Mountain View, CAUSA
Hometown: Mountain View
September 15, 2014
For my professional life,I wrote a great deal of expository prose. My ventures into poetry and fiction were tentative and not encouraging. On retiring to the Bay Area, I joined a writing class in order to hone my skills at memoir. I have had so much fun writing poetry and short stories that I have not written nearly as much memoir as I had expected. Something has changed. Now thanks to Nanowrimo, I have stumbled into writing a novel, something that I also knew I could never do. It's only a bit over 10,000 words but I know now that I have to finish it. I get some feedback from my fellow classmates but I'm hoping to increase the amount and the penetration of critique by joining your group.
I love poetry and I write some from time to time, but not enough to really call myself a poet. I also write short stories, and lately, flash fiction. From time to time I send into competitions but apart from a long-listing in Flash500, with little success. As mentioned above, I am now toiling to complete a novel. My style? I love irony and word play so I tend to create highly articulate characters. In one or two very short pieces, I have some comically slow-witted characters; in the world of my longer pieces there may be foolish people but not stupid. I've written occasional fantasy pieces but my main genre is realism. Memoire! I think that I've had an interesting life and I still make an effort to write memoir. I conceive this to be written for family, to be read by others if and only if it happens to catch their interest. I don't think that I've led a particularly marketable life.
Critique! The in-class comments that I get in the writing class that I attend are very helpful but they are very much off-the-cuff. This group here appears to be a bit more structured in its approach: Google Docs, pre-circulation of text, etc. In general, my class-mates seem to like my writing but, fortunately, they don't hesitate to find fault. However, I'm occasionally astounded by things that they completely miss. A recent example was a love-triangle that I very explicitly set out in the first paragraph. One person got it but only after a second reading. A writer has to discover these failures to communicate - so I did. Now I'd like to know WHY nobody got it. That takes longer. I'm hoping that it will happen in the Red Rock. I've already confessed to being retired. However, I was told by one of your organizers that the age criterion was really an attempt to match experience, rather than age per se. As I am very much still a beginner, she said to please come along. Hope it works out.
I was born in China, of English parentage, grew up in New Zealand, carry a passport from the UK, and a Green Card from the US where I have spent my entire professional life. I have written many professional papers but little fiction, until now!
As this was my first meeting, I have little to go on in making a separate judgement on the group. Given my experience of the meeting, that judgement has to be highly favorable.