out but the entries keep pouring in. If you want a shot at one of two Pen & Paper registrations, generously sponsored by Middle Georgia State College, you should click here now to enter. In addition to sending 10 of its students to the 2013 Crossroads Writers Conference, Middle Georgia State College has sponsored these two non-student registrations too. Increase your chances by entering daily and sharing with your friends. The giveaway ends Monday, September 16, 2013 at 11:59 p.m. Learn more about tickets for the 2013 Crossroads Writers Conference here. Check out the schedule for the 2013 Crossroads Writers Conference here. Stay tuned for more news about Crossroads, including the special Sunday sessions for Storyteller Deluxe ticket holders and this year’s new T-shirt...

Why go to Crossroads? Because Meaghan says so!

Our friend Meaghan Walsh Gerard is a writer. When we met her, she was working and living the nonprofit life, which is about as lucrative as being a writer. That’s to say not much. And though she didn’t get one of our full scholarships, she did get a partial scholarship, funded largely by our awesome community of writers, because we knew we needed her to join us last year. What a great decision on our part! When you meet her at this year’s conference, you’ll know exactly why too! She has a ton of fire and a bunch of talent. Best yet, she has that follow-through we adore at Crossroads, which is to say she’s a good influence on a few of us slackers (ahem, Chris). Here’s an except about what she had to say about her experience, meeting Crossroads organizers and mingling with our all-star lineup of professional writers — and why she thinks you should join us this year. Meaghan, thank you! (To read the whole dang thing and to check out more of her work, go to MWGerard.com.) The act of writing is solitary but I never knew writing could be so friendly. There is no competitive jealousy at Crossroads. Everyone I met and talked to wanted to better their own process and was genuinely interested in each other’s projects. And for the first time ever, I won NaNoWriMo that November. …If you like writing, GO… …It’s a celebration of the written word. It’s the annual reminder for those of us who need the encouragement to keep writing during those subway commutes and while the dinner...
Marathons are hard. Writing is harder.

Marathons are hard. Writing is harder.

A couple weeks ago, I started running again because I’ve signed up for a 10K and two half-marathons. Yesterday, as I finished up my route, this occurred to me: writing is harder than running. I’ve run a marathon–26.2 miles–without stopping. I’ve run dozens of 5Ks, and a few 10ks and half-marathons. I’ve logged hundreds of miles in races and in training for them. And I’ve done this despite being, for a runner, fat and slow, and coming to running after a decade of smoking two packs a day. By contrast, though I’ve had hundreds of thousands of words published as a journalist, I have written zero books. I want to write books. Something about writing is just harder for me than running. I think I know what it is. Though I typically blame my busy schedule for not writing more, time isn’t the problem. (Time management maybe.) Running takes about an hour–sometimes two–out of my day. Good writers, I hear, dedicate at least an hour a day to writing. My problem (and maybe yours) is that I need to lower my standards. Running is easier than writing, for me, because my standard for writing is much higher than my standard for running. In a race, I just want to finish …and to beat at least one of the people dressed like Batman. But when I write, I want each page to be masterful, eloquent, world-changing. I need to lower my standards. In our forthcoming interview with writer Kevin Maurer, he said, “You have to be willing to write badly.” (He has a lot of great insight on developing the discipline...