Mucho months ago I signed up for a six-hour/one-day poetry workshop. A year ago I’d signed up for an earlier version of the same workshop, which had fortysome participants. But this time, it would be more intimate, with far fewer attendants; so I made it a point to sign up early, lest I lose my chance of getting in.
But here’s the thing: The workshop takes place in less than a week, and as of one or two days ago, I was the only one who’d signed up. And in an ironic twist to my feeling that I needed to get in early in order to get a spot, there’s a possible chance not enough people will register in order to make the workshop a “go.” However, the woman who’s conducting the workshop says this sorta thing happens pretty much all the time: folks waiting until after the two-minute warning to commit themselves to attending.
This tendency has me pondering what sorta writing career I wanna pursue. Workshops and conferences and the like are a way to help replenish the coffers in-between writing gigs. And while my finding out a mere week before this current workshop that I was the only one who’d signed up was a bit unsettling, it had to be even moreso for Rosemerry—she has had to put in the time and energy and effort for a workshop that might not take place. And to hear from her that this is somewhat par for the course… Well, grrrr. I’m wanting my vocation to be _less_ stressful than my current paying-job. I tend to do badly and poorly, being held in suspension while waiting for a, Good To Go. There are other writerly avenues that can be followed, but still…
However, workshops and such are also a way to build an audience, to promote yourself as “the real deal,” and to escape the solipsistic vortex of crafting and to engage yourself in the writing community. (And, too, sometimes workshops do have participants, do happen.) And surely, being a writer, I’ve dealt before with ideas not panning out. Yet I keep returning the pages, even without any guarantees. It’s to be expected. It’s par for the course.