With just one week to go to Romance Rocks 2014, RWA is proud to introduce you to our featured speakers and what they’re offering in their presentations:
Friday Workshop Presenter and Speaker – James Scott Bell
Writing the Knockout Novel
This Knockout Novel Workshop will get you into the deep tissue of your fiction. You’ll learn the tool and techniques of the masters, including:
• What Plot is really all about
• The power of disturbance and doorways
• How to write scenes with no dull parts
• Creating “jump off the page” characters
• The fastest way to improve your manuscript
• The essentials of great dialogue
• The secret of voice
Saturday session 3 ~ Revision & Self-Editing
The bestselling author of Plot & Structure revisits the art and craft of writing with a comprehensive look into how to polish your manuscript into the gem and editor or agent (or reader) can’t resist. With proven techniques, James will walk attendees through revision and self-editing, so that each writer can get the most out of their work, and present it in its best light.
Keynote Speaker – Cherry Adair
Build 3-D Characters So They Leap Off The Page
Compelling characters drive your story. Without rich, 3-D characters the story flat lines, leaving the reader lost, bored, or wondering why they invested their time. Fully developed characters shouldn’t be an afterthought. (even if you prefer writing by the seat of your pants) Crafting captivating characters starts before the first word is written.Desire intrinsically creates conflict, making for memorable characters. You’ll learn how to give your people powerful, driving goals, as well as strong motivation for doing what they do. Cherry will show you how to seamlessly weave together their backstory with their physical descriptions to make them feel like real people instead of cardboard cutouts.
Sunday session 6 – Luminous Dialogue
Dialogue isn’t as boring as, “How would you like your eggs?” the morning after. (Unless they are dinosaur eggs!) Dialogue has to work hard and serve several purposes while at the same time entertaining your readers. Cherry will share her secrets of how to make your dialogue sparkle and sing. Discover ways to insert readable, but still authentic accents or dialects. Learn how to change narrative into fast-paced, page-turning dialogue. Learn about ‘white space’ and how to use it to make your story move faster. Find out how to make your characters sound like themselves and nobody else. Cherry will show you techniques for strengthening dialogue to make it shine on the page.
Guest Speaker – Marie Force
Rejection Was My Friend – A ‘Rags to Riches’ publishing story
New York Times bestselling author Marie Force will share her “rags to riches” publishing story and how she went from the most rejected author in the history of rejected authors to five appearances on the New York Times bestseller list in 2013 and one more (so far) in 2014. She will share her strategy as a “hybrid” author who is engaging in both self-publishing and traditional publishing and how her innovative use of social media has been a game changer.
Sunday session 4 – Self Publishing 101
New York Times bestselling author Marie Force has self-published more than 20 original titles and sold more than 1.5 million of her self-published titles. She will share her tips and techniques for putting books in front of readers. She will cover everything from cover design to retailer challenges to effective marketing strategies to aid discoverability in an increasingly crowded field.
Guest Speaker – Jim Azevedo
10 Trends Impacting the Future of Book Publishing
Jim Azevedo, marketing director at Smashwords, will examine how the simultaneous rise of ebooks, self-publishing and democratized access to retailers will forever transform the publishing landscape. In this session, Jim will discuss 10 publishing industry trends that will most impact the future for book authors. Learn how the power center in the book publishing industry is shifting from publishers to writers, as self-published authors realize they already have access to the tools to out-sell and out-compete the big publishers. Learn why the former stigma of self-publishing is being replaced with growing pride as self-published authors scale all the international bestseller lists.
Saturday session 2 – Secrets of the Best-Selling Self-Published Ebook Authors
Since its launch in 2008, Smashwords has helped more than 80,000 authors release over 285,000 ebook titles. In this session, Jim Azevedo, marketing director at Smashwords, will unveil the secrets of the most commercially successful self-published ebook authors. Session attendees will learn from real-life examples of how authors broke out to become bestsellers. Among the many secrets in his presentation, Jim will reveal best practices strategies for cover design (including examples and an intriguing case study), pricing, platform building, distribution, how to unleash word-of-mouth buzz with viral catalysts, and how to partake in the global market for ebooks. This session is relevant for aspiring authors, intermediates and advanced publishing professionals. Novices and intermediates will learn how to think like a professional publisher. Experienced self-published authors and publishers will learn how to emulate the best practices of successful authors who are rewriting the rules of ebook self-publishing.
Guest Speaker – Kate Byrne
How Romance Rocks in the UK – An insight into the international publishing market
What kinds of romance are readers loving in the UK in 2014? What do we have in common with the Australian and US markets? Where do we differ? What are the advantages in having a publisher as your advocate in the UK? How are we working to be part of the romance community? Insight into this and more from a romance editor and passionate fan of the genre in the UK.
Guest Speaker – Lucienne Diver
Sunday session 5 – The Publishing Process
Ever wondered what happens to your manuscript after that agent or editor accepts it? Lucienne Diver has sold over 700 titles to all the major publishers, and in this workshop she’ll address the mystery of what happens to your manuscript, and answer any questions you have on the process.
Julian Hewitt – Media Arts Lawyer
What you need to know before you sign a contract
A rundown of publishing contracts and various publishing rights and protection of an author’s copyright