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The “Secret” Red Room Method and Red Room’s History
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[Before I tell the whole story, I hope you’ll sign up for our several-hour workshop beginning next Tuesday, May 8th, 2012! It’s a conference call so you can participate from anywhere in the world, called “Bestseller Bootcamp: Write Your Book in 100 Hours.”]

What’s the big secret—what is this mysterious method, you ask? It all began in 1904 in a remote part of Tanzania. Okay, really it all began in 2002 in a conveniently located neighborhood in San Francisco, at an old mansion on Alamo Square. This is back when we were called the Red Room Writers Society and kept little red leather notebooks made in Florence. (At least we partied like it was 1904.)

Red Room’s founder, Ivory Madison, was always a maverick (I refer of course to the trail-blazing Texas ranching family, the Mavericks, and not to any recent Republican candidates; see http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/05/weekinreview/05schwartz.html). She developed what I believe was the most effective, inspiring method ever developed both to support writers emotionally and to get them finally to write the books they were agonizing about—thus ending their agony. (About writing, anyway.) I know because I was there, as one of the first four members of the Red Room Writers Society, back in 2002.

These past several years, Ivory has been so focused on Red Room operations, she doesn’t teach much if at all, and she rarely accepts coaching clients. However, when Dave Logan, a #1 New York Times Best Selling author, benefitted greatly from Ivory’s writing coaching on his new book, he insisted they had to do a workshop together so more writers could benefit.

So if you’re stuck on a manuscript you can’t finish or have an idea for a manuscript and can’t seem to get started, I wouldn’t miss it. It’s this Tuesday, May 8, Wednesday, May 9, and Thursday, May 10, from 5:00pm to 6:30pm PDT (San Francisco time). Sign up today!

As a huge bonus, this isn’t just Ivory teaching, its Dave—with his experience as an author and coach to some of the top CEOs in the country—sharing his expertise, as well. After Ivory coached Dave on his writing, Dave helped Ivory with her business blocks, so this promises to be a dynamic conversation with lots of personal insights from both coaches—both authors and noted coaches.

I think I promised you a little more about our history. So, the Red Room Writers Society began as a real, in-person writers community and “school” for established and aspiring authors. I emerged from the program with my first published work, a law review essay, and it changed the course of my life. As Red Room grew, so did I. I was there every step of the way, doing everything from exploring my own inner demons that kept me from writing, to helping Ivory with the tea and hors d’oeuvres for hundreds of writers. My demons now focus on other things (e.g., my weight from all those hors d’oeuvres, the customer support queue), but we still wind up making tea together and our community is now global. A writer from Mexico and another from England have already signed up for the workshop. It’s going to be really fun.

And you’ll find out the “secret” Red Room Method for finishing a brilliant book you love, in a very short time. I can’t tell you here, not because I’m holding out, but because there’s a reason the workshop is more than four hours long. The secret is a lengthy series of identifying blocks, making paradigm shifts, understanding the concrete action steps needed and in what order, and the tips and pitfalls you need to know along the way. It’s about following the most efficient route to getting a book done, embracing your authentic voice, accepting the help of others, and conquering procrastination and perfectionism so we can read your book.

Please let me know if you have any questions about the workshop, about Ivory or Dave, or about Red Room’s history, in the comment section below. In my heart, the Writers Society never really disbanded, so I’m really excited about Red Room getting back to its roots!

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Thanks for the history

Thanks for the history, Huntington!  I didn't start attending the Red Room salon until 2004.  You got the jump on me.

I was hoping you'd say the Red Room was going to start up its monthly marathons again.  I adored being able to hide in that lovely mansion to knock some serious wordage out.  I miss that.


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I miss it, too!

I have such fond, vivid memories of those days, Loren. I know it's not exactly the same, but as a result of this Bestseller Bootcamp, new accountability groups that approximate what we used to do are forming among the people who signed up. I'll let you know if another marathon seems to be coming about because of it.

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Thanks for some more history on Red Room!

Hi Huntington,

I wanted to sign up for Ivory's Boot Camp...unfortunately because of my schedule, I was unable. Any possibility that the Audio tapes will be available when we enter the Book Store? No matter the price, I know the tapes would be well worth it.

As always I am so grateful for you and the others at the helm of Red Room...it is a rewarding experience to belong!

Have a great day!

Mary Walsh

P.S. I am still waiting for the complete story/blog  about the summer vacation with your Grandparents and the shrimp facts.You promised. Being a Grandmother, memories from Grandchildren that are happy are important to me. And your great picture still puts a smile on my face! 


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Bestseller Bootcamp recording

Hi Mary,

Yes! We're recording the Bootcamp sessions, and we'll be making them available at a much lower price. We'll make an announcement just soon as they're ready.

Your words about Red Room make my day! We're the ones who are grateful for the great writing and supportive spirit you and our other devoted members give—you're the one who really make this community. It truly is a pleasure to look over all your shoulders every day. Thank you!


P.S. Oh, my gosh, you're right that I need to write that up. Now would be a good time since it's been exactly thirty-five years since that happened. I'll do my best to get to it soon. Thanks for the reminder and for the compliment about my photo.

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great secret history

Only...I really wish it had started in Tanzania....