Writing from the Ashes

Colorado Springs, Colorado
Thursday, April 18, 2013
The 21st Annual PPWC
Registration opens November 15th, 2012

Thursday Morning Workshops*

Sell Your Book, Not Your Soul – A Sales and Marketing Bootcamp
Presented By: Deb Courtney, Susan Mitchell, Aaron Ritchey

In this multi-layered workshop, we’ll start with planning for your success and what to do when you are pre-published. Crafting a marketing plan is as important as putting your plan in motion when your new book hits the stores, whether brick and mortar or the virtual bookshelves. Then it’s all about keeping “Top of Mind” awareness. Each of our experts will bring their own unique angle to the conversation, from the newbie author, to the savvy publicist, to the small press editor. The workshop will also include interactive mock interviews, examples on how to hand sell, and media story pitches that will make your press kit shine!

Truth and Consequences: The Pleasures and Perils of Writing Memoir, Personal Essay and Creative Nonfiction
Presented By: Kathryn Eastburn

We'll cover the limitations of memory, re-creating scenes, ethical considerations, researching, etc. Learn the concepts behind turning personal experiences into riveting stories with universal themes.

Writing for Today's YA and MG Market
Presenter: Kate Testerman

An overview of the current market for YA and MG fiction, touching on top titles, authors, and trends, including aid from  literary agent Kate Testerman, specializing in the market on querying.

Pitch Perfect
Presented By: Bonnie Hagan, Chris Mandeville & PPW Staff

What do you say when you pitch your book to an agent or editor, or when an author you admire asks "what are you writing?" What should you not say? What kinds of questions should you be prepared to answer? Do "elevator pitches" really happen? In this interactive workshop you'll learn all the ins and outs of pitching your manuscript, be able to ask questions of seasoned pitchers, get hands-on practice honing your "logline," and see pitching demonstrated live. In addition, you'll have the opportunity to practice your own pitch in a small group and receive immediate feedback from experienced PPW staff.

Thursday Afternoon Workshops*

Writing and Marketing Historical Fiction
Presented By: David Liss

Writing historical fiction has its own set of rewards, and its own dangers. In this seminar, we will explore the specific traps of this brand of novel, how to avoid them, and how to make historical fiction work for you. Specific topics will include research methods, effective use of research (or, how not to overwhelm your reader with detail), world-building, how to render plausible historical characters, and how to make your specific area of interest, no matter how arcane, marketable. Participants will have the opportunity to share and brainstorm specific trouble spots. If you are considering bringing a historical to the market, you won’t want to miss this practical, craft-based seminar.

The Four P’s of Nonfiction
Presented By: Matt Frederick

This workshop will help you assess the status of your nonfiction work and identify the next steps you need to take to improve your chances of publication. You will read aloud a brief statement or description of your work—a pitch, synopsis, first page, or similarly informative piece of 250 words or less. The instructor and class participants will assess your project in terms of the Four P’s: Platform (can you convince a publisher you have the expertise, reach, or name recognition to attract an audience of readers?); Prose (are your writing and narrative skills suited to your project?); Proposal (what is this peculiar document required by agents and publishers for nonfiction projects, and what makes it most effective?); and Purpose (is the concept or format you have chosen for your book appropriate to the needs of readers as well as your own goals?). From there, the instructor will guide you as you work on your weaker area(s). Bring to the session the first chapter of your manuscript, a chapter outline, and any related documents you have been working on (query, proposal, etc.).

The Query Lab
Presented By: Sorche Fairbank

Most agencies receive between one and three hundred query letters each week, yet respond positively to a very select few. Do you know the secrets to writing a winning query? Have you ever wondered if there are fonts agents intensely dislike? Is any one day/week/month better to send your query? What commonly gets a letter rejected before it’s read all the way through? Join agent Sorche Fairbank for lessons on the basics of a powerful query, review of a laundry list of query Dos and Don’ts, and open Q&A.  Bring two copies of your single-page query letter to be edited on the spot!

Lie Like You Mean It
Presented By: Stephen Graham Jones

What makes a story 'real?' Why can we always distinguish a verifiable story from one somebody's making up as they go? Or, can we? In here we'll talk about crossing that line so much that it smears, and we can't tell which is what, so that, hopefully, all that finally matters is the power of the story.

*Please note: Workshop titles, locations, and faculty are all subject to change without notice. PPW will do its best to keep you informed, but we can not guarantee there won't be changes due to unforeseen circumstances. Thank you for you cooperation and patience.


Contact Information

  • Registrar, PPWC 2013

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