Monday, December 5

Home/Monday, December 5

Books will be sold today.

8:00am: Breakfast


9:00am – 10:30am

Guest Faculty Lecture: Alex Espinoza (Fiction)

Room: Salon 4

Writing About Place. Setting is the essence of drama and in this lecture, we’ll examine how to create vibrant settings that become as important to the reader as the characters they’re reading about.

9:00am – 10:30am

Faculty Lecture: Anthony McCann (Poetry)

Room: Salon 6

Somatic Poetry. In my talk last residency students were introduced to the work of CAConrad. This residency we will look at Conrad’s (Soma)tic Poetry exercises. These exercises are preparative ritual engagements with the natural and human world; Conrad crafts each of his poems from materials gathered though these engagements. We will look at a number of the exercises closely, discuss how we might craft an exercise of our own and then do one of Conrad’s together. No familiarity with Conrad or his work is required; what is needed is a genuine willingness to experiment and comfortable clothes and shoes. We will likely end up out doors, sitting on the ground. There will be dirt. Bring a good notebook with many pages and some reliable writing implements as well.

 10:30am – 12:00pm

Guest Faculty Lecture: Dana Johnson (Fiction)

Room: Salon 4

Writing Sex: Yes, there can be too much of a good thing.

 10:30am – 12:00pm

Guest Faculty Lecture: Mickey Birnbaum (Playwriting)

Room: Salon 6

F*^k Three-Act Structure, Five-Act Structure Rules. Five Act Structure The dominant structural paradigm for screenwriters, playwrights and novelists has been the three-act structure, but what if there’s a structure more durable, more useful, more suited to storytelling? The five-act structure has been around since the Romans. Shakespeare used it. And Shakespeare, as we know, was never wrong. We’ll examine how a five-act structure functions in film and theater, and how you can apply it to your own

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

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 Student Lecture: Christina Tillitz (Screenwriting)

Room: Salon 4

Historical Film: Making History Exciting without Sacrificing Truth. Historical films are big. The King’s Speech (2010), Argo (2012), 12 Years a Slave (2013), and Spotlight (2015) all won the Academy Award for Best Picture. It seems easy enough – the story is already written for you.  But how do you make your story stand out?  We’ll examine key moments from the 1930s and discuss how to turn them into compelling films that aren’t fiction. (P.S. There will be gangsters).


Graduate Student Lecture: Monica Main (Screenwriting)

Room: Salon 4

What Ever Happened to Screenwriter Legend Joe Eszterhas?  How does a man who broke so many glass ceilings for screenwriters in Hollywood go from being one of the highest paid and most powerful screenwriters of all time to completely M.I.A. (Missing in Action)?  What happened to this Hollywood screenwriting icon and how can other screenwriters learn from the errors of his ways so that once they break in, they can STAY in the business?  Having studied Joe’s career for the past 2 decades, I’ve been able to closely examine why his career had worked and why it had stopped working.  When throwing in comparisons of his screenwriting nemesis of back in the day, Shane Black, and making brief comparisons at to why Shane’s career is still alive and well while Joe’s is not, we’re able to establish precisely what went wrong with Joe’s career and what went right with Shane’s.  It’s an interesting and somewhat surprising reveal when discovering why Joe’s career is likely over for good.  Joe’s hottest and quite relevant tips to screenwriters for success in Hollywood will also be presented.


Evening Program: Student Readings in R Bar (coordinated by TAs)

Room: R Bar (main lobby)