Friday, December 9

Home/Friday, December 9

Books will be sold today

8:00am: Breakfast

9:00am – 10:30am

Guest and Faculty Lecture: Forrest Stephan & John Schimmel (Screenwriting)

Room: Salon 4

Writing For Virtual Reality. “The next big things” come and go. 3-D was supposed to change the movie business, give us a whole new experience. Didn’t really happen. But now there is virtual reality. People are jumping on this bandwagon with an unnerving ferocity. But there’s a difference: This time, if we get it right, it could be a major game changer for the way we experience stories. What could that mean for writers and storytellers? Will the age-old paradigm for drama finally shift? Come join me and Forrest Stephan who is both a major part of the brain trust at Cloud Imperium Games and a clear visual representation of why it makes little sense that I work there.

9:00am – 10:30am

Faculty Lecture: Mary Waters (Fiction)

Room: Salon 6

The “It” Factor – Describing what an experience feels like. With so much competition out there, what is the “it” factor that makes a piece of writing stand out to an editor?  “It” factors come in many different forms.  So I’ll focus on just one aspect that sinks many writers:  conveying what a particular experience feels like.  This where most writers are at their most trite, tedious, and uninsightful.  This is where an editor can weed out mediocre writers (or discover a promising writer).  It’s what separates a diamond-in-the-rough writer from someone who may be technically more skillful but shows little promise. We will examine some great examples of “it” quality writing (BTW, this has nothing to do with beautiful prose, or writing styles.  This also has nothing to do with showing vs. telling.)

9:00am – 10:30am

 Faculty Lecture: David Ulin (Nonfiction)

Room: Salon 3

The Engaged Essayist. We expect the essay to focus inward because that is the nature of the form. At the same time, essays come at us from glancing angles, illuminating things we haven’t seen before. This is the result of engagement, which is the essayist’s most essential tool. Political, personal, lyric, critical — all essays begin with the engagement of the writer to the material.

10:30am – 12:00pm

Guest Faculty Lecture: Jessica Kubzansky (Playwriting)

Room: Salon 4

The Journey of New Plays, from Page through Development to Full Production. In this soup-to-nuts lecture, we’ll go from concept to production, looking at the steps that your work will go through from you sitting at your desk to you sitting in the audience, watching it all unfold.

10:30am – 12:00pm

Guest Faculty Lecture: Ben Blacker (Screenwriting, Nonfiction)

Room: Salon 6

Writing, Creating, and Producing A Successful Podcast Empire. And The Also All The Other Stuff, Too. You want to create narrative podcast that becomes a national sensation? Want to do it while also creating comics, writing for television, and developing your own projects? We’ll discuss this all with Ben Blacker.

10:30am – 12:00pm

Guest Faculty Lecture: Ryan Harbage (Agent, Publishing)

Room: Salon 3

Agent & Author with Rob Roberge. A candid conversation on the working relationship between an agent and an author…and a look into how it can go sour, too.


12:00pm – 1:00pm: Lunch

1:15pm – 4:15pm: Main Genre Workshops

Classes will be held in the Las Flores Conference Center

Salons 1, 2 and 8 are located in the main conference and meeting area

12:00pm-1:00pm: Lunch

1:15-4:15: Main Genre Workshops

Crane: Begonia

Essbaum & McCann: Gardenia

Goldberg: 3012

Graham Jones:  Jasmine

Malkin:  Lantana

Otis:  Larkspur

Rabkin:  Lavender

Stillman/Ulin: Plumeria

Roberge: Gardenia

Schimmel: Hibiscus

Smith:  Primrose

Waters: Iris


Graduate Lecture: Melissa Henderson (Fiction)

Room: Salon 4

Multimedia in Modern Narrative. Are multimedia elements in fiction/NF mere gimmicks, antiquated before they can ossify? How far can we go before crossing the border into graphic novel/comic book territory? What do we talk about when we talk about multimedia? We’ll explore multimedia that strengthens/supports the narrative without seeming like a dated cheap trick. (There will be props. Possibly treats.)


Graduate Lecture: John Mattson (Screenwriting)

Room: Salon 4

Character — What It Is, What It Isn’t, and How It Works in a Screenplay:  Christopher Vogler wrote: “We want real stories about real people. A real character, like a real person, is not just a single trait but a unique combination of many qualities and drives.” He’s wrong. The sophisticated psychology of your protagonist is likely beside the point.


Evening program: Night of 1000 Plays in the bluEmber room