2018 Speaker Schedule

2018 Speaker Schedule


January 6 - Foundations of World Building - Donna Galanti

All stories happen somewhere. Whether you write fantasy, dystopian, science fiction, or even about the “real world,” world building is key to creating a meaningful story. With two science fiction and two fantasy books under her belt, Donna shares methods of world building that any writer can apply. From the smallest details to the rules of its universe, discover the way a considered approach to world building can govern the hearts of your characters and help drive your story. Topics include: elements of world building, using world building to support conflict and tension, world building questions and resources, and what to avoid in building your world.


February 3 - Selfpub 101 and Open Q&A - Marie Force

Marie will cover all the basics of self-publishing from the decision to do it to the ins-and-outs of how to do it. Then she'll have a no-holds-barred Q&A that will be interesting, informative and helpful to writers at all stages of their career. 


March 3 - 25th Anniversary Event with Damon Suede

MEMBERS ONLY event to celebrate VFRW!


April 7 - "We Don't Need No Stinkin' Rules" - Holly Jacobs

Editors complain about the lack of originality, lack of spark. Over-zealous contest judges send unsuspecting entrants into hysteria. One writer tells another, "You will NEVER sell THAT because of XYZ."  Rules, rules, rules.  Lately it seems like writing in general and romance in particular are drowning in them. Holly Jacobs says the truth will set you free! The truth according to Holly is:  most of the "rules" can be bent, broken, folded, spindled, and otherwise mangled. Very few of them are absolutes, at least as far as they're concerned. Once you know the "rules," can you ignore them and break them at will? Is it really "all in the execution?"


May 5 - Breaking Out and Making Six Figures - Eliza Knight

With the advent of self-publishing years ago, the world of publishing opened up in a whole new way, paving the path for many writers to forge lucrative and self-sustaining careers. In this workshop, I'll share my own personal journey to success, but also focus on key elements every writer can and should implement in order to gain visibility and succeed. Topics we'll focus on are: Career structure, focus and goals - Writing smart - Gathering your team - Marketing strategies that work and those that don't - Planning for the future. 

(off June, July, August)


September 15 - Working Lunch Workshop with Madeline Hunter

Taking Your Writing to the Next Level: Motivation, Characterization and Conflict


What makes one story ordinary and another a page turner? What makes characters come alive to readers? How can reconsidering the motivations of your characters add depth to your story? What kind of conflict will sustain a novel length story?


Join Madeline Hunter in her full day workshop where she will discuss all of these questions and show how essential decisions about conflict, motivation and characterization are among the ways to take your writing to the next level. Specific examples and hands on sessions will help writers to see how you can reinvent a story idea to make it more compelling and "big book." Bring a work in progress or a new story concept and leave with a conflict driven synopsis for a book that will wow readers and captivate editors. 



October 6 - Annual General Meeting - Judi Fennell and Steph Julian

On vendors and platforms for self-publishing.


November 3 - Jo Stout

Using the three-act plotting method from Alexandra Sokoloff's Screenwriting Tips for Authors, this module will help writers learn what is needed to lay out a road map for a new book, give a lifeline to those mired in their middle with no idea how to get unstuck, and craft a plan of attack for those who are raring to revise a completed manuscript.

December - Holiday Party