Why Writing Workshops Rock!

SlateFor the past few weeks, I’ve been participating in a New Adult writing workshop courtesy of Litreactor and the awesome Rhonda Helms. This was my first ever full on writing workshop where we got lectures and then homework based on those lectures. I learned so much during these few short weeks – the workshop is sadly over – so I thought I’d share some of what I took away from this course.

1. Regardless of genre or category, a great many things apply to all forms for fiction

Although the workshop focused on NA, the tropes of the genre and nailing that perfect NA voice, I learned a great deal about emotional resonance, plotting and romantic arc development that I’ll definitely be incorporating in my YA writing.

2. Outlining might not be for me

For those of you who follow me, you’ll know I tend to oscillate between pantsing and plotting. It seems when I pants, I dream of being a plotter and when I plot, my inner pantser rebels and demands some free rein. Although I worked hard on outlining a story idea in this workshop, I ultimately abandoned it and wrote something else because I just couldn’t get into a story when I already knew how it ended.

3. Contemporary might not be for me

Despite the fact that my new release next week is in fact a contemporary YA novel, I’ve pretty much some to accept that my home is in speculative fiction. I’m in my happy place when writing about cyborgs and aliens, weird tech and the apocalypse.

4. I want/love/need other writer feedback

Perhaps the best thing about this workshop for me was getting to meet other writers, interacting with them, getting feedback from them and discussing craft issues with them. This reaffirmed my love of critique and also showed me that no matter how polished you think a piece might be, there is always going to be room for improvement.

Have you attended any writing workshops?

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