The 6th annual Northern Colorado Writers Conference is scheduled for March 11-12, 2011, at the Fort Collins Hilton (near the CSU campus). Following the theme of Passport to Writing, “through workshops, connecting with other writers and interacting with agents and editors, you will be transported to new, exciting places in the writing world.”
Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers members are well represented on the faculty of the conference. Sandi Ault will conduct two workshop sessions, “Killer Queries,” and “First 100 Words.” She will also participate in “Query Critiques.”
Award-winning, Bestselling author of the WILD Mystery Series, Sandi Ault, will show you the three tools you need to create a query that will sell your book. And she has the skills to back it up. Sandi's first query went to 31 agents as cold-queries. Thirty responded with a request for the manuscript, and Ms. Ault found herself in the enviable position of getting to interview and then select her agent from among these thirty. Next, Sandi's chosen agent used the same query text to submit to publishers. The result? Twelve publishers requested the manuscript, they all showed an interest, and the book went to auction, with the editors bidding for the right to publish the book. The winner topped the bidding by buying TWO books and making it a series! The rest is history. And Sandi's agent now uses her original query letter as a model for teaching query-writing workshops. If you want to create a query that will work, this is the workshop for you.
Carol Berg is presenting “What is This Thing Called Voice” and “Unforgettable Characters.” She is also on an author panel.
What is This Thing Called Voice
Transform a character into a distinct, memorable individual by refining the character’s voice. Learn how an author can subordinate his or her own narrative voice to the persona of the point-of-view character, exposing the attitudes, beliefs, and intelligence unique to that character. Voice is created not only in dialog, but in narrative and description. Creating a vibrant, living voice incorporates everything from grammar and word choice to the character’s observations and emotional reactions. This workshop will involve brief writing exercises.
Linda Berry’s sessions are titled “Writing Winning Entries” and “Goddess of Fiction.”
Goddess of Fiction
Linda uses 8 line drawings (flatline, bell curve, sine waves, sunburst, spring, square, triangle, and outline) to illustrate some of the basics of good storytelling: choosing meaningful detail, pacing the introduction of events and turning points, weaving story lines together, brainstorming your way into fresh ideas, incorporating back story, fitting the pieces together, creating tension and conflict, and organizing the material. Her big finish is combining the line drawings into an odd—but recognizable—figure of a woman she calls The Goddess of Good Fiction.
The Northern Colorado Writers Conference also features opportunities to meet and pitch to agents and editors.
This year, the agents are Rachelle Gardner of WordServe Literary, Kelly Sonnack from Andrea Brown Agency, Michael Ebeling and Kristina Holmes from Ebeling and Associates, and Mike Nappa of Nappaland Literary Agency.
Spring Lea, editor at The Grumpy Dragon, will also be taking pitches.
Kerrie Flanagan, director of Northern Colorado Writers, will conduct a bonus pre-conference workshop on Saturday, February 26th, from 9:00 to 12:00 open to all conferences attendees at no additional cost. This is an opportunity to learn inside details about the event. Kerrie will also discuss how to effectively pitch to an agent.
Everything else you ever wanted to know about the conference and links to registration can be found at the Northern Colorado Writers website. There is a page detailing what the agents and editors are currently looking for, and another page with detailed information on each workshop session.
NCW is on Facebook as Northern Colorado Writers and on Twitter as @NCW_FortCollins.