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It’s finally here.  Day 1 of the Greater Lehigh Valley Writer’s Group Write Stuff Conference™ begins tomorrow Thursday, March 22. Starting us off is NYT bestselling author, Bob Mayer.

7:00 a.m. Check-In table opens.  Pick up registration materials at the check-in table

Bob Mayer 2


Thursday March 22 Session Overview

 Includes Lunch and Writers Café

Day 1 Summary Graphic copy


Morning Session Syllabus


The Original Idea: The Heart of Your Story and Key to Selling Your Book

Can you say what your book is about in 25 words or less? This is essential to writing a tight book and then selling it.  We’ll discuss ways to find and state your original idea so that you stay on course while writing the book and an approach with which you can excite those you tell your idea to when trying to sell it. Conflict drives your story.  Not only must conflict escalate throughout the entire novel, every single scene must have conflict in it. The Conflict Box is an effective technique for focusing your story on the protagonist, antagonist, their goals and finding out if you have the necessary conflict lock.

Plot and Outline: The Events of Your Story Part 1

  • Narrative structure is a baseline craft for a writer to understand.
  • The creative process before the actual start of the book
  • The elements of narrative structure with examples from film clips.
  • The exciting opening that grabs the reader through the escalating conflict to the climactic scene and ending with the resolution
  • Discussion with emphasis on hooks, the remote-control effect, building suspense, and having satisfying endings.

Plot and Outline:  The Events of Your Story Part 2 and Introduction to Character Part 1:

The most critical component of a novel is character.  How do you go from flat two-dimensional characters to vibrant three-dimensional ones? Templates to develop characters and the concept of character arc and change will be discussed. These include profiling, psychological frameworks to show character arc and change.


Afternoon Session Syllabus


Introduction to Character Part 2 (Continued from morning session)

Point of View, Setting, and Dialogue goes beyond just first person, third person and omniscient voices. The point of view you write in is your voice as a writer and often the issue lies deeper than simply a mechanical device. For example, voice dictates what you can say about your characters and what you can’t. It also sets you apart from others and makes you distinct. Setting is not just where, but also when, and can help set your story apart from others.

The Creative Process for Writers

Why do we write? How do we write? How do we create something out of just our minds? The longer I’ve been writing for a living, the more I’ve been focusing on process. It’s unique for every writer, but the most important aspect of what we do. We have to understand how our minds work, how we create, how we process idea, story and put them into our writing. A topic rarely covered, but I’ve found it’s the most fundamental thing a writer needs to understand.

Selling and Marketing Your Book

Should you go traditional or self-publish? Which is better for you? What should you do to succeed on either path? In the quickly changing world of publishing it’s often confusing to know what to do. The benefits of various paths will be discussed as well as ways to market books, regardless of path chosen.


Thursday 6

And don’t forget Writer’s Cafe at 7:00 PM, where you get an opportunity to practice your pitch, or share the first page of your story to others.


Article by DT Krippene – Social Media Chair