Friday, April 13, 2012

Get Lit! & Online Classes: Happenings and Opportunities

Get Lit! Festival 2012 continues its schedule with a number of authors and speakers, such as Jess Walter presenting his latest novel, Beautiful Ruins, and Kim Barnes discussing her latest novel, In the Kingdom of Men. The schedule of remaining events are shown on the Events page of this blog, as well as a link to the Get Lit! site.

Also, for those writers interested in online writing classes, below is the schedule for a couple of interesting-looking classes I received in my inbox last week from I took a travel writing class through them a few years ago and enjoyed the lessons and valuable feedback.

"Make 'em Laugh, Make 'em Cry, Make 'em Wait"
by Patricia Kay
May 1-25, 2012
$30 at

Great books are about more than good plotting, likable characters, lots of conflict, and skillful writing. For a book to really grab a reader, the author must make an emotional connection with that reader. Otherwise, even though the reader may enjoy the book, it won't be one he'll remember. It won't be one he'll talk about. And it won't be one he'll recommend to others. In this class, you'll learn various dramatic techniques that will help you stir your reader's feelings and make him feel he has an emotional stake in the story's outcome.

* Making your reader care: the dramatic journey
* Crafting powerful scenes that accomplish what you envision
* How sequels help you involve your reader
* Psychic distance: one of your most powerful tools
* Suspense and tension on every page
* Various emotional responses and ways to elicit them
* Building your own emotional palette

Patricia Kay is the USA Today bestselling author of more than 50 novels of romance and women's fiction. An acclaimed teacher, she formerly taught writing classes at the University of Houston and has given workshops all over the country. She now limits her teaching to online classes. You can learn more about her on her website at

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"Fearless Writing"
by Laura Baker
May 1-31, 2012
$30 at

It all began with Fearless Writing. Writers start with freedom from doubts and just a passion for story. Then all too soon you struggle to overcome weaknesses in your storytelling. But what if the very thing you're muscling into submission is what would empower you? This is the premise of Fearless Writing -- that what you call flaws are what make your stories unique. Packed with exercises and feedback from  award-winning author Laura Baker, this class taps your own dramatic powers, then puts those powers to work, transforming your story concept into a Story Vision empowered with your own strengths.

* Find the story you need to write
* Define your emotional and thematic motivators
* Through writing craft, focus the three underpinnings of great storytelling
* Create your own defining Storytelling Paragraph
* Turn ideas into a story using the Story Box process
* Learn the power of premise
* Bonus special exercise for those with a completed manuscript

With Laura's coaching, many unpublished writers are now published, and the techniques she teaches are used by NY Times bestselling authors. One author said, "Light bulb moments are so common when I'm learning at your side that I spend most of my time in this wild state of enlightenment and excitement. Just incredible." For more information about Laura's coaching classes and critiquing visit her website:



Jennifer Lamont Leo said...

Thanks, Nancy. Get Lit always sounds so intriguing. And that "Make 'em Laugh" class sounds like exactly what my mss needs right now.

Kathy Cooney Dobbs said...

Oh! To be a fearless writer!