I spent the past week at the Historical Fiction, Alternate History, and Time Travel workshop taught by Kristine Kathryn Rusch. I learned a ton, got to catch up with a few authors I already knew, met five more authors, and had a wonderful time.
I not only wrote my first time travel story (which is, of course, the opening to a novel), I also wrote my first alternate history story (also a novel opening…). I’d never had any desire to write either – reading those types of stories is very different from wanting to write them. My goal with this class was to learn more about writing historical fiction, and I considered time travel and alternate history to be a part of the package that I’d be exposed to, but not focus on. To my great surprise, I found myself enjoying writing these stories just as much as I did the historical fiction assignments. Who knew?!?
On top of learning and working on (a lot!) of fun homework assignments, we all had to read each other’s stories. There were twelve students, and we wrote one story ahead of time, and another four in class – so that meant we each had to read forty-four stories during the week as well as work on a variety of assignments. All of the stories were very good, and some were just amazing. It was not only fun to read them, it was also fascinating to see what other people came up with.
We stayed at the Anchor Inn, which is a very unique place. Every time I go there I find something new. Here’s a tiny peek at what’s on the inside. Being at the Anchor is kind of like traveling back in time…
I had so much classwork to do that I didn’t have time to walk on the beach until Saturday, but it was a beautiful day for it!
Now I’m back in the real world with a few new projects to wrap up: a short story set off the coast of Sicily around 1500 B.C., a series of novellas set in the Wild West, a time travel novel in which a man goes back to the 1800s to find his great-great grandfather and the location of a lost gold mine, and a novel set in the American West – except it isn’t the American West, since Spain never gave the Louisiana territory to the French, and therefore the Louisiana Purchase never happened. And back then, ‘Louisiana’ referred to land that is now part of Arkansas, Missouri, Iowa, Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska, and parts of Minnesota, North & South Dakota, New Mexico, Texas, Montana, Wyoming, and Colorado, as well as part of the current state of Louisiana.
And that list is just the new projects that came out of this workshop. 🙂
I have a lot of writing to do… I can’t wait to get started! I’m so glad to be back home with my writing buddies!!!