Volume 10
An Online Literary Magazine
November 30, 2015


Editor's Note


Nick O’Connell


Nick O'Connell


riting is selection. It’s not typing. It’s not a gush of self-infatuated logorrhea. It’s not meandering stream of consciousness. As John McPhee observes in a recent issue of The New Yorker:


“Writing is selection. Just to start a piece of writing you have to choose one word and only one from more than a million in the language. Now keep going. What is your next word? Your next sentence, paragraph, section, chapter? Your next ball of fact. You select what goes in and you decide what stays out.”


Editing is also selection, making choices based on an editor’s taste and experience, factors sometimes hard to predict, but definable nonetheless. Our magazine’s focus on narrative grows out of my own work as well as my writing program, The Writer’s Workshop.


When I launched this magazine in 2005, I had no idea if it would last. Back then, many literary magazines were folding, especially glossy print magazines sponsored by university writing programs. I hoped to provide a new place to publish outside the sometimes narrow confines of commercial magazines.


Ten years later, I’ve been astonished at the literary riches placed on our doorstep. We’ve published many renowned authors, including Annie Proulx, David Guterson, Timothy Egan, Patricia Wells, Norman Maclean, and Ivan Doig as well as a number of emerging talents like Alexandra Garfield, Larry Eclipse and Beth Miller.


I could not have accomplished this without the help of my staff, especially managing editor Kathleen Glassburn, editors Irene Wanner, Jane Alynn, and Cassandra Overby. Their dedication, professionalism and love of fine literature have proven instrumental in putting out each and every issue.


For this, the 10th anniversary issue of The Writer's Workshop Review, we’re delighted to publish an excerpt from Tom Robbins’ new memoir, Tibetan Peach Pie, which reveals the man behind such fantastically imaginative titles as Another Roadside Attraction and Only Cowgirls Get the Blues. This issue also features an updated interview I conducted with Robbins from At the Field’s End: Interviews with 22 Northwest Writers; “Dinner Service,” Gizelle Janovic’s take on the madness and magic of restaurant work; Anne Fox’s, “The Perfect Word,” a light-hearted look at the trials of the writing vocation; Stefania Hartley's surprising and touching story, “Gnà Peppina"; and “Adventure Paradise in Provence,” my story about exploring the Dentelles de Montmirail in southern France.


We hope you enjoy the 10th issue of The Writer's Workshop Review. Please let us know what you think, and if you have a story that might work for us, please send it. We read all year and welcome submissions at any time. We look forward to hearing from you!



The lovely town of Sablet near our base in Vaison la Romaine, in Provence.


All best,

Nicholas O’Connell

Publisher/ Editor

The Writer’s Workshop Review




Travel, Food and Wine Writing Class in Provence - May 22 - 28 - Travel writing, food writing and wine writing are some of the most appealing genres of nonfiction, calling on all of an author's skills—dramatic scenes, character sketches, concrete detail, point of view, scene by scene construction—to compose compelling, engaging travel narratives. This six-day intensive travel writing class will introduce you to essential techniques of travel, food and wine writing as well as giving you expert, insider advice about how to submit and publish finished travel stories.


In addition to learning these skills, you'll dine at outstanding restaurants, visit some of the world’s best wineries, and explore fascinating historic sights. You’ll enjoy exclusive behind-the-scenes tours unavailable to the general public. Best of all, you’ll receive up-to-date story ideas from local industry experts that you can turn into finished travel, food and wine stories by the end of the course and submit to newspapers and magazines for publication.


The six-day travel writing class will take place in Vaison la Romaine, one of the most beautiful medieval hill towns in Provence, and a center of the region's cultural and epicurean life since Roman times. The cost will be $2,600 per person, including accommodations and most meals. (single supplement, $500 per person). Plane fare, transit to and from Vaison la Romaine and some meals extra (see itinerary below).


To enroll, please send me a non-refundable deposit of $800 to 201 Newell St., Seattle, WA 98109. Enrollment is limited to 10.


For more information, contact me at nick@thewritersworkshop.net, 206-284-7121, or take a look at my website: http://www.thewritersworkshop.net/travel.htm.



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