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Workshops by Track

View a list of RWA2022 workshops by track.

Workshops are open to registered conference attendees on a first-come, first-served basis. No additional registration is required. Please email [email protected] for more information.


Career Track

Book to Screen (CAREER)
Speaker: Dete Meserve
As streaming services and networks demand stories to satisfy our viewing needs, they are relying more than ever on books to provide them. But what goes into the long process of turning a novel into a film or series? The Book to Screen workshop will illuminate a process that can seem mysterious, often glamorous (those Deadline or Variety announcements!), as well as lucrative for authors.

The workshop will be led by Dete Meserve, an award-winning producer of film and television who’s adapted and produced several books into films and TV series. She is also a bestselling author herself. She adapted her first novel, Good Sam, into a screenplay which she produced for Netflix. She is also at work on a second screen adaptation of one of her books.

Meserve will provide a candid, behind-the-scenes, realistic picture of the book-to-film experience. She will walk you through the process from both the perspective of a producer who has acquired books, adapted, and produced them for the screen as well as the perspective of an author whose books have been produced or are currently in the film development process.

If you are an author who has questions about the book-to-screen experience or has ever been approached by producers, this engaging session is definitely for you.

Digital Toolkit for Authors on a Budget (CAREER)
Speaker: T.B. Bond and Carly Brooks
Do you find that the business of writing is more expensive than anticipated? Don’t know where to start with budgeting? We understand! We have developed a toolkit for you! In our Digital Toolkit for Authors on a Budget workshop, you will learn about free and low-cost tools to market and organize for maximum results. Attendees will receive a digital resource kit.

Improving Your Presence on Amazon (CAREER)
Speaker: Caridad Piñeiro
Standing out in a crowded market is difficult, especially on Amazon with the volume of books available for sale. In this workshop, Caridad explains what you can do to improve your presence on Amazon by creating an author profile, more effective Amazon book page, and new Amazon A+ content.

Indie Editor Panel (CAREER)
Speaker: Jen Graybeal
Whether pursuing an indie publishing, hybrid options, or just planning to contribute to an anthology, finding the right indie editor to work is a game changer for authors. Join us for a discussion about the indie publishing business, advice for building your publishing team, and answers to all your questions.

Marketing without Social Media (CAREER)
Speaker: Jen Graybeal
I'm just going to say it... you don't need a social media presence to sell books. Consistently creating interesting, engaging content takes time and creativity--both are precious commodities for authors. Not to mention the challenge of finding followers. Let’s look beyond social media and ads to tap into other marketing options.

Math Is Money for Authors (CAREER)
Speaker: Elizabeth West
What if I told you that the language you use about your writing and your business could be translated into the the universal language: math? Learn how to use basic math principles, with a calculator, of course, to design business metrics and key performance indicators for your writing business. You don't have to guess if an ad is working or if books released in summer sell better than winter. After Math Is Money for Authors, you will be able to create math models using your own data and make stronger decisions for your career's future.

Publishing 101: What to Expect After You Sign (CAREER)
Speaker: Jenna Jaxon
A workshop for writers who have just gotten a contract or who are in the process of querying their works in hopes of receiving an offer. The workshop will help authors navigate the process of having their books traditionally published including when to say no to a contract, dos and don'ts of a contract, elements publishers control and how to negotiate them, and what publishers expect from authors.

Romance Author Long Tail Strategies: Maximizing Your Back-List Sales Organically (CAREER)
Speaker: Bella Love-Wins
Taking longer than normal to release your new book? It happens! New additions to our family, health related priorities, the stress of this pandemic environment we're currently living in, and other realities can delay our progress to release new books. But they don't have to be as hard on our ability to earn a good living and provide for our families.

This workshop is designed to help authors at all levels to maximize your sales from your back-list of books so that you can have revenues that are sustainable for the long term.

Ten Keys to Success & Survival: What Every Romance Author Should Know (CAREER)
Speaker: Jane Porter
The publishing industry is a tough business, and there's not just one way to succeed. But there will be bumps and challenges and there are things you can do to help you meet your goals. In this workshop, Jane will share her ten top keys to success and survival for every romance writer.

Craft Track

The Art of Tending Your Creative Garden: Tips for Discovery Writers (CRAFT)
Speaker: Jaycee Jarvis
Does outlining suck all the magic out of your story? Do plotting books leave you scratching your head? If you prefer to discover your story as you write it, there are still important tips and techniques that can help you stay in the creative flow and cultivate the best possible story. Learn how to prepare your field, plant your story seeds and grow your manuscript more effectively.

Building a Better World (CRAFT)
Speaker: Amanda Arista    
Writers have total control over the worlds they create and the heroes they manipulate. In this lecture, Amanda will explore the keys to the relationship between these worlds and the steps to walk through when creating a world from scratch to challenge your hero, or how to find the write hero to make your world a better place. Like building a pyramid, a strong foundation is key to creating inherent conflict within your story. From continents to cultures, this workshop will help beginning writers think of the big questions for new realms, past, present and future.

Creating Page-Turning Dialogue (CRAFT)
Speaker: Susan Dansby
Meet-cute. Exposition. Love Scenes. Break-ups. Reunited. HEA. Repeat. When you’re writing for the same characters in the same town in love stories that go on for decades, is there anything new to say? Yes! Susan Dansby has spent over 20 years writing 64,000+ pages of dialogue for the soap inhabitants of Genoa City and Oakdale. In this upbeat, interactive workshop, she’ll share behind-the-scenes tips on how to keep your dialogue fresh and engaging, and your readers coming back for more.

Creating that Fatal Flaw (CRAFT)
Speaker: Laurie Schnebly
Writers like knowing ways to create plausible, likable characters who will naturally come into conflict with each other... and with themselves. Learn how to use the nine enneagram types, each with its own heroic traits and fatal flaws. (While it’s all about fictional characters, people often spot real-life uses for this information as well!)

Dark or Dangerous: The Art of Writing Dark Romance (CRAFT)
Speaker: Eve Vaughn
This workshop tackles the rising trend of dark romance. Do you like alpha hole heroes and can't get enough of dark steamy plots? But when do dark romances cross the line or is it possible? If you want to write dark romance and leave the reader wanting more this is the workshop for you.

Directing Readers' Emotions (CRAFT)
Speaker: Alex Lidell
Facts do not direct readers’ emotions and opinions — your presentation of the facts, does. This is why romantic suspense heroes can get away with murder left and right while still being good guys. In this workshop, we will go over techniques to evoke specific emotions toward characters. Need to make sure your reader is rooting for Tristan? This workshop is for you!

Intense & Tight: Pacing the Short Contemporary (CRAFT)
Speaker: Jane Porter
The short contemporary novel isn’t a shorter version of the long contemporary novel. It’s a totally different beast altogether. Readers that love short contemp series, love it because it’s a roller coaster read—fast, intense, tight. The magic of the short contemporary is the pacing.

Mastering POV (CRAFT)
Speaker: Caridad Piñeiro
Point of view is often one of the hardest concepts to master and use effectively in your writing. In this intensive and hands-on Free Write, NY Times and USA Today bestseller Caridad Piñeiro will discuss the three primary types of point of view in fiction and non-fiction so that writers may select the best point of view and/or repair any point of view issues they may have in their work. Attendees will be asked to select a one-page scene in order to revise the scene from another point of view and possibly share it with other attendees. In addition, attendees should select several pages from your work and have ready three different color highlighters in order to review those pages to determine if there are point of view issues.

Putting the Com in Rom-Com: Exploring the Impact of Humor in Romance Novels from Jane Austen to Casey McQuiston (CRAFT)
Speaker: Michael Buzzelli
The sock and the buskin. Melpomene and Thalia. The masks of Tragedy and Comedy. Whatever you call them -- every story is enhanced by the elements of tragedy and comedy. Jane Austen knew they were opposing sides of the same coin. She used irony, biting sarcasm, wit and buffoonery to give her characters and their world a sense of realism. She used humor to create sympathy for them. The modern novelist can enhance their work with wit and humor. Life is an intersection of Comedy and Tragedy. Often, you will hear the funniest stories at the funeral home. We remember people fondly If they made us smile. We tell stories about them with wit and humor. This is how we cope. Humor unites us even in dire circumstances. If you want to write an engaging novel, you must have elements of both. Your book is a reflection of life and you must use the tools of comedy and tragedy to tell your tale. This seminar will help you hone your sense of humor. Find the funny -- in plot and character. Whether you are writing a bodice ripper, a historical romance, or an LGBTQ story set in space, humor can ease your readers into the story and, possibly, catapult you to the bestseller’s list.

Stirring in Subplots (CRAFT)
Speaker: Amanda Arista
You’ve got yourself a thrillsome thriller. A fabulous fantasy. The very best of Westerns. It just needs a little something extra – but what? Fortunately, Amanda is here to help you season your story to perfection... with a dash of subplots! We’ll cover the who, when, why, and how of adding a subplot to your story, integrating it seamlessly with your main storyline and bringing it all to a delicious conclusion. Bring your appetite – this class is a feast!

Stuck in an Inspired Rut? Endless Creative Plot Ideas for Writing Inspirational Romance (CRAFT)
Speaker: Maggie K. Black
Get out of a plot rut and get ready to brainstorm! Inspirational romance is a genre with endless creative possibilities. This practical and interactive workshop is all about finding new, fresh, and fun ideas for writing inspirational romance, that get away from storylines that are overused, cliché or problematic. Authors of all genres are welcome! Whether you’ve written one book or one hundred, authors of any genre will come away with some fun new ideas for developing your next story. Let’s plot together.

Time Is on Your Side: How to Use the Events of Our Lives to Plot Our Stories (CRAFT)
Speaker: Candie Moonshower
Beginning plotter? Here's a tried and true method for plotting your romance novels. Points covered will include but are not limited to learning and practicing the following: 1. Understanding Aristotle's Three-Act Structure. 2. Setting your story within a definitive time period in order to provide a beginning and ending for plotting purposes. 3. Giving your protagonists a set amount of time to achieve their goals or suffer the consequences. 4. Providing the benefit of a ticking clock to your story.

The Two-Hour Plot (or Plotting by Trope to Keep Your Readers Happy) (CRAFT)
Speaker: Grace Goodwin
Are you tired of writing stories that fall flat and leave your readers unsatisfied? Are you really tired of unenthusiastic three-star reviews? Do you want to understand why your readers love one book and are "meh" about the next? Unless you are consciously giving them what they want, every book's success will feel like a spin at the roulette table. Join me in a high-speed, shortened version of my 2 Hour Plot workshop where you will figure out what YOUR readers want and how YOU - and your writing style - can give it to them every single time. Relevant to all genre fiction, and will work whether you are a "pantser" or a "plotter."  Note: This is not a beginner level course. Come with your thinking caps on...

Your Universe, Your Rules ... Or Is It? Don't Be Afraid of the Series Bible! (CRAFT)
Speaker: Grace Goodwin
Are you afraid of a large, multi-layered series? Join me as I share with you the simple system I use to track a nearly 60 books series across multiple families, planets and worlds with almost 200 characters.

Research Track

Detective for a Day: Criminal Investigations/Homicide 101 (RESEARCH)
Speakers: Patricia Gunning and Tee O’Fallon
Are you struggling to give your crime scenes that realistic edge? Here’s your chance to get inside a detective’s head. Join real life law enforcement officers for this interactive workshop as they guide you through an actual homicide investigation that you—the detective—solve. Review evidence. Interview witnesses and victims. Ask questions, get the answers, and find out whodunit!.

Writer’s Life Track

Author Life Audit (WRITER’S LIFE)
Speaker: Tracee L. Garner
No matter where you are in your author career, it's never too late to take an aerial view of All the things. Why not take so time to audit your author career! I know that sounds painful, but if it were to mean more efficiency, more clarity, maybe even more time saving, money saving and better earning strategies can be revealed, plus peace of mind? Sound good now? In this session, I'll quickly overview how to get your goals straight for your publishing career path, offer tools for increased efficiency, canvassing your career, assessing what needs fixing rn (that's right now) and what can wait to help you make a solid, thorough plan, and move it!

The Get Write to It Girls: Writing with Partners (WRITER’S LIFE)
Speakers: Karen Bonnick, writing as KT Bond, and Linda Culbertson
We've all been told that writing is an isolated and isolating enterprise. And to a large extent, that is true. We do write on our own. But we are not meant to exist only in the vacuum of an author and their work. We need the power of interaction with others who share our passion for words and our need to tell stories. This workshop will introduce participants to the concept of writing partners in the age of COVID-19, which is when the writing group, "The Get Write To It Girls", was born.

Making a Plan and Sticking with It: Goal Setting and Accountability (WRITER’S LIFE)
Speaker: Jaycee Jarvis
Do deadlines sneak up on you? Or blow right past? Learn to set manageable goals, break down tasks and achieve your dreams, using simple online tools.

Seduce the Muse: How to Keep the Words Flowing No Matter What (WRITER’S LIFE)
Speaker: Rebekah Fraser
Many writers struggle to get words on the page. In this workshop, you’ll learn: How to take a flexible approach to writing that can help you seduce the muse and increase your word flow; How to use an activity log to gain clarity about which parts of your writing practice are, or are not, working for you; and We’ll practice my unique three-phase approach to help your creativity soar: 1. Creating a writing schedule that works for your life, 2. Eliminating external distractions, 3. Eliminating internal distractions. (Fun fact: this process involves chocolate chips!) This session will include journaling, group sharing, and brainstorming. It suits writers of all experience levels who struggle to meet deadlines due to writer’s block or distracted attention.

Write to Riches: Abundance Mindset for Authors (WRITER’S LIFE)
Speaker: Renee Rose
Are you tired of the grind? Sick of the agony, constant striving, and disappointment of your author career? Are you ready to transform it into something that matches your dreams? Harness the power of abundance mindset to manifest your desires, and attract wealth. As an author, you are well acquainted with attributing a core wound to your main character(s). Just like our heroes and heroines, we each carry core wounds or beliefs that block our success and abundance in our author businesses. Abundance mindset coach Renee Rose will help you identify and release the limiting beliefs that hold you back from attracting the career of your dreams. Bring a journal and pen for freewriting exercises and show up to release the grind, pain and frustration of authoring to unblock your way into success.