Messy Desks, Deadlines, and Writing Classes

Ann H Gabhart Ann's Posts, One Writer's Journal

~~~Here’s my granddaughter ready to take over her grandma’s place as writer for the day. She’s a super fast typist, but it’s a little hard to read all those words she types without concern over proper placement of letters. Free flowing thoughts – er fingers. Perhaps good for the creative energy.
~~~I’d like to blame the messy desk in the background on her, but I have to admit the mess is all mine. I like a neat desk, but I think papers reproduce overnight and spread like creeping kudzu. Scattered about in no particular order I have bank statements, calendar books, church bulletins, books of inspirational sayings, and info on my computer that’s still not working properly and all my troubleshooting isn’t fixing.
~~~Everybody groans when I say the word “Vista.” I hear all of you out there groaning now. I don’t really care what operating system I have as long as it operates. I’ve always been that way about cars too. As long as the motor turns over and starts purring when I turn the key, I’m happy. Of course I like one that’s small enough to parallel park with ease which means my husband considers it a toy car. So we usually ride together in his van.
~~~But one reason my desk is so messy is that I’m having to push toward a deadline and do some promo things for The Seeker that’s making an appearance at the same time as the deadline. It’s good to have something to blame your mess on. Everything that comes up I say I’ll do that in July the same as I did last year. I didn’t get everything done in July last year. Some of those “to do” things are still on my list. My list is turning yellow with age.
~~~But before July, I’m going to be leading a couple of classes at the Kentucky Christian Writers Conference in Elizabethtown the middle of June. I hope – really hope – to have my book finished before then. The two classes I’m leading are about developing characters and revising. The revising one sounds so dull that nobody will probably come to that one, but making your writing better by careful editing and revision is definitely worth the time and effort.
~~~I’m beginning to worry I may have gotten in over my head with these classes. I taught a community ed writing class for several years and enjoy teaching, but the people coming to this conference will probaby know more about writing than I do. I go on instinct a lot. You can’t teach instinct. But maybe I can share some of the things I’ve discovered in my many years of writing. That’s one thing I’ll probably have on most of the attendees, the number of years I’ve been at it.
~~~But if you were coming to my class, what would you like to know? What questions would you ask? What tips would you share about character development or revising? If you’ve got an extra minute, let me know.