Contemporary Romance Writers 2017 Workshops

Unless stated otherwise, workshops take place on closed Yahoo Loops Forums and are $15 for CRW Members, $25 for RWA Members, or $35 for Non-RWA Members. For more information, contact the VP of Workshops.

Enroll Now For:

      

Mark Your Calendars For:

  • October 2-17, 2017: Surviving NaNoWriMo with Peter Andrews
  • October 3-28, 2017: Serializing: Using the Structure of Episodic Television to Craft Your Serialized Novel with Ines Johnson
  • November 1-22, 2017: Worldbuilding for Contemporary Fiction with Peter Andrews
  • November 1-29, 2017: Book Trailers with Ines Johnson
  • January 1-28, 2018: Lab Errors and How to Prevent Them in Novels with Marie Johnston
  • January 1-28, 2018: Goodreads is for Authors with Diane K. Peterson
  • February 1-28, 2018: How to WRITE When Everything Goes WRONG with Allie Pleiter
  • February 4 – March 2, 2018: Developing Stronger Characters Through Journaling with Cathy Chant
  • March 1-28, 2018: Hook ‘em, Dano: Writing the Grabber Opening Scene with Linnea Sinclair
  • March 1-28, 2018: Press Kits – Be Ready When Opportunity Knocks with Kathryn Jane
  • April 1-28, 2018: Piracy For Authors – Understanding the Issues with Merien Grey
  • April 1-28, 2018: Creating Unforgettable Characters — How to Make them Walk, Talk and Seduce Readers with Carla Caruso and Samantha Bond
  • May 6 – June 1, 2018: Principles of Good Website Design for Writers with Cathy Chant
  • May 1-28, 2018: Fights In Fiction (What it feels like to get hit, not how to hit) with Merien Grey
  • May 1-28, 2018: Write The Effing Book: Plotting Techniques for Plotters and Willing Pantsers with Mary E. Thompson
  • June 1-28, 2018: Head Games: Writing Deep Third POV for Maximum Impact with Linnea Sinclair
  • June 19 – July 3, 2018: Self Publishing: Easy as ABC with Meredith Bond
  • July 10-31, 2018: Four Types of Scenes with Lindsay Schopfer
  • August 1-25, 2018: Inside Out: Crafting Your Character’s Internal Conflict with Linnea Sinclair
  • August 1-28, 2018: How to Plot a Novel or Short Story with Samantha Bond
  • September 9-28, 2018: Writing the Romantic Novella with Cathy Chant
  • September 1-28, 2018: Volunteerism – Making it Worth Your Time and Theirs with Merien Grey
  • October 1-28, 2018: Focus on the First Five with Samantha Bond and Robb Grindstaff
  • October 1-28, 2018: EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS for You and for Your Writing with Kathryn Jane
  • November 1-28, 2018: The Actual How of Making Time to Write – Project Management for Writers with Merien Grey

Past 2017 Workshops:

  • January 2-31, 2017: Getting Results from Your Author Newsletter with Jessie Clever
  • January 2-27, 2017: Characterization: Making Strengths and Weaknesses Work for You with Linnea Sinclair
  • January 14 or January 22, 2017: Bringing Something to the Table: How to Be a Sought After Speaker Before You Publish with Merien Grey
  • January 30 – April 22, 2017: Three Month Course!: Advanced Concepts Thru Genre Film with Sally Walker
  • February 1-17, 2017: Pitches & Blurbs and Tag Lines with Linnea Sinclair
  • February 5-19, 2017: Writing and Resistance: Overcoming Our Blocks to Success with Mindy Hardwick
  • March 1-17, 2017: Pissing Off Editors, Or How Not To Get Published with Linnea Sinclair
  • March 6-30, 2017: The Road To Publication: Queries, Synopses and More! with Chanel Cleeton
  • March 6-31, 2017: Hardwired for Hot with Merien Grey
  • April 3-28, 2017: How’d I Miss That? Self-Editing with Kathryn Jane
  • April 3-30, 2017: Zen & The Marketing Author with Deborah Riley-Magnus
  • May 1-17, 2017: The Art, Craft, and Business of Writing Genre Fiction
  • May 1-26, 2017: What’s a Tweet and Why Should I Care? Diving Deep into Social Marketing
  • May 1-26, 2017: Worldbuilding From An Intelligence POV
  • May 1-29, 2017: Self-Publishing “Where The Heck Do I Start?”
  • June 1-29, 2017: “Shoot Me Now!” Write Your Own Back Cover Copy With Confidence
  • June 5-30, 2017: Romantic Screenplays 101
  • June 6-27, 2017: Crafting a Complete Story
  • July 3-28, 2017: More than Just Window Dressing: How Secondary Characters Make Your Novel Come Alive
  • July 5-30, 2017: Military 101
  • July 11 – August 1, 2017: A Novel in Four Drafts


August 8-29, 2017

Finding Your Writing Process

NOTE: This workshop takes place at 7 pm PST each Tuesday via a webinar (see below for details; archive on site for participants)

About the Workshop:

Everyone has an idea for a book. The tough part is turning that idea into something that readers will want to read, review, and recommend to friends. Whether you’ve just gotten a brilliant idea or are suffering from a year-long bout of writers block, this course is for you. Participants will learn how to develop ideas into plots, how to make the most of their writing time, and how to create a unique writing system tailored to their needs.

Each week, instructor Lindsay Schopfer will host a live, one-hour, video group chat via Zoom which participants can attend by following a link provided in a private, e-mailed invitation. For those who can’t attend these chats live, all presentations will be recorded and posted on a private page where all students can view them at their convenience until the end of the month. Students will also have access to Lindsay via e-mail for any questions they may have on the craft of writing during the course.

Week One: The Idea Factory

It isn’t hard to have one good idea, but how does a writer get multiple ideas during each writing session? Whether you’re trying to come up with the plot to your next novel or just trying to figure out what a character should say next, this class is designed to help you. Students will learn effective observation techniques, tricks for removing the boundaries to their imaginations, and the alchemy of idea-making.

Week Two: Turning Ideas into Manuscripts

While the process of getting ideas can be both fun and fulfilling, there comes a time when a writer must begin the work of translating his scattered thoughts into a story that his readers can enjoy. In this course, students will learn the difference between planning and stalling, how to stay organized during the writing process, and how to write with confidence regardless of the need to revise later.

Week Three: Making the Most of Your Writing Time

“I only write when I’m inspired, and I make sure I’m inspired every morning at 9 a.m.” Come and learn how to turn off your inner critic and make the most of the time that you set aside to practice your craft. Participants in this course will learn how to create a writing-friendly environment, how to manage their writing time, how to prepare for their writing time, and how to set organic goals that will measure success rather than focus on artificial deadlines.

Week Four: Pick Your Process

Writing is an art form, and a writer’s process is as unique as the art they create. In this course, Lindsay will give a variety of ideas and methods that have worked for all types of authors to help you start building your own process. Students will learn a variety of ways to do outlines, organize ideas, revise their work, and get feedback.

About the Presenter:

Lindsay Schopfer is the author of two novels, the sci-fi survivalist Lost Under Two Moons and the steampunk adventure The Beast Hunter, as well as the fantasy short story collection Magic, Mystery and Mirth. His short fiction has also appeared in Merely This and Nothing More: Poe Goes Punk from Writerpunk Press and Unnatural Dragons from Clockwork Dragon. When he isn’t writing, Lindsay is a writing coach and instructor for Adventures In Writing, where he helps writers learn about and improve their craft. His workshops and panels have been featured in a variety of Cons and writing conferences across the Pacific Northwest. He is also a mentor for Educurious, a Gates Foundation-funded program designed to connect high school students with professional writers.

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September 1-28, 2017

Character Torture 101—Writing Conflict 

About the Workshop:

Writing Guru Dwight Swain said that it’s the author’s job to manipulate the emotions of the reader. There’s no better way to do this than for the author to put his characters through one roller coaster episode after another, taking the reader along for the ride. But how much conflict, how much character angst is too much? How can an author keep the action from becoming cartoonish? Bantam Spectra author Linnea Sinclair answers those questions and more in this fun and fast-paced (because torturing students is good, too!) course that explores the importance of conflict in today’s commercial fiction novels.

About the Presenter: 

Winner of the prestigious national book award, the RITA®, as well as the PRISM, PEARL, and SAPPHIRE, author Linnea Sinclair is a name synonymous with high-action, emotionally intense, character-driven science fiction romance novels. Reviewers note that Sinclair’s novels “have the wow-factor in spades.” Her books have claimed spots in the Locus Top Ten and received starred reviews in Publisher’s Weekly.  Romantic Times BOOKreviews magazine consistently gives Sinclair’s books 4-1/2 stars (their highest rating). Starlog magazine calls Sinclair “one of the reigning queens of science fiction romance.” She’s the author of the exciting Dock Five Universe series that starts with Gabriel’s Ghost. Other Sinclair novels include PEARL award winners Finders Keepers, Games of Command, and Hope’s Folly (Dock Five book #3).

Sinclair, a former news reporter and private investigator, resides in Florida with her husband, Robert Bernadino, and their thoroughly spoiled cats. Readers can find her perched on the third barstool from the left in her Intergalactic Bar and Grille at www.linneasinclair.com.

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September 5-16, 2017

DIY Book Tours

About the Workshop:

Book Tours are an excellent and cost effective way to spread the word about your new release and gain exposure. However, they can be a costly endeavor for new writers whose dimes have gone to copyedits and covers. Learn how to DIY your blog tour in six steps which include building a media kit, targeting the right bloggers for your book, tailoring your email to each blogger to break through their slush pile, how to keep records of which sites you’re visiting along with what and when to give them materials, promoting your tour on your social media sites, and following up to ensure you’ll be invited back.

About the Presenter:

Ines Johnson is a television writer turned romance novelist. She currently teaches college level courses in scriptwriting and story development.

Ines writes books for strong women who suck at love. If you rocked out to the twisted triangle of Jem, Jericha, and Rio as a girl; if you were slayed by vampires with souls alongside Buffy; if you need your scandalous fix from Olivia Pope each week, then you’ll love her books!

Ines is best known for her charming fairytale retelling romance Pumpkin: a Cindermama Story. The Cindermama series features single mothers who’ve given up on love after kissing toads, but they each get a second chance at love with a prince charming.

Aside from being a writer, professional reader, and teacher, Ines is a very bad Buddhist. She sits in sangha each week, and while others are meditating and getting their zen on, she’s contemplating how to use the teachings to strengthen her plots and character motivations.
Ines lives outside Washington, DC with her two little sidekicks who are growing up way too fast.

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September 5-29, 2017

Story Bootcamp 

About the Workshop:

Start fast! Keep it humming. End with authority.

Polish, correct, and tighten the prose. Learn how to rewrite your story, whether fiction or nonfiction, so it entices, captivates, and delights readers. This course will explore the dimensions of your story and push them to the limits so you get the most from your premise and your readers get compelling experiences.

In the first week, the bootcamp will focus on getting a good start. Students will develop loglines, workshop their first five pages, and explore plotting. In the second week of the class, the instructor will hold a productivity clinic, stress test protagonists’ arcs, and find the juice in conflicts. The third week will focus on connecting the dots between scenes and chapters and practicing dialogue sprints. In the fourth and final week, students will have the chance to share and critique ideas for endings and to prepare to withstand the dreaded mid-novel slump.

No slackers! This is a highly interactive class that depends on commitment and participation.

About the Presenter:

Peter Andrews is a full-time independent writer, and he has worked as a speechwriter, a Web producer, and a radio producer. He writes the popular How to Write Fast blog (http://howtowritefast.bogspot.com/). He has authored two books, sold dozens of short stories, and published over 200 articles explaining technology to lay audiences. He is a member of RWA and past president of its Young Adult chapter.

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