SPRING 2018 SEMINARS

Our industry and craft-focused seminars are one time, three hour classes. At Writing Workshops Dallas, we care about the craft of writing as much as we care about the business of writing. We know how hard won your work is. Our mission is to get your work in shape and out into the world so that it can find a readership beyond the workshop table or your critique group. We're proud of our talented instructors, all widely published and experts in their field, who have a strong desire to help writers navigate the many paths to seeing their work into the world, from surviving the first draft, to revising, and eventually publishing. We offer a rotating schedule of seminars and are always adding new topics. If you would like to suggest a seminar topic, feel free to use the Contact Page to let us know what you'd like to see on the schedule.

Before completing your purchase, you must first receive enrollment confirmation using the Register button below each seminar description to ensure there is still room in the class. All returning students receive a discount.

SEMINARS

Writing Out of the Wilderness: A Publication Seminar

Survive Rejection, Forge a Path to Publication, & Make Yourself Findable

Sunday, February 25, 2018 - 3:00PM -5:30PM

Blake Kimzey, Director & Founder of Writing Workshops Dallas, will show you the resources and strategies you need to put your work out in the world with purpose. Named one of D Magazine's Artists to Learn From in 2018, he will discuss the mountain of rejection any writer will face on their way to publication and how to overcome the odds and forge a path to publication. There is a saying that writing is rejection. That's true: everyone has been rejected many times. But over time those form rejections should turn into personal rejections and eventually become acceptances. Do you feel stuck in your journey to publication? If so, let us help! If you're submitting your work for publication you know that only the top 1 - 2% of all submissions are accepted by literary journals and literary agents. Those are long odds, and we want to help you improve them. With so many writers vying for publication you need to make sure your work has received the attention it needs before you spend hours researching markets, writing cover letters, and staring at your e-mail hoping to receive an acceptance from an editor or offer of representation from an agent. Blake will also discuss building a memorable character and believable setting, and how to use narrative inventory to architect your story. Topics will include:

  • Strategies for submitting work to literary journals and contests
  • Crafting a smart cover letter
  • Attending conferences/residencies
  • Taking charge of your professional development
  • How to make yourself findable online to editors and agents
  • How to engage with and become part of the online literary community

Fee: $55 or $45 for former/current students | Live Stream Available!

  • Blake Kimzey, Presenter
  • Sunday, February 25, 2018 - 3:00PM to 5:30PM
  • Seminar meets at The Foundry Club at Mockingbird Station: 5307 E. Mockingbird Ln / Dallas, TX / 75206
  • Live Stream is available for students who live outside of Dallas. Just let us know when you register.

Before completing your purchase, you must first receive enrollment confirmation using the Register button below.

A Writer’s Blueprint for The Social Media Game

Sunday, March 4, 2018 - 3:00PM TO 6:00PM

For writers in the digital age, establishing a social media presence is a must. Having a strong social media presence not only builds your audience but can also connect you to agents and publishers.  But for many writers, navigating social media effectively can be overwhelming.  Questions quickly arise: Which social media platform is the best for writers? What type of content should I post? How do I grow my audience? I like the idea of Twitter but don’t know how to use it the right way...what can I do? And lastly, can I REALLY land an agent from a social media account? In this seminar, you’ll not only get answers to all the questions above—you’ll also receive actionable tips on how to establish a social media presence that will move your writing career forward in 2018!

Fee: $55 or $45 for former/current students | Live Stream Available!

  • Whitney Davis, Presenter
  • Sunday, March 4, 2018 - 3:00PM to 6:00PM
  • Seminar meets at The Foundry Club at Mockingbird Station: 5307 E. Mockingbird Ln / Dallas, TX / 75206
  • Live Stream is available for students who live outside of Dallas. Just let us know when you register.

Before completing your purchase, you must first receive enrollment confirmation using the Register button below.

Writing Characters People Get Attached To

Sunday, March 11, 2018 - 4:00PM TO 7:00PM

Why do certain characters stick with you long after you’ve finished a book? What makes a character memorable? We've all read books that seem technically perfect with clean plotting and tight prose, yet the characters themselves are forgettable. What makes a dynamic character? How do you write a character that compels the reader to keep reading? We'll discuss the importance of early emotional attachment to your protagonist, and how to maintain that attachment throughout a novel-length work. This interactive seminar will also offer answers to:

  • What is the difference between a static and a dynamic character?
  • How do I create a transformative character arc?
  • Why is it important for a character to have agency?
  • How do I give a character agency?
  • Am I starting the story in the right place for this character to be appealing?
  • How do I introduce a character’s backstory in a way that feels organic?
  • How can a character show different sides when interacting with others?
  • How does a character’s goal relate to attachment?
  • How do I introduce flawed characters in a way that the reader still attaches to them?

Instructor Amber Royer's debut Science Fiction novel, Free Chocolate (June 2018), was named one of Barnes & Noble SFF Blog’s 25 Debuts to Watch for in 2018!

Fee: $55 or $45 for former/current students | Live Stream Available!

  • Amber Royer, Presenter
  • Sunday, March 11, 2018 - 4:00PM to 7:00PM
  • Seminar meets at The Foundry Club at Mockingbird Station: 5307 E. Mockingbird Ln / Dallas, TX / 75206
  • Live Stream is available for students who live outside of Dallas. Just let us know when you register.

Before completing your purchase, you must first receive enrollment confirmation using the Register button below.

Grant Writing Fundamentals

Sunday, March 25, 2018 - 3:00PM TO 6:00PM

This seminar will introduce you to the basics of grant writing, and the essential components of a good argument for funding. We’ll cover grant structure and content, rhetorical technique, and practical strategies for engaging the types of audiences you may encounter when attempting to raise money for yourself or your organization. This seminar is recommended both for novice grant writers and those who would like to refresh their skills with an afternoon of discussion and situational writing practice.  We’ll explore both the craft and purpose of this form of persuasive writing, and also discuss how grant narratives read from the perspective of the gatekeepers, program officers, grant reviewers, board members, and others who have a stake in considering your funding request. You are welcome to bring in a proposal you are working on or examples of grant guidelines if you’d like to use them as writing prompts, but no prior grant writing experience is required or expected.

Please note: this seminar focuses on the craft and strategy of grant writing rather than funding sources or how to find them. If you need help with funding research, you can find local assistance at the Dallas Public Library’s Grants Information Service and additional resources at foundationcenter.org.  Writing Workshop Dallas’ Grant Review and Mentoring Service also offers one-to-one coaching that can assist you in targeting grant requests to the funding sources that best match your needs and the work you do.

Fee: $55 or $45 for former/current students | Live Stream Available!

  • Robin Myrick, Presenter
  • Sunday, March 25, 2018 - 3:00PM to 6:00PM
  • Seminar meets at The Foundry Club at Mockingbird Station: 5307 E. Mockingbird Ln / Dallas, TX / 75206
  • Live Stream is available for students who live outside of Dallas. Just let us know when you register.

Before completing your purchase, you must first receive enrollment confirmation using the Register button below.

Writing Villains as the Mirror of Heroes

Sunday, April 1, 2018 - 4:00PM TO 7:00PM

You often hear that a character needs to arc. But how does your protagonist realize she needs to change? What shows him the consequences of not arcing?  It's the villain, and the best protagonist/antagonist match-ups complement each other and come into direct conflict. We will focus on creating captivating protagonists and antagonists that challenge and test each other. This interactive seminar will also offer answers to:

  • What is the difference between a villain and an antagonist?
  • Why does my story need the baddest bad guy my character can logically face?
  • How can my protagonist and antagonist have the same psychological wound?
  • How can I logically show how the flaw in the antagonist can be a strength in the protagonist?
  • How can I show that my protagonist’s ability to change is what allows her to beat the antagonist?
  • How can my hero make his antagonist feel vulnerable?
  • How does showing the hero being drawn to the villain in some way add moral complexity?
  • How can I make the reader feel sympathy for the antagonist?
  • How can I build a hero and a villain that both feel like real people?

Instructor Amber Royer's debut Science Fiction novel, Free Chocolate (June 2018), was named one of Barnes & Noble SFF Blog’s 25 Debuts to Watch for in 2018!

Fee: $55 or $45 for former/current students | Live Stream Available!

  • Amber Royer, Presenter
  • Sunday, April 1, 2018 - 4:00PM to 7:00PM
  • Seminar meets at The Foundry Club at Mockingbird Station: 5307 E. Mockingbird Ln / Dallas, TX / 75206
  • Live Stream is available for students who live outside of Dallas. Just let us know when you register.

Before completing your purchase, you must first receive enrollment confirmation using the Register button below.

Self-Editing Seminar

How to Self-Edit: 50 Essential Tips for Honing Every Manuscript

Sunday, April 8, 2018 - 3:00PM TO 6:00PM

As featured in D Magazine's "Five Things You Must Do in Dallas," this seminar, led by full-time editor and author Blake Atwood, will delve deep (or is it deeply?) into the challenging and robust (poor word choice) process of self-editing. You will learn specific, practical self-editing tips so you can present your most inrediblest (Are you even trying?) work to an editor, agent, publisher, or audience. You will also learn the differences between developmental editing and copyediting, how to know when you should stop self-editing, how to find and work with an editor, what you can expect to pay for professional editing, and what it’s like to work with an editor. This interactive seminar will help writers of all kinds, from novelists to nonfiction authors to poets to screenwriters. 

As an included bonus, every student will receive a digital copy of Blake Atwood’s Don’t Fear the Reaper: Why Every Author Needs an Editor as well as a digital download of the seminar’s tips.

Fee: $60 or $50 for former/current students | Live Stream Available!

  • Blake Atwood, Presenter
  • Sunday, April 8, 2018 - 3:00PM to 6:00PM
  • Seminar meets at The Foundry Club at Mockingbird Station: 5307 E. Mockingbird Ln / Dallas, TX / 75206
  • Live Stream is available for students who live outside of Dallas. Just let us know when you register.

Before completing your purchase, you must first receive enrollment confirmation using the Register button below.

CROSS-GENRE SEMINAR

Breaking the Writer's Block

Sunday, April 15, 2018 - 3:00PM TO 6:00PM

Many writers share the same secret fear: a crisp, blank page. How could this possibly turn into a novel, or your next nonfiction essay, or even your first poem? Why do you suddenly feel as though you have nothing to say? If these thoughts sound familiar, this jam-packed seminar is here to pull you right out of the slump and get the ink flowing again. In this interactive, three-hour class, we’ll examine a range of methods that acclaimed writers have turned to when their own wells ran dry, taking the time to explore the exciting potential within each new approach. We’ll also take part in several writing exercises that will begin to generate new topics and material for you to take home. By the end of the seminar, you’ll have a whole new set of tools at your disposal. We’ll top off the day by drafting a unique plan of action for achieving your goals, and you’ll leave with the motivation you need to hit the ground running.

Fee: $55 or $45 for former/current students | Live Stream Available!

  • Mag Gabbert, Presenter
  • Sunday, April 14, 2018 - 3:00PM to 6:00PM
  • Seminar meets at The Foundry Club at Mockingbird Station: 5307 E. Mockingbird Ln / Dallas, TX / 75206
  • Live Stream is available for students who live outside of Dallas. Just let us know when you register.

Before completing your purchase, you must first receive enrollment confirmation using the Register button below.

Telling Your Story: A Creative Workshop for Nonprofits

Sunday, April 22, 2018 - 3:00PM TO 5:30PM

It's not always enough to do good and assume the public understands your value. An organization also has to be ready to translate its work into ideas that engage, enlighten, and persuade those it seeks to reach. Good storytelling is fundamental to demonstrating a nonprofit's merits and needs, especially when speaking directly to those who can provide the kind of support that allows an organization to serve its community well.  This seminar is designed for anyone working in the nonprofit world who is responsible for communicating the mission, ideas, or impact of programs/projects/services to an audience whose positive response is critical. Those who might benefit from this course include grant writers and development staff, program managers, board members, and others seeking to tell bigger stores in fewer words, and to craft effective narratives demonstrating the essential value of their organization.  Regardless of the audience, great nonprofit storytellers usually understand a few things about rhetorical strategy, dramatic structure, and the graceful art of (ethically) spinning facts, details, and circumstances to one's best advantage. So we'll discuss the complexities of language and persuasion, and ways that compelling prose can make all the difference.

Writing Workshop Dallas’ Grant Review and Mentoring Service also offers one-to-one coaching that can assist you in targeting grant requests to the funding sources that best match your needs and the work you do.

Fee: $55 or $45 for former/current students | Live Stream Available!

  • Robin Myrick, Presenter
  • Sunday, April 22, 2018 - 3:00PM to 5:30PM
  • Seminar meets at The Foundry Club at Mockingbird Station: 5307 E. Mockingbird Ln / Dallas, TX / 75206
  • Live Stream is available for students who live outside of Dallas. Just let us know when you register.

Before completing your purchase, you must first receive enrollment confirmation using the Register button below.