Monday, December 31, 2012

What's Next for PPW?

By Mandy Brown Houk


There are all sorts of hackneyed metaphors to use for the end of one year and the beginning of another. But for the purposes of this article, I’ll zoom in on just one: the turning of a page.

As writers, we’re all avid readers (and if you’re not, you ought to become one). We know the delicious breathlessness of the turn of a page. In a particularly lovely book, you start to slide your finger behind the page you’re on before you’ve gotten halfway through it. If you’re like me, you sometimes have to deliberately slow your eyes down to make sure you don’t miss something in your haste to flip over and find out what’s next!

I find that I do the same in life sometimes. I forget that reality doesn’t work like fiction, so resolution isn’t necessarily imminent or swift or paced in a manner I’d like. I yearn for things to be linear, to follow a pattern. For each year-end since 2004, I’ve been sure the next “page” (year) would bring a book deal, or at least an agent. I finally signed with an agent this spring, but my finger’s still paused there, lifting up the corner, itching to see when (if) the ultimate goal will actually happen, and when.

Regardless of where you are in your writing journey--starting your first draft, or going on tour with book number eight--you can’t predict what will be written on page 2013. It’s exciting and aggravating, suspenseful and maddening.

Here’s where Pikes Peak Writers can help.
          
First, we’re all right there with you. If you haven’t already, you need to treat yourself to an evening with Deb Courtney or Mary Karen Meredith, the hostesses of our monthly get-togethers (Writer's Night and Open Critique, respectively). You’ll find kinship and conversation and even critique partners.
            
For brushing up on your craft and marketing skills, we have a wonderful calendar planned for our Write Brains (both in-person and online).
            
And, of course, the biggie: PPWC 2013. Each year I’m amazed at the opportunities that unfold in the halls of the Colorado Springs Marriott. Opportunities to learn, sharpen skills, meet other writers, breathe life into perhaps dormant dreams, and meet industry professionals that can be instrumental in turning that crucial page toward publishing (where do you think I met my agent?!).
            
Check out our calendar and our conference brochure and see what we’ve got planned. You may not know exactly what’s printed on page 2013, but you can make yourself ready to meet it.
            
Go on. Lift that corner.

About the Writer:  Mandy Brown Houk is a freelance writer and editor, and she teaches at a small private high school in Old Colorado City. She's written for several magazines and anthologies, and has completed two novels--only one of which is worthy of the light of day. Mandy's work is represented by Sally LaVenture at Warner Literary Group. Her web site is www.mandybrownhouk.com.
            

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