One Santa Fe note which I neglected to post yesterday involves twenty minutes that I had the privilege to spend with author and teacher Suzanne Wolfe. Let me explain the experience in this manner. Suppose you are a young sprinter and got to spend twenty minutes with Usain Bolt, or perhaps you are a high school quarterback and did the same with Tom Brady (during his four-game suspension, heh heh). Maybe you’re a young physicist and sit with Steven Hawking, or a rookie CIA agent and get to learn from – but wait. I can’t mention her name or she’ll have to kill me. That is what it was like to sit at a picnic bench on a patio in the Santa Fe afternoon for twenty minutes with Suzanne Wolfe.
I had with me my manuscript of a story about a boy and a girl and a snake; no, it wasn’t Adam and Eve (or was it?), and Ms. Wolfe had already made numerous editorial marks and comments on it. Now, I had the chance to explore each of those comments, or at least the most important ones, and learn how Point of View and Word Choice and Major Dramatic Crisis works in such a story. Three days ago I didn’t even know that the above-mentioned categories existed! Now Ms. Wolfe was explaining their meaning, their importance, and suggesting ways to bend and shape my story into a more pleasing and coherent product.
I realize that I may never become a great writer, which might save me from dying of cirrhosis in a Paris hospital from drinking too much Spanish wine. I do, however, have the opportunity to become a better writer than I am how, if I want to put in the hard work. That is a gift and an offer that I can’t refuse.