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Flash Draft Your Book in a Week

Genre: Writing
Location: MISA West (Santa Fe)

Flash Draft Your Book in a Week

Spaces Available

Instructor: Allison K Williams

About This Workshop

Got a great idea for a novel? A memoir you want to write and share? Most of a manuscript…that isn’t quite there? In one week, you’ll plan and structure your novel or memoir, write the five most important scenes, and take home a work plan to finish faster.

This workshop is suitable for memoirists and novelists at all levels—the exercises will be tailored to each individual’s work and needs. Allison works with literary and commercial fiction and nonfiction, and is familiar with the conventions of most genres. She’s helped writers sell to Big Five and literary publishers, hit the NYT Bestseller list, and sign multi-book deals.

Whether you’re revising or writing from scratch, you’ll create a powerful plot with engaging characters and a strong hook that pulls in agents, publishers and readers. You’ll discover how to find and polish your unique narrative voice, and when to honor or break the conventions of your genre. How to craft great scenes with tension and mystery, and write beautiful beginnings and brilliant endings for scenes, chapters and whole book. And you’ll learn your own best work methods for finishing the book after the retreat.

Each day, we’ll work on writing craft and apply it directly to your book. No prompts or freewriting—this is all about getting your story on the page. Allison will “live-edit” pages to illuminate your work and show the next steps; you’ll write those next steps right away.

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:
– Turning points: writing the most important scenes for your story arc
– Using a dramatic structure to make plotting easier (and five structures to choose from!)
– Writing a powerful opening that starts your story in the right place
– But/Because/Therefore: how writing a synopsis NOW keeps your draft moving
– Examining your main antagonist’s true motivation (everyone’s the hero of their own story!)
– Your story’s cultural relevance, and exactly who needs your words
– Finding your true voice on the page
– Structuring a “quiet” memoir or literary fiction where the action is largely internal
– Simple craft techniques to improve your writing while you draft (practice makes perfect!)
– Creating mystery and tension to keep the reader turning pages
– Discovering how much worldbuilding, backstory or family history to keep in the next draft—and the easiest way to make sure your story starts in the right place.
– Identifying and embracing your own writing process to set deadlines and finish your book

Who should attend this retreat:
– Novelists with an idea who need a plan
– Memoirists with with a powerful story who want to know how to tell it
– Writers whose draft has “gotten away from them” and needs shape and focus
– Writers working on a second book…who’d like the process to move faster this time!
– Book coaches and editors who want a greater understanding of dramatic structure and scene- and sentence-craft.
– Creative Writing students and MFA graduates needing guidance and support through a new project
– 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”
– Writers who want to publish traditionally, independently, or hybrid

Workshop Details

Dates:03/11/2024 to 03/15/2024
Level:All Levels
Materials List: Download




Tuition: $0

Lodging and Meal Options: $0

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

Arrival Date: 03/11/2024

Departure Date: 03/15/2024

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