Odyssey grads are just naturally smarter and better-looking than non-graduates…
Odyssey Class of 1996
Top Row: Susan (“Bear”) Winston, Dana (“The Whirlwind”) Vander Els, Barnaby (“I believe H. G. Wells wrote a story like that in 1918”) Rapoport, Sherry (“living in another world”) Lind, Lynda (“I’m doing it for research”) Rucker, Carl (“Socks with sandals?—It’s a Hawaii thing”) Tamura, Patricia (“phoenix”) Jackson, Judi (“is wise”) Hardin, JoAnn (“Don’t live in the woods by yourself and write horror if you scare easily”) Forgit
Middle Row: Piper (“It’s my real name!”) Perry, Lee C. (“It’s like boot camp”) Smith, Derek (“Rare Bits”) Hill, Mark (“My kung fu is best!”) Stafford, Jerry (“Belt the Spleen”) White, Aly (“Epics-r-us”) Parsons
Bottom Row: Jeanne (“There’s an iguana on my head!”) Cavelos, David J. (“Dances on Chairs”) Schwartz
Still Asleep: J. S. (“No, my kung fu is best!”) McDonough
OK, smarter… well, they hadn’t graduated yet, as of this photograph!
COMMENTS FROM THE ODYSSEY CLASS OF 1996
David J. Schwartz
The hardest thing about starting as a writer is working in a vacuum. At Odyssey I was able to get feedback from people who could relate to what I was writing. By listening to their critiques and through insights gained by critiquing the works of others, I learned what I was doing right, what I was doing wrong, and what I wasn’t doing at all.
Lee C. Smith
If you want to cut five years from the learning process, TAKE THIS COURSE.
If you want to become a better genre writer, the Odyssey workshop will give you insight into how to become that writer. The atmosphere is warm and supportive, and Jeanne Cavelos’s ideas and comments invaluable.
An opportunity to meet exciting authors and up-and-coming new writers in a stimulating environment.
J. S. McDonough
Odyssey was a great experience. I can’t think of a better way to spend my summer vacation. Nobody can challenge Odyssey’s Kung Fu.
Dana Vander Els
I got a clear picture of my weaknesses as a writer, rather than a picture of my writing as weak.
I learned that professional writers are real people, and I’m a real person, so this could all, possibly pan out. I’ve never had my strengths and weaknesses made so evident to me, and that was exactly what I needed. I have achieved the state of being guided.
I’m really glad I came. Jeanne’s professional background, sense of humor, and enthusiasm make her the perfect teacher, and the esprit that developed among group members was magical. An extremely valuable experience for any writer in the genre.
Attending Odyssey is the most valuable thing I’ve done for my writing. It would have taken me a long, long time to pick up by trial and error what I learned in six weeks here. I never thought of myself as a ‘workshop type.’ Now I think it’s an invaluable experience for beginning writers.
I can’t imagine any serious writer of the fantastic not going through something like this. Boot camp for writers. Odyssey: there will be time for procrastination later.
The workshop provided inspiration tempered by hard work and criticism. It helped me to detect weaknesses in my own writing and gave me some ideas about improvements. Don’t expect to get any sleep. But you’ll be better for it.
Odyssey helped me to improve my writing in ways I previously could not fathom. The atmosphere was perfect: due to Jeanne’s rules and methods, my classmates’ comments were critical but not condescending. Odyssey showed me how to write.
Any serious writer of fantasy, science fiction, or horror shouldn’t miss Odyssey. Whether you write short stories or novels, this workshop will help you to hone your writing skills and put you that much closer to publication. I highly recommend it.
I wish I could reconvene Odyssey for everything I write.