Summer in Words

Writing Conference

Polly Campbell teaching two workshops

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Workshop Descriptions:

Compelling Details
The difference between writing that inspires, engages, and excites readers is in the details. Without them writing clarity is compromised and the piece goes from dramatic to drab. Choosing just the right detail  — picking the perfect flower to mention out of a garden of dozens — is the key to creating a powerful piece. Too many details weigh the writing down,  but a few select, well-placed ones add energy and vibrancy to your piece. In this workshop writer Polly Campbell will show how to uncover the details that will give your piece meaning, and explain how to use them to evoke emotion in the reader long after she puts down the page.

Finding Focus
There are millions of stories to tell, but your job is to tell one at a time. Anything else will result in jumbled, meandering mess. A story with a tight and clear focus will serve as a compass for the reader, directing them through complex topics and insightful prose. For you, the writer, a focus serves as a road map leading you in the right direction toward the story’s ultimate purpose. A clear focus makes the piece both easier to write and easier to read. In this workshop, Polly Campbell will explain why a tight focus is a critical element to any  piece of solid writing and she’ll show you show you to develop a clear focus for any story.

Mindfulness and meditation,  resilience and rumination, visualization and vacations are just a few of the topics Polly Campbell has written about during her 15-year freelance career.

These days, Campbell specializes in personal growth, psychology, and spirituality topics. And she has also written numerous human-interest stories and profiles detailing the lives of jail-bound embezzlers, giant-pumpkin growers, environmentally-conscious entrepreneurs and others during career. Her work has appeared in national publications including Arthritis Today, Gaiam Life, Family Circle, American Profile, The Writer, and dozens of other magazines and newspapers.

She is a blogger for  Psychology Today,, and  is currently working on a book “Imperfect Spirituality: How to Develop a Spiritual Life in the Midst of a Messed-Up Day.”

Campbell has tested many of the self-improvement strategies she writes about in her own quest to find more peace, joy—and some days just socks that match. She is a writer, wife, mother, cat-litter changer, and avid player of Candyland from her home in Oregon. Her blog is


Author: jessicapage2

Jessica Page Morrell lives in Portland, Oregon where she is surrounded by writers and watches the sky all its moods and shades. She’s the author of Thanks, But This Isn’t For Us, A (Sort of) Compassionate Guide to Why Your Writing is Being Rejected; Bullies, Bastards & Bitches, How to Write the Bad Guys in Fiction; The Writer’s I Ching: Wisdom for the Creative Life, Voices from the Street; Between the Lines: Master The Subtle Elements Of Fiction Writing; and Writing Out the Storm. Morrell works as a highly-sought after developmental editor because if your characters are a bundle of quirks and inconsistencies, or the plot stalls and the scenes don’t flow, these problems need to be unriddled before you submit it to an agent or editor. She also works on memoirs and nonfiction books with a special focus on logic and voice. She began teaching writers in 1991 and now teaches through a series of workshops in the Northwest and at writing conferences throughout North America and lectures to various writing organizations. She is the former writing expert at which was voted as one of the best 101 sites for writers. In 2008 she founded Summer in Words, a yearly writing conference held on the Oregon coast. She hosts a Web site at, and she’s written a monthly column about topics related to writing since 1998 that currently appears in The Willamette Writer. She also contributes to The Writer and Writers Digest magazines, writes a monthly e-mail newsletter, The Writing Life, and a Web log at

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