I offer workshops for writers of all levels, from beginning to advanced.

  • “Question Me a Novel” takes you from the spark of an idea to a completed draft.
  • “Polishing Silver and Panning for Gold: Revision for Writers” teaches a multi-layered approach to revision, from a broad, big-picture focus to the close-focus issues of sentence structure and word choice.
  • “Show, Don’t Tell: Mastering Deep POV” covers point-of-view, from choosing the correct POV for your story to using deep point-of-view to create an immersive experience for your readers.
  • “Sell Your Books, Not Your Soul” is for authors who find marketing difficult or uncomfortable, or who find themselves overwhelmed by the social and internal pressure to “do everything.”

I also do half-day and one- to two-hour sessions on craft, business, and creativity.

I’m available to speak to:

  • schools
  • writers’ groups
  • book clubs
  • retirement facilities
  • other organizations.

Prices and dates below are for workshops I schedule and organize. However, if you have a group of three or more in the Nashville area or five or more in other areas and would be interested in hosting one of the following talks or workshops, please contact me. I’d love to discuss how I can help you or your organization: [email protected].

 

Question Me a Novel

Question Me a Novel

Date: Feb, 20, 2017

Time: TBA

Place: Blue Ridge, GA

Deadline for Registration: TBA

 

The “Question Me a Novel” workshop is designed for writers who:

  • Want to write a novel but don’t know where to start
  • Have started a novel but don’t know how to finish
  • Have written one or more novels that feel flat and lacking in depth

Based on the assumption that you are the expert on your novel, the system leads you through a series of open-ended, non-prescriptive questions and exercises that can take you all the way from the seed of an idea to a finished book, or move you through a “stuck” spot in your story. Whatever your genre, whether you’re a pantser or a plotter, this nuts & bolts workshop will give you practical, step-by-step strategies to take you from the initial idea to a completed first draft.

You’ll learn how to:

  • create a strong foundation for your novel
  • create memorable characters and a compelling plot
  • add depth and complexity
  • use background and sensory details to bring the world of your story to life
  • and much more

In addition to eight hours of intensive instruction, you’ll receive:

  • A copy of the workbook and digital workbook file that correspond to the workshop
  • A free 30- to 60-minute private phone consultation after the workshop

Here’s what previous participants have to say:

“I’m at Starbucks with no writer’s block, thanks to you! I have a plan now! Sorry about all the exclamation points but I had been stuck for months and it’s so nice to be un—-!” Jan L.

“Yesterday’s workshop was so good. Every section was helpful….I attended [some other writing workshops] a few years ago, and they were perfectly fine, but compared to yours they’re quite sketchy. My point is not to criticize them but to point out that you offer what fiction writers really need.” – Lynette I.

Price: $80
The price of the workshop includes the course workbook but not lunch or lodging.

To register, choose the appropriate price and click the “Buy Now” button. If you prefer to pay via check, or for further information, email [email protected]





 

Polishing Silver and Planning for Gold: Revision and Editing for Authors

Polishing Silver and Panning for Gold: Revision and Editing for Authors

Date: Email [email protected] to arrange a date

Time: TBA

Place: Nashville, TN – (or email me to arrange a place)

Deadline for Registration: TBA

The first draft’s finished, but it’s not the shining gem it was in your head. Maybe the characters are flat, maybe the setting is a cipher, maybe the plot has all the structure of pudding. The book you envisioned is in there somewhere, but you just can’t seem to find it. Sound familiar? 

For most of us, that first draft is a promising mess; you can see glimmers of the book you wanted, but how to make it shine? Whether your draft is too thin or too fat, has structural flaws or tepid language, this workshop can help you strengthen story structure, deepen characters, sharpen dialogue, heighten tension, and tighten and polish your prose until your book is the best it can be. No one can promise your book will be a bestseller, but whether you’re a beginner or a pro, this workshop can help you make your book better.

You’ll learn to:

  • Find and fix structural flaws
  • Improve pacing
  • Deepen character
  • Heighten tension
  • Make more effective use of word choice and sentence structure
  • And much more

In addition to eight hours of intensive instruction, you’ll receive:

  • A copy of the workbook and digital workbook file that correspond to the workshop
  • A free 30- to 60-minute private phone consultation after the workshop

Price: $80

The price of the workshop includes the course workbook but not lunch or lodging.

To register, choose the appropriate price and click the “Buy Now” button. If you prefer to pay via check, or for further information, email [email protected]


Register



Show, Don’t Tell: Deep Point of View

Mastering Point of View

Date: Email [email protected] to arrange a date and placce

Time: TBA

Place: Nashville, TN (or email me to make arrangements)

Deadline for Registration: TBA

Recently, as a coaching client and I discussed her manuscript, she sighed and said, “I wish you’d do a workshop on point of view.”

Point-of-view, or POV, is one of the most challenging things for writers. It’s so easy to slip into from one character’s head into another’s without noticing that even the most experienced writers sometimes catch themselves doing it. In fact, in my workshops and coaching sessions, not to mention the contests I’ve judged, POV errors are among the most common.

Mastering POV will give you an edge when it comes to writing compelling and immersive novels. The skillful use of point-of-view draws your readers deeper into your book and is the greatest secret to mastering the art of “show, don’t tell.”

We’ll spend the first part of the day on choosing the right POV character and on how and why to avoid head-hopping, but the bulk of the workshop will focus on using deep point-of-view to develop character, create depth, and make your readers feel like they’re living your story. With writing exercises and practical, step-by-step strategies for using POV effectively, the “Mastering POV” workshop gives you tools for becoming a better writer.

In addition to eight hours of intensive instruction, you’ll receive:

  • A copy of the workbook and digital workbook file that correspond to the workshop
  • A free 30- to 60-minute private phone consultation after the workshop

Price: $80 The price of the workshop includes the course workbook but not lunch or lodging.

To register, click the “Buy Now” button. If you prefer to pay via check, or for further information, email [email protected]


Register



 

 

Sell Your Books, Not Your Soul

Sell Your Books, Not Your Soul: Marketing and Promotion for the Rest of Us

Date: Email [email protected] to arrange a date and place.

Time: TBA

Place: TBA (Email me to arrange a date and place)

 

Your book has been published in print or electronic form or both. What now? Where are all the readers? Are your sales everything you’ve dreamed they would be?

“Sell Your Books, Not Your Soul is a workshop on book marketing and promotion for authors who would rather do almost anything but sell.

Sure, it would be great to sit in your pajamas and write while your books fly off the shelves, but the reality is, no matter how good your book is, no one will buy it unless they know it exists. But how do you let them know? Do you need Twitter? How often should you tweet? What about Facebook? Is social media the key to publishing success? What about newsletters, giveaways, contests, swag?

It’s easy to be overwhelmed by all the marketing advice out there. The truth is, the best marketing plan is the one you’ll actually do–the one tailored to your strengths and interests. If you love marketing, and if promotion comes easily to you, this workshop is not for you, but if, like most of us, you struggle with that side of the writing life, the “Sell Your Books, Not Your Soul” workshop can help.

Here’s what it’s going to cover:

  • Determining your marketing style
  • Discovering your most effective marketing tools and strategies
  • Creating a marketing and promotion plan tailored to your strengths, interests, schedule, and comfort level
  • Finding review sites, speakers’ bureaus, blogs that accept guest posts, bookstores, library contacts, radio stations and podcasters
  • And much more

In addition to a full day of instruction, you’ll receive:

  • A copy of the workbook and digital workbook file that correspond to the workshop (includes resource guide)
  • A free 30- to 60-minute private phone consultation after the workshop

Price: $150

To register, click the “Buy Now” button. If you prefer to pay via check, or for further information, email [email protected]


Register



 

 

 

 

Workshop Cancellation Policy

  • All fees are non-refundable. In the event of an emergency, you will be able to transfer your registration fee to another workshop.
  • In the unforeseen event that a workshop needs to be cancelled, it will be rescheduled, and you’ll have the option to register for that event or transfer your registration fee to another workshop.
  • In the even less likely event that a workshop needs to be cancelled and cannot be rescheduled, all registration fees will be refunded.

 

Half-Day Workshops

Each of these Half-Day Workships Can be Adapted to Longer Workshops or 1- to 2-Hour Seminars

Planning the Novel

This workshop is a step-by-step guide to getting ready to write. This session will help you take your book from the initial idea through the planning stage and into the starting gate. You’ll create the scaffolding and foundation for your novel. Then you’ll learn how to deepen and develop your story. At the end of the workshop, each student will receive a day-by-day guide to completing the novel.

Crafting Characters

Think of your favorite book. What brought it to life? Chances are, it was the characters. What is it that makes certain characters stay with us for days or even decades after we’ve turned the final page? This workshop focuses on turning paper people into complex, well-rounded individuals who will live on in your readers’ minds.

He Said, She Said, We Said, They said: Writing Effective Dialogue

Effective dialogue is more than just what people say. It reveals character, drives the plot, reveals subtext, and often evokes emotion. It’s not speech. It’s an illusion of speech. When done correctly, the mechanisms are invisible. This workshop will show you how to write clean, crisp dialogue that brings your characters to life and sounds more natural than the real thing.

Revision and Editing

You’ve written “the end,” but are you really finished? How can you make that manuscript better? This workshop is a truncated version of the Question Me a Novel workshop listed above.

Mastering Point of View

This workshop will teach you how to choose the right POV character, how and why to avoid head hopping, and how to use deep point-of-view to create an immersive experience for your reader. This is a truncated version of the Mastering POV workshop listed above.

The Storyteller Within: Unleashing the Muse

Whether or not you believe in writer’s block, whether or not you believe the Muse is a delicate beast, there’s no denying that sometimes we need to recharge our creative batteries. This fun and inspirational infusion of creativity will revive your excitement and help you jumpstart your novel or short story. Guaranteed to awaken your inner storyteller.

30-Minute to 2-Hour Talks

Motivational Talks


Hidalgo or Secretariat: The Power of Perseverance

Some people achieve their dreams with apparent ease, getting the job after the first interview, the promotion after a few months, the book contract within months of writing “the end,” the movie deal a few weeks later. Those people are Secretariats, fast out of starting gate, first to the finish line. Most of us are not Secretariats. But remember this: Hidalgo also won his race. This session focuses on the power of perseverance—not just staying the course, but building and bettering ourselves as we travel it. Not just pounding on the door, but finding the keys to make it open.

First a Compass, Then a Map: Knowing What You Want and How to Get It

“If you don’t know where you’re going, how will you know when you get there?” This session will help you focus your dream, define your goals, and create a workable plan that will put you on a path toward accomplishment.


How-to Talks


Planning Your Novel

This is a truncated, “hit-the-high-points” version of the Planning Your Novel Half-Day Workshop.

Revision and Editing

This is a truncated, “hit-the-high-points” version of the Revision and Editing Half-Day Workshop.

Point of View

This is a truncated, “hit-the-high-points” version of the Mastering Point-of-View Half-Day Workshop.

Crafting Characters

This is a truncated, “hit-the-high-points” version of the Crafting Characters Half-Day Workshop.

Dialogue

This is a truncated, “hit-the-high-points” version of the Dialogue Half-Day Workshop.

 

 

 

 

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