Webinar Day 1: June 10 9AM – 4PM Pacific – (convert to your time zone)
Webinar Day 2: June 11 9AM – 4PM Pacific
Workshop Day (Optional): Sunday June 25 9AM – 4PM Pacific
Can’t make the live webinars? Register to get the recording after
Where: Online — Zoom Classroom
Price: $100 – $350
Scholarships Are Available!
Riveting, evocative storytelling hinges on the choices your characters make. These pivotal choices are not necessarily the high action moments in your plot, but they are the moments that define who your character is and becomes. By charting a handful of critical moments of choice in your story, by examining the pressures and risks at each moment, by taking into account how your character’s identities inform their actions, and by understanding deeply how your character pushes against their history and environment at each step, you can create a powerful mini-outline.
This character arc outline can empower you to ask more strategic questions about your plot, pacing, sequence of scenes, your dramatic tension, what clues you provide the reader and when, and about your character’s agency, identity, and journey.
On webinar Day 1–How Your Characters Navigate Their History–author Stant Litore will walk you through how to chart your character arc in a way that allows you to use that arc as a potent tool for outlining or revision, and we will discover ways to explore how your characters push against their history.
On webinar Day 2–How Your Characters Navigate Their World–you’ll discover how your character pushes against their environment and how the exciting fictional world you create exerts pressures on your character and creates unexpected opportunities for plot.
The material covered in this webinar will be relevant regardless of your genre or topic; after all, a fictional world can be as big as an imagined universe, or as local and intense as a crime scene or a dining room table. By the end you will be in a better position to review your narrative (or your vision for it) and identify where you’ve left gaps, where you’ve taken too long, and where there are additional opportunities for both nuance and suspense in your character’s journey as they struggle to become (or remain) who they need to be.
Optional: Workshop Your Character Arc (+$200)
In the workshop portion, writers will get the opportunity to share and refine their character arc with peers and workshop leaders Stant Litore and K. Tempest Bradford. (More workshop leaders will be announced in coming weeks.)
As guided in the seminar and in a private forum open in the two weeks between the webinar and workshop, you will bring with you a chart of the critical moments of choice in your story. During the workshop, you will be divided into small groups; in each of these groups, we will collaboratively investigate and refine this character arc.
We’ll take a look at what elements could be heightened or added to key scenes, what critical scenes might be missing or understated, how these moments of choice can be better prepared for, and what opportunities exist to bring your character alive on the page with greater complexity and excitement, in ways that tighten your plot and develop and deliver on your story’s thematic concerns. You will also learn from the workshopping of your peers’ character arcs.
You will leave the workshop with a more defined and vigorous vision for your character’s conflict and actions and with fresh and specific ideas for structuring your story to maximize the emotional and dramatic impact for your character and the reader.
The workshop is limited to 16 participants. You must attend the Live Webinar or register to get the recordings to take part in the workshop.
Writers of all genres — Literary, YA, Middle Grade, Science Fiction, Fantasy, Horror, Mystery, Children’s Books, Romance — and all mediums — Prose, Playwriting, Screenwriting, Comics/Graphic Novels, Games — from all backgrounds and any skill level.
The webinar will run from 9AM – 4PM Pacific Time (click here to convert to your time zone) on Saturday and Sunday with breaks throughout the day, including a longer break around the halfway point so participants can eat a meal.
The workshop will run from 9AM to 4PM Pacific Time, also with breaks. Writers will be divided into small groups with one workshop leader each. In these groups, you will collaboratively investigate and refine each person’s character arc. Please plan to attend the full day’s workshop and not only your critique.
The workshop will not be recorded.
Please buy the following texts before the webinar begins.
- Writing the Other: A Practical Approach by Cynthia Ward and Nisi Shawl
- Write Characters Your Readers Won’t Forget by Stant Litore
- Write Worlds Your Readers Won’t Forget by Stant Litore
Zoom meetings software is compatible with standard screen readers and has several other accessibility features that make it possible for writers who are Blind or vision impaired to participate in the webinar. Questions will be submitted via the chat function.
Live closed captions will be available, auto-generated by Rev.com. The final version of the recorded webinar will have auto-generated closed captions available. Note: the accuracy of these captions varies, and for live webinars we do not edit them.
Zoom video conferencing works on computers, tablets, and most smartphones. We suggest you access the live webinar via a computer for the best experience. Before enrolling in class, make sure your computer or mobile device is compatible with Zoom. Before class, load the app on your system and join this test meeting.
A webcam/video camera is not necessary for class because students won’t be on video. The Q&A will be text-only. You can call in via phone if audio isn’t working through your computer.
We have full and partial Vonda N. McIntyre Sentient Squid Scholarships available for this webinar. If you do not have the financial means to pay for all or part of the registration cost, we encourage you to apply. We have a broad definition of financial need that ranges from writers who do not have the money at all to writers who have the funds but can’t afford to use them for a writing class.
We especially encourage writers who have been financially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic to apply. Wherever you exist on the financial needs spectrum, don’t self reject! (Still not sure whether you should apply? Read this post.)
Our scholarships are available to any writer regardless of background or identity. We set aside a portion of scholarships specifically for students who identify under the POC, BIPOC, or BAME umbrellas as well as for Palestinian writers/writers of Palestinian heritage, though we do not limit the number of scholarships we give to marginalized authors.
If you can afford to pay for part but not all of the registration fee, please apply for a partial scholarship. Under this financial aid plan you can let us know the amount you can afford. If you cannot afford to pay at all, please apply for a full scholarship.
To apply, please fill out this form by 11:59PM Pacific May 20th. You’ll be asked to provide:
- A brief (300 or fewer words) statement of financial need
- A brief (500 or fewer words) description of a work or works in progress that you hope the webinar will help you create.
- If you identify as POC, BIPOC, BAME, or Palestinian, you may indicate that if you wish.
Deadline: 11:59PM Pacific May 20th. We will notify all applicants of their standing two weeks before class begins. If you have any questions, please use our contact form to ask!
We are not offering refunds for this webinar. If you purchase a ticket for the live session and are unable to make it, you will still get access to the recording and resources.
Register for this webinar and The Heroine’s Journey by May 21st and get both for just $175–$50 off the full price.
In The Heroine’s Journey–June 17th, 2023 | 10AM – 5PM Pacific–New York Times bestselling author Gail Carriger provides a full break down of what aspects of this other Western story structure make for compelling narratives and voracious readers, where these elements originate, why they’re successful, and how to write them. She’ll help you take control of story structure by delving behind the scenes for hidden messages and gain insight into under-studied narrative conventions and modern publishing markets.
The perfect companion to Write Characters Your Readers Won’t Forget. To get this offer, choose the Special Deal ticket option below. Available until May 21.