Thursday, October 28, 2010

November WriterU On-Line Classes

November 1-26, 2010
"Pros & Cons of Blending Genres"
by Allison Brennan
$30 at

With fourteen thrillers and four short stories to her name, ranging from suspense to paranormal to romance and everything in between, Allison Brennan has repeatedly hit the bestseller lists. Her romantic thrillers don't follow the traditional 50/50 mix of romance and suspense, blending traditional elements of thrillers and mysteries to create something a little different. What raises the stakes and makes readers come back for more? Character.

Having taken risks -- like blending genres and breaking rules -- Allison has enjoyed great success, as well as falling in some major potholes. This always frank author will discuss a variety of issues, including:

* What is genre?
* What should you consider when exploring a new genre?
* What is "voice" and how do you find it?
* Who can you rely on for research and technical support?
* What is conventional wisdom and when should you avoid it?
* How can you take your traditional story idea and twist it?
* How to assess feasibility of your intriguing, genre-blending idea?
* The importance of character, pacing, and reader expectations

Alison Brennan is a New York Times bestselling and award-winning author of fourteen books and four short stories. She lives with her husband and their five children in northern California and is currently writing book two in her Lucy Kincaid romantic thriller series which launches in January of 2011 with LOVE ME TO DEATH. Visit her at or check out her Seven Deadly Sins series at

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November 1-26, 2010
"Scene & Sequel"
by Patricia Kay
$30 at

Are you finding it hard to understand and apply the principles of story construction using Scene and Sequel? If you are, you're not alone. Many writers, even multi-published veterans, find the concept a difficult one. But now help is at hand. By utilizing a combination of fourteen lessons, homework, class discussion, and feedback on your written work, this class on building blocks to great fiction will take the mystery out of Scene and Sequel. You'll learn:

* What a scene is and isn't
* Planning and revising scenes for maximum effect
* How and when to use sequels
* Controlling pace with scene and sequel
* Choosing the best point of view
* Writing for the strongest emotional impact
* Flashbacks: when and how to use them
* How to write a unique love scene

Patricia Kay is the USA Today bestselling author of 50 women's fiction and romance novels. An acclaimed teacher, she formerly taught various writing classes at the University of Houston and has given workshops all over the country. She now limits her teaching to online classes. You can learn more about her on her website at

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November 8-19, 2010
MASTER CLASS: "Dodging The Saggy Middle"
by Sherry Lewis
$55 at

Prerequisite: must have a complete manuscript

Some writers love beginnings, and some love endings, but the dreaded saggy middle is dreaded and feared by writers alt all career stages. What causes the saggy middle? How do we get through that dull area between exciting setup and the climactic end, where conflict droops and motivation wilts? In this workshop, Sherry Lewis will help you concentrate on getting around that saggy middle problem to keep readers, agent and editors hooked all the way through. You'll learn how to:

* Make sure your characters are multi-dimensional and interesting
* Make them active enough to keep the reader turning pages
* Pace your character arcs for maximum effect
* Use subplots to drive the story forward
* Make sure you have enough conflict to keep readers interested
* Use conflict and turning points to better pace your novel
* Keep secrets -- a vital part of bridging the saggy middle

Sherry Lewis is an award-winning career writer with roughly 30 published books to her credit. Her books include two traditional mystery series, and both contemporary and time travel romance. A long-time member of Romance Writers of America and a member of Sisters in Crime, Sherry is a frequent judge on the contest circuit, and she has taught writing classes both online and in person for over 15 years.

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