A: SCREENWRITING TRICKS FOR AUTHORS (AND SCREENWRITERS!)
For: All writers, especially delegates who were unable to attend the Friday Workshop
Screenwriting is a compressed and dynamic storytelling form and the techniques of screenwriting are easily adaptable to novel writing. Whether you’re a plotter or a pantser, you can jump-start your plot and bring your characters and scenes vibrantly alive on the page—by examining your favorite movies and learning from the storytelling tricks of great filmmakers.
Alexandra Sokoloff is the author of the supernatural thrillers and paranormal tales. As a screenwriter she sold original horror and thriller scripts and adapted novels for numerous Hollywood studios.
She is the author of SCREENWRITING TRICKS FOR AUTHORS (AND SCREENWRITERS!), and WRITING LOVE, workbooks based on her internationally acclaimed blog and workshops.
See the March Hearts Talk for an interview with Alexandra.
B: REVISIONS: REWRITING, EDITING, PROOFREADING...OH MY!
For: All writers
Whether on your first book or your 51st, revisions are a part of the writing process. Self-imposed, or requested, rewrites are a good thing. Not a necessary evil, but one of the most important tools you have in your creative arsenal. Like any tool, the ability to self-edit effectively needs honing, practice, confidence in the wielding. Find your best revising method within this abundance of hints on how to manage revisions with a smile. (Or, at the very least, less than mortal dread.)
Ally Blake is a bestselling, multi-award winning novelist who has been published in over twenty languages with more than three million books sold world-wide. Her fun, fresh, flirty books are published by Harlequin Mills and Boon. She and her family, including three boisterous toddlers, share a property in the leafy western suburbs of Brisbane with kookaburras, cockatoos, lorikeets and the occasional creepy crawly. When not writing she loves eating M&Ms, watching The West Wing reruns, playing hide and seek, and barracking til hoarse for the Collingwood Magpies AFL team.
For Ally's Conference Spotlight on the blog, please follow the link (13th March).
C: ENGAGING YOUR READER
For: All writers, all genres
Beautiful prose and a clever plot is not enough. The secret to selling a manuscript is how well you can engage a reader. Readers read popular fiction — and especially romance — to be swept away, to experience an emotional journey. They don’t simply read — they interact with a book; with the world, with the characters and with their problems. For the writer the key is to create reader engagement on a number of levels — intellectual, psychological and emotional.
Anne is a former teacher, a former president of RWAust, a three time RITA finalist, has twice won the Romantic Book of the Year (Australia) and the National Reader's Choice Award (USA) and has been listed in Library Journal (USA) best books of the year. www.annegracie.com
D: PANEL: IT'S WAY MORE THAN TWILIGHT:
EVERYTHING YOU EVER WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT WRITING YA BUT WERE TOO FREAKED OUT TO ASK
Kaz Delaney, Vanessa Barneveld, Amanda Ashby, Sara Hantz
For: All writers
Both basic and specific topics covered via individual presentation with questions/discussion invited from the audience to create a warm, entertaining, informative atmosphere. Topics: language and sexuality levels; differences between YA and traditional adult romance; tone; markets; publishers and agents; Oz vs US; contests; setting; characterisation and what’s hot.
Kaz Delaney splits her time between teaching and writing. She also has a split personality, and in cooperation with her alter ego, Kerri Lane, has written over 60 books for children and Young Adults. As Kaz, she was a lead author for Dorchester’s (NY) Smooch line for young adults. Her latest YA novel is entitled ‘Dead, Actually’ published with Allen & Unwin, March 2012. While speaking of splits it may be noted that while she also suffers the occasional split end, she draws the line at performing the actual splits. She lives and plays at NSW’s gorgeous Lake Macquarie and is represented by Jacinta di Mase of JDM Management.
Vanessa Barneveld is a two-timer. That is, a two-time Emerald Award and two-time Golden Heart® Award YA finalist. By day, she writes and records audio description voiceovers for the blind and writes TV captions for the Deaf. By night, she wrangles two cats, a never-ending house renovation and several YA manuscripts. Despite all the two-timing, she’s totally devoted to her musician husband. She's represented by Robin Rue of Writers House, NYC.
Amanda Ashby writes young adult and mid-grade books for Puffin (US). She also watches far too much television and she never shares the remote control with anyone. Her debut book, You Had Me at Halo was nominated for a Romantic Times Reviewers Choice award, and her first young adult book Zombie Queen of Newbury High was listed by the New York Public Library's Stuff for the Teen Age 2010. Her latest release, Fairy Bad Day, was selected by Voya as one of their Top Shelf Fiction for Middle School Readers 2012.
Sara Hantz writes young adult fiction. She has a PhD in Education and lecturered for many years and has two grown-up children who have yet to grasp the fact that the bottomless money pit will soon be closing over. Sara's debut book The Second Virginity of Suzy Green was listed by the New York Public Library on their Books for the Teen Age. When not writing or working she spends more time than most people she knows watching TV - in fact if TV watching was an Olympic sport she'd get the gold medal.
For the Conference Spotlight on this session on the blog, please follow this link (23rd April).
Download all the Saturday Breakout Sessions (opens PDF)