The Clarion West Write-a-thon


Yes, it’s the solstice, and yes, I’ve signed up for the Clarion West Write-a-thon.

That link above will take you directly to my pledge page, but if you want more information, here goes.

Clarion West is a famous writing workshop in Seattle.

For nearly 30 years, Clarion West has been run for six weeks during the summer. As you might guess, it spun off from an older workshop with the same format in Michigan (I think) called simply “Clarion”. It’s taught by five writers and one editor, each trading off for a week, and writers come from all over to attend. They quit jobs, end relationships, lose apartments, and generally uproot their lives to spend a month and a half sequestered away from the world working on their fiction.

I’m not a graduate. I applied once in the 90’s but was turned down. However, the list of graduates is sure to include authors you love.

Clarion West has a reading series.

This is how I know the workshop. As part of the fundraising efforts, the workshop runs a reading series. It was the first place I ever heard a writer read, way back in the early 90’s (back when they held them in the basement of Elliott Bay Books), and it helped me find some terrific writers.

This year’s instructors are: Elizabeth Hand, Neil Gaiman, Joe Hill, Margo Lanagan, Samuel R. Delany, and Ellen Datlow. Too bad I have a kid or I would definitely be busing across town for these.

Clarion West still needs support.

Times are tough for everyone, including non-profits. To help raise money, CW is holding a “Write-a-thon” in which people pledge to walk a certain distance write a certain amount of words while the workshop runs.

Me, I’m hoping to wrap up the first draft of THE GREAT WAY in that time, so any pledges in my name will be considered serious and for real motivation.

Hey, it’s a good organization and a good cause. If you can bear to make a pledge, please do. #SFWApro