Monday, June 22, 2009

Day One - KRWW

I have arrived at the Kenyon Review Writer's Workshop! Excitement! Overcoming many difficulties to get here (namely a dead car transmission and a linguistics paper which is still not finished). Despite this I arrived well and on time.

Sunday morning was the first day of workshops.

Our two quotes for the week are Hanna Ardent: Storytelling reveals meaning without committing the error of defining it, and Einstein: If at first the idea is not absurd, then there is no hope for it. We are committed to a week of both not defining and bringing forth absurdity. I like it.

Kenyon has the distinction of being a writing workshop. That is, we write. "Summer workshops" and "writing conferences" have somewhat dubious reputations for being places where writers (A) gather to talk and rub elbows, or (B) edit by committee -- or, as Tyler Meier calls them, "workshops that witch doctor the manuscript you brought with you." Here we bring nothing with us but our acceptance letters. Here we write to produce new work.

I feel like I have been rushing through the last week. Go, go, go. Get the car, get the cats, go. Drop the cats, repack, go. Get to town, unpack, go. Get to breakfast, to workshop, to lunch to dinner to reading, go!

Finally, I took a breath Sunday evening.

How long has it been since I seriously considered sleep before 10:00 pm? Today, I am there.

There's been no time for me to relax and enjoy the Kenyon experience ... even that beer I caught with a friend Saturday evening felt scheduled and false. This place is frickin verdant, naturalist's wet dream and I've been ignoring much of its beauty. Is it the go, go, go mentality? Is it the paper hanging over my head?

Highly Recommended