Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Semester Break

Vermont College of Fine Arts has long semesters, about 20 weeks long. We have breaks, about three or four weeks long, during December/January and June/July.

So what do I do during the semester break?

Family things.
This break I moved from China to Germany. We are exploring our new city.
Last December I went to Beijing and Xi'an.

I read. We get a list of books that the faculty will use in their lectures so I am reading those as well as three other assigned books for a discussion at residency. I also read all the manuscripts for my workshop group--there are ten of us, so that is about 25 stories because I am in a picture book workshop this time.

Also for this coming residency--I will give a presentation as part of the picture book panel. I am fine tuning it, putting finishing touches on my power point, giving my presentation to a few friends (over the computer) so I can see what I need to adjust.

I revise. I already revised several picture books using Uma Krishnaswami's response to my last packet, which included editorial notes and line edits.
I am also revising a novel, the one I drafted first semester.

I read for friends. I get to read a novel for a writing friend. The first draft even. I always enjoy reading books at the various stages and giving feedback. This will be fun.

During break I don't have packet deadlines and the pace is different. It is a time to recharge and read and write--
and look forward to Vermont.
My next semester starts soon: residency begins July 11th.


Angela said...

You sure do A LOT In your breaks!

We didn't make it to X'ian when we lived in China but I want to go sometime (and to Harbin in the winter!)

Good luck with your presentation! Have a great semester!

Sarah Blake Johnson said...

I guess I did do a lot, didn't I.

Thanks. I'll let you know how my presentation went.