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Second Draft: Your Path to Powerful, Publishable Writing

Genre: Writing
Location: Madeline Island

Second Draft: Your Path to Powerful, Publishable Writing

Spaces Available

Instructor: Allison K Williams

About This Workshop

You’ve got a beautiful, wild and free first draft…now what? Maybe you need more words—or fewer—but which ones, and where? Or you’ve somehow lost your momentum before finishing, and don’t have a clear plan to restart. You know it takes more than shifting some scenes and checking the spelling to create a finished novel, memoir or essay that hooks agents, sells to publishers and attracts readers. But how do you stride through the next draft with a clear map…and where should you be going?

This week, you’ll learn how to revise a first/early draft into a structured, powerful story with engaging characters and a strong hook. You’ll discover how to find and polish your unique narrative voice, while honoring the conventions of your genre. Your second (or next!) draft process will be smoother and stronger, and your work much closer to publication-ready.

Each day, we’ll work on writing craft and apply it directly to our work-in-progress. Allison will “live-edit” pages to illuminate your work and show the next steps. We’ll also touch on different publishing paths, and participants will have a personal consultation during the week to discuss their writing and publishing goals.

This retreat will cover:
– How to let the writing you have guide you to the writing you need to do.
– Finding your true voice as a writer.
– The difference between story, plot and structure, and how each guides your sequence of events.
– Moving from sentence to scene to story to create the reader’s experience.
– Starting your novel or memoir with an engaging hook in the very first pages (and the promise a prologue must make).
– How to know exactly what events belong in your book…and what to let go.
– The difference between dramatic situation (ho-hum) and dramatic action (wow!)
– Discovering how much worldbuilding, backstory, and family history to keep in the next draft—and the easiest way to make sure your story starts in the right place.
– How all books are mysteries (even memoirs!) and using mystery to create tension in memoir, genre fiction and literary fiction.

Who should attend this retreat:
– Writers stuck midway in a draft and unsure how to move forward
– Writers experiencing rejection for their manuscripts or essays and wondering what the “secret” is to getting read.
– Novelists facing a second draft without the creative excitement of the first draft.
– Memoirists in anything from a first to a fifth draft who know their manuscript “isn’t quite done…” but who don’t know what “done” will look like.
– Creative writing students and graduates of MFA programs who want to expand their writing craft with conscious practice.
– “Plotters” who want to build on the structure they have with more freedom and creativity, and “Pantsers” who need to anchor and focus their storyline.
– Writers hearing feedback that their book lacks tension, needs a stronger hook, or the story is “hard to follow” or “didn’t grab the reader.”

Workshop Details

Dates:07/31/2023 to 08/04/2023
Level:All Levels
Materials List: Download




Tuition: $0

Lodging and Meal Options: $0

Total: $0 (plus tax) - Just $25% Minimum Deposit Required

Arrival Date: 07/31/2023

Departure Date: 08/04/2023

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