Writers Workshop

Hi. Welcome to the Torcon 3 Writers Workshop page. Torcon 3 is planning a variety of activities for aspiring writers this year. We’ll keep you posted on what’s being planned and how it’s developing on the Torcon website. 

"Critique circle" workshops 

One thing we need to tell you about right away are the "critique circle" workshops we’re offering. Here’s your chance to get first-hand feedback from your peers and from a number of professionals in the field.

This workshop style requires that manuscripts be submitted in advance by mail or e-mail. The manuscripts will be assigned to a critique circle session where three manuscripts will be considered. Each member of the circle will receive copies of all three manuscripts.

You’ll have ample time to read the other entries in your circle, as the other members of your circle will have ample time to read your entry. The members of each circle will include the manuscript entrants, two professionals in the field and a moderator.

In the session, each member offers his or her comments on what they liked, what they didn’t like and – most important – what they think will improve the manuscript in question and make it more saleable to editors. The critiques are offered verbally, but also may include written notes and/or notations on their copies of the manuscript (all your manuscript copies will be returned to you at the end of the session). The moderators will offer their critiques as well and they’ll make sure no one’s critique is interrupted or goes into overtime. Each critique is given without interruption, then the author of the manuscript gets a chance at the end to ask questions and receive clarifications.

The spirit of the critique circles is to provide positive, constructive criticism – but that doesn’t exclude being tough at times. This workshop style is probably not recommended for anyone who’s only interested in hearing praise or is sensitive to criticism, but remember that we’re here to help.

Because of the amount of time, care and forethought taken in putting these circles together, you may as well make the best us of this opportunity and submit your best work – something you really desire to get published.

The critique circles will be held in quiet, private rooms on the con site, but away from the hustle and bustle, and will last about three hours, so that everyone has a chance to get their comments in. Visitors will not be allowed to sit in (excepting assistants to entrants with physical disabilities). Please make sure to show up on time for your section. Late arrivals cause headaches for everyone.

There’s a $48.15 ($32.10 USD) fee, including taxes – to cover the cost of photocopying, mailing and routing of manuscripts to other members of your circle. Make checks payable to TorCon3. Payment by credit card may also be made online at [online payment not yet available]. If mailing your fee (which should be included in your manuscript submission if you’re mailing your submission) you can also use your credit card by including your credit card information (Visa, MasterCard, American Express). All credit card payments will be processed in Canadian Funds.

Here's what you do:

All entries must be received by June 30, 2003.

Please e-mail inquiries to writersworkshops@torcon3.on.ca.
E-mail entries, please contact Deirdre Saoirse Moen at workshop-sub@torcon3.on.ca.

Postal entries may be sent to: 

Torcon 3 Writers Workshop 
c/o Richard Chwedyk, Workshop Coordinator, 
7538 N. Bell Ave., 
Chicago, Illinois 60645-1962 

(e-mail workshop-leader@torcon3.on.ca).

We’ll try to make every possible accommodation for late manuscripts, but acceptance of manuscripts will be limited by the number of manuscripts we receive, the space allotted to us for the critique circles and the number of professionals available to provide critiques. We’ll do what we can to make this the best possible writing workshop experience but your patience and cooperation will be greatly appreciated.

Other activities in the planning stages . . .

. . . include hands-on, one-session workshops on various aspects of the writing process and various genres, "pitch sessions" with editors and agents, and maybe much more. Keep checking here and we’ll keep you updated on what’s happening to make these plans into realities.


Last updated: 07 August 2003

Send comments or suggestions to WritersWorkshops@torcon3.on.ca