16th Annual Florida Writers Conference

“What A Character”
October 19 – 22 in Altamonte Springs, Florida

jennifer allenJennifer (J.A.) Allen


J. A. Allen is an emerging author, established blogger, and successful freelance writer. Focusing on common writing struggles, her blog JAAllenAuthor.com boasts over 21,000 followers and a glowing recommendation from best-selling author Anne Rice. As cohost of the fledgling web show Writers Off Task With Friends, she interviews emerging and established authors and discusses methods to overcome writing challenges. Her premiere novel, Old Souls, is set for release soon.


Planning Your Crappy First Draft for a Spectacular Novel

Writing a first draft can be a liberating experience. Finally, the characters and plotlines that lived solely in the author’s mind for so long can find reality in print. And, while writers often obsess about putting the right words on the page, it is widely agreed that the first draft isn’t about stressing over the right words—it’s about honing the story itself. Getting the first draft on paper while the intended plot is still fresh in one’s mind can be a crucial factor in writing a cohesive story. So, before diving into the first draft of a novel head first, there are several points an author should plan, enabling the writer to immerse his or herself in the world they are creating.

Manipulating the Hero’s Journey for a Better Book

The Hero’s Journey, the Monomyth, and the Writer’s Journey are variations of the same basic outline. The story structure has been used to map countless successful novels and Hollywood hits such as The Lion King, Gladiator, The Hobbit, and The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe. It’s a useful tool to help map out your book —without surrendering creative control. This workshop focuses on manipulating the basic elements of the Hero’s Journey to build a plot filled with twists and turns that the readers will never expect. Attendees of this workshop will examine the various steps of the model in a comparative study of three very different works:

  • The Matrix
  • Frozen
  • The Catcher in the Rye

Interview Topics

Building a successful blog, plotting a novel, writing short stories for contests, Breaking into the freelance writing market, conflict and tension, characterization, constructing a solid social media platform, First drafts for success.


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