"This work is unlike any other, in its range of rich, conjuring imagery and its dexterity, its smart voice. Carroll-Hackett doesn’t spare us—but doesn’t save us—she draws a blueprint of power and class with her unflinching pivot: matter-of-fact and tender." —Jan Beatty

Weekend Retreat: One-on-One Manuscript Consultation and Editing

 

One-on-One Manuscript Consultation and Editing in Poetry, Fiction, and Nonfiction

Let’s get together and let me provide you with a weekend consult at the beautiful Porches Writers Retreat, giving your manuscript three days of undivided attention!

Let’s start where you are and see where your beautiful work will take us! 

No minimum length required!

Isn’t life a work-in-progress? 🙂

porches light

Poetry:  The manuscript–free or formal verse, prose poems must be submitted to me electronically at least three weeks prior to our workshop, and I will have closely read and made editorial comments before we arrive. We will spend time discussing those suggested edits, as well as discussing elements of poetic craft, prompts and exercises for promoting creativity and revision. We will also work on new ways of seeing and finding poems.  Suggestions for further reading will be made based on the aesthetic demonstrated in the submitted manuscript. The weekend will conclude with a close-out of the weekend’s work, including suggestions on ordering, overall structure, submitting, marketing and promoting the manuscript. (No minimum but No More than 60 pages)

Fiction:  A manuscript–collection of short stories or novel must be submitted to me electronically at least three weeks prior to our workshop, and I will have closely read and made editorial comments before we arrive. We will spend time discussing those suggested edits, as well as discussing craft, characterization, structure, consistency, and other elements of well-made fiction as demonstrated by the submitted work. We will also work on language and new ways of understanding and crafting voice and storytelling. Suggestions for further reading will be made based on the aesthetic demonstrated in the submitted manuscript. The weekend will conclude with a close-out of the weekend’s work, including suggestions on ordering, overall structure, submitting, marketing and promoting the manuscript. (No minimum, but No More than 250 pages, unless we discuss otherwise)

Creative Nonfiction: A manuscript–collection of essays, personal narrative, memoir, travel writing, food writing, lyric, any nonfiction–must be submitted to me electronically at least three weeks prior to our workshop, and I will have closely read and made editorial comments before we arrive. We will spend time discussing those suggested edits, as well as discussing craft, characterization, structure, consistency, and other elements of well-made nonfiction as demonstrated by the submitted work. We will discuss research and reportage, and work on language and new ways of understanding and crafting voice and storytelling. Suggestions for further reading will be made based on the aesthetic demonstrated in the submitted manuscript. The weekend will conclude with a close-out of the weekend’s work, including suggestions on ordering, overall structure, submitting, marketing and promoting the manuscript. (No minimum, but No More than 250 pages, unless we discuss otherwise)

 

Total cost: $750, and includes:

  • written detailed line edit and critique of full manuscript;
  • a full weekend of one-on-one close sessions on elements of craft, voice, structure, polishing the writing and polishing the manuscript;
  • suggestions and information on submitting, marketing and promoting the manuscript;
  • shared first-night supper, light breakfast fare, coffee, juice, etc, for Saturday and Sunday mornings,
  • lodging for two nights in the beautiful Porches Writers Retreat in the rolling hills and forests surrounding Norwood, Virginia.

Scheduling is determined on an individualized basis.

Let’s make your beautiful work even better!

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Praise from Clients of Poetry at the Porches!

Porches Consult Client Signs with Agent!

The one-on-one workshop I did with Mary at the Porches was critical to the evolution of my book and my overall writing career. I had taken writing workshops where students shared 15-20 pages of our writing each week. But I needed someone who would read the whole manuscript and give me more complete feedback.

I was so nervous to send it to her. Would she hate it? Would she laugh at my efforts? Would she think the story was stupid or the characters were ridiculous?

No. Mary made me feel comfortable right away. We got right into talking about the book and wow! She knew my characters as well as I did. She asked me hard questions and pushed me to improve in many ways. Going into our session, I knew about some of the problems with my manuscript. Mary helped me figure out how to address those. She also brought up things I hadn’t even thought about, but that turned out to be problems that needed fixing before the manuscript was done. Mary’s style is encouraging and thoughtful and expressive. I will always be thankful to call her a teacher, mentor, and friend.

After my weekend with Mary, I took a month or so to revise my book. I used the extensive notes she gave me to guide my efforts. I sent the manuscript to agents, many of whom showed a lot of interest. I ended up signing with one of them and well, here we are! I recommend the one-on-one workshop with Mary to all my writer friends: those just starting out or those who have experience but may just need a little nudge. Do it; you won’t regret it!~Shadia Garrison (@shadiagarrison)

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My abandoned novel, hidden for months at the bottom of my desk drawer, nudged me to sign up for Mary Carroll-Hackett’s one-on-one workshop at the lovely Porches Writing Retreat. I expected, and wanted, intense criticism and instruction. And that’s what I got. Mary had studied every page of my manuscript multiple times. Her concrete suggestions spurred me to think hard about plot, characters, and craft. We sat down each day and specifically examined how placement of chapters adds tension to plot, how to frame dialog within text for deeper meaning, and how slight changes in point of view often strengthens the entire piece. In the evenings, Mary’s magical storytelling came into play. Just when I found myself caught in her conjured world, she would relate all of it to my own work. As my understanding of my characters grew, my trust in both them and myself increased. I returned home ready to make my book the best it could be. Those few days of Mary’s wise guidance changed my writing life forever.”~Kathryn Milam

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