I left home Friday at 1:00 pm; my Mapquest said the ride to the Retreat site was one hour, 59 minutes. I entered to door at 3:00 pm. How's that for truth in advertising? I like those maps a lot, because they give you the mile-marker Exit Numbers, which I can follow easily. Towards the end, though, when I was honing in on it, I suddenly remembered that scene in "The Color Purple" where the white lady drops off her "colored maid" to spend time with her family and then leaves to drive herself home - only to have a panic attack at driving alone and requiring her to come away immediately to take her home.
Well, maybe not quite THAT bad, as I did get there, on on time (!!!)
What to say? Well, just a quick synopsis here, as I haven't put in my photos yet, but in overview: YES, it was infinitely worth-while for me. I left here having written a bunch of kid stories, and came home the author of children's stories. I got just a fearsome lot of information about the nuts & bolts of getting something published, having had the privilege of hearing editors and agents both. And as for the craft of writing? Well - I discovered that I don't know many authors' names, but I am familiar with some of the books. VERY familiar.
For example, Holly Black . I imagine I'm one of the few who didn't know her name, but I OWN the first two books of her extarodinarily well-known Spiderwick Chronicles. She was hilarious, informative, interesting and interesting, and I sat listening, I suddenly remembered - they made her book into a MOVIE! I guess that's pretty good.
There was more, and I'll elaborate when I get my pictures; in the meantime, suffice it to say that I came away feeling like a really-truly author, and actually and really inspired.
"Details at 11:00".