This morning Twitter has been buzz about this thing called an Amtrak Residency. Obviously, my interest was piqued about this concept because how much do I love trains? Open your arms wide. Really wide. Wider! That much. I love trains THAT MUCH. Especially for writing.
So, the article that started this wonderful hashtag (#AmtrakResidency) says that Amtrak is considering it and even their Twitter account confirmed it.
We’re thrilled by the interest you’ve shown in #AmtrakResidency & are working quickly to formalize an entry process. Keep your ideas coming!
— Amtrak (@Amtrak) February 22, 2014
This is amazing. Everyone should write on a train. It really is one of the best places to write, I’ve found. How do I know that? Well, I’ve done my own #AmtrakResidency–twice.
The first time was on my way to the AWP conference in Chicago. A 19 hour train ride on the way to a writers conference…what else would I do? It was literally the best thing I could have done. That’s how Lagniappe, my novel-in-progress grew legs. I met people there that reminded me of my characters and the plot started to unravel before me.
About a year later, my most recent research trip to Saint Louis, MO happened. I wrote something that I loved and helped Lagniappe find a soul! Other people did too because that little novel-in-progress was chosen by The Writer’s Hotel for their program this summer.
I love this idea. LOVE. LOVE. LOVE. I will definitely apply for an #AmtrakResidency when it comes up. Lagniappe needs some more work and I need to return to Saint Louis for more research. If you’re even curious about this, you should check it out.
Want to see how I approached my residency? Here are the blog posts from that time. Oh, and if Amtrak is reading this, I’ve got ideas. Contact me. We’ll talk.
From the road: Where I am that is where I am going.
From the road: Settling on the setting
From the road: Having a dinner conversation with your characters
To Saint Louis
Researching your story: Taking a research trip for your writing
A letter to my readers: My trip so far
Learning to write historical fiction