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the inner workings of Alison Miller Woods

Alphabe-Thursday: X is for eXtra learning = eXtra fun. March 24, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — Alison @ 3:57 pm
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This is an Alphabe-Thursday entry for Jenny Matlock’s blog.

I have two recent “learning experiences” that are prominent in my mind at the moment.

The first, was that in February I was able to attend a three-day writing conference – “Life, the Universe, and Everything” at BYU. I had never done anything like this before. I had been to a one-day workshop event, but nothing on this scale. From talking to other attendees I gathered that the format was a little different than some other conferences. Some conferences have a single presenter teach a class. There were a few presentations like that, and they were done really well, but most of the conference was done with panel discussions on a topic. There was an amazing array of local authors in the areas of Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror (that was the focus of the conference) and artists as well.

In general, just the atmosphere was energizing and re-motivating for whatever project we may have been working on. I had a great time!

I attended discussions on writing short stories, strong female characters, retelling tales, plot-storming, editing, and  pitching your work to an agent or editor. I even did a workshop where they read our first page of our story out loud (five of us) and the room of people commented on strengths and weaknesses. That one was scary, but I came out relatively unscathed.

It really has me contemplating the next conference and investing the money into it. I feel like I learned so much and yet I have such a long way to go still. The LDS Storymakers conference is in May. From what I have heard, it is more instructional – less panel discussions. The thought of going is really exciting; I just have to rationalize the money.

My second experience was making a wedding cake for my husband’s cousin. It has been more than a year since I have attempted something like this and I had forgotten how much I stress about it.

It was good that she was family, because I’m sure she was more forgiving than others might have been. All I could see were the problems and issues (like the fact it ‘slumped’ while sitting in the warm apartment all day), but the family liked it and she was just glad the whole planning process was over with. (Remind me not to do this again. . .)


10 Responses to “Alphabe-Thursday: X is for eXtra learning = eXtra fun.”

  1. magsmcc Says:

    Impeccable on all and many fronts!


  2. Jackie Says:

    your cake looks beautiful and I would have never imagined it to be stressful . I am kidding .


  3. I for one think the cake turned out wonderfully. Great conferences are able to inspire while instructing. So glad you enjoyed it.


  4. Judie Says:

    I couldn’t do that if someone held a gun to my head! Beautiful work, even if it did “slump,” whatever that means.


  5. First of all…what a beautiful cake! My girls and I love to watch the cake challenges and cup cake wars, cake boss, etc… (cakes and cupcakes are my weakness…yum!)

    And good to hear that you enjoyed the writing conference.
    Blessings & Aloha!


  6. Hey, the cake is lovely! And I bet it tasted good, too! That’s what folks will remember–that gorgeous, yummy cake!
    The writing conference sounds awesome. so glad you could attend and be inspired!


  7. Lourie Says:

    That cake is gorgeous! You have quite a talent there!


  8. WriteChick Says:

    I attended the LDStorymakers conference last year. It was pricey, but fun! It’s always fun to meet other local writers and be able to network. ALSO-the wedding cake is amazing! I worked at a bakery for a while and was pretty bad at cake decorating, so I know the amount of work that goes into a creation like that. 😀 Good job!


  9. Keri Says:

    I’d love to go to a writers’ conference. Sounds fun. Your cake turned out lovely. I used to make cakes for friends and family but you’re right, it is a stressful business!


  10. Writing AND cakemaking! Sounds like a fun time all the way around.

    I wonder why we are always so hard on ourselves. When I look at this cake I think it’s amazing!

    I suspect you will rock the writing conference.

    Just don’t allow yourself to undermine your talents!

    Thanks for linking.

    A+ and my apologies for my late visit this week.


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