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2 responses to “Professional Practices: Part 1”

  1. Jennie Fields

    A radical and interesting point of view, Eric. But don’t you think the really useful thing we learned at the workshop was to question every word, to eschew every cliché, to look at our own work the way that really snarky person in the class would look at it and revise it before they verbally abused us? In other words, to write as best we are capable. Always. Does that ever go out of fashion? Does that ever become unnecessary, even in this critical time of change in publishing? I hope not.

  2. Eric

    Jennie,
    Thanks for your thoughts! You’re absolutely right, of course. A workshop should help writers “write as best we are capable.” That’ll never go out of fashion, not even in this rapidly changing publishing environment. But I think the typical workshop model needs to adapt to better serve these writers so they can write as best they are capable in this new environment in which they’ll have to do more and more of what publishers used to do but now don’t. I think a workshop of any sort is a perfect place to provide information about what I call “professional practices.” (Most other professional programs in the arts–the visual arts, music–do in fact offer something along these lines, I think, don’t they?) If the traditional academic workshop can’t or won’t change, I think there are other models out there now for what might serve young writers more effectively, and at a price they can afford, and more on this to come….

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