South Coast Writers Conference

http://www.socc.edu/scwriters/pgs/schedule/saturday-workshop/index.shtml

Saturday Workshops

 

 

South Coast Writers Conference - 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Saturday Workshops will be held at Gold Beach High School.

Come prepared to write and learn. Some workshops will have time for writing and reading of participants’ work. Workshops are limited to 25 students and cost $60  before January 31, $70 after. Please indicate a first and second choice on the registration form. 

SESSION 1 -  9 am - 10:30 am 

A. Not Who They Think They Are: Building Character Through Contradiction - Bill Cameron

“Everyone is necessarily the hero of his own life story.” —John Barth

At its core, character development is not about likeability, or relatability, or sympathy. It's about empathy. As writers we must understand not only a character’s traits, interests, needs and desires, but what they value and how they see themselves—as well as how others see them. Internal conflict and contradiction is often foundational in who people are. This workshop will explore ways to build characters who may be fooling themselves, but are richer and more compelling as a result.

Suggested Reading
Fall for Anything by Courtney Summers
Code Name Verity by Elizabeth E. Wein
Beat the Reaper by Josh Bazell

B. Gold on the Beach - Robert Arellano
Whether you write romance or noir, short story or novel, poetry, prose, or postmodern—whatever project you bring to or begin at our workshop,"Gold on the Beach," you will generate a rich draft of raw material to take home with you and refine into a finished treasure. The heart of this ‘working workshop’ will be guided writing. A relative of ‘free writing’ and ‘automatic writing,’ guided writing is facilitated by a teacher or coach who supplies the catalyst for your first sentence and continues to provide brief prompts at 5-minute intervals. Guided writing is intended to release partly formed or unconscious draft material to enrich a project, whether new or work-in-progress. 

Yes, you may bring the manuscript of a project you have been working on, but the first guided-writing session (about 30 minutes) will start with a clean slate on a character you have in mind, someone new who has potential for your writing or a character that is essential to your story. Please come prepared on Saturday with:  
            a) Your favorite composition medium: notebook, laptop, etc 
            b) A character 
            c) A conflict
 
If you would like a bit of additional context: 
a) your character can be fuzzy, someone in your head: a semi-autobiographical character or a caricature of someone you know.  
b) the conflict is optional — even if all you have is your character name and a rough idea of their hopes and fears, the first half-hour of writing will likely generate a conflict.
 
The point is to indulge in the experience to generate fresh material for your art.
 

C. The top mistakes new authors make (and how to avoid them!) - Tawna Fenske
It's easy to screw up when you’re getting started as an author. Just ask Tawna Fenske—she’s done it plenty! She's also learned a few things from years of judging contests, critiquing manuscripts, building a career in marketing & PR, and stumbling a few times in her own journey as a published author of romantic comedy. From writing craft to social media, learn the top landmines for newbie writers—and how you can leap gracefully over them.

D. Cracking the Nut: Writing (and Editing) with Conscious Intent - Heidi Connolly 
Where does writing end and editing begin? How do you integrate mind and “creative intuition” and trust both the process and the outcome? This workshop looks closely at how to suspend judgment in order to keep the creative juices flowing, how to avoid focusing on the outcome at the expense of the process, and how to access and maintain the spark—the energy that drives the hand to strike the key—necessary to write, rewrite, edit . . . and then write some more.
 
E. Exploring The Short-Short Story  - Stefanie Freele
This is a workshop for writers who are looking to fine tune their short fiction in preparation for publication. In addition to reading samples of award-winning short stories, discussing elements of great flash and short fiction, writers will edit, share work, and begin a new piece. Fiction writers who are working on (or considering) any project-length welcome.

SESSION 2 - 10:45 am - 12:15 pm

F. The Art of Short and Book-Length Memoir - Melissa Hart
What makes a memoir marketable?  How is this genre different from autobiography?  Where should you begin your story, and where should you end? This workshop will help participants to choose a compelling era and/or theme for a personal narrative, and to craft it in a manner appealing to literary agents and editors.  We'll discuss professional memoirists' use of literary techniques, including the popular practice of immersion journalism. As well, we'll talk about ethical issues, and how to seek professional publication of short and long memoir.

G. Putting Words on the Page: Generating Ideas and Crafting Snazzy First Lines -  Tanya Chernov
We’ll begin at, well, the beginning–the moments that lead us into writing, and what to do when we get there. From idea lists to prompts, from eavesdropping to free-writing, students will explore the many ways to get into the creative groove. We will also discuss the importance of a well-crafted title and opening line. Using several examples of stellar beginnings from published poetry of well-known and emerging writers, students will comment on what makes a title or opening line compelling enough to continue reading. Exercises will be given for the class to explore ways to generate ideas and develop first lines. 
 

H. High-Class Songwriting - Chuck Pyle  
Endorsed by Martin Guitar, with songs recorded by John Denver & Jerry Jeff Walker, Chuck Pyle's Songwriting Method is about compressing long thoughts, elaborating life experiences, and super-coloring descriptions by turning common words into evocative ones. It's for people who don't know the first thing about writing a song but who are willing to write a melody by clapping their hands and singing words to it. Singing in-tune is a learn-able skill and all it requires is practice. Everyone can learn to sing.

"The poets job is not to point out the extraordinary but to show how extraordinary everything actually is."
—Charles John Quarto

The Chuck Pyle Songwriting Method is about learning to borrow from one's surroundings, setting the time and place before the "story" begins, and about how to pick a theme. The writer may already have an idea for a theme or may pick one from the ten-minute, timed-writing required in the class. The "timed-writing" is an exercise where the student writes down everything by hand that comes to mind about their theme, without taking pen from paper (please, no laptops). From that 10-minute, timed-writing, the members will offer their favorite parts for the flip-chart part of the seminar for everyone to see. This is where long thoughts are compressed into short phrases, life experiences are elaborated upon, common words are turned into evocative ones, and ways are discussed on how to keep the "teller's" voice sounding like the same person throughout the song.

This class is for people who want to write songs but don't know the first thing about it. You will learn that writing a melody is as easy as clapping your hands and singing words to it.  People refuse to believe that good taste can be taught. This seminar takes on the challenge by filp-charting songs from those who've already written a part of a song. In this segment, everyone can comment on 'where' a song's story is going, on compressing the visuals to match the meter, and on some other word choices that might have improved the telling.

I. From Slush Pile to Printed Page: Giving your Poems the Best Chance for Publication - Kelly Davio
Editors of national literary journals receive thousands of poetry submissions for each issue they compile. Why is one quality poem accepted while another is rejected? How can a poet give his or her poems the best chance for publication? In this workshop, one poetry editor explains what makes a submission--and a poet--stand out from the masses, how editorial decision are often made, what editors love and what they loathe, and how poets can significantly increase the chances that their work will be accepted.   
 

J. What Editors Want: Getting (and Keeping) Magazine Freelance Gigs - Kim Cooper Findling
Learn the tricks of the magazine writing trade from an editor and longtime freelance writer. This session will cover how to successfully pitch ideas and win assignments, write and submit copy that editors will love, and earn trust and repeat assignments. We’ll cover the basics of navigating writer’s guidelines, gathering and crafting ideas, getting an editor’s attention, providing top-notch work and avoiding common mistakes.

SESSION 3 - 1:30 pm - 3 pm

K. Not Who They Think They Are: Building Character Through Contradiction - Bill Cameron

“Everyone is necessarily the hero of his own life story.” —John Barth

At its core, character development is not about likeability, or relatability, or sympathy. It's about empathy. As writers we must understand not only a character’s traits, interests, needs and desires, but what they value and how they see themselves—as well as how others see them. Internal conflict and contradiction is often foundational in who people are. This workshop will explore ways to build characters who may be fooling themselves, but are richer and more compelling as a result.

Suggested Reading
Fall for Anything by Courtney Summers
Code Name Verity by Elizabeth E. Wein
Beat the Reaper by Josh Bazell

L. Gold on the Beach - Robert Arellano
Whether you write romance or noir, short story or novel, poetry, prose, or postmodern—whatever project you bring to or begin at our workshop,"Gold on the Beach," you will generate a rich draft of raw material to take home with you and refine into a finished treasure. The heart of this ‘working workshop’ will be guided writing. A relative of ‘free writing’ and ‘automatic writing,’ guided writing is facilitated by a teacher or coach who supplies the catalyst for your first sentence and continues to provide brief prompts at 5-minute intervals. Guided writing is intended to release partly formed or unconscious draft material to enrich a project, whether new or work-in-progress. 

Yes, you may bring the manuscript of a project you have been working on, but the first guided-writing session (about 30 minutes) will start with a clean slate on a character you have in mind, someone new who has potential for your writing or a character that is essential to your story. Please come prepared on Saturday with: 
            a) Your favorite composition medium: notebook, laptop, etc. 
            b) A character 
            c) A conflict
 
If you would like a bit of additional context: 
a)  Your character can be fuzzy, someone in your head: a semi-autobiographical character or a caricature of someone you know. 
b) The conflict is optional — even if all you have is your character name and a rough idea of their hopes and fears, the first half-hour of writing will likely generate a conflict.
 
The point is to indulge in the experience to generate fresh material for your art.
 

M. High-Class Songwriting - Chuck Pyle
Endorsed by Martin Guitar, with songs recorded by John Denver & Jerry Jeff Walker, Chuck Pyle's Songwriting Method is about compressing long thoughts, elaborating life experiences, and super-coloring descriptions by turning common words into evocative ones. It's for people who don't know the first thing about writing a song but who are willing to write a melody by clapping their hands and singing words to it. Singing in-tune is a learn-able skill and all it requires is practice. Everyone can learn to sing.

"The poets job is not to point out the extraordinary but to show how extraordinary everything actually is."
—Charles John Quarto

The Chuck Pyle Songwriting Method is about learning to borrow from one's surroundings, setting the time and place before the "story" begins, and about how to pick a theme. The writer may already have an idea for a theme or may pick one from the ten-minute, timed-writing required in the class. The "timed-writing" is an exercise where the student writes down everything by hand that comes to mind about their theme, without taking pen from paper (please, no laptops). From that 10-minute, timed-writing, the members will offer their favorite parts for the flip-chart part of the seminar for everyone to see. This is where long thoughts are compressed into short phrases, life experiences are elaborated upon, common words are turned into evocative ones, and ways are discussed on how to keep the "teller's" voice sounding like the same person throughout the song.

This class is for people who want to write songs but don't know the first thing about it. You will learn that writing a melody is as easy as clapping your hands and singing words to it.  People refuse to believe that good taste can be taught. This seminar takes on the challenge by filp-charting songs from those who've already written a part of a song. In this segment, everyone can comment on 'where' a song's story is going, on compressing the visuals to match the meter, and on some other word choices that might have improved the telling.

N. A Self-publishing Primer: Potential, Pitfalls, and Profitability - Heidi Connolly 
So, your book is ready to unleash into the world! But how? Where do you start? Will you self-publish or solicit an agent or publisher? Do you really need professional editing? Get your questions answered before you sign that contract or purchase those 1000 books. We’ll discuss both the potholes and the potentials of the publishing marketplace so you can avoid the pain and invite profitability faster than you can say “I want my book on Amazon.com.”  

O. Exploring The Short-Short Story  - Stefanie Freele
This is a workshop for writers who are looking to fine tune their short fiction in preparation for publication. In addition to reading samples of award-winning short stories, discussing elements of great flash and short fiction, writers will edit, share work, and begin a new piece. Fiction writers who are working on (or considering) any project-length welcome.

SESSION 4 - 3:15 pm - 4:45 pm

P. The Art of Short and Book-Length Memoir - Melissa Hart
What makes a memoir marketable?  How is this genre different from autobiography?  Where should you begin your story, and where should you end? This workshop will help participants to choose a compelling era and/or theme for a personal narrative, and to craft it in a manner appealing to literary agents and editors. We'll discuss professional memoirists' use of literary techniques, including the popular practice of immersion journalism. As well, we'll talk about ethical issues, and how to seek professional publication of short and long memoir.

Q. The Trail of Breadcrumbs: How to Find the Way Back Home - Tanya Chernov
When we have a personal attachment to a place, it’s easy to overlook its most immediate details. In this workshop, we’ll discuss the details of place and participate in writing exercises that lead us back to the places we know so well and discover what makes what is familiar to us unique to a reader. By exploring the senses, we’ll scour our memories for the most intimate details of place. This interactive workshop is perfect for writers  trying to incorporate a richer sense of place into their poetry and prose. 
 

R. The top mistakes new authors make (and how to avoid them!) - Tawna Fenske
It's easy to screw up when you’re getting started as an author. Just ask Tawna Fenske—she’s done it plenty! She's also learned a few things from years of judging contests, critiquing manuscripts, building a career in marketing & PR, and stumbling a few times in her own journey as a published author of romantic comedy. From writing craft to social media, learn the top landmines for newbie writers—and how you can leap gracefully over them.

S. From Slush Pile to Printed Page: Giving your Poems the Best Chance for Publication - Kelly Davio
Editors of national literary journals receive thousands of poetry submissions for each issue they compile. Why is one quality poem accepted while another is rejected? How can a poet give his or her poems the best chance for publication? In this workshop, one poetry editor explains what makes a submission--and a poet--stand out from the masses, how editorial decision are often made, what editors love and what they loathe, and how poets can significantly increase the chances that their work will be accepted.  

T.Travel Writing for Fun and Profit—Kim Cooper Findling
Ever dreamt of becoming a travel writer? This workshop will help you learn to think like a travel writer, pitch ideas to editors, break in to the travel market, and bring place and experience to life on the page. Be prepared for hands-on writing activities. 

 

Registration Form