Presidents' Day Weekend, February 12-15, 2016 A Weekend For Words, September 25-27, 2015 Settle For Exceptional in Sunriver, OR May 2-3, 2015

LA13 (Irvine) Schedule

  • Click on any individual workshop title to view its summary. For specific instructions on how to navigate the interactive online schedule, or customize and print your own weekend itinerary, please go to the “Tips” tab above, where we also have a video tutorial. All workshops and events will take place at the conference hotel, the Wyndham Irvine, located at 17941 Von Karman Avenue, Irvine, CA 92614.

    Click any given day for its schedule, or scroll down to view the full weekend. A summary of all workshops can be found on the Workshops and Events page.

    • Scroll down to any given day by using your browser’s schroll bar on the right (or touch and drag).
    • Position your mouse pointer over the timetable grids to scroll to the relevant timeframe using the horizontal scroll buttons that will appear.
    • Click on the gray box with the title of the event you’re interested in to expand it and to view more information about the event.
    • In an expanded event box, click the “Add to Program” button to highlight this event on the printable schedule (optional).
    • Access a printable schedule (which also contains any highlighted events) by clicking the tiny, black printer icon at the upper-right of each day’s timetable (optional).
    • Watch the video below for a tutorial that walks you through all of this functionality. Be sure to click the little “gear” icon and set the quality to “720p” HD for the best possible viewing experience.

     


Friday, September 25th, 2015

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REGISTRATION DESK

Walk-in Registration

Walk-In Registration
September 25th 12:00pm - 8:00pm
Registration Open
(space permitting)
You may register in person at the conference, availability permitting. Space is limited, so the best option to ensure you have a spot is to register beforehand using the online form using the Registration link above.

Currently Staffed By:
 
 

WORKSHOP

Read & Critique

Rogue Read & Critique(s)
Sep 25th 9:00pm - Sep 26th 12:00am
Pallamary (All-Genre) / Taylor (All-Genre) / Hooks & Perkins (Sci-Fi/Fantasy)
Writers read material aloud, then receive feedback from the facilitating Workshop Leader, who may also solicit additional feedback from other participants before moving on to the next manuscript. One simple rule for workshop read & critique is that the reading author is not allowed to respond to the critique unless directly asked.


  • Laura Taylor (all-genre)

  • Matthew Pallamary (all-genre)

  • Melanie Hooks & Laura Perkins (sci-fi & fantasy)

 
Pitch Witches: What’s Your Book About?
September 25th 3:40pm - 5:10pm
Marla Miller & Jennifer Silva Redmond
Whether you’re an author-publisher or are querying agents and editors, knowing how to summarize your story in as few words as possible is key to selling it. Bring your best pitch and “Pitch Witches” Marla Miller and Jennifer Silva Redmond will work their “magic” to make it even better.
 
Read, Critique & Live to Write Another Day
September 25th 2:00pm - 3:30pm
Melanie Hooks & Laura Perkins
Staff members and R&C vets Laura Perkins and Melanie Hooks walk you through critique-giving etiquette and their most helpful methods of interpreting ‘craft vs opinion’ notes, all while keeping your ego – and passion for your work – alive and well.
 
 

WORKSHOP

Craft & Execution

Everything You Need to Know about Sex Scenes
September 25th 2:00pm - 3:30pm
Janet F. Williams
Writing sex scenes can be intimidating, even for seasoned authors. Explore the “ins and outs” of good sex writing, from mild to wild, straight or gay or whatever suits the mood, in this workshop. Expect graphic language, humor, and information designed to help authors change wooden scenes into writing readers crave.
 
Getting to the Heart of Women’s Fiction
September 25th 3:40pm - 5:10pm
Janis Thomas
Women’s Lit is a broad genre, but one of the most popular and best-selling forms of fiction today. In this workshop, we will discuss:

  • The definition of women’s fiction

  • The sub-genres of women’s fiction and the commonalities within these sub-genres

  • What makes a women’s fiction novel work?

  • Creating your main character and her journey

  • The opening chapter—grabbing your readers and pulling them in

  • How conflict drives your character and her journey

  • Interweaving plot and character to create a compelling story your readers won’t put down

 
 

WORKSHOP

Craft & Execution

Nonfiction for Newbies: Is it a Book or Not?
September 25th 2:00pm - 3:30pm
Marla Miller
TBA
 
Transformative Narrative: A Shamanic Approach to Story
September 25th 3:40pm - 5:10pm
Matthew J. Pallamary
TBA
 
 

WORKSHOP

StoryCore

To Be Announced
September 25th 2:00pm - 3:30pm
TBA
TBA
 
Defining Genre: What Are You Really Writing?
September 25th 3:40pm - 5:10pm
Jean Jenkins
Writing a genre or a sub-group story but unsure of the word count? Or the body count? Where your story fits? Does it fit at all? This workshop will help you define your genre and offer guidelines. Come armed with questions. This workshop is recommended for both fiction and narrative nonfiction writers.
 
 

WORKSHOP

Business & Alternative

Care and Feeding of a Writer
September 25th 2:00pm - 3:30pm
Claudia Whitsitt
Feel like you’re in this all alone, like no one can understand the ups and downs of being an author? Join this practical session and learn that you are indeed not an island and your issues with rejection, self-deprecation, emotional roller coasters, self-doubt, and loneliness can be overcome and make you a better writer. Chocolate will be served!
 
To Be Announced
September 25th 3:40pm - 5:10pm
TBA
TBA
 
How to Make the Most of the Conference
September 25th 1:00pm - 1:50pm
Wes Albers
The SCWC is unlike most writer events. Whether it’s your first time attending the conference, or you are a veteran SCWCer, learn how to benefit most from the weekend’s workshops and events, as well as what opportunities galore await beyond the posted schedule.
 
 

PANELS & SPECIAL EVENTS

No-host Mixer & Booksigning
September 25th 5:20pm - 7:00pm
Rub elbows with friendly authors. Mingle with your peers.
 
Welcome & Intros
September 25th 7:10pm - 8:00pm
Wes & MSG
 
 

SPECIAL GUEST SPEAKERS

Neal Griffin
September 25th 8:00pm - 8:50pm
Author, Benefit of the Doubt
 
 

 

Saturday, September 26th, 2015

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REGISTRATION DESK

Walk-in Registration

Walk-In Registration
September 26th 7:00am - 6:00pm
Registration Open
(space permitting)
You may register in person at the conference, availability permitting. Space is limited, so the best option to ensure you have a spot is to register beforehand using the online form using the Registration link above.

Currently Staffed By:
 
 

WORKSHOP

Read & Critique

Rogue Read & Critique(s)
Sep 26th 9:00pm - Sep 27th 12:00am
Pallamary (All-Genre) / Taylor (All-Genre) / Hooks & Perkins (Sci-Fi/Fantasy)
Writers read material aloud, then receive feedback from the facilitating Workshop Leader, who may also solicit additional feedback from other participants before moving on to the next manuscript. One simple rule for workshop read & critique is that the reading author is not allowed to respond to the critique unless directly asked.


  • Laura Taylor (all-genre)

  • Matthew Pallamary (all-genre)

  • Melanie Hooks & Laura Perkins (sci-fi & fantasy)

 
Read & Critique (Women's Fiction)
September 26th 2:40pm - 4:10pm
Janis Thomas
Conducted as the workshop leader sees fit, writers read a select amount of their pages aloud, then receive feedback from the facilitator, who may also solicit additional input from other participants. Reading is not mandatory to participate in read & critique. In fact, many writers benefit greatly by simply listening to astute feedback given on material that may reveal similar problematic aspects of execution they may be wrestling with in their own work.

Advance sign-up is not required, nor additional copies of the pages being read. The number of pages read will be determined by the workshop leader, based on how many participants wish to read.

As a matter of courtesy and respect to the other writers, don't "read and run." It's rude.
 
Read & Critique (All-Genre)
September 26th 1:00pm - 2:30pm
TBA
Conducted as the workshop leader sees fit, writers read a select amount of their pages aloud, then receive feedback from the facilitator, who may also solicit additional input from other participants. Reading is not mandatory to participate in read & critique. In fact, many writers benefit greatly by simply listening to astute feedback given on material that may reveal similar problematic aspects of execution they may be wrestling with in their own work.

Advance sign-up is not required, nor additional copies of the pages being read. The number of pages read will be determined by the workshop leader, based on how many participants wish to read.

As a matter of courtesy and respect to the other writers, don't "read and run." It's rude.
 
Best Foot Forward 1: Polishing to Impress 1
September 26th 10:40am - 12:10pm
Jean Jenkins
Limited to 12 participants. Advance registration submission of material required. Freelance editor Jean Jenkins analyzes your story idea, writing style, character motivation, sense of setting, character commitment, and all the other little things that agents and editors look for when reviewing sample pages. >>Details
 
Read & Critique (All-Genre)
September 26th 9:00am - 10:30am
TBA
Conducted as the workshop leader sees fit, writers read a select amount of their pages aloud, then receive feedback from the facilitator, who may also solicit additional input from other participants. Reading is not mandatory to participate in read & critique. In fact, many writers benefit greatly by simply listening to astute feedback given on material that may reveal similar problematic aspects of execution they may be wrestling with in their own work.

Advance sign-up is not required, nor additional copies of the pages being read. The number of pages read will be determined by the workshop leader, based on how many participants wish to read.

As a matter of courtesy and respect to the other writers, don't "read and run." It's rude.

 
 
 

WORKSHOP

Craft & Execution

Make YOUR Sci-Fi/Fantasy World Come to Life – a BYOP (Bring Your Own Pages) Workshop
September 26th 2:40pm - 4:10pm
Laura Perkins
A follow-up to Lane Heymont’s world building session, in this workshop we will apply the world building skills to your own work-in-progress to create a vibrant, believable environment from scratch. Be prepared to leave this session with the necessary tools to bolster the believability of your story's world going forward.
 
Setting: Creating a Believable Sci-Fi/Fantasy World
September 26th 1:00pm - 2:30pm
Lane Heymont
TBA
 
Pantsers: Keep the Creativity Flowing
September 26th 10:40am - 12:10pm
Suzanne Redfearn
Using theme and well-developed characters, learn how to go with the flow and write like a pantster, allowing the story to take you where it will. Exercises will teach you how to allow plot to develop organically, the story dictated by its natural flow, creating unexpected surprise and tension, eliminating writer’s block, and keeping writing fun.
 
Creating Tension Where There is None
September 26th 9:00am - 10:30am
Claudia Whitsitt
Learn the techniques, necessity and benefits of tension and how to avoid the inclination to smooth the waters to make your story one that will keep readers missing sleep, food, and pit stops. Bring part of your current story which lacks tension, in order for us to workshop your selection.
 
 

WORKSHOP

Craft & Execution

How to Polish, Package and Promote Your Memoir
September 26th 2:40pm - 4:10pm
Jennifer Silva Redmond
There are so many memoirs out there—why are some of them wildly popular, while others never get off the ground? Clear, specific, universal themes are key, as well as good writing, but a lot happens after the first draft is complete that determines whether the book will sell. This workshop will help memoirists perfect their story, with practical tips (and ideas for ongoing help) for the many stages of polishing, editing, and packaging your book. Understanding these essential elements will give you a head start, at any stage of your project, and save you time and money. And don’t forget promotion, which can begin in small ways as soon as you begin writing but should definitely start well before publication. Bring your memoir query or pitch—even if it’s still in the concept phase—and get ready to improve your book’s odds of success.
 
Re-Entry: Editing Nonfiction for Dramatic Impact
September 26th 1:00pm - 2:30pm
Stacey O'Brien
TBA
 
Memoir: Structuring Your Story and the Stories Within
September 26th 10:40am - 12:10pm
Stacey O'Brien
TBA
 
How to Craft an Excellent Nonfiction Book Proposal
September 26th 9:00am - 10:30am
Megan Close
Nonfiction books are more popular now than ever before. The majority are sold on proposal, before the manuscript is written. In this workshop, learn how to properly structure a nonfiction book proposal and make it stand out from the hundreds–even thousands–of other submissions that literary agents and editors receive every month.
 
 

WORKSHOP

StoryCore

Finding the Beats of Your Story
September 26th 9:00am - 10:30am
Ara Grigorian

Like a home, the right structure will help a story stand true and withstand time (and criticism). Readers (and movie watchers) have expectations and if you don’t deliver, your story will never get off the ground.


There is a lot of material out there on structure techniques and methodologies. What you use is not the focus of this workshop. The focus is on analyzing stories and identifying key plot points and their timing to show that all good stories have the same “beats” and they typically happen around the same time.


We will utilize both James Scott Bell’s “12 Signpost Scenes” and Blake Snyder’s Save the Cat! beat sheet as guides to decompose/breakdown the stories into the core elements that help move the plot forward efficiently and with vigor. We will analyze one movie completely, along with excerpts from a book and key scenes from other movies, highlight each pivotal beat. As we move along, you will compare your novel’s beats. By the end, you should be able to identify gaps, see why some scenes have worked real well, and what you can do help move your story forward.



 
Anatomy of Romance: New Adult and Beyond
September 26th 10:40am - 12:10pm
Ara Grigorian
Every story has an element of romance. Whether it’s a Romance story (ex. Outlander, Notting Hill), a story with a love sub-plot (ex. Hunger Games, Footloose), a buddy love (ex. Lethal Weapon), or team love (ex. Avengers, Guardians of the Galaxy) — it is the writer’s job to know what the reader expects and how to deliver on those expectations.

In this workshop we will explore:

  • What is Romance? If you plan to have a book that will land in the “Romance” genre (contemporary, sweet, suspense, etc), you need to know what your reader expects

  • What is New Adult? It’s more than just a targeted demographic, but because of the age of the protagonists, the reader has expectations of what the romance will look like and the heat level

  • How the classic three act structure and it’s associated beats change when it comes to Romance and how the pacing changes in New Adult

  • Character development — what makes a good relatable hero and heroine

  • Different levels of sexual tension and how the stakes are higher in New Adult

  • "Happily Ever After” endings and how that expectation is evolving into “Hopeful” endings

 
Plot vs. Character: What’s Driving Your Story?
September 26th 1:00pm - 2:30pm
Janis Thomas
In this workshop, we will discuss plot-driven fiction vs. character driven fiction, the characteristics, merits, pitfalls and genres most associated with each. Is your novel plot or character driven? Is it possible for your story to be both? The emphasis of this workshop will be on the following:

  • Plot development—how to move your story forward

  • Character—how to create a complex, engaging, relatable main character

  • Your story’s setting and world and how they relate to your plot and main character

  • Story arc and conflict

  • Main character’s evolution

  • How to interweave your plot and main character’s journey to create a compelling read

 
Voice: Whose Story is it?
September 26th 2:40pm - 4:10pm
Darlene Quinn
TBA
 
 

WORKSHOP

Business & Alternative

Self-Publishing from A to Z: The Nuts and Bolts of Making Your Own Way
September 26th 9:00am - 10:30am
Gayle Carline
Self-publish or go traditional? If you’re sitting on the fence, this workshop will help you make an informed decision. A primer for the basics of being an author-publisher, in it we’ll start with questions to determine whether your book is a good candidate, then move on to the details of releasing a finished product and finding readers.
 
Authorpreneur: Managing YOUR Publishing Business
September 26th 10:40am - 12:10pm
Darlene Quinn
Author skills and track records are not equal—therefore the path which will produce the best quality for you and your brand must be an informed, individual choice. This workshop will explore the successful business model for you, once your finished—meticulously edited—manuscript is complete
 
Book to Audiobook: Meeting the Needs of Your Audience
September 26th 1:00pm - 2:30pm
Kathy Porter
An audiobook is a perfect way to entice a reluctant reader, non-reader, or short magazine article-type reader, as well as derive additional income. This workshop will address the audiobook production process, distribution options, marketing and more.
 
Indie Excellence: Glocalization and the Key to Survival
September 26th 2:40pm - 4:10pm
Taylor
The eBook market is a global playground that must be thought of as local. Are you really going to limit yourself to Amazon and Kindle? How many eBookstores do you think you can access as an Independent Author-Publisher? How does more than 300 sound to you? Ever been curious about how to access the Chinese digital book market?

Two issues loom large on the Independent Author Publisher horizon once a writer produces a beautifully written, skillfully edited book and makes it available for purchase. Those issues are diversification and discoverability.

This Indie Excellence workshop is designed for:

  1. Writers who believe that having all of their eggs in one basket is a poor business model;

  2. Writers who wish to globally expand their readership and gain royalty income from a wide range of sources.


There really is a huge new world out there beyond the confines of Amazon and Kindle. Come and explore it!
 
 

SPECIAL GUEST SPEAKERS

Roseanne Montillo
September 26th 8:00am - 8:50am
Author, The Wilderness of Ruin
 
Aline Ohanesian
September 26th 8:00pm - 8:50pm
Author, Orhan’s Inheritance
 
 

PANELS & SPECIAL EVENTS

Lunch
September 26th 12:10pm - 1:00pm
On Your Own
Placate Your Palate. Dine at the hotel, or at a nearby eatery.
 
State of the Agent Panel
September 26th 4:20pm - 5:30pm
Discussion with attending agents: Marisa Iozzi Corvisiero, Samantha Bremekamp, Megan Close, Lane Heymont, Jill Marr, Sara Sciuto, TBA
 
SCWC*LA Banquet
September 26th 6:40pm - 8:00pm
Yum!
 
 

ONE-ON-ONE CONSULTS

Advance Submissions
September 26th 9:00am - 10:30am
Appointments
 
Advance Submissions
September 26th 10:40am - 12:10pm
Appointments
 
Advance Submissions
September 26th 1:00pm - 2:30pm
Appointments
 
Advance Submissions
September 26th 2:40pm - 4:10pm
Appointments
 
 

 

Sunday, September 27th, 2015

  • 7:00am
  • 8:00am
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  • 10:00am
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  • 1:00pm
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  • 11:30am
  • 12:00pm
  • 12:30pm
  • 1:00pm
  • 1:30pm
  • 2:00pm
  • 2:30pm
 

REGISTRATION DESK

Walk-in Registration

Walk-In Registration
September 27th 8:30am - 12:00pm
Registration Open
(space permitting)
You may register in person at the conference, availability permitting. Space is limited, so the best option to ensure you have a spot is to register beforehand using the online form using the Registration link above.

Currently Staffed By:
 
 

WORKSHOP

Read & Critique

Read & Critique (All-Genre)
September 27th 9:00am - 10:30am
TBA
Conducted as the workshop leader sees fit, writers read a select amount of their pages aloud, then receive feedback from the facilitator, who may also solicit additional input from other participants. Reading is not mandatory to participate in read & critique. In fact, many writers benefit greatly by simply listening to astute feedback given on material that may reveal similar problematic aspects of execution they may be wrestling with in their own work.

Advance sign-up is not required, nor additional copies of the pages being read. The number of pages read will be determined by the workshop leader, based on how many participants wish to read.

As a matter of courtesy and respect to the other writers, don't "read and run." It's rude.
 
Best Foot Forward 2: Polishing to Impress 2
September 27th 10:40am - 12:10pm
Jean Jenkins
Limited to 12 participants. Advance registration submission of material required. Freelance editor Jean Jenkins analyzes your story idea, writing style, character motivation, sense of setting, character commitment, and all the other little things that agents and editors look for when reviewing sample pages. >>Details
 
 

WORKSHOP

Craft & Execution

Making Every Line Count: Dialogue in Short Stories
September 27th 10:40am - 12:10pm
Kristin FitzPatrick
In this workshop, we will isolate dialogue in our stories-in-progress and analyze the ways that each line helps to build tension, drive the story forward, and more. We will discuss ways to reveal information inside and outside of dialogue and how to make each character’s voice sound distinct.
 
Writing Razor Sharp Description in Short Stories
September 27th 9:00am - 10:30am
Kristin FitzPatrick
Short stories have to say more with less, so they often rely on short, powerful descriptions to reveal what’s really going on under the surface. In this workshop, we will look at stories-in-progress and identify key items (people, places, objects, animals, etc.) that need to carry meaning for each story.
 
 

WORKSHOP

Craft & Execution

To Be Announced
September 27th 10:40am - 12:10pm
TBA
TBA
 
Historical Nonfiction (TBA)
September 27th 9:00am - 10:30am
Roseanne Montillo
TBA
 
 

WORKSHOP

StoryCore

Promises to Keep: Rewarding Your Reader
September 27th 9:00am - 10:30am
Jean Jenkins
Everyone, from acquisition editors to the reading public, picks up your pages with certain expectations. If you disappoint a reader, your manuscript gets rejected, or you miss a sale. This workshop offers pointers on how to anticipate your promises to the reader, how to keep those promises, and meet reader expectations.

Subjects to be covered include:

  • How readers’ unstated expectations change with genre

  • How much do your readers need to know—and when do they need to know it?

  • Writing 3-D people, not cardboard characters or caricatures

  • How motivation builds character, and character builds story promises

  • The harder the character struggle, the bigger the promise

  • What strengthens or weakens a plot

  • How to delay outcome without frustrating the reader

  • Delivering a satisfying finish

 
Backstory: Employing Expository like a Screenwriter
September 27th 10:40am - 12:10pm
Jennifer Silva Redmond
One of the biggest challenges a writer faces is how and when to give readers information about what came before page one, and how to fill in readers on what happens off the page as the plot evolves. Clunky, obvious, “on the nose” expository is the bane of agents and editors—not to mention readers—and one of the chief reasons that manuscripts and books get put down, never to be picked up again. Readers want (and need) to learn about characters and situations as they go along, much as we learn about people and situations in real life. In this workshop you’ll learn how to integrate the backstory into your story by employing “character reveals,” “visual expository,” and some other screenwriting tricks. Bring the first few pages of your book manuscript, or a short story, essay or article, and be prepared to do some “hands-on” editing.
 
 

WORKSHOP

Business & Alternative

Query Letter Tricks that Work
September 27th 10:40am - 12:10pm
Maralys Wills
TBA
 
To Be Announced
September 27th 9:00am - 10:30am
TBA
TBA
 
 

SPECIAL GUEST SPEAKERS

To Be Announced
September 27th 12:20pm - 1:00pm
TBA
 
 

PANELS & SPECIAL EVENTS

SCWC Awards and Farewell
September 27th 1:00pm - 1:30pm
Currently Staffed By:
 
 

ONE-ON-ONE CONSULTATS

Advance Submission Critique

Advance Submissions
September 27th 9:00am - 10:30am
Appointments
 
Advance Submissions
September 27th 10:40am - 12:10pm
Appointments
 
 

 

Please note that this is the working schedule and is subject to change without notice.