Summer in Words

Writing Conference

Why Summer in Words?

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Why Summer in Words?

I moved to Oregon 23 years ago and began teaching writing. That first year I fell in love with the Oregon coast, and soon began hosting weekend writing retreats at beach houses along the Pacific shore. It didn’t take me long to realize that the coast was an ideal place for writing and dreaming and rejuvenating.  Ferocious with life. The smells of salt, seaweed and adventure. Constantly changing sands.Mysteries washed up on shore and lurked in tide pools. The ocean always talks to us, sometimes forgiving and soothing, sometimes wild with whitecaps and steel.

Sunset over water with boatsFifteen years ago I was teaching writers during the Summer Solstice. We stood together on a deck, watching the sun dip down amid a tapestry of lavender, apricot, and gold, while revealing our writing dreams. It is a moment forever stamped in my memory. I knew I wanted to return to the endless Pacific each June with writers and I realized how much I love gathering writers together. I began fiercely believing in the power of the writing community.

The Oregon coast has since brought be solace, inspiration, and a sense of belonging.Many of my writing dreams that I discussed that first day of summer came true including six published books. Since the conference began, SIW participants have sharpened their skills and drawn inspiration from the many workshops and talks along with the wide expanse of ocean, the constantly changing light, and pounding surf. Some attendees went on to publish articles, land book deals, publish novels that had been languishing or incomplete. As for the speakers who have taught at previous conferences…well, over the years their careers have exploded.

More to come on that topic…..

Meanwhile, notice the brimming wonders all around you. Create art and stories.

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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 iVillage.com 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 www.writing-life.com, 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 http://thewritinglifetoo.blogspot.com

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