Sunday, June 24, 2012

Santa Barbara Writers Conference 2012

*Please make sure to check out the slideshow at the end of this post and feel free to leave your comments and memories!

Monte Schulz, Owner
Nicole Starczak, Director
Grace Rachow, Director of Volunteers
Staffed by an intrepid group of workshop leaders and hard-working volunteers!

Living at risk is jumping off the cliff and building your wings on the way down.

What can I say? This year’s S.B. Writers Conference was one of my very favorites by far. In the last thirty-five years, the conference has only seemed to get better and better. In the past ten years of my involvement I have made lifelong friends through the conference and every year come out of it a changed person.

Many friends often ask me, “What is it you guys do all day? Just write?!” To me this conference is about intellectual exhileration, socializing, celebrating our creative lives, supporting each other in our literary pursuits, and coming together once a year to remind ourselves that we—as writers—are not alone in the world.
Monte and Nicole with the intrepid Workshop Leaders

The Tireless Volunteers of SBWC 2012!

Owner Monte Schulz, Award-Winning Author Fannie Flagg, and Director Nicole Starczak

It’s a week so packed with delicious fuel for your muse that we each come out of it completely inspired and absolutely exhausted. I think that I slept something like thirteen hours the first night after the conference ended. Between nightly talks by award-winning authors like Dorothy Allison (Bastard Out Of Carolina) and Fannie Flagg (Fried Green Tomatoes) are seven days filled with morning and 
afternoon writers workshops from every genre under the sun (historical fiction, literary fiction, screenwriting, nonfiction, women’s fiction, memoir, young adult fiction, humor and more). As well as book panels by new authors, screenwriters, literary agents, editors, and publishers. It’s no wonder that this conference has a national reputation: Men and women fly in from around the country (and often out of it)...hungry to work on their craft.

For me the most magical moments of the conference are those that come in the moments "stolen between"….random conversations over coffee breaks after you haven’t slept for eighteen hours with someone you might never have met if it weren’t for the conference. Or listening to one of your workshop leaders belt out a tune and play guitar at the Talent Show at the end of the week. Or sharing a laugh with Fannie Flagg about a Dating Show she appeared on in the 70s and is shocked somebody actually has a copy of! ;) See the photos below….

There’s a bond that is made between writers here at the conference. If you’ve been thinking of going but can’t muster up enough reasons to go here’s a good one: You will come out of it a changed person. And the conference—like any good intoxicant—is addicting. This was my 10th year and I wouldn’t think of missing it. It’s come to punctuate the year for me in a way that only a few other events can do (Summer Solstice, my birthday, and Halloween!).
One of my favorite events, the Wine and Cheese Party!

Here’s to all of you who were here with us this year and to those who would have liked to be!

If you attended the conference and would like to get copies of some of these photos, feel free to just send me an email.

If the slideshow music doesn’t come on when you click “play” just refresh your browser and click “play” again.

Enjoy the slideshow and Viva La Muse!!! ;)