Welcome new Writers’ Program instructor Eve Porinchak! Eve is teaching a one day course, How to Land a Literary Agent (Reg# 368616) this July, and sat down with us to offer some insight into creative life and her upcoming course.
(She’s also going to be teaching a course focused on becoming a literary agent this fall!)
What sparks your creativity?
I always gain inspiration to create during outdoor activity. My best ideas come when I’m running on the beach, hiking in the mountains, biking in the desert, that type of thing. That said, I cannot stand to create in a vacuum. I need to bounce ideas off other people who get what I’m trying to do. If I’m stuck in something I’m writing, I can always rely on my sister to talk through snags and get my wheels spinning to set me on the right path. We make an excellent team!
What’s your favorite book and/or movie?
I love Mark Salzman’s True Notebooks more than anything. It’s his 2004 nonfiction book about a creative writing program he developed for the kids locked up in Los Angeles Central Juvenile Jail. It’s brutal, yet hilarious, and always moves me to tears. It altered the course of my entire life by inspiring me to take a teaching position in his InsideOut Writers program. I’ve been teaching incarcerated kids ever since, and love working with this population. People are always surprised to learn that I have witnessed more bravery, loyalty, and humanity in jail than anywhere else I’ve ever been.
What’s your favorite quote about writing?
“Write drunk and revise sober.” ~ Author Peter De Vries (most likely)
To clarify, I feel like early drafts should rely on stream of consciousness flow from our uninhibited minds. And revision requires such calculated thought. I think if we try to edit as we go, we’ll end up in an endless cycle of stasis. So, I use “drunk” metaphorically. That said, there’s no judgement here if people actually write drunk. Do what works for you! That’s a writing quote from Evie P. J
What excites you most about teaching for the Writers’ Program?
I adore writing and I adore teaching, and there’s nothing better than teaching writers! I’m most excited about connecting with aspiring authors and literary agents and guiding and exciting them about the publishing world.
What do you hope your students get from your course?
For writers who attend my July “How to Land a Literary Agent” one-day class, I’m hoping they generate an excitement for the literary agent search, while also creating a practical plan for finding the perfect match.
For people interested in becoming literary agents who enroll in my fall “Building a Network of Authors, Editors, and Publishers” course, I would love for them to gain a solid “peek behind the curtain” understanding of the wonderfully creative and multifaceted life of a literary agent and develop enthusiasm for all that publishing has to offer!
I love that absolutely anybody can become a writer or a literary agent, regardless of background or lack of a degree. No formal education is required. We can be self-taught and succeed. Dedicated research, a love of creating, and perseverance really do pay off in this industry. My best advice: Never give up on your publishing dreams, no matter what anybody says!
Thank you to Eve for taking time to share with us. Look for more instructor interviews coming soon!