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2024 Schedule

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Remember to fill out a feedback form to enter the giveaways!

Reminder: all times are listed in EDT/New York City.
Please convert to your local time. Thank you!

This schedule is subject to some changes until the start of the conference.

Friday

Friday, June 28, 2024

  • YouTube
3pm – 3:30pm Opening & Welcome Session

AWC Chairs: Shanon (S.D. Huston), Margaret Pinard, & Devon Gambrell-Clark with Bryan Cohen & Stefanie Newell

During this half hour welcoming ceremony, there will be a brief discussion about where to find the schedule and what to expect. Giveaways and how to enter will be announced. We'll also introduce the Keynote Speaker.

  • YouTube
3:30pm – 4pm Keynote Speech 2024

Keynote Speaker, Kathleen Sweeney with Book Brush

“Authorpreneurship: Venturing Out from the Standard Author Role”

Join Kathleen Sweeney as she reveals how authors can break free from the norm. Discover simple but effective ways to step out of the box and find your own path to success, not just in writing! It's time to shake things up and let your author brand shine!

  • YouTube
4pm – 5pm Session #1, Seminar

Special Guest Speaker, Bryan Cohen

“How to Love Launching Your Book”

Book launches are a vicious cycle. After finally finishing a manuscript, most authors jam-pack too many marketing tasks into too little time. This leads to poor results and some seriously stressed-out authors. But what if you could have a minimalist launch plan, better book sales, and a whole lot more happiness?

Building on his 2023 AWC talk, Best Page Forward CEO Bryan Cohen will discuss the ins and outs of a happier, healthier book launch. During the talk, you'll learn:

 

  • How to focus on the 80% of your marketing tasks with the best chance of success

  • Why it's actually better to do fewer things for your launch (and to concentrate on what you actually enjoy doing)

  • The best ways to leverage other people's audience for your own book launch

  • Why most authors see worse launches each time and how to turn that book sales frown upside down

  • What to actually do on book launch day to lower your stress, and much, much more!

  • YouTube
5pm – 6pm Session #2.1, Panel

Guest Speaker, C. M. Lockhart with Tatiana Obey

“Fantasy Worldbuilding: How to Create a World Readers Want to Live In”

This presentation will focus primarily on fantasy worldbuilding, but the information provided will be applicable to all writers, whether they write contemporary romance and are building a small-town setting, or horror authors who are building a haunted house.

 

Tips and advice will supply authors with concrete information they can use to enhance their worldbuilding skills. This will also give authors things to keep in mind as they critique the stories they may have already written and add to their world for any series they may be currently working on.

 

Attendees will walk away knowing where to focus their worldbuilding efforts, what details aid the reader in visualizing their world, how much detail can be included before it becomes overwhelming, and more. This presentation will be ideal for attendees looking to improve their craft and ask questions of published, indie fantasy authors.

  • YouTube
5pm – 6pm Session #2.2, Seminar

Guest Speaker, Self Pub with Andy

“Ethical Espionage for Authors”

How would you like to be a spy without risking either of the following:

 

  1. putting your life on the line?

  2. doing anything illegal or unethical?

 

You’re in luck because that’s exactly what you can do when it comes to spying on fellow authors in your genre.

 

During this seminar, we’ll dive into the art of ethical espionage and uncover the secrets successful authors are using.

 

Once armed with this knowledge, you’ll be able to deploy your own advanced tactics to help you reach the readers desperate to buy your books. Who knows, it may even result in an increase in book sales!

 

Remember, with great knowledge, comes great responsibility. Use it wisely.

 

Join me on this journey where I show you how to ethically spy on your fellow authors to take you to the next level in your publishing game.

  • YouTube
5pm – 6pm Session #2.3, Seminar

Guest Speaker, Bree Buonomo

“Breaking into the Industry with Short Fiction”

As writers, many of us believe that breaking into the publishing industry happens one way: Writing a novel. And much of Authortube follows writers' journeys as they write, edit, and publish their novels - some are in traditional publishing and others are in indie publishing. However, there are more ways to break into the writing industry than just novel writing. Short fiction writing is one! In the past two years, I have researched many magazines and small press publications, followed their themes and submission calls, and began sending my short fiction out into the world. This process can be just as confusing, disheartening, and joyous as any publication journey, and I want to help YOU navigate it to the best of your ability and to (hopefully) find success! In this seminar, we will talk about how to stay organized when writing short fiction for submission, how to write to a deadline, the process of editing under pressure, and more!

  • YouTube
6pm – 7pm Session #3, Panel

Special Guest Speaker, Dale L. Roberts with Bailey Yeager, Senior Manager of IngramSpark Sales; Tara Cremin, Director of Kobo Writing Life; Chelsea Bennett, Education & Community Manager of Lulu; Julie Trelstad, Head of US Publishing at Streetlib; Kris Austin, CEO of Draft2Digital; Mark Coker, Founder of Smashwords; Danica Favorite, Community Manager of PublishDrive; & Alex Smith, Technical Lead at Bookvault

“Future of Self Publishing Books on Amazon & Beyond”

Join us for an insightful panel discussion on the Future of Self Publishing Books on Amazon & Beyond, featuring representatives from IngramSpark, Draft2Digital/Smashwords, PublishDrive, Lulu, Streetlib, Bookvault, and Kobo Writing Life. We'll delve into key trends, the role of AI, and strategies to maximize visibility and sales. Whether you're an aspiring author or seasoned self-publisher, gain valuable insights from industry experts. Tune in for expert advice and valuable tips on navigating the ever-evolving landscape of self-publishing.

 

Key questions covered: 

1 - How do you see the future of self-publishing evolving in the next five years?
2 - What are the key trends shaping the self-publishing industry today?
3 - How do you envision the role of artificial intelligence in the future of self-publishing?
4 - What advice do you have for authors who are considering self-publishing but are unsure which platform to choose?
5 - What strategies do you recommend for authors to maximize their visibility and sales on your platform?

  • YouTube
7pm – 8pm Session #4.1, Panel

Guest Speaker, Nia James (Vixen of Fiction) with Magie Ward & Tiffany L Russell

 “World Building and Story Bible Help for Plotters, Pantsers, and Plantsers”

This panel will give tips and advice on world building for all types of writers by different types of writers. So whether you are a plotter, pantser, plantser, Architect, or Gardener, we will share our tips with you. We will answer questions throughout and still do a full Q&A at the end.

  • YouTube
7pm – 8pm Session #4.2, Seminar

Guest Speaker, Amelia Griggs

“7 Steps to Your Bestselling Book”

I will focus on my seven proven steps of how to turn a story idea into a physical published book. It will be based on my book on the same topic, and a training course I created to help people turn their dream of being a published author into reality.

 

I've been self-publishing for about 8 years now, and I have documented everything I did, what worked and didn't work, every step of the way.

 

In addition to explaining how I got started with writing, I will also explain why I choose self-publishing and some tips and secrets I learned along the way.

 

I write in different genres including nonfiction, fiction, and children's books, so my training applies to all genres, and various types of book formats including eBook, paperback and hardcover.

  • YouTube
7pm – 8pm Session #4.3, Seminar

Guest Speaker, Katlyn Duncan

“Clear Space, Clear Mind: Enhancing Your Writing through Decluttering”

In the "Clear Space, Clear Mind" workshop, we will explore the transformative power of decluttering, not just in physical spaces but also in our writing practices. As a decluttering coach and published author, I will guide participants through techniques to streamline their writing environment and process, fostering creativity and productivity. Participants will learn to organize their writing spaces for maximum efficiency and minimal distraction, discover methods to declutter their writing process, resulting in clearer, more focused content, and gain insights into how a simplified approach can lead to a more fulfilling and productive writing experience.

  • YouTube
8pm – 9pm Happy Hour

AWC Chairs: Shanon (S.D. Huston), Margaret Pinard, & Devon Gambrell-Clark with Mark Gottlieb, Self Pub with Andy, C. M. Alongi, Anita Stewart (A. F. Stewart), Holly Rhiannon, & Heather Dewey Pettet

During this hour, we’ll relax, discuss anything great we learned that day, and make connections with our audience members. At the end, we'll break off to go to the After Parties!

Saturday

Saturday, June 29, 2024

  • YouTube
10am – 11am Session #5.1, Seminar

Guest Speaker, Emma Bennet

“Keep Pitching: Land Traditional Deals after Self-Publishing”

Do you dream of seeing your self-published book signed with a traditional publisher? Emma Bennet signed a 5-book deal with her current publisher in 2022, which included four self-published contemporary romances. In this seminar, Emma will share her own story as well as explaining the tips and tricks of how to pitch your book so traditional publishers take notice, leaving you with the skills to give you the best chance of landing a trad deal.

  • YouTube
10am – 11am Session #5.2, Workshop

Guest Speaker, Michael Evans with Emilia Rose

“How to Create a Subscription The Simple and Profitable Way”

The goal: for authors to learn about the opportunity in starting a subscription and walk away with everything they need to know to create one themselves and start generating an income from this new revenue stream.

 

3 parts to presentation:

  1. What are subscriptions and why do they matter? Are they right for you?

  2. The foundations of a subscription, the different models, and how to set one up.

  3. How to market a subscription in a way that is sustainable for you

  • YouTube
10am – 11am Session #5.3, Seminar

Guest Speaker, Pae Veo

“The Philosophical Threads of Authorship”

This thought-provoking seminar explores the intricate relationship between current philosophical trends and the art of writing, offering a unique perspective on how awareness of these trends can empower authors to gain more control over their creative expression.

  • Mirroring Reality Through Words: Examine the correlation between philosophical trends and the reflection of reality in literature. Understand how being attuned to these trends enables authors to mirror and interpret the world around them through their work.

  • Benefits of Conscious Writing: Investigate the transformative benefits of conscious writing, where authors, readers, and intersubjective communication converge. Learn how being cognizant of these elements enhances the development of ideas and creates a more relatable experience for the reader.

  • Beyond Fiction: Redefining Reality in Writing: Challenge the notion of writing fiction and explore the impossibility of truly writing fiction in the conventional sense. Discover how awareness of this paradigm shift puts authors in control of the reality that influences their work, transcending traditional boundaries.

 

Leave empowered with a profound understanding of philosophy's role in your writing, and take control of your narratives, armed with insights that illuminate the hidden threads shaping your words!

  • YouTube
10am – 11am Session #5.4, Panel

Guest Speaker, Skye Winter with Tiffany Russell, Laura Nettles, Esther Marie Andújar, Regina Duke, Desiree M. Ortega, & Nia V James

“Writing & Publishing Romance Shorts: The Good, Bad & Ugly”

Writing & Publishing Romance Shorts: The Good, Bad & Ugly as the name suggests will discuss writing and publishing Romance Shorts as there are so many people interested in joining the shorts community. The panel will discuss planning/plotting shorts, average word counts, ideal categories for shorts and requirements, mistakes we've made while writing and publishing shorts that others should potentially avoid, and support groups/resources/communities for short romance authors and how to access them. We will then accept any questions viewers may have for the panel about Romance shorts or our unique publishing journeys.

  • YouTube
11am – 12pm Session #6, Seminar

Special Guest Speaker, Nick Thacker

“Leverage Your Assets — Sell More Books By Leveraging Your Work”

Marketing in 2024 (and Beyond): Leverage Your Assets — You can write, you can run ads, and you can burn out. What’s changed since we started publishing books is the way readers consume our content. Are you taking full advantage of that? Are you reaching them exactly where they are, with exactly the formats they want? Time to think bigger, broader. Here’s how.

  • YouTube
12pm – 1pm Session #7.1, Seminar

Guest Speaker, Kathleen Sweeney with Book Brush

“Stand Out On The Shelf: Strategies and Social Media Tips for Authors”

Join Kathleen Sweeney from Book Brush as she explores the process of how readers select their books and how social proof shapes their choices. Dive into the realm of social media marketing tailored for authors like yourself! Learn how to enhance your online presence and connect with readers effectively with Kathleen's practical tips and strategies. Discover how to leverage the influence of social proof and the power of social media to strengthen your author brand.

  • YouTube
12pm – 1pm Session #7.2, Seminar

Guest Speaker, Julie Broad

“How to Use Your Book to Grow Your Brand and Author Platform”

If you've written a non-fiction book, you have created a fantastic tool that you can use to gain email subscribers, build your positioning in your industry, and become a name people know. The challenge is how to use the book effectively to do that. In this session, author and founder of Book Launchers, Julie Broad will share:

  • 3 ways to effectively give away books to grow your brand

  • How to leverage your book for opportunities to increase your email list (and get paid to do it)

  • Tools to use to make using your book to grow your brand and platform easier.

 

Don't waste your free books on people that don't care—join this session to be strategic with your book marketing to gain more email subscribers and brand presence!

  • YouTube
12pm – 1pm Session #7.3, Seminar

Guest Speaker, C. M. Alongi

“Writing Diverse Characters (Without Being Boring, Preachy, or Cancelled)”

Everyone wants more diverse stories. Authors want to include diversity in their cast of characters. But we've all seen and read shows, movies, and books where those diverse characters are flat and two-dimensional, or they solely exist to preach about a social issue rather than contribute to the plot, or they end up so offensive that the author finds themselves blacklisted from readers.

 

Thus, many authors decide NOT to write any diversity in their stories. And then get chewed out for being exclusive, or whitewashing, or cowardice.

 

So how do writers write characters from minority groups they’re not a part of? How do they do it in a way that doesn't cause more harm to those groups and actually enriches their story? And what happens when they do make a mistake—how should they respond without jeopardizing their career?

 

This seminar will utilize much of my own practical experience writing my novel CITADEL, novella series BLACKWING, and ongoing TikTok series CAFAE LATTE.

  • YouTube
12pm – 1pm Session #7.4, Seminar

Guest Speaker, Shelby Leigh

“Diversifying Your Income Streams as an Author”

As an author with an audience of more than 500K readers, I have been in the social media and online business space for years and learned quickly that diversifying my income streams not only grew my business and income, but also took the pressure off me making a living from just my books. It doesn't have to be this way and every author can benefit from having more than one income stream.

 

From book sales to merch to paid newsletters, affiliate income, speaking income, service offerings and more, I would love to not only talk about these income streams but share my step-by-step tips for how authors can set these things up and start making some extra income.

1pm – 1:30pm Break
  • YouTube
1:30pm – 3pm First Page Critique Panel

Judged by Mark Gottlieb, Holly Rhiannon, & Ariadne Macquarie

Moderated by AWC Chairs: Shanon (S.D. Huston), Margaret Pinard, & Devon Gambrell-Clark

The First Page Critique Panel will critique first page submissions by anonymous writers. During the Panel Session, these works will be read aloud, and panel members will raise their hand if and where they would have stopped reading the work. At the end of the reading, panel members will be able to comment on what stopped them, and then give one positive note about the work, so one Help Note and one Love Note.

  • YouTube
3pm – 4pm Session #8, Seminar

Special Guest Speaker, Stefanie Newell

“The Art of How To Build An Author Platform”

In this one-hour session, we will delve into both the strategic and creative elements that transform aspiring writers into successful authors. We'll explore the key components of building an author platform, including email marketing, social media engagement, and crafting an author website that leaves a lasting impression. You’ll leave this session knowing how to build an author platform that considers your personal goals and comfortability. Attendees will also receive the PDF "5 Must-Know Secrets Before Publishing To Amazon."

  • YouTube
4pm – 5pm Session #9.1, Seminar

Guest Speaker, Mark Gottlieb

“Navigating the Literary Landscape: A Comprehensive Guide to Securing a Literary Agent”

Embark on a transformative journey into the intricate realm of literary representation. This session promises to be a beacon for aspiring authors, providing invaluable insights into the nuanced process of acquiring a literary agent.

Key Takeaways for Attendees:

 

Crafting an Irresistible Query: Learn the art of composing query letters that grab attention, showcase your unique voice, and succinctly communicate the essence of your manuscript.

 

Navigating the Submission Process: Understand submission guidelines, decipher industry jargon, and strategize your approach to increase your chances of acceptance.

 

Building a Targeted Agent List: Develop a personalized list of literary agents tailored to your genre, style, and career goals.

 

Understanding Agent Responses: Decode the various responses you may receive from literary agents, from personalized feedback to form rejections.

 

Establishing Author-Agent Relationships: Explore the dynamics of a successful author-agent partnership.

 

This seminar promises to be a transformative experience, equipping attendees with the knowledge, skills, and confidence needed to embark on the exhilarating journey of securing a literary agent.

  • YouTube
4pm – 5pm Session #9.2, Seminar 

Guest Speaker, Elaine Canyon

“Beyond the Label: An Autistic Perspective on Writing”

Writing with autism presents a unique experience that differs for every autistic writer. As a late diagnosed autistic with ADHD and OCD, I’ve accumulated several things to help me in my writing. While my experience is not true to every autistic, I hope these tools and processes that help me can help others.

  • YouTube
4pm – 5pm Session #9.3, Seminar

Guest Speaker, Eloise Bahr

“Budgeting for Authors”

As creatives, many writers are not only intimidated and overwhelmed with budgeting and numbers, but for those who aspire to be full time authors, this dreaded step is essential in planning a profitable career. I want to take my decade of experience in accounting to share the importance of financial management and analysis. 

Pursuing a career as beautiful as storytelling shouldn't be marred by a dread of numbers. The goal of this seminar would be to remove the fear associated with bookkeeping and provide writers with the tools and knowledge to go forth in their dreams to make empowered decisions. 

Topics during the seminar would include:

 

  • Budgeting Best Practices

  • Breakeven Analysis of a Product

  • Hiring Out vs DIY Analysis

 

Attendees will receive a link to a Google Sheet file that has easy to use financial templates.

  • YouTube
4pm – 5pm Session #9.4, Workshop

Guest Speaker, Leah Lindeman

“Who Is Your Customer and How to Keep Them”

Many writers think that an interested reader will always be the prospective customer. When a writer has direct access to the reader, one-on-one in person or via social media, that is true. Most of the time it isn’t the case. 

There’s usually some middleman, whether it be a bookstore, a book database, a tv/radio/or print spot, any medium that puts you in front of readers. 

In “Who Is Your Customer and How to Keep Them,” we’ll dive into who is your real customer in different marketing situations and how you can enrich their lives for the better. 

 

At the end of the day, giving value to your customer helps you earn the investment of their trust, time, and dollar.

  • YouTube
5pm – 7pm Session #10, Seminar

AWC Recruitment Chair, Margaret Pinard

“When to Stop Researching and Start Writing”

Whether it’s procrastibaking or buying a fifth new pen, writers can get very engrossed in NOT WRITING due to fear of the great task they’ve set themselves, and one of the easiest ways to do so is by endlessly RESEARCHING. Here to set you—and herself—straight in this regard is Margaret Pinard, author of 5 novels and 1 collection of short stories. This seminar will explore writer fears that may need to be addressed, showcase cold calculations to make when assessing one’s setting and worldbuilding, offer a checklist of types of research to cover, and present examples on the spectrum of good-bad-ugly draft passages to illustrate where a novelist might need to keep going—or head back to the library.

  • YouTube
6pm – 7pm Session #11.1, Seminar

Guest Speaker, Anita Stewart (A. F. Stewart)

“Lost in Genre: How Authors Need to Target Their Readers”

With so many mashups, subgenres and crossovers these days, finding which genre you should focus on for marketing can sometimes be confusing. Add in retail book categories and authors often flounder if their book doesn’t fit easily into the popular slots. This can lead to misalignment with readers and books falling flat with sales. This session will navigate you through how to find the best genre and category targeting for a book.

 

Topics will include: Finding your Perfect Reader, narrowing your genre, niche subgenres, targeting the right readers, methods for finding Amazon categories, genre keywords, genres for ads, targeting genre promos, and why genre is important for covers.

  • YouTube
6pm – 7pm Session #11.2, Workshop

Guest Speaker, Tiffany Russell with Nia James (Vixen of Fiction)

“Building Your Story Bible in Notion”

My workshop presentation will consist of working with Vixen of Fiction to move key parts of her story bible into Notion. I will be showing her ways that she can add information easily as well as organize it so that she can find what she is looking for in a quick fashion.

  • YouTube
6pm – 7pm Session #11.3, Seminar

Guest Speaker, Cleave Bourbon

“How to Successfully Self-Edit Your Novel”

Many Authortube speakers talk about self-editing, but do not offer a plan or instruction on how to do it, where to find resources so one can do it well, examples of how to self-edit, or the pitfalls of trying to do it yourself rather than hiring a professional freelance editor and spending a lot of time and money waiting for the editor to complete your manuscript.

 

Being an English teacher and showing students how to self-edit essays and other academic papers, I have developed a self-editing approach that works very well with authors whether they are seeking traditional publishing and need to submit polished manuscripts, are self-publishers who want to send a more polished manuscript to a freelance editor, or even self-publishers who are just beginning, and do not yet have the monetary resources to hire a freelance editor yet.

  • YouTube
6pm – 7pm Session #11.4, Seminar

Guest Speaker, Lauren Wheatley with Nicole Wheatley

“Dos & Don'ts of Writing for a Blind Character”

Nicole and I will offer what to showcase and things to avoid when writing for a blind character based on our experiences. This seminar will offer more positive approaches to showcase a disabled character in your writing while avoiding negative or harmful stereotypes. At the end we will cover how to reach out to a sensitivity reader and explain what that process involves.

  • YouTube
7pm – 8pm Happy Hour

AWC Chairs: Shanon (S.D. Huston), Margaret Pinard, & Devon Gambrell-Clark with Bree Buonomo, Elaine Canyon, Leah Lindeman, Cleave Bourbon, Morgan Lee, D.L. Tillery, Laura Nettles, Ariadne Macquarie, & Adrian Santiago

During this hour, we’ll relax, discuss anything great we learned that day, and make connections with our audience members.

Sunday

Sunday, June 30, 2024

  • YouTube
10am – 11am Session #12.1, Seminar

Guest Speaker, Holly Rhiannon

“Redefining Author Communities in Modern Publishing”

This seminar focuses on a crucial yet often overlooked aspect of authorship: community. At The Stygian Society, we prioritize genuine support and collaboration over the fixation on social media metrics, aiming to redefine the author-publisher relationship for the modern era.

Key takeaways:

  • Value of Genuine Connections: Understanding why real relationships trump online metrics and how to cultivate them.

  • Success Beyond Social Stats: Strategies to thrive without relying solely on social media numbers, focusing on craft and community building.

  • Creating Sustainable Support: Practical steps to foster a robust author community that encourages growth and collaboration.

 

Our seminar is more than just a talk; it’s an opportunity to inspire change in the industry. We’re here to reshape the publishing landscape by emphasizing support and creativity instead of just numbers and algorithms.

 

Join us in redefining authorship and fostering a community-driven approach to publishing!

  • YouTube
10am – 11am Session #12.2, Seminar

Guest Speaker, Morgan Lee

“Self-Publish Well for Under 100 Dollars”

One of the biggest barriers to self-publishing is money. Many of us have full-time jobs that don’t pay us nearly enough, children to buy Christmas gifts for, mountains of bills and student loan debt, or other responsibilities that don’t allow us to throw thousands of dollars into a book that might not sell. This conundrum has me thinking...can you self-publish a book for under 100 dollars and do it WELL? No cutting corners? No glaring typos haunting your dreams? In this seminar, I will take you through my experiment of doing just that—publishing a book for under 100 dollars and share with you the tools used, steps taken, and skills required to get from an idea to a successfully published book.

  • YouTube
10am – 11am Session #12.3, Seminar

Guest Speaker, D.L. Tillery

“Understanding ‘The Self’ in Poetry Writing”

Embark on a profound exploration of personal identity and poetic expression in the immersive Seminar, “Understanding ‘The Self’ in Poetry Writing.” This unique session is designed to empower participants to navigate the intricate landscapes of self-discovery through the art of poetry.

Guided by seasoned poet Author D.L. Tillery, attendees will be guided through a series of dynamic exercises and reflective prompts, followed by a Q&A. Participants will uncover the nuanced interplay between selfhood and poetic voice. This seminar is not merely a lesson; it’s a curated experience that encourages individuals to delve into the core of their being and translate those revelations into evocative verses.

Whether you're a seasoned poet or a novice explorer of words, this seminar promises to be a catalyst for personal and creative growth. Attendees will leave with a deeper understanding of themselves, newfound poetic skills, and a portfolio of inner thoughts that authentically captures the essence of their unique narratives.

  • YouTube
10am – 11am Session #12.4, Seminar

Guest Speaker, Samantha L Nasset

“Genre Expectations and When to Bend Them”

With “Genre Expectations and When to Bend Them,” I will discuss the expectations readers place on stories based on their genre and why this is important for writers to learn about and understand.

I will discuss the difference between a genre defining expectation—such as happily ever after & Romance—as well as more flexible expectations—such as Fantasy taking place on Earth or elsewhere.

With these differences in mind, I will also discuss examples of stories that actually utilize genre conventions against the readers, which leads to foreshadowed surprises readers still don’t see coming because well that’s just not done in X genre.

Transitioning from these examples, the presentation will then focus on how writers are not trapped in creative boxes because of genre expectations. Writers will walk away with more confidence in their understanding of how to work with genre expectations and feel less overwhelmed by genre as a whole.

  • YouTube
11am – 12pm Session #13, Seminar

AWC Publicity Chair, Devon Gambrell-Clark

“TBD”

Coming Soon!

  • YouTube
12pm – 1pm Session #14.1, Seminar

Guest Speaker, JD Estrada

“Collaborating for the Perfect Cover”

Getting the right cover for your book is an art in and of itself. This seminar will discuss the value of creative briefs and how to find the right artist for your book. What information to include, how to guide them in their creative process, and anything you can touch upon to make sure that once you get your cover, and everyone is in love with it.

  • YouTube
12pm – 1pm Session #14.2, Workshop

Guest Speaker, Laura Nettles

“Descriptive Prose Workshop”

Attendees will have the chance to submit snippets (up to 150 words) of their work in a form found in the description box. In the form, attendees will include their emails and have a chance to join on screen while I go over their work. A maximum of 15 minutes per person will be allotted so at least three people will be able to have feedback. I will stop the workshop at the 45-minute mark and have 10 minutes for questions from the audience.

  • YouTube
12pm – 1pm Session #14.3, Seminar

Guest Speaker, Natalie Forslind

“I Wrote Every Day for a Year – This is What I Learned”

I took a year off from work to focus on writing. To make sure I got the most out of the experience, I decided to start writing every day. At the time of this conference, I will have written every day for almost 1.5 years. During this time, I have tried different famous author’s writing routines, read a lot of books on productivity, and written a book about writing and productivity.

 

This seminar will share my key findings when it comes to habits, writing, and productivity. Most people don’t realise how easy it can be to start writing every day. Most people also don’t realise the importance of relaxation and rebooting when working on big projects like books.

  • YouTube
12pm – 1pm Session #14.4, Seminar

Guest Speaker, Laura Humm

“Five Editing Mistakes (and How to Fix them)”

As authors, we tend to focus on writing and leave the editing to someone else. Or, when we try to edit ourselves, we don’t know what to look for or how to fix it. This seminar will define five of the most common mistakes (i.e., low impact, muddy voices, unbalanced dialogue, reader burden, and minimal change) authors make when self-editing. Then, we'll talk about how to find the mistakes (e.g., what to look for, where to look) and practical actions that will fix the problem areas to create more compelling stories.

  • YouTube
1pm – 1:20pm Session #15.1, Seminar

Speaker, Ariadne Macquarie

“Understanding Poetry: On Craft, Discipline, and Discovering the Poet Within”

Current and future poets will be given a crash-course in understanding and interpreting poetic craft. They will walk through a close-read of a poem to understand how it functions; they will be given pointers on how best to break into the discipline of reading and writing poetry consistently; they will be given a list of texts to do further research on poetic craft on their own; and at the end they will be given a brief walkthrough of difference resources they can use to submit their own poetry to various literary magazines.

  • YouTube
1pm – 1:20pm Session #15.2, Workshop

Speaker, T. Helen Price

“Practical Steps to Tackling Your Messy First Draft!”

The first draft serves as a writer’s raw exploration of a story. Yet, transitioning from this chaotic first draft to a polished manuscript is a very overwhelming task. Therefore, I present an empowering and enlightening guide designed to relieve pressure from many beginning writers (like myself) during this essential stage of the writing process.

This presentation is tailored to address the concerns of aspiring authors grappling with the mammoth task of rewriting and refining their first drafts. The purpose is not to impart a magic formula for instant solutions - rather, it is to arm writers with practical, systematic, and sustainable strategies to transform their first drafts into engaging and coherent manuscripts.

At the end of the session, attendees will walk away with:

  • An understanding of the importance and purpose of a first draft and the rewriting process.

  • A step-by-step, practical approach to dissect their first drafts and identify areas for improvement.

  • Techniques and exercises to help improve elements such as plot, setting, dialogue, and character development.

  • Strategies for self-editing.

  • A renewed sense of confidence and motivation to continue their writing journey.

  • A writer friend (me!)

  • YouTube
1pm – 1:20pm Session #15.3, Seminar

Speaker, Martin Lejeune

“Outlining without a Subscription: The Spreadsheeter's Guide to Plotting”

In a world where every piece of writing software wants a subscription from authors just trying to get by, there must be a way to outline a novel without breaking the bank. This is where the StorySheets method of story outlining can revolutionise how your story business does business.

 

Like many authors, Spreadsheets are not pretty but they get the job done. We will look at how techniques developed in the fast-moving television landscape allow writers to quickly break story beats to write with maximum efficiency. 

 

This unique way of working also offers abilities to track project management for the book through various stages of development and can be scaled up to be used to outline an entire series. 

 

Spreadsheets can allow you to break, rebreak and track a story from inception through publication and the author who masters them, can master all.

  • YouTube
1:20pm – 1:40pm Session #15.4, Seminar

Speaker, Sam Wicker

“Tools to Get Unstuck in Your Writing”

We've all had that moment. You've followed your outline, but there's just something not right. You've written that epic scene you were excited about, but now you can't get from that point to the next. You're at a standstill. You know where you need to go, or have an idea, but what do you write between this scene and that? Or maybe you are a discovery writer and you've found yourself stuck on a scene because nothing you picture really works. You need an idea. You need something to kickstart the next scene or a plot twist. The brain just isn't coming up with anything. It's been hours, days, weeks, months....

 

There are tools to help you out with that. From dice to plot workbooks, cards to D&D builds, there are ways to help you get unstuck, to make your story exciting, or to get those words to flow again. I'll show you the tools I have in my arsenal that help me out, and hopefully they will help you, too.

  • YouTube
1:20pm – 1:40pm Session #15.5, Panel

Speaker, Adrian Santiago with TBD

“The Emotional Rollercoaster that is Publishing a Novel”

I'll lead a panel discussion on the emotional hurdles, peaks and canyons, and how we navigate them. How we've failed to in the past, steps we've taken to prevent succumbing to the emotional rollercoaster ride, triumphs and stumbles along the way. I'll have prepared topics, questions, anecdotes and more. We'll take questions from the chat as well.

  • YouTube
1:20pm – 1:40pm Session #15.6, Workshop

Speaker, D.L. Tillery

“Mastering the Art of Short Story Writing”

Ready yourself for a captivating journey into the realm of storytelling mastery with this workshop. In this dynamic and immersive session, participants will unravel the secrets of crafting compelling short stories that captivate readers from the opening line to the final word.

 

As the facilitator, I bring a wealth of experience in the world of storytelling, offering practical insights and hands-on guidance. Through a carefully curated blend of theory, interactive exercises, and personalized feedback, attendees will learn the essential elements of storytelling, from character development to narrative structure. This workshop is not just about writing; it’s about honing the skills to create narratives that linger in the minds of readers long after they turn the last page.

 

Whether you're a budding writer seeking to enhance your storytelling prowess or a seasoned author looking to refine your craft, this workshop promises to elevate your short story writing to new heights.

  • YouTube
1:40pm – 2pm Session #15.7, Seminar

Speaker, Skye (S.D. Hegyes)

“Creating a Notion Mastermind to Track All Things Writing”

Are you like me, having trouble keeping up with everything dealing with all your stories and ideas? Do you have Post-its with scraps of ideas in various locations? Random notebooks partially filled with tidbits of notes? Multiple documents saved to your computer all talking about the same thing but saved to different folders on your hard drive? Do you want everything in one location where you can find it with a simple search?

 

Maybe it's time to create a mastermind for yourself, a one-stop-shop where you can track all of your writing, ideas, publications, etc.

 

I will show viewers and audience members how I use Notion to create a mastermind that allows tracking all of the following:

 

  • multiple pen names

  • multiple writing projects in various formats

  • writing updates (word counts and or progress)

  • publication information

  • social media content tracking

  • social media KPIs

  • publication KPIs and finances

  • project planning for future months/quarters/years

  • and more!

  • YouTube
1:40pm – 2pm Session #15.8, Seminar

Speaker, Heather Dewey Pettet

“Sensitivity Readers: What They Really Do”

In this presentation, I will be discussing what a sensitivity reader does, some important questions they should ask you, and some important questions you should ask them. Also, there will be a few tips for working with this specialized type of editing.

  • YouTube
1:40pm – 2pm Session #15.9, Panel

Speaker, JD Estrada with Heidi Angell & Joe Compton

“Healthy Writing Habits”

Burnout, impostor syndrome, mental chatter, work-life balance, posture, hydration. There are MANY things we have to take care of to ensure we can keep doing and being our best. This panel is meant to give you tips and tricks and also show you that you're not alone.

  • YouTube
2pm – 3pm Closing Session

AWC Chairs: Shanon (S.D. Huston), Margaret Pinard, & Devon Gambrell-Clark with Pae Veo, Eloise Bahr, Lauren Wheatley, Samantha L Nasset, & Sam Wicker

During this last hour of the writing conference, we’ll explore our favorite parts and how we feel moving forward in our writing lives. Giveaway winners will also be announced.

Reminder: all times are listed in EDT/New York City. 

Please convert to your local time. Thank you!

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