"All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us." —J. R. R. Tolkien

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

The Big (Sur) Adventure

One comment: Driving on the top of big cliffs is scary. And pretty. But the last thing I wanted to do was look.

OK, so California is beautiful. I'd flown through LA one time, and once I made it to Tahoe, but other than that, I've never seen the state. So after my overnight stay with sister-in-law and niece, I headed down to Big Sur Friday morning. Accompanying me on my journey was an excellent audiobook - "A Great and Terrible Beauty" by Libba Bray. Can you say fantastic?

I lucked into a room by myself as my roommate got double booked. OK, so my cabin was at the very corner of the place, and there was a total blackout one night, but my doors had locks, so aside from creepy horror movie recollections, I felt safe.

My schedule for the weekend included group critique sessions with Catherine Ryan Hyde (author of Pay it Forward and like a gazillion more awesome books), Laura Rennert (agent at Andrea Brown), and Jamie Weiss Chilton (agent at Andrea Brown). I also had a one-on-one critique with author Eric Elfman who'd pre-read my first 20 pages.
Can I say the feedback I got was incredible, I made great improvements on my manuscript, and I met so many nice people.
If you can make it to this workshop, go!

Possible highlight of the trip? Filling up my rental car gas tank at 5:30 in the morning Monday and having a guy at the pump next to me tell his friend on the cell phone, "Man, this girl just got out of her car at 5:30 in the morning to fill up her tank, and she sure is pretty." I kind of smile, and he says "Girl, you sure wake up looking good."
OK, sounds creepier than it was. There were plenty of people around, and let's face it. I'm a married 37 year-old woman with 2 kids. It's nice to have a random stranger tell you you're pretty even when you haven't showered and have no makeup on.


Christine M said...

Sounds like you had an incredible time!

PJ Hoover said...

I did! It's so nice to have dedicated time to write!

carla said...

so happy for you here.
(and even shocking myself Im above the jealous pangs. go me! :))



Patty P said...

So glad the weekend was successful. I loved getting there. The views were amazing (I wasn't driving!)
Regarding the workshop, I'm curious as to why you chose the spring retreat and not the Fall one?

PJ Hoover said...

Hey Patty! Welcome to the blog :)
I chose the March retreat only because of timing and where I was in regards to my manuscript. I think the December one was filled up before I was ready to sign up.
California is such a great state!

And Carla, you sure are purdy too! And I'm not even (too) jealous of your muscles!