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» Hatrack River Writers Workshop » Forums » Open Discussions About Writing » Bootcamp?

   
Author Topic: Bootcamp?
jaycloomis
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What's this bootcamp business all about?

All the forums for boot camp are locked -- how do you sign up for it and when does it start?

-Jayson


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annepin
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Ah, yes. That is where the big kids play.

Bootcamp is an almost-once-a-yearly workshop run by OSC. Applications are usually accepted starting January. Usually he posts an announcement on the home page or there abouts. Once you attend the workshop you get the special keys for a forum devoted to the workshop attendees.

[This message has been edited by annepin (edited November 27, 2007).]


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InarticulateBabbler
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A week with OSC, and a handful of others selected on their writing merits, to receive instruction and insights--but that's just icing on the "special keys for a forum devoted to the workshop attendees."...


[This message has been edited by InarticulateBabbler (edited November 28, 2007).]


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annepin
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Lol, IB. Maybe I have some repressed bitterness about the forums! I remember as a young hatrackling I tried to open them and got the message demanding a password. "Why, the nerve!" I thought to myself.

Anyway, yes, the bootcamp is, reportedly, quite brilliant and helpful.

Which begs the question, is anyone applying for next year? What about for Clarion or Odyssey? Niel Gaiman is teaching at Clarion next year...


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Robert Nowall
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I've wondered why one of them is so much more active than the others...
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Zero
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Well, no offense to Card who writes just about the best damned prose I've ever seen, I don't see the value in bootcamp. I think in order to find your native narrative voice you don't need to be attending lectures by another writer. It's like learning how to paint by Jackson Pollock. Sure he was a great painter (According to many people, but not me) But he can only teach you his style, not help you find/create your own.


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Rahl22
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Bootcamp 04'er here. (Yes, that's the more chatty one.)

Zero, I'd agree with you if that's what it actually was. But the value of bootcamp is not at all in the lectures received (although they were always interesting and helpful). You go to bootcamp to practice critiquing other stories, to write one (or more??) of your own, and to spend a week in focused commune with other writers.

Worth it.


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annepin
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Yeah, I doubt anyone can teach you to write like they do. Rather, it's about mentoring you to find your own process, maybe giving you some ideas on how to do things along the way.
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RMatthewWare
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I think the point of Bootcamp, or any other type of writer's conference is to get you away from your distractions and just kind of have a jamming session of writing. You're away from friends and family and surrounded with fellow writers. I think maybe when my life settles down and my wife's out of school I'd like to go to one, just to see what it's like.
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Christine
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Boot camp was awesome! I learned more in a week than I learned in about 5 years of mucking around on my own. I highly recommend the experience to anyone who can go.

As for the forums and their activity level -- most of us have wandered away to a special private forum. I think my year, 2003, is completely dead except over at Codex.


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Kathleen Dalton Woodbury
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In my opinion, a truly helpful writing teacher doesn't lecture, but instead has students workshop stories (exchange them with each other and the teacher for feedback).

This is helpful for at least two reasons:

First, as a story is discussed, the teacher can use the story's problems as stepping off points to expose aspiring writers to all kinds of different theories and approaches to writing, not just whatever approach that particular teacher may find helpful.

Second, when workshopping stories, students experience the truth of "it's better to give than to receive" because figuring how to give helpful feedback on someone else's story teaches you how to look carefully at and think creatively about any story, where receiving feedback on your own may do no more than help you with just that story.


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skadder
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How do you apply? Do you have to submit a story? Who do you apply to? How many get to join? When is the deadline?
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JeanneT
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Here is the blurb from last year's bootcamp which was $750. I don't see one yet for next year.

quote:
Literary Boot Camp is open only to writers -- college-aged and older -- who are serious about professional level work. Following the two-day Writing Class, the Boot Camp writers go on with four intense days of creating and critiquing new stories developed at the beginning of the week - all under the leadership of noted author Orson Scott Card.

Enrollment for Literary Boot Camp is limited to no more than 18 participants and is by application only. Those who wish to attend must register with a $175 deposit and submit the FIRST PAGE ONLY of a short story. Prompt application is advised. Tuition does not include housing or meals. The deadline for submitting writing samples is June 8; you will be notified whether or not you have been accepted by June 15. The remaining balance of $550 will be due by July 13. Those not accepted to Boot Camp will have the choice of either applying their $175 deposit to the two-day Writing Class or having their deposit refunded.


I would guess that next year's will go up in January. I have no idea what housing and food would cost. The expense isn't huge considering that it is a pretty prestigeous writing credit. This is one that you would probably include on queries.

[This message has been edited by JeanneT (edited November 29, 2007).]


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meg.stout
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Bootcamp is cool. Here's a link to my write-up of this past year's experience:

http://megstout.com/articles/Sweat.htm

Alas, as far as accessing the super secret bootcamp fora, attending bootcamp only gets you into the forum for your year and the general bootcamp thread.

And as I found when I finally got the secret decoder ring and gained entrance to the general bootcamp thread, I was told that most former bootcampers who would be expected to post on the general bootcamp thread have wandered over to a place called Codex, a rocking place where "membership is free, but requires either at least one pro fiction sale or completion of a major, by-audition-only speculative fiction writing workshop such as Clarion, Odyssey, Literary Boot Camp, Clarion West, etc." Codexians include WotF winners, editors, agents, in addition to newbie writers with a mere workshop or publication credit.

To check out the parts of codex (library and mega-blog) that can be seen without a secret decoder ring, you can go to:

http://codexwriters.com/


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Kathleen Dalton Woodbury
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Just went over to take a look at Codex, and I am hurt to see that Critters is the only online workshop listed.
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meg.stout
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Hatrack is listed under "Fora and Discussion Groups"
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TheOnceandFutureMe
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So after reading this post I've decided I'm going to apply to at least a few writers workshops this summer. What are my options?

I've looked at Clarion, Clarion West, Odyssey, Literary Boot Camp. Are there any on the East coast?


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annepin
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Are you looking specifically at speculative fiction? Or are you open to any fiction workshop?

You can poke around on The Shaw Guides to search for workshops in any location.

[This message has been edited by annepin (edited November 30, 2007).]


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JamieFord
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I went last year and honestly, it changed me as a writer. I blogged about it while I was there if you want the inside scoop:

http://www.jamieford.com/bittersweet-blog/2006/6/12/uncle-orsons-literary-boot-campsunday.html


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Kathleen Dalton Woodbury
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meg.stout:
quote:
Hatrack is listed under "Fora and Discussion Groups"

Hmm. Well, I guess that's okay, then. But we're a workshop, too, right?

TheOnceandFutureMe:

quote:
Are there any on the East coast?

Viable Paradise is on Martha's Vineyard.


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JeanneT
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And some nice person sent me this link:

http://www.runelords.com/journal/?page_id=27

I think the Bootcamp may not be quite right for me, but a good workshop is a great idea. I'm looking around.


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RMatthewWare
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Any midwest workshops?
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Spaceman
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The february or march issue of Poets and Writers is the issue that all the workshops from all over the country advertise.
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JeanneT
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Meg, I'm curious. In your comment about Clarion, Odyssey, Literary Boot Camp, Clarion West, etc... what is etc?
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meg.stout
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quote:
Meg, I'm curious. In your comment about Clarion, Odyssey, Literary Boot Camp, Clarion West, etc... what is etc?

I honestly don't know - you'd have to ask Luc Reid, since I just copied that straight off the codex intro page.

I assume if it is a by audition writing workshop of some note, it can be found to meet the criterion. I'll go ask for the latest list of qualifying by-audition-workshops.


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meg.stout
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TheOnceandFutureMe wrote:

quote:
So after reading this post I've decided I'm going to apply to at least a few writers workshops this summer... Are there any on the East coast?

Literary Bootcamp will probably be in Buena Vista, VA again this summer, fwiw.


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JeanneT
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And isn't one of them (I forget which) in New Hampshire?

The midwest appears to be a bit lacking in workshops.

I'm giving some thought to attending David Farland's novel-writing workshop. I don't know that it is considered one of the "major" workshops, but it looks like one that could be a valuable experience. And I like the idea of a workshop that concentrates on novels. As much as I want to improve my short story writing, I am really a novelist so that would make more sense for me.

[This message has been edited by JeanneT (edited December 01, 2007).]


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meg.stout
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I checked into the workshops that qualify one to join Codex. Luc replied:

quote:
To have an official list of writing workshops, we would have to know about all of the writing workshops in the world and rule on each and every one of them, so instead, we have a list of ones we know work out and deal with exceptions on an as-needed basis.

Generally speaking, the workshop should meet these kinds of guidelines. This is not an official list of rules, but rather a general description of the qualifications:

1) Be run, founded, or taught by one or more very successful writers, agents, editors, etc.
2) Have a selective acceptance policy that requires potential participants to submit a writing sample, which is at least part of the basis for their acceptance or not
3) Run for a minimum of about five days of intensive work


If you have questions about any specific workshops, you can e-mail Luc Reid directly at join@codexwriters.com


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JeanneT
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Thanks for checking, meg. Interesting.
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Kathleen Dalton Woodbury
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Registration is now open for the 2008 Literary Bootcamp:

http://www.hatrack.com/bootcamp2008.shtml


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annepin
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Hot diggety! It's in California this year? That makes it much more appealing... Of course, what I save in airfare I'll probably end up forking out in hotel rooms...

Btw, first page of a short story... I assume he means standard manuscript format (i.e. 13 lines?)

[This message has been edited by annepin (edited February 27, 2008).]


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JeanneT
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Ugh. If I'd known it was going to be on the West Coast this year I might would have held off on the other workshop I signed up for. The two day thing that's an option is a possibility though.
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brainie
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I'm really pleased it's in San Diego - I can fly out, learn fabulous writing techniques, and visit my family. It's perfect for me.
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mitchellworks
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so, when this asks for the first page of a short story, do you think they're talking 13 lines?
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JeanneT
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I suppose the first page of a short story would be about that since properly formatted it starts half-way down the page.
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rickfisher
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It was never clear to me (Bootcamp '01) just what that "one page" meant, and in the years since I've never found out, though I talked/corresponded with several people applying who wondered about the same question.

But I'm pretty darn sure you don't need to restrict it to 13 lines. You should be able to send at least a full, properly-formatted page. (What I sent was actually closer to two pages. Whether he's gotten fussier about the length since then or not, I have no idea.)


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Rommel Fenrir Wolf II
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MORE PT, MORE PT,
WE LIKE IT,
WE LOVE IT,
WE WANT MORE OF IT,
MAKE IT HURT OSC,
MAKE IT HURT.

sorry made me think of basic commbat training. our drill sgts made us say that when they smoked us. but in sted of OSC we said DRILL SGT.

is there PT during this bootcamp if you screw up?

RFW2nd

[This message has been edited by Rommel Fenrir Wolf II (edited March 05, 2008).]


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