NOTE: GET MINI WORKSHOP PLUS THE REST OF THE DAY for only $110! The Mini Workshops at Writing and Illustrating for Young Readers, 2015, offer a small critique-group setting for writers and illustrators with the same intense, hands-on experience as the week-long morning workshop, but with a different teacher, different topic, every morning for four hours. Sign up for one day or all five!

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MONDAY, June 15th, 8:30-12:30

Illustration Class

with Guy Francis

This workshop will cover everything you need to know about illustrating picture books from design basics to advanced tips and techniques. We will cover the best ways tell and layout a story through thumbnails, roughs, sketches and final artwork and will learn how to take your story from an idea to a dummy book and to publication. Whatever your skill level this will be a fun hands-on experience where you can get the tools and answers you need to take your own book ideas one step closer to becoming a reality. Class size: 20

TUESDAY, June 16th, 8:30-12:30

Title Your Life: Writing Memoir for Young Readers

with Emily Wing Smith

We’ll do more than title our lives in this class.  The world of memoir is gaining popularity–for all ages. Our class will concentrate on how to best tell our own stories, and how to be creative while telling the truth. Class size: 20

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WEDNESDAY, June 17th, 8:30-12:30

Writing Romance in a YA Novel

with Sarah M. Eden

Class Description: No matter what genre you write, there’s a good chance your plot contains some type of romance. Every well-crafted romantic plot line is built on three essential elements, without which the love story falls flat. There is a science to the art of crafting a compelling, emotionally charged, and satisfying romance that hits these three crucial notes.

This class covers:
  • the three essential elements of romance
  • the crucial moments that cannot be skipped over or left out of any romantic plot line
  • how these elements influence and shape the larger plot arc
  • the characteristics needed to craft a romance your YA readers will fall in love with
This hands-on, interactive workshop offers attendees the opportunity to practice the concepts taught so they will leave fully equipped to apply what they’ve learned in their own writing. Class size: 20

THURSDAY, June 18th, 8:30-12:30

Writing the Mystery Novel

with Matt Kirby

Whodunit is the Least Interesting Question: In this presentation, Matt will talk about writing in the Mystery genre, drawing from what he learned writing Icefall, which won the Edgar Award (given by the Mystery Writers of America). Mysteries are about more than clues, suspects, and a detective who sorts them all out. Rather, mysteries speak to our deep need for order and meaning. Unlike the game, the questions of who, and where, and with what weapon are not nearly as interesting as why. Matt will provide attendees with some concrete strategies for taking their mysteries to the next level, and help those writing in other genres to add a little mystery to their stories. Class size: 20

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FRIDAY, June 19th, 8:30-12:30

Writing the Series

with Cheri Pray Earl

Writing the Series:

The objective of the series workshop, besides to have fun and laugh a lot, is to learn how to write a series for children. The End. Writing a series is different in several ways from writing a single novel, so we’ll spend the four hours learning those differences. But we’ll also learn how to write well–which is why we’ll start our class online a month before the conference begins. Yes, this workshop is for over achievers (you know who you are). Below is a short list of my expectations for the class and for you.

1. The month before the conference begins you’ll work on assignments that I post for you on our class blog.  One assignment will be to finish your first chapter and post it for all class members to read and comment on. FYI: Our blog is private, meaning it is restricted to our class members only.
2. On the day of the class, you’ll bring hard copies (one for everyone in the class) of (1) your series arc and the arc for your first book in the series (you’ll draw these on the wipe board as well); (2) the plot summary for your series and for the first book in the series; (3) a list of current, published children’s series that work and a brief explanation of why you think they work. You’ll need to read read read . . .
3. During class, we’ll discuss The Secrets of writing a series, how to plot character-driven stories (my favorite), and learn More Secrets of writing well. We’ll also workshop your arcs and plot summaries and revisit your first chapters. *I may also ask you to bring copies of a few pages from your revised first chapter. TBA.
Bring a laptop or tablet so you can see assignments on the blog and write STUFF in class.

Class size: 20

There will be no refunds after April 30th. If you cancel before this date, you will receive a full refund, minus a 20% administration fee.