PPWC 2015: Workshops Edition

Hello my lovelies!

Like I’ve said a couple of times now, I want to try and focus on craft during the weekend of conference and based on the list of workshops on the website, there will be a lot of different options to choose from. I never try to over plan what I want to do since I usually change my mind during the conference. What I usually do is try to get an idea of my top picks and then when I get the actual schedule I can work out of a plan of action (which I usually end up changing 100 times).

This year I wanted to try and give you lovelies a look into some of the ones I have some interest in. So, let’s get going on it, in alphabetical order no less:

  • The Art of the Funny Bone — Bob Spiller is presenting this workshop and I’m kind of on the fence about this one — not because of Bob Spiller of course — but because of comedy. My stories tend to be on more of a serious note but I don’t think any of it would be hurt by a little comedy thrown in.
  • Constructing Your SciFi or Fantasy Novel — Presented by Josh Vogt. If you didn’t catch on by the title, this workshop would seem to be focused on world building. I love me some world building but do struggle some with it. I don’t know how to balance the information I give from being just right to over/underwhelming. There have been world building sessions at most of the conferences I’ve gone to but I’ve never found time to go to one, this time I want to make sure I get in on this one.
  • Exploding Plot Points — Presented by Alex Kourvo and with an obvious topic. I want to make sure my plot points as well as the scenes involved in the story are all on point and keeping to a good story arc.
  • Fast Talk: Speeding the Pace of Your Novel — This is presented by Mary Sue Seymour, a literary agent, so she should be well versed in what the acceptable pacing is for different novels. There are some points where I know I need to work on pace.
  • The Foundations of a Freelance Writing Career — This one is presented by Josh Vogt. Like I said in my post about the prequels on Thursday, this is one field I’m interested in. Though not really focused on the actual craft of writing, it is something I think I need to try and myself in the direction of pursuing.
  • How the Process Works: Your Gateway to Hell — Here we have a workshop presented by Liz Pelletier and MK Meredith. Though I doubt this will be focused on craft, it does take you through the publication journey. The reason why I’m trying to sneak this one in during what I hope to be a craft focused weekend is because one of the presenters — MK Meredith — was one of the first people that seemed to be so welcoming when I started going to Pikes Peak Writers Conference so I would love to see her and support her during her workshop.
  • In the Beginning — This one is presented by Laura DiSilverio and focuses on beginnings. I’ve had a hard time with beginnings lately. Since I chose not to do the editing session on Thursday, I’m hoping that this session will — hopefully — give me a jump into a good edit on my first couple chapters.
  • It’s All About Character — Presented by Kevin Ikenberry. We have a interesting session looking in on characters. Sometimes I know my characters can come off as a bit dry, so hopefully going to a workshop about characters will help give me some ideas on how to flesh out the characters.
  • The Loaded Exchange: How to Write Tension Packed Dialogue — Presented by Angie Hodapp. I love getting tips on dialogue. I don’t think I use as much as I should be, hopefully it’ll be another kick in the butt.
  • Making Your Characters Matter — A character workshop presented by Angel Smits. This one is one that seems interesting but apparently I love picking out the character workshops this year, so we’ll have to see which ones I get to actually go to.
  • One Moment in Time: Writing Scenes — This one is presented by Cara Lopez Lee and we have another one for scenes. Again, we’ll see which ones end up being the ones I go to.
  • Part of a Balanced Breakfast: Serials, Series and Keeping Them From Getting Stale — This one interests me on a couple levels. First it is presented by one of the keynotes — Seanan McGuire — and second because of a few ideas that I have floating around in my head are based in the same world as Goddess Born. Understanding how she does series and seeing how to keep continuity going would be interesting.
  • Scenes: Using Every Crayon in the Box — Mary Kay Andrews is teaching this one, which she’s a keynote speaker so it’ll be interesting seeing what she has to say. It’s another one on scenes though, so we’ll see what happens.
  • Seven Essentials for Powerful Fiction — Presented by Brandy Vallance, this seems to be an overall craft focused workshop. It’ll be interesting to see what she considers the seven essentials and how to apply them.
  • Snapping Pictures with Words: The Art of Description — Here we have a workshop presented by Angie Hodapp on description. I think I could use some help here, I think it’s one of those things that really doesn’t have a middle ground. You’re either good or bad at description. I like to think that I’m pretty good for the most parts, but there are some points where I know I downright suck.
  • Ten Absolute, Surefire Ways to Keep Your Pages Moving — Another workshop on pace, this one presented by Andrew Gross. Another one where I have to make a decision on which. Again will all depend on the master schedule that comes out and what happens when. It’s with another keynote so that will be interesting to see.
  • Writing Combat in Science Fiction — Presented by Keven Ikenberry. This one interests me because even though I don’t write science fiction, I do have modern day fantasy/paranormal. Goddess Born takes place during a major war in their world and there is definitely combat. Time Healer will have some combat as well. I think I can take what I learn here and apply it to the fighting in my own stories.
  • Writing the Strong Female Protagonist — Barbara O’Neal is presenting this one. It is a character workshop again but is focused specifically on female protagonists which most of mine tend to be.
  • Understanding Scene Structure — Another one on scene but this one is presented by Pam McCutcheon. I’ve loved previous workshops I’ve taken from Pam and have learned a lot. Maybe I can learn even more.
  • Unlocking Personification and Metaphor to Deepen Emotion — This is another workshop presented by Brandy Vallance. It seems to be focused on bringing out emotions in your readers to feel deeper about the writing. Seems very interesting from the description.

So those the ones on my highlighted list. Though there are a few that I am looking at for back up. Maybe, depending when they release the schedule, I’ll let you know what my initial plans will be for the conference.

You should all check out the list in the link above. Tell me what y’all think of the offerings. If you’re going to PPWC and planning on hitting any of the ones I listed, find me and say hi.

Until next time my lovelies.

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