Genre Fiction Workshops, Panels and Events
To register for the full conference and enroll in a workshop or critical seminar, click on the button below. All keynote talks, panels, one-day workshops, readings and special events are included in general registration, as is attendance at the Poetry Symposium each afternoon. All three-day Workshops and three-day Critical Seminars require an additional fee of $250.
GENRE FICTION PANELS
Genre Fiction Panel #1: "Three SFWA Presidents All in a Row." Russell Davis, Moderator, with Robin Wayne Bailey and James Gunn.
This panel features three past presidents of the Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) on stage to answer your questions about SFWA (celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, with close to 2000 members worldwide), science fiction and fantasy publishing past, present and future, and speculative fiction writing in general.
Thursday, July 21, 8:30 - 10:00 am, Taylor Hall 200
To see full biographies of the panelists, click each speaker's name below:
GENRE FICTION ONE-DAY WORKSHOPS
Genre Fiction Workshop #1: "Money Flows Towards the Writer." Instructor: Stacia Deutsch
Thursday, July 21, 2:00 - 4:00, Taylor Hall 229
There are many roads to becoming a published author and many more paths to making a living with words. We will explore the multitude of places a writer can work. From magazines, to write-for-hire, to freelance, to blogs - you can get paid to write. It might not be a lot, or it might be more than your wildest dreams, but as Russell Davis says, "Money flows towards the writer." Let's look at all the ways to make that happen!
Genre Fiction Workshop #2: "The Art of Flash Fiction." Instructor: Michaela Roessner
Saturday, July 23, 2:00 - 4:00, Kelly Hall 128
Everybody understands the concept that Flash Fiction is writing that can be read in a flash. But what is it really? And why is it so hot these days? Learn what defines it including its various forms, how to write it, and how to utilize its terrific advantages for getting a leg up in becoming a published writer and entering your chosen genre or genres. Bring paper and a pen or pencil, or your laptop. This presentation will include a couple of in-house writing exercises.
Genre Fiction Workshop #3: "Beyond the Manic Pixie Dream Girl and the Warrior Princess: Creating Complex Female Characters." Instructor: Candace Nadon
Sunday, July 24, 8:30 -10:00 am, Taylor Hall 200
Pop culture is populated with a wider range of female characters than ever before. These characters are usually upheld as strong, independent, sometimes fierce, and always complex, “true” heroes for a technological age. However, most of these characters have not shattered cultural stereotypes about women, broadening how we think of women in fictional narrative, but are merely repackaged traditional representations of women that are decidedly not complex. As writers, we want to create compelling, complex and specifically rendered characters, regardless gender or genre. At the same time, we know archetypal characters deeply resonate with readers, but how do we know if we are perpetuating stereotypes instead of mining archetypes? In this seminar, we’ll discuss the difference between archetype and stereotype and why it matters in fiction, tying it to contemporary representations of women. Then, we’ll discuss how to balance archetype and specificity when developing female characters, and you’ll have the opportunity to develop your own.
Genre Fiction Workshop #4: "The Seven Habits of the Highly Effective Writer." Instructor: Russell Davis
Sunday, July 24, 2:00 - 4:00, Taylor Hall 204
In this ninety minute talk, bestselling author and editor Russell Davis will offer both new and experienced writers a blueprint for being more effective, and ultimately, more successful: seven different habits that can absolutely improve your approach to writing, being productive, and selling more of your work. There will be time for questions and answers about writing and the publishing business at the end.
GENRE FICTION THREE-DAY WORKSHOP
All three-day workshops meet Thursday, Saturday and Sunday, 7/21, 7/23 and 7/24, from 10:15 - 12:15. Cost: $250 in addition to registration.
Genre Fiction Three-Day Workshop: "Is Your Novel Ready to Market?" Instructors: Robin Wayne Bailey, Russell Davis, James Gunn
Kelly Hall 128
In this three day workshop, Russell Davis, Robin Wayne Bailey, and James Gunn - all past Presidents of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America - will help identify common issues with already completed novel-length works that are being prepared to go to market. On Day 1, Russell Davis will tackle the problems often found in plot and conflict. On Day 2, Robin Wayne Bailey will address character and dialogue. And on Day 3, James Gunn will talk about novel proposals and what's important to include that will help your work find a home. There will be writing exercises, and students are encouraged to use completed works or works in progress for the three day session.
GENRE FICTION THREE-DAY CRITICAL SEMINAR
All three-day Critical Seminars meet Thursday, Saturday and Sunday, 7/21, 7/23 and 7/24, from 10:15 - 12:15. Cost: $250 in addition to registration.
Genre Fiction Critical Seminar: "The Western Mystery: Just Folks." Leader: Clay Reynolds
Taylor Hall 226
The West is a huge and enigmatic land, one that is, as one nineteenth century historian put it, “full of nothing at all.” Of course, this isn’t true. The West is full of astonishing and amazing people, events, and places, much of which is hidden in plain sight, much of which is shrouded only by the constancy of change and the mutability of time. In other words, it’s full of the mystery of the commonplace. To a large extent, writing fiction is all about unraveling such mysteries, from revealing them as they offer themselves, finding them in the lives of ordinary folks, and the American West is thus a perfect setting for it. In this seminar we will explore the nature of finding such mysteries in what would appear at first glance to be the ordinary, the usual, even the mundane, and discovering through story, character, and theme the intriguing tales behind the obvious. Special importance will be given to considering the traditional mysteries of Western lore—legendary figures, lost towns, missing people, unsolved crimes—but more emphasis will be given to pulling the people of the West into focus, into developing character, dialogue, story, and, of course, setting as elemental parts of the American West. We will discuss the works of Elmore Leonard, as well as western crime and mystery writers such as Tony Hillerman, Loren D. Estleman, Cormac McCarthy, John Nichols, and others. Attention will be paid to the genesis of the Western novel and its traditional evolution. Overall, though, our goal will be to discover the mystery of fiction itself, an analysis of what makes a story work well, and why that at the heart of every great piece of writing is a mystery. We will be considering the fundamental elements of fiction writing and how they can be adapted or shaped to the crime and mystery categories. Students will be asked to participate in exercises that will illustrate the points of the discussion. Limited to 10 participants.