On the train to my hotel, I received an email warning that due to two former presidents attending a meeting the next morning, security would be increased and we might need extra time to arrive and check-in. Thankfully, I'd arrived the night before, so I avoided most of the excitement the next day. A second email arrived informing me that my morning Master Class, with Kathleen Oritz was being cancelled due to travel complications. I was disappointed, but keen on the offers for a smaller Skype-based course or a personal web presence review. I could have registered in another morning class, but I was more intrigued by these possibilities. The next morning, I knew I'd made the right choice.
As I picked up my registration, I was reminded to keep my name tag on me and am glad I did. The green paper identifies me as a writer at the conference, not a demonstrator or other bystander. The number of bright yellow vests over dark blue uniforms was rather intimidating, as were the percentage of men with some sort of coiled wire attached to a bud in their ear. That said, I had an expensive, if sparse, breakfast, met another writer. I was happy to not have to rush off to a class and take a little extra time going through the information in my welcome packet. I wrote an entry for the funny contest included in it and signed back up to do the picture prompt blog. That's it! I'm officially writing again! By the end of that, however, I could neither deny nor ignore the growing pain behind my left eye, signifying an imminent migraine. Rather than sit at my tiny table in lobby and try to glimpse either Clinton or GW for myself, I went up to my room to lie down. I didn't rest long before chanting of "Bush!" and the beating of a drum came from outside and I saw a small gathering of demonstrators outside my hotel, fourteen floors down. It was after 11 anyway, so I headed down to get some lunch before my afternoon Master Class.
Overall, my kickoff at the conference is not unlike my book release. I little something here, a little something there, but not quite in full swing. That changes in an hour when I have two master classes back to back. Just so, in the middle of July, my book was available in all electronic forms and through international distributors. Slow start, but building. Hopefully steadily growing. We'll see.
Here's the 75 word or less piece I wrote to complete the following scenario:
Young Jack tapped his pencil impatiently against his desk. Would school never end? As the clock ticked off each...slow...second, his teacher droned on about dangling participles. Jack flipped open the cover of his English book and promptly fell into the pages. Once he regained his feet, Jack took a few steps forward, then scooped up his pencil. As he waved it, sparks flew and he knew something enchanted had just occurred. He waved the pencil again and became locked in mortal combat with
a man holding a sword.
"How propitious!" a squeaky voice exclaimed. At first Jack thought her a child, but a corset emphasized her curves. She was tiny, an elf, with a wart atop one ear. "We have an opponent!"
"How can I fight with a pencil?" Jack paled as the man swung his sword.
Flailing wildly, the man dodged.
Using the alchemy of his dangling participle, Jack drove off his opponent.
Note: words to include were sword, elf, corset, alchemy, wart and propitious.