Today we went to the Locus Awards Ceremony. Neil Gaiman came over to our table and said hi. Later at the Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony he read a lovely piece about Harlan Ellison. We rode the bus there and back, and I spent the evening critiquing the first full stories that we’ll workshop. An amazing, exhausting, wonderful day.
We were allowed to share news of our acceptance on April 2nd, so I made the mistake of postponing fundraising until April. Then my day job became really busy, and now it is almost the end of April, and I’m just getting started finding ways to raise the funds for tuition, airfare, and living expenses while at Clarion West.
I can already tell that this is going to be a great class, full of innovative people, just from the ways that we take this first step towards Clarion West:
- Here’s a kickstarter project by one of my classmates.
- And another of my classmates is making an amazing, beautiful statement of just how much this workshop means to her.
In the next few weeks I plan to hold a yard sale, a bake sale, and apply for a loan in case all else fails.
But today I had some fun. I went out into my backyard and made a video for my kickstarter project. You can watch it here.
I have no idea if this will work at all, but it seems like a good first step.
I had a voice mail waiting for me from Neile Graham, who has a lovely, friendly voice. I called back, calming myself, listing all the possible reasons I might have been called that were NOT about acceptance.
My application was incomplete.
I hadn’t sent in the application fee.
I was an alternate.
They were calling to ask me to please never apply to Clarion West again.
But Neile told me I had been invited to attend. After squealing and jumping around and running into the kitchen and telling my partner, “It’s Clarion West!” I finally calmed down enough to tell Neile, “Yes! I will be there.”
I love that Clarion West calls the new class to let them know they’ve been accepted. It’s that first jolt of connection, of waking up your mind to “hey! this is really happening!” But even after speaking with Neile, I couldn’t accept that I’d actually be attending the workshop. I began to think it might be reality when I received a confirmation email later that night, but then I had to wait all through March to find out who my classmates were. I began to think that the release of the class list had been delayed because they had decided they didn’t want me to attend after all, and were trying to figure out a way to tell me.
Now that it’s April, and we’ve got an email list set up where we’re talking about Clarion West preparations, it is beginning to feel real at last.
I’ve sent in my deposit to secure my place at the workshop. I’m waiting for Monday to roll around so I can buy my ticket to the Locus Awards. And there’s a packet of information coming in the mail soon.
But I don’t think I’ll believe it until I arrive in Seattle and enter the mysterious sorority house, and sit down to workshop the kind of stories I love with people who love them too.