I’ll attend Write-by-the-Lake in Madison, WI next week.  It’s an opportunity to work in a focused way on a stand-alone novel I’m writing.  I’m grateful my job as a free-lance Sign Language interpreter allows such flexibility in my schedule, so I can take a week away when needed.  WBTL offers many different options for specific workshops.  I signed up for Lori Devoti’s (www.loridevoti.com) “Twelve Weeks to First and Final Drafts.”  I’m a consistent writer in my writing life, but the speed her workshop promises is intriguing…and welcome.  I’ll blog more about my experience at WBTL as it happens.

This summer and fall offer many opportunities for writers (published and un-) to attend conferences/workshops.  In addition to WBTL, I’ll attend Bouchercon in September (St. Louis) and Murder and Mayhem in Muskego in November (WI).  Karen Burgess, (www.literarylunchbox.wordpress.com) one of the women in my critique group and a sister mystery writer/lover, just emailed she’s signed up for Bouchercon–we’ll go together, which will be fun for me.  I typically attend these conferences alone and tend to be my isolated self, too shy to talk with others while underneath I’m dying to connect.  All in the learning curve, all in the learning curve.

I’m listening to a CD of Elizabeth Berg’s The Art of Mending as I drive around to various jobs in the city and burbs.  This is dangerous.  Berg is such a perfect writer (nothing extraneous, always pitch-perfect in the emotional content).  In the story, the father dies.  I started bawling right there in the turn lane, the green arrow a blur.