We just had our 9th Geneva Writers' Conference, 200 writers with 16 instructors and panelists, Jan. 31 to Feb. 2. It was one of our best. I always think that! Then each one is better than the best! It's a huge organization, running twelve parallel workshops and panels, with Q&A's in between, all at Webster University, here in Bellevue / Geneva on the lake with the mountains in the distance.
Writers flew in from the US, the UK, Ireland, the Canary Islands, and even from Iran for the weekend. They arrived by train from Paris, Brussels, Karlsruhe, Salzburg, Parma, and all around Switzerland. Then there were all of us expats living in and around Geneva. All in all we hailed from 40 different countries.
Now back to my writing and my monthly workshops, with a trip to London in early March and then to the States April 20 to May 10. Hoping that my agent in NYC will have found a home for my new book, Side by Side, Writing the Way to Lasting Love.
A new personal essay, Swiss Scaffolds, is posted in my blog. I will continue to post these 'new'(already published but new on my website) essays every two or three months. I chose this essay hélas because it relates the story of a referendum in Switzerland that was to limit the number of foreigners and that was defeated in 1971. Unfortunately this month another referendum, also to limit immigration, was voted and passed.
To close this homepage, I return to my most recent book, One Year to a Writing Life, that offers twelve workshops in the art and craft of writing. The book is in its 10th printing and has sold just over 20,000 copies. And it's published now by the University of Renmin Press in Chinese.
From the introduction:
Ask writers to define the writing life and you will get many answers. Annie Dillard says that it is "life at its most free." For Stephen King, it's a "brighter, more pleasant place." From Brenda Ueland to John Gardner, writers have been offering counsel to encourage people to write. And all the words come back to one fundamental truth: a writing life is a creative life....
For me it has become a life that awakens to birdsong in early morning, that lingers with sunlight in late afternoon. It is a life that slows down to touch each moment, a life that deepens from an inner source. I was fifty years old when I started along the way. I had been writing letters, various papers, journal entries, but not thinking of myself as a writer. My life was full yet I longed for something more. Once I acknowledged that I wanted to be a writer, the well within me filled with fresh creativity....
One Year to a Writing Life presents twelve workshops drawn from over fifteen years of teaching. The lessons dovetail inspiration and instruction. The first component, inspiration, comes from my trust in writing as a way of life. A trust nourished by practice.... The second component, instruction, comes from my appreciation of writing as a process. We sharpen our writing skills, clarify our thinking, and deepen our awareness of ourselves and of the world around us....
There is a light within each of us, the light that we bring into the world. ONE YEAR TO A WRITING LIFE will lead you to this light. With your words, you become a light bearer in the world."
Thank you for your visit.