Track/Presenter Workshop Description


Catherine Ann Jones 

 Heal Your Self With Writing Our lives may be determined less by past events than by the way we remember them. You are invited to come aboard this inner adventure that offers a step-by-step journey of discovery and re-visioning through focused journaling. Telling stories about our past through focused journaling can help change our perspectives to enable healing and empowerment. In this way, we are able to make meaning out of memory and put the past where it belongs - behind us. Healing and transformation are only possible through changing one's perspective from within. In this way, global healing takes place one individual, one tribe, at a time. What story are you living? How do you choose to remember your story?


 Nadine Nettmann

Show vs Tell  They always say show don’t tell, but what exactly does that mean? We’ll go over specific examples and tips on how to show instead of tell to really bring the reader into your story.

Novel Writing

Bryan Young 

Fast Fiction  Writing fiction on a deadline can be daunting, especially when you’re working toward multiple deadlines with multiple outlets. In “Fast Fiction,” we learn how to build quick idea springboards to launch our creativity for fiction of any length. It is suggested that a pen and paper or computer to write with are brought to this workshop, as there are interactive assignments.


 Sam Horn

 How to Critique Our Own Work ...with an agent/editor's eye so we're creating and submitting copy that earns their attention and respect - and maybe even representation and a book deal.  The question isn't, "What do I want to say?" as much as it is "What hasn't the agent/editor seen that will get their eyebrows up? What is intriguing, relevant, salable? Is this crystal clear?  Does it make me want to turn the page and keep reading?"


 Laure-Anne Bosselaar

You Readin’ to Me? 

At readings, have you sometimes been disappointed not by the work, but by the way it was read? In this interactive session, we’ll learn to bring our poems or prose to life by developing the ability to engage the public and allow our work to have maximum impact on the audience. With some easy but essential “tricks,” we’ll develop techniques that will help us get our work across fluently and appear confident and convincing at all times.   

Young Adult and Childrens

 Wendelin Van Draanen

Keeping Hope in the Mail  How do you get your story from inspired beginning through the sagging middle to the end and onto an editor’s desk? Wendelin Van Draanen, award winning bestselling author of 35 traditionally published books, gives specific strategies for getting your story finished and circulating.


Natalie Obando-Desai 

 How to Pitch Your Book Like a Pro Whether you’re looking to get an agent or looking to get media coverage for your book, the most important thing you need to know is how to pitch your book and yourself. This workshop will help you hone in on your pitching skills including your logline, premise, and what makes you the perfect person to tell this story. With over a decade’s experience in the competitive world of book publicity and successfully helping people land agents through workshops, Natalie helps authors find the best way to position their books and themselves.

Writing for the Screen

Doug Richardson 

Intuitive Story Structure  It’s true. When it comes to storytelling, structure IS everything. And yet you still struggle with it. Did you know that story structure is within you? It is everywhere and in everything and right under your nose. Novelist and screenwriter Doug Richardson illustrates how structuring your story is already in your bag of tricks. You just need to know where to look.

Publishing and Agents

Peter Beren

Why Do I Need an Agent and How Do I Get One? 

Publishing has changed in many ways in the last few years. One important change is that publishers now depend on agents to become the gatekeepers of what books make it into submission and are being considered for possible publication. The first-line of editors, as well as the slush pile, have, by and large, been eliminated. Some houses have a policy of not accepting submissions that do not have an agent attached to them.

Part muse, part accountant, literary agents help you refine your book concept, find a good publisher, help write your proposal, and negotiate your contract. They also function as career counselors, advocates, promoters, therapists, editors, mediators, and mentors. Agents will guide you through the publishing process and provide all of these services while getting you more money than you could ever get for yourself. Here you will learn why your agent relationship is one of the biggest bargains in publishing, along with tips and techniques on how to find a good one.