Monday, December 8, 2008

Good evening, ladies and germs. I just flew in from Vegas and boy are my arms tired …

[No laughs, just breathing.]

Welcome to my seminar at Steamboat, the Ski Capital of the United States. I’ve called you all here today to because I miss Bradley Whitford and I need some hacks to write scripts for a new politically oriented sitcom where all the pretty actors endlessly bicker with each other and make inane social commentary on world affairs.

[“Who’s Bradley Whitford?” a lone voice asks.]

Or perhaps you’ll just be writing witty dialog about the non-meaning of life. Regardless of what you write—novels, screenplays, politician’s lives, or teeny-bopper romance, you need the finishing touches, the panache, the pièce de résistance of an established ink-stained wretch like me.

This year, reality TV will die vaingloriously. The lack of serious scripts in the vast wasteland will create boredom. TV will collapse into an apocalypse of golf, football, baseball, and the lesser sports of beach volleyball and homoerotic wrestling. Novels will claim their place in the pantheon of diversion. My workshop will teach techniques to make your writing interesting and engaging with these topics:

— Learning from the Masters: Jacqueline Susan, John Grisham, Dan Brown, and Lester Holloway.
— Exotica: Common Uses of Multisyllabic Words.
— The House Effect: Obscure Diseases and Character Development.
— Five Plot Twists Guaranteed to Make Your Male Readers Stand at Attention.
— Crude Language, Car Crashes, and Stud Muffins.
— Hot Romance Lessons from Movie Hunk Jack Noseworthy.
— Agents? Candygrams or Bereavement Cards?

These three days, you will learn how to professionally polish your novel so it pwns the publishing world. Now, let the writing begin!

Today, you have 30 minutes to read feedback on your very engaging 500 words on “Why I Want to Be a Big-Name Writer.” Then, take out your pads, pens, computers, and brain cells! Write an opening chapter of 1000 words on “Ethel the Aardvark Goes to Architecture College” by 6 p.m. That’s when I’ll be back from the slopes to listen to you read those openings for my verbal critique over dinner.

Tomorrow, we go to the casino and you can write all about gambling. I’ll be playing the games so you can gain technical knowledge.

And on our last day, I’ll meet with each of your to help prepare your evaluation of the course. None of us will go away unsatisfied.

I hope you all enjoy these three days of skiing, gambling, feasting, and writing. Remember, a well-fed, well-entertained author is a good author.

Dave Fragments is a writer and scientist, fascinated by heterogeneous catalysis as well as science fiction and the written word.

What the Hey? For the duration of Aught Eight, the Y.P.R. machine will be steered by the very capable (?) hands of Mr. Jimmy Chen and Mr. Fortunato Salazar
Happy Xmas (War Is Over Ongoing) The ghosts of Y.P.R. Christmases past.
Jeez, the Holidays Seem to Come Earlier Every Year ... Y.P.R. calls it a night on 2008. (See ya in ’09 ...!)

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