Here's a brief rundown of the first day (5-13-2011) of the conference from my perspective:
Again traffic was a mean bugger due to roadwork being done on 79. I attended 4 workshops and also was a part of the networking lunch.
09:15 - 10:15 Four Truths of Character with Romona Long
10:30 - 11:30 Break free from the Slush Pile with CJ Lyons
12:00 - 1:00 Networking Lunch
1:30 - 2:30 Shaping Story Arcs with Romona Long
2:45 - 3:45 Balancing Dialogue and Narrative with Terry Friedman
Four Truths of Character with Romona
During this workshop we learned the difference between a Pourquoi story and an Origin story.
We learned that the first two truths: Place in Society and Place in Family are based on facts and may or may not change. The two remaining truths are Personality and Flaw. These two are dependent upon the first two, and can change more readily.
She gave us examples from various well known books and we even worked on one of our own characters.
Break Free from the Slush Pile with CJ Lyons
A very informative workshop with the writer CJ Lyons. She told us what what we should want from an agent and what we do not want in an agent. On the flipside, she also told us what agents were looking for in a client and what they did n
ot want. She gave us many resources to get further information.
For this workshop, if we wanted a chance to win a critique of a query letter from her agent, then we were supposed to have sent in a query letter a few weeks before the conference. She went a step further and gave us constructive criticism on ALL the queries she received. Anonymously, of course. I was quite pleased with what she had to say about mine.
Networking Lunch - This was such a wonderful opportunity to meet other aspiring authors and writers. I met some very interesting people. It was very positive and radiated with passion and commonality.
Oh, I had a chicken sandwich.
Shaping Story Arcs with Romona Long
Romona spoke to us about story arcs, within a single novel and also within a series of novels. It was fairly straight forward. She also told us that all characters, major and minor, have their own story arcs within the larger framework of the whole story (except, of course, the very minor characters where we don't need to know anything about them)
Balancing Dialogue and Narrative with Terry S. Friedman
Again, a very insightful workshop. We learned about how much narrative/dialogue ration usually occur in a given genre. We covered Point of View in a fair amount of detail. There were some points that she brought up about switching POV within a story, that seemed out there a bit. I intend to do some more research on the subject and in a later post, describe what it was as well as give more detail about this workshop. It did open my eyes, and I liked what I saw.
After that, I left for home, another 2 hours one way because of the busy roadwork and congested traffic.
Overall, it was a very positive experience for me.
Tomorrow's post will cover the conference on Saturday 5-14-2011