Wednesday, December 11, 2013

No Kiss Blogfest Sign Up Time

Long time no blog! But...I of course had to stop by and announce the 5th annual NO KISS Blogfest! Because of my hectic and demanding schedule, I won't be hosting the fest that year. That honor (and sacred duty) has gone over to my friend Amalia Dillin (who has a few sweet No Kisses up her own sleeves).

The rules haven't changed! Anyone can join. You can write your own No Kiss scene, or share one from your current WIP.

You can link to a video with a No Kiss Scene. Or post a snippet from a novel you love. Just keep the NO Kisses (almost kisses...the tension filled moments that fill the space between kisses that are almost just as good).

But this year, all the action will be happening at Amalia's blog. So head on over there to sign up!

The fun begins on January 2nd (plenty of time to recover from New Years Eve).

So sign up, and I'll see you guys for the usual juicy start of the New Year!


This is how you do it!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Fall Writing Workshops

AAH! I haven't blogged in months! And I promise it's been for insanely boring reasons. I've been teaching a ton of dance classes, and teaching dance and drama at a summer camp (because I am SO dramatic *sigh*).

Oh, and writing! Duh!

But it's almost fall, and you know what that means!

BOOTS!

Also...new writing classes and workshops you can take with me if you like...and you know...live nearby.

Here's my fall teaching schedule at Musehouse!
8 Week Classes:

Fantasy and Science Fiction Writing (a workshop for adults)
Fantasy and science fiction writing have long held our interests and are often the most important stories in
shaping who we are as people. We can use elements of these fantastic stories to better understand our lives and our hearts. Many of us have a story inside, one that is just waiting to be written. With the right tools, we can tell those stories and write about the worlds we wish to visit in our minds. This is a great foundation course for anyone interested in or currently writing science fiction or fantasy. Premise, plotting, characterization, world building and using archetypes are just some of the topics we’ll cover. We’ll also study a modern fantasy by Laini Taylor.
Fall Session:
Day: Friday, September 27; October 4,
11, 18, 25; November 1, 8, 15, 2013
Time: 10am to 11:30am
Early Bird Registration Fee: $160
Registration Fee: $180
Late Registration Fee: $190



Friday Night Workshops:

Editing and Critiquing Your Manuscript
So you’ve written a novel and you want to take the next step toward publication, but first you’ll have to revise and edit. Whether you’re seeking publication in a major house or interested in self-publishing, the techniques learned in this workshop will take your draft to the next level. Revision strategies and
tools for self-editing, as well as how to work with critique partners will be discussed.
Day: Friday, October 4, 2013

Time: 7pm—9pm, Fee $40

Elements of Plotting
Whether you have several manuscripts under your belt or you’re dreaming of writing your first novel, a return to the fundamentals of storytelling is always a good idea. In this workshop we’ll be covering the basics of plotting, the essential aspects needed to make any story tick and come to life.
Day: Friday, November 1, 2013
Time: 7pm—9pm, Fee $40

Writing Romance in Young Adult Literature
Romance has always been one of the best selling genres in literature and it’s become one of the most important and appealing aspects of young adult literature to readers. In this workshop we’ll be examining the romance genre, how to write realistic and captivating romances and how to invoke romance into your young adult writing.
Day: Friday, December 6, 2013
Time: 7pm—9pm, Fee $40

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Summer Workshops and Course Offerings

Hey Guys! I know I've been a little quiet on the blog lately, but that's just because so many things are happening. Well, I'm here to announce a bunch of them!

This summer I'm teaching two Science Fiction and Fantasy Writing classes. One for adults (as in grown ups) and one for teens (as in, you may not have the right to vote yet).

AND...I have 3 awesome writing workshops. So here are all the details and descriptions below.

Classes:


Fantasy and Science Fiction Writing (a workshop for adults)
Fantasy and science fiction writing have long held our interests and are often the most important stories in
shaping who we are as people. We can use elements of these fantastic stories to better understand our lives and our hearts. Many of us have a fantastic story inside, one that is just waiting to be written. With the right tools, we can tell those stories and write about the worlds we wish to visit in our minds. This is a great foundation course for anyone interested in or currently writing science fiction or fantasy. Premise,
plotting, characterization, world building and using archetypes are just some of the topics we’ll cover. We’ll also study a modern fantasy by Maggie Stiefvater.
Summer Session:
Day: Monday, June 3, 10, 17, 24; July 1, 8, 2013
Time: 7pm—8:30pm
Early Bird Registration Fee: $120
Registration Fee: $140
Late Registration Fee: $150


Fantasy and Science Fiction Writing (a workshop for teens)
Falling into a world of fantasy or futuristic technology can be one of the most
entertaining and thrilling ways to read a book. But nothing beats actually creating these worlds. This course will cover the basic elements needed to create, plan and write a science fiction or fantasy story. We’ll study a modern work of fantasy by Laini Taylor, exploring ways to create either your own world or write about a hidden world that fits into ours. Students will have all the tools they need to finish writing a novel of their own, one that they will begin writing in class, incorporating all of their favorite aspects of fantasy and science fiction.
Summer Session:
Day: Tuesday, June 4, 11, 18, 25; July 2, 9, 2013
Time: 2pm—3:30pm
Early Bird Registration Fee: $120
Registration Fee: $140
Late Registration Fee: $150


Workshops:


You've written a novel and now you're ready for an agent. But navigating through the querying process to get one can feel like a daunting and impossible task. Fear not. The process is actually far more straight forward than many believe--if they have the right tools. Having a fantastic query letter is the key to having your work seen and this course will teach you exactly how to write the query letter that will have agents requesting your work. The instructor will share her own querying process and query letter which had a 50% request rate and landed her offers of representation with several agents within 30 days. Attendees are encouraged to come with a draft of their own query letters.

Friday, May 3, 2013 7PM-9PM


Writing the Young Adult Novel (First and Second Fridays with Frankie Series)
Are you writing a young adult novel? Or considering writing one? This workshop is for you. We'll look at not only what makes a book a young adult novel, but what makes it successful. Savvy writers who want to break into the young adult industry need to know how to navigate through this ever-changing field. So we'll also be looking at current trends in the market and how to understand the trends, but still write the story of your heart. The process of querying, signing with an agent and networking in the young adult industry will also be covered, along with personal tidbits from the instructor’s journey to publication. Get ready for a crash course in the young adult novel and how to bring your own YA book out into the world.

Friday, June 7, 2013 7PM-9PM

Many novels are well plotted and full of action but can still bore readers. Usually it's because the stakes aren't high enough and there are pages lacking tension. Whether you are writing a thriller, or a fantasy, a young adult contemporary or a quiet family novel, you can always raise the stakes. We'll look at ways to bring your novel to the next level and add tension that will grip readers to every single page.

Friday, June 14, 2013 7PM-9PM

Characters can make or break a novel: breaking it when they appear flat, and making it sing when the characters are fully developed. But breathing life into literary creations isn't always simple. In this workshop we'll be looking at what makes a character feel memorable, alive and developed. Character development goes far beyond knowing their birthday and favorite food. We're going to dig deep, examine what makes a person tick, and what makes a character come alive. All of the techniques learned in this course can be applied to a working novel, or stored away for future reference.

Friday, July 12, 2013 7PM-9PM

The fee for every workshop is $40 and you can register by visiting Musehouse


Friday, April 26, 2013

Art of the Query Letter Wokshop


Hi Everyone!

Just dropping in to let you know my query writing workshop is running a second time--next Friday! Here's the description below and information on registering. Hope to see you there!

You've written a novel and now you're ready for an agent. But navigating through the querying process to get one can feel like a daunting and impossible task. Fear not. The process is actually far more straight forward than many believe--if they have the right tools. Having a fantastic query letter is the key to having your work seen and this course will teach you exactly how to write the query letter that will have agents requesting your work. The instructor will share her own querying process and query letter which had a 50% request rate and landed her offers of representation with several agents within 30 days. Attendees are encouraged to come with a draft of their own query letters.

Friday, May 3, 2013 7PM-9PM

The fee for this workshop is $40 and you can register by visiting Musehouse

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Castle Adventure

Every now and then you have a day where you call up two of your best friends, who are conveniently on spring break as elementary school teachers, and you say this:

Tomorrow we're going on an adventure. We're going to a castle.

And luckily they say yes!

Thus began our castle adventure day where we took a mini road trip to Doylestown, PA to visit the Mercer Museum and Fonthill Castle, all courtesy of the amazingly talented renaissance man, Henry Mercer.

I have an obsession with castles. I work in one. Or...you know, on a campus with one. So when I realized that another castle was in my backyard (and by backyard I mean MILES away from my backyard) I had to go.

First stop was the Mercer Museum which holds hundreds of amazing artifacts, original horse and buggies (no horses), apothecary bottles, whaling boats, muskets, spinning wheels. Enough to make you think you've wandered into a store for Oregon Trail supplies. And it's all inside a castle-like building.

Top floor of the Mercer Museum



Angel tiles

Tools for punishment...eek!
Floors 6-2 are wide open, and it basically looks like you're at Hogwarts or more specifically, inside Gringotts
Ye olde class room
Sharply spiked pew
Baskets and little chairs hung from the ceiling
I churned butter (vegan style) with Henry's dog Rollo on my lap
We visited a library with a balcony!
We found a vampire killing kit! Check out the cross!
And I learned how to drive a horse and buggy.
After that it was on to the castle, where sadly we couldn't take any pictures inside. But we could outside!

Driving into the castle
Here I am in front of Fonthill Castle
So that was my adventure. We were also hoping for ghosts to pop out, because every castle needs at least one ghost, but it was a very fun, and un-haunted day.

Have you guys gone on any recent adventures?

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Raising The Stakes And Increasing The Tension


Hey guys! My next workshop at Musehouse is coming up in a few weeks and I'll be talking about tension and stakes!

Raising The Stakes And Increasing The Tension Workshop
Many novels are well plotted and full of action but can still bore readers. Usually it's because the stakes aren't high enough and there are pages lacking tension. Whether you are writing a thriller, or a fantasy, a young adult contemporary or a quiet family novel, you can always raise the stakes. We'll look at ways to bring your novel to the next level and add tension that will grip readers to every single page.

Friday, April 5, 2013 7PM-9PM

Check out Musehouse to register.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Science Fiction and Fantasy Writing for Teens

Hey guys! Wanted to let you know I'll be teaching an 8 week class on writing science fiction and fantasy for teenagers at Musehouse next month. Here is all of the information you need to sign up below and learn more about the class.

P.S. This is not writing FOR teens, it's writing for TEENS! A class of teenagers:-)


Science Fiction and Fantasy Writing for Teens at Musehouse
Falling into a world of fantasy or futuristic technology can be one of the most entertaining and thrilling ways to read a book. But nothing beats actually creating these worlds. When it comes to fantasy, anything is possible, but there are still rules. In this workshop, we’ll be exploring a wide range of fantasy and science fiction writing ranging from classical to contemporary fantasy. Students will further explore the writings of Ursula K. LeGuin as well as the contemporary work of Marissa Meyer. They will then begin crafting their own fantasy worlds, characters, and rules to showcase that story that they always wanted to tell.
Spring Session:
Day: Monday, April 1, 8, 15, 22, 29;
May 6, 13, 20, 2013
Time: 7pm to 8:30pm
Early Bird Registration Fee: $160
Registration Fee: $180
Late Registration Fee: $190

Visit Musehouse to register.