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Forum: 2014 Seminars/Classes

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  1. How to AVOID Publication Success

    I will discuss the mistakes aspiring authors make, and some published authors make, because I think I've made them all.  I started writing romance novels 20+ years ago, but it has taken me a long time to focus, to finish, to understand what makes a successful book.  I've sold what turned out to be a contemporary romance series to Samhain.  The third book is due out in May.  I've self-pubbed 3, one of which is the first in a fantasy series.  Before that I sold two to Avalon Books (which went nowhere).  I'll have a short story in the 2013 Novelists, Inc. anthology as well.

    ...lack of focus, moving from one project to another, never completing even one to make it sellable, the numerous unfinished manuscripts which still clutter my shelves, how hard I had to work even on my last Samhain book (editing it twice per her suggestions before the editor would offer a contract).  The fact that I still struggle with GMC and constantly have to ask myself "what is this book about?  what do these characters want?" I can give hope to the strugglers.  If I did it so can they.  Maybe I can help them avoid some of the mistakes I made.  It's possible they don't know what they're doing IS a misstep.

    I belong to Novelists, Inc., and am a former member of Romance Writers of America, national and local chapter.  Whenever I see requests for workshop pitches I always think, well, I can tell them what NOT to do!

    Barb Meyers

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  2. Writing Horror and Dark Fiction

    For writers of the dark genres:  horror, dark fantasy, occult, and science fiction, this seminar contains practical advice on writing horror and dark fiction. Based upon the book, Telling Tales of Terror:  Essays on Writing Horror and Dark Fiction, editor Kim Richards will discuss the following topics:

    What Scares You.
    Beyond Blood, Guts, and Gore.
    Suspension of Disbelief.
    Occult in your Fiction
    Characters and Character Development.
    Sex in Horror.
    Point of View.
    Accurately Portraying Action and Violence.
    Women in Horror.
    Setting the Mood.
    Creating Monsters.
    and more.

    Kim Richards

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  3. Letting Go Of Perfectionism

    If your inner editor is driving you batty or that manuscript you've been working on for two decades is still not where you want it to be, this seminar is for you! Learn how to strive for perfection but accept your best. Silence the inner editor and the "I-N-G-E" voice. Even better, learn how to polish your work to editing-ready in three steps instead of 33 using tried-and-true methods that really work.

    J.S. Wayne will show you how to identify the difference between striving for excellence and being unrealistic; when to say a manuscript is as good as YOU can make it on your own; and how to stay motivated even when your inner critic is dragging you down. Perhaps most importantly, he'll help you find coping strategies that work for your personality and lifestyle to get past those moments when everything's going wrong and you see your story going down in flames! If you struggle with perfectionism, don't miss this seminar.

    J.S. Wayne

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  4. Advanced Plotting

    Many books and workshops teach the basics of plotting: conflict, complications, climax. Now learn advanced techniques that will make a decent plot dynamic. Start with a “grab you by the throat” opening to pull readers into the story. Learn how to pack the plot full by
    complicating your complications. Control your pacing through sentence and paragraph length. And finally, encourage late-night reading under the covers cliffhanger chapter endings. Learn techniques to make any story or book better. Novelists will benefit from these insights, whether they are just starting out or have years of experience.

    I've given variations of this talk at workshops around the country, and I'm doing an online video version for Delve Writing next month. I have also conducted forum workshops like the ones you have.

    Our Host: Kris Bock

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  5. The Four Squares of Publishing™: Building Blocks To Live A Charmed Author’s Life

    April 14-18

    Blurb: What if there were four cornerstones to every publishing career that provided a firm foundation to anything an author desired? And what if these cornerstones were the same for every author—regardless of genre, publishing choices, and career path? In this week-long class, we’ll dive into the Four Squares of Publishing™ and discover the power they hold to support (and topple) an author’s career and how to make them into the strong foundation that an author needs to live a charmed publishing life.

    Mary Caelsto's Website

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  6. The two edged sword – the pitfalls of being published (or what every new/aspiring author should know about publishing!)


    What you didn't expect after writing your first book (such as the pressure to write a second one!), how to deal with excoriating edits/bad reviews/good reviews, the new and unexpected pressures on your diary, the perils of publicity (good and bad), relationships with other authors, dealing with publishers who aren't based in your country, tax, etc.
    As Charlie Cochrane couldn't be trusted to do any of her jobs of choice—like managing a rugby team—she writes.

    Charlie's Cambridge Fellows Series of Edwardian romantic mysteries was instrumental in her being named Author of the Year 2009 by the review site Speak Its Name. She’s a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association, Mystery People, International Thriller Writers Inc and is on the organising team for UK Meet for readers/writers of GLBT fiction. She regularly appears with The Deadly Dames.


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