F2K (which stands for Fiction 2000, its third name, and the one that has stuck) is close to opening for our newest session. It's been awhile since our last session, and we have a new site running. So along with exploring all the nooks and crannies there, I have also been doing a little bit here and a little bit there. Adding rooms, forums, scheduling the weekly chats, and so on. The toughest part has been corralling our Mentors. Mentors are volunteers who have been through the course before and know what we’re all about. They are guides, I suppose, with a little more experience than the average student, as far as the course is concerned.
The free writing course, which runs for six weeks, is basically peer-supported; writers helping writers. Mentors also give some individual attention to those students who wish to pay a small fee. And it is small! I used Mentor Support for my second trip through and found it well worth it. But the other two times I did not. It depends on how you approach the course, and how much time you wish to spend on it. And a student can “upgrade” any time they like.
So far I still have two rooms without a Mentor, though I have emailed two folks. Like herding cats, I guess! But the fact is, since I was asked to be the F2K Coordinator I have been eager to get this going. So I’m anxious to get my Mentors lined up and ready to go!
If any of you are interested in kick-starting your writing, or learning some of the basic elements of writing fiction, why not sign up? Right now we intend to open on May 23rd, barring any unforeseen circumstances, and it’s a fun experience for newer, as well as more seasoned, writers. I don’t believe there’s any age restriction, although we cater to the adult writer more than children. Check it out.
Meanwhile I am still writing my sequel to “Benning’s War”; the research is rough – this is not the era I am comfortable with – but edifying. Discovering new characters, learning how they interact with each other, playing with the dialogue and action, all of it is tiring but exciting. It’s funny to say, and non-writers may shake their heads in disbelief, but while you are deep in the writing – inspired, I guess – the characters seem to speak for themselves. They come to demand your attention, clamor for their voices to be heard, and seems to direct the story-telling. Ask a writer; they’ll tell you!
I’m using PriNoWriMo as a spur to action, if you will, and I am not quite half-way to our 50,000-word goal for the month. Even if I make the goal the novel will not be close to being finished. There’s a lot of story to tell and 50,000 words won’t come close. And that doesn’t even touch what will happen when I begin editing it. But that’s in the future. For now it’s the writing that is alive.
And how about you?