Joining our community of writers is easy to do. Follow these rules and get started today! Here’s a step-by-step guide.
1. Become a member of our workshop at meetup.com. We use this service to keep track of attendance and exchange files. It’s free.
2. RSVP to a meeting at meetup.com. Sign up for as many meetings as you want. Join a waiting list if it is full. Spots open up all the time.
3. Read the work scheduled for discussion. The stuff you need to read is found in the “Files” section. Authors post their stories/poems/essays no sooner than one week before the meeting. The “Files” section is underneath the “More” tab. Find out what you’re supposed to be reading here.
4. Print these files. Prose submissions must be double-spaced, 12-point font, Times New Roman. Do not reformat these pages to save paper. You will need space on the page for step 5.
5. Read these stories/essays/poems. Write comments in the margins as you read.
6. Write a response. Please type your response, though if handwriting is your only option, that’s fine, too.
6a. What should my response contain? These responses aren’t supposed to be judgments. They’re supposed to give the writer an idea of how the story/poem seemed to you. So write what you observe. Log your feelings at each twist and turn. Make note of the thoughts that come to you. This is not a time to “look for faults.” But you should tell the writer if a passage confuses you, or if a character seems flat, for example.
7. Bring these written comments to the meeting. You’ll hand these comments to the author at the end of the workshop.
8. Participate in the discussion. You are free to ask questions, chime in with your thoughts, elaborate on things other people say. It’s intellectually stimulating for you and the writer! More on good discussion techniques here.
So you’ve attended a meeting and provided feedback. Now how do you get feedback on your work?
Contact me or talk to me at a meeting and we will work together to find a day that works for you. Your submission must not exceed 20 pages (12 point Times New Roman, double-spaced) or 3 poems (poems do not need to be double-spaced). If you have something longer, check with me, and we may still be able to read it.
You’re on the schedule and you need to post your writing. Here’s how you post it:
1. At least one week before the scheduled discussion of your work, log onto meetup.com.
2. Click on the “Files” section under the “more” tab. (It’s where you found the reading materials in step 3 above.)
3. Then click on “Add a file.”
4. Click “Browse” to select the file and upload it. You’ll also see a “Description (optional)” field. Write the date of the meeting at which this piece will be discussed. Example: “Peter’s story for discussion on Wednesday, February 6th.” Please make it available to “Anyone.”
If you have questions, please contact me. We’re looking forward to meeting you!