Ha! Fooled you. No, I have not fallen off the face of the earth. I have survived a whole year since we lost our boy.
The writing class. Well, my first impression is that the teacher is drinking heavily, or not getting enough sleep, or something. She doesn't proofread, that's for certain. The missing words and punctuation and the fact that she tends to wander off and not finish her sentences make her entries hard to follow.
All the same, her comments on the first week's assignment were useful. The ending was cheap. She was right. But the comments on the second assignment ranged from 'it was great' to 'this is why it was great.' A good start, but it doesn't give me anything to work with.
I feel so stuck! As if all my writing reaches exactly the same level of development and sophistication and then stops. All of the students and teachers and critique groups don't seem to be able to help me. The inexperienced among them give strange or even contradictory advice (one says 'cut this bit; it's irrelevent,' and another says 'this bit's important; expand on it!') or worse yet just say 'it's perfect, I don't see anything wrong with it.' The more experienced also see where the weak spots are, but can't seem to offer any advice on how to fix it. At first I was excited that we were finally going to have a SCBWI meeting (after nearly THREE YEARS as a member) but I'm not sure how good the turnout will be. Still, I will make the most of it.