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Original editor for Send2Press: Christopher L. Simmons

Beginning And Professional Writers Benefit From Rawlings Writing The Region Workshop

Gainesville, Fla. - April 6, 2004 /Send2Press Newswire/ -- Aspiring and professional writers alike will have the opportunity to work with some of the finest authors ever to set word to paper during the Gainesville Association for the Creative Arts' 2004 Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings "Writing the Region" workshop July 21-25, 2004 in Florida (

Named for the well-known author of "The Yearling," the nationally recognized five-day workshop is held in Gainesville, Florida, a short drive from Rawling's home in Cross Creek. The program features distinguished authors in nearly every genre, including Shelley Fraser Mickle, whose 1993 Novel "Replacing Dad" became a nationally televised movie. Mickle said the underlying goal of the workshop is that all writers can improve.

"The fact that attendees perform their work at the closing banquet underlies our basic philosophy," Mickle said. "This workshop is for the attendees. "Everything works toward helping all of us be better writers who are sharpening our skills and invigorating our imaginations," she said.

Workshop presenter and University of Florida professor Kevin McCarthy said he's spoken with past attendees who have gone on to start their own writers groups to share their material with each other. "The Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings Writing the Region workshop is very effective," McCarthy said, "and it's never a one-way street. We teachers learn just as much from our students, whether they're in a workshop or in a classroom."

New to the workshop this year is "The Editor's Table," which allows authors to spend 15 minutes in a one-on-one session with a professional editor. Writers can talk to the editor about their work and ideas, or have the editor give a query letter or up to three pages of manuscript a review. Many faculty members, such as Mickle, return to the Writing the Region workshop year-after- year.

"I think what I am most proud of, in terms of being on the faculty from the first year, is the family-type feeling we have established," Mickle said. "Lots of folks come back each year, and it feels like a reunion, although for first-timers, the workshop has a warm welcoming atmosphere."

In addition to Mickle, workshop faculty include poets Peter Meinke and Sidney Wade, agent Cricket Pechstein, writer and filmmaker Bill Bellville, historical fiction author Michael Gannon and columnists Jeff Klinkenberg and Bill Maxwell.

A sample of session topics for the 2004 workshop include: writing historical fiction, nonfiction writing, mystery writing, playwriting, poetry, self-publishing, freelancing, characterization, writing with a sense of place and using observation skills to improve writing.

Optional activities include one-on-one sessions with a workshop faculty member or a trip to the Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings home in Cross Creek.

Early-bird registration for the workshop for the five days is just $335, which includes all sessions and meals. There are also one-day and half-day rates available. For more information, call toll-free: 1-800-917-7001.

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