Last weekend, I had the immense pleasure of attending Anna Campbell‘s romance writing workshop at the Queensland Writers Centre. Now, you may remember that I was hysterically sleep deprived, and within minutes of my arrival I managed to lose the critique that Anna had done on my first ten pages of Take a Chance on Me, lose my sunglasses, fail to master the hot water tap for a cup of coffee, fail to find the sugar that was sitting in a jar right in front of me, and probably unnerve the gentle QWC volunteer who greeted me when my baby brain refused to allow words to move from my brain to my mouth and so moved my jaw noiselessly up and down while making some sort of fish noises in reply.
So that was me.
Now for Anna.
Anna so kindly said to me, ‘oh I don’t know why you’re here really, your story is wonderful’. I smiled and nodded my thanks, but I knew that (a) my story needed help and you never stop learning and why wouldn’t I learn from a master of the craft, and (b) I was a total mess (refer to previous paragraph) and needed some professional therapy to get my head back on track.
And learn I did. Yes, romance writing contains pretty much the same structural elements as any good story, but there were at least two huge lightbulb moments in that workshop for me that had me gagging on my coffee and thinking, ‘oh golly, I have a bit of work to do’. And one of those lightbulb moments was on the importance of the first kiss. My characters have rushed right over that little gem and I’m going to go back and ask them to indulge the reader.
Almost as wonderful as Anna’s workshop was the PILE of free books I came home with!! And… we got free chocolate as well!! Come on. I would have gone just for those two things alone 🙂
Anna’s latest book, Seven Nights in a Rogue’s Bed, is now available and I can’t wait to get my hands on that steamy little number.
Thanks Anna for a wonderful day.