Summer Writing Intensive

There’s nothing quite like it. That feeling of walking into the bookstore and seeing your name on the cover of a new release sitting there on the shelf. It’s pretty damn magical, if I do say so myself.

But there’s also nothing quite like the feeling you get when, after waiting for weeks, sometimes months, you finally get a response from the editor or agent to whom you submitted your latest work and…it’s another rejection. Even worse, there isn’t any helpful feedback – no sense of where you went wrong or what you can do to make it better. How are you supposed to improve if no one is telling you what you’re doing wrong? How are you supposed to make yourself stand out from the thousands of other submissions they are receiving?

I know, you say to yourself, I’ll sign up for one of those live workshops. One taught by a team of successful authors. Surely they can help me, you think. But every workshop you look at costs hundreds of dollars per session, never mind what it will cost to travel and stay in the hotel for the week. By the time you’re done you’ve spent well over a thousand dollars. Who can afford that?

There has to be a better way. You know what? There is.

It’s called the Summer Writing Intensive and it’s taught by two successful authors, Jon F Merz and Joe Nassise, who have sold more than thirty books between them in the last eight years to publishers such as Simon & Schuster, Harlequin/Gold Eagle, Kensington, St. Martin’s Press, HarperCollins and Tor.

You want to be confident the next time you submit your work. You want that submission to generate interest; for that editor or agent to sit up and take notice. Ideally, that interest will turn into an offer of publication and eventually, later on down the road, you’ll be the one walking into that bookstore looking for that first sight of your new book on the shelves, waiting for a legion of crazed readers to buy it.

The Summer Writing Intensive can help get you there. Best of all, you can do it from your own home at a fraction of the cost of other writing retreats.

The workshop consists of eight live webinars; each focusing on a key element of the writing craft that you need to know in order for your manuscript stand out from the rest and to make your career what you want it to be.

Each webinar session will be an hour long and will include handouts and real-world examples to illustrate the point of each lesson. As a participant you’ll be able to ask questions and interact during all of the sessions, allowing you the opportunity to learn from your fellow participants as well as from the instructors. Transcripts of each session will be available after the workshop for you to refer back to at a later date, so you’ll always have the material on hand when you need it.

Here’s a quick look at the sessions and what you’ll be focusing on in each one:

Story Structure: Crafting a Plot that Begs the Reader to Keep Reading

In this lesson you’ll learn:

  • How proper structure is necessary for a story to work
  • Why conflict is the key to any story, regardless of genre
  • The three pillars of plot that support your story
  • The best ways to build complications that make sense and increase the conflict

Living, Breathing Characters: Make Your Heroes and Villains Come Alive

In this lesson you’ll learn:

  • Techniques to design and execute character arcs in your stories
  • How to give your heroes larger-than-life qualities
  • The proper use of backstory and how to provide context to your characters’ actions
  • How to create villains that your readers love to hate

Pacing: Getting to the Climax is Just as Important as Having a Good One

In this lesson you’ll learn:

  • How to craft an effective hook to open your story
  • The importance of adding tension to every page
  • Why so many books sag in the middle – and what you can do to prevent it from happening to yours
  • Five ways to craft a knock-out ending

Action Scenes: It’s a Gun Fight not a Ballet

In this lesson you’ll learn:

  • The basics of a fight: emotion, adrenaline, and tactics
  • Armed and unarmed fighting for writers
  • Structuring your fight scene so it leaves the reader breathless
  • Does it make sense? Understanding anatomy and how the body responds to being punched, pulled and crushed

Revision: Sharpen that Knife, Baby!

In this lesson you’ll learn:

  • How proper structure can keep your revision work to a minimum
  • Specific techniques to organize your revision work so that you don’t waste unnecessary time
  • How to know what to revise and what to leave alone
  • Ways to polish the good stuff to make it great

Proposals: In Order to Sell, it has to Sing

In this lesson you’ll learn:

  • The three key elements of a great proposal
  • How to write a synopsis that grabs them by the throat and won’t let go
  • How to write a query letter an agent or editor will actually read – then act upon!
  • Ways to craft a proposal package that will have your editor or agent wanting more

Social Media Marketing: Using Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to Build Your Career and Promote Your Work

In this lesson you’ll learn:

  • What’s behind the Facebook craze and why it’s important to you
  • The difference between a solid Twitter presence and a poor one
  • How using LinkedIn can enhance your career and provide opportunities you might have otherwise missed
  • How to measure and monitor your social media impact

Digital Editions: Stop Leaving Money on the Table

In this lesson you’ll learn:

  • What you need to know before putting digital editions of your work up for sale
  • Tips and tricks to properly format your book for sale on the Kindle
  • How to get format and upload your book for sale on the iPad
  • Ways to promote and publicize your digital editions to make the most of your offerings

The techniques Joe and Jon will be teaching in the workshop have helped them write and sell successful novels in a variety of genres – here’s just a sample of what they’ve published recently:

Better yet, the workshop has been designed with the would-be author’s pocketbook in mind. You get:

  • Eight sessions focused on improving your craft
  • Handouts and real-world examples to help you put the techniques into action
  • A written transcript of each session
  • Feedback and advice from two bestselling writers

All for just $125.00

The workshop begins July 21st and runs through Sept 8th, meeting each Wednesday night. Sessions start at 9:00 pm EST and run for an hour. (If you have to miss a session, the workshop transcript and materials can be sent to you following the session.)

If you’re thinking about submitting your work in the next few months, you don’t want to miss the Summer Writing Intensive. We’re limited to 100 slots, so get your registration in early!

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  • Joe Towers July 6, 2010  

    Jon – Great idea. This is a very good way to broaden your revenue streams. I can tell from observing you the past few years (has it really been 8?) how hard you have worked to gather intelligence. I will bet those on the receiving end will get more than their money’s worth.

  • admin July 7, 2010  

    Thanks Joe! Much appreciated!

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