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Odyssey back for Summer 2006

01/12/2005. Contributed by Jessica Martin

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Odyssey is a workshops for writers of fantasy, science fiction, and horror. Held each summer on the campus of Saint Anselm College in Manchester, NH, USA, the Odyssey workshop runs for six weeks, and combines a learning and writing experience with in-feedback on students' manuscripts.

Odyssey is run by an editor. Jeanne Cavelos, Odyssey's founder and director, is an author and former senior editor at Bantam Doubleday Dell Publishing, where she won the World Fantasy Award for her work.

"I give the same unflinchingly honest, concrete, detailed feedback to students that I provided to professional authors," Cavelos said. "That can be a shock for students, but it can also trigger rapid improvement. I'm constantly told by graduates that they learned more at Odyssey than they learned in years of workshopping and creative writing classes."

The workshop runs from June 12-July 21, 2006. Class meets for 4 hours in the morning, 5 days a week, and students use the afternoons and evenings to write and critique each other's work. Prospective students, aged 18 and up, apply from all over the world. The application deadline is APRIL 14.

In 2006 Odyssey is hosting author Robert J. Sawyer. Robert has been called "The dean of Canadian Science Fiction" by the Ottawa Citizen, and is one of only sixteen authors in history to win both the Nebula Award and the Hugo Award for Best Novel. He also has eight other Hugo nominations to his credit. He's won nine Canadian Science Fiction and Fantasy Awards ("Auroras"), as well as various other national and international awards.

The Odyssey workshop is also excited to welcome its 2006 guest lecturers: authors Melissa Scott, Jeff VanderMeer, Laurie J. Marks, and Christopher Golden; as well as editor and agent Shawna McCarthy.

In some news from old Odyssey graduates:

Barbara Campbell's book Heartwood came out last May from DAW Books. She attended Odyssey in 2000, and said this about the change the workshop made in her writing: "I now had the tools to analyze pacing, world-building, characterization (and my old pal--plot). . . . I ultimately transformed my wandering fantasy of 180,000 words into a 100,000-word novel I was ready to show my agent." The other volumes in the three-book Trickster's Game series will be out in 2006 and 2007.

Elaine Isaak, whose novel The Singer's Crown came out in October under the Eos imprint of HarperCollins, is from the class of 1997. She says, "The first two stories I ever sold would not have been written without Odyssey. . . . Jeanne has an eye for identifying the author's intent and the heart of the work, and offering useful advice about how to craft the work to be nearer to the dream." Look for the second book in her series, The Eunuch's Heir, in 2006.

Fans who have been following Carrie Vaughn's Kitty stories in Weird Tales are excited about the release of her novel, Kitty and the Midnight Hour, from Warner. The book has just been released and is on the USA Today Bestseller List. The second novel in the Kitty series, Kitty Goes to Washington, will be out in 2006.

Tuition is $1,600 and housing in on-campus apartments runs $625 for the six weeks. Students have the option of receiving college credit. Thanks to the generosity of an anonymous donor and graduate of the program, Odyssey will be offering three Gandalf Grant scholarships to the most promising writers of the class of 2006 in the amounts of $1,250, $500, and $250.

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