16th Annual Florida Writers Conference

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

The Florida Writers Conference has a proven track record of helping writers move to the next level with inspiring workshops that deliver meaningful information, informative panels, and the opportunity to speak with industry leaders and agents and editors from leading literary agencies and publishing houses.

Florida Writers Foundation Celebrity Workshop

Separate registration is required for the Celebrity Workshop benefiting the Florida Writers Foundation

8:30 AM Registration and check-in opens for the Florida Writers Foundation

9:00 AM – 4:00 PM Lessons from a Lifetime of Writing with New York Times bestselling author David Morrell (Royal Palm Ballroom)

4:00 PM – 4:45 PM David Morrell book sale and signing (Bookstore)

Florida Writers Conference Begins

Note: Early bird registration includes all of tonight’s Boot Camp workshops

8:00 AM – 11:00 AM Bookstore set-up

1:00 PM – 8:00 PM Bookstore open for business

6:30 PM Registration and check-in opens for the Florida Writers Conference (Dogwood)

7:00 PM – 7:30 PM Welcome and opening remarks (Crystal Ballrooms A – E)

7:45 PM – 9:15 PM Boot Camp Workshops

  • Fiction Writers Boot Camp – Janice Hardy (Crystal Ballroom A – B)
  • Finding an Agent Boot Camp – Jeff Kleinman (Crystal Ballroom C)
  • Marketing Boot Camp – David Ivester (Crystal Ballroom D)
  • Screenwriters Boot Camp – Michael Tabb (Crystal Ballroom E)

9:30 PM Registration & check-in closes

6:30 AM Registration and check-in opens

7:00 AM – 7:45 AM Genre Breakfast (Connect with authors who write in the same genre as you)

  • Announcements at 7:30 AM (Crystal Ballrooms A – E)

7:00 AM – 9:00 AM Bookstore check-in (Capital One & Two)

8:00 AM –  ­6:30 PM Silent Auction (Chambers)

8:00 AM Opening Session with David Morrell followed by book signing (Crystal Ballrooms A – E)

Get to know our National Guest of Honor in this one-on-one interview hosted by Conference Faculty Chair Vic DiGenti. Learn how David Morrell became known as “an absolute master of the thriller novel,” (Dean Koontz) and how his love for a classic TV series inspired him to be a writer. David will sign books immediately after the interview.

9:10 AM – 10:10 AM Workshops

  • Writing the Cozy Mystery – Nancy Cohen (Crystal Ballrooms A – B)
  • So You Want to Write Science Fiction & Fantasy – Diana Pho (Crystal Ballroom C)
  • A Walk Through the Traditional Publishing Process – Jennifer Donovan (Crystal Ballroom D)
  • World Building: Creating the Best Environment for Your Story & Characters – L. E. Perez (Crystal Ballroom E)
  • Smells Like Teen Spirit (YA Panel) – (Royal Ballroom)
  • Perfecting Your Pitch – Chantelle Osman (Amphitheater)
  • Critique 101 (2 hours – Advance registration required) – JoSelle Vanderhooft (Executive Board Room)

10:00 AM – 6:30 PM Bookstore Open

10:30 AM – 11:30 AM Workshops

  • True Crime – Stranger than Fiction – Carla Norton (Crystal A – B)
  • How to Write an Effective Hook or Elevator Pitch – Mark Gottlieb (Crystal C)
  • Using Micro-Tension to Write a Riveting Story – Heather Whitaker (Crystal D)
  • Super Fans: The Secrets to Selling More Books – Penny Sansevieri (Crystal E)
  • 5 Trademark Issues for Writers – Anne Dalton (Amphitheater)

10:30 AM – 11:30 AM Collection Signing (Royal Palm Ballroom)

11:45 AM – 1:45 PM Collection Lunch & FWA Volunteer Recognition (Crystal Ballrooms A – E)

2:00 PM – 3:00 PM Workshops

  • Going Deeper: Eliciting Greater Emotion Through Deep POV – Carol Post (Crystal Ballroom C)
  • So You Want to Write Historical Fiction – Susan Carol McCarthy (Crystal Ballrooms A – B)
  • A Trap for the Unwary: The Risks & Rewards of the First Person Viewpoint – David Morrell, National Guest of Honor (Crystal Ballrooms D – E)
  • Dredging Up Your Dark Side (Panel – Royal Palm Ballroom)
  • How I sold 20,000 Copies of My Debut Novel in the First Year – Allison Maruska (Amphitheater)
  •  Critique 102 (2 hours – Advance registration required) – JoSelle Vanderhooft (Executive Board Room)

3:20 PM – 4:20 PM Workshops

  • Your Life As A Character – Lauren Gibaldi & Jenny Torres Sanchez (Crystal Ballrooms A – B)
  • Narrative & Creative Nonfiction – Jeff Kleinman (Crystal Ballroom C)
  • Planning Your Crappy First Draft for a Spectacular Novel – Jennifer Allen (Crystal D)
  • Find an Agent & Publish Your Book – Emmanuelle Morgen (Crystal Ballroom E)
  • Life of an Acquisition Editor (Panel – Royal Palm Ballroom)
  • Ethics for Writers – Anne Dalton & Chrissy Jackson (Amphitheater)

4:40 PM – 5:00 PM Door Prize Drawing – You must be present to win. Be sure to bring your raffle tickets. (Crystal Ballrooms A – C)

5:15 PM – 6:15 PM Workshops

  • Show Don’t Tell: Learning to Love and Trust Your Readers – Sam Staley (Crystal Ballrooms A – B)
  • Social Media; The Good, the Bad & the Ugly – Eric Smith (Crystal Ballroom C)
  • The Discipline of Writing  – Ben Hale (Crystal D)
  • Mystery Writing: It Starts with a Crime – Micki Browning (Crystal Ballroom E)
  • Effective Book Marketing with POEM – Keith Ogorek (Amphitheater)

6:15 PM – 7:00 PM Welcome Reception (Royal Palm Ballroom)

6:30 PM Registration & check-in closes

7:00 PM – 7:45 PM Welcome Dinner (Crystal Ballrooms A – E)

  • 7:45 PM Keynote Address by Steve Berry, Florida Writer of the Year (Crystal Ballrooms A – E)

8:30 PM – 10:00 PM Workshops & Panels

  • Publishing by the Numbers – Paul Stevens (Crystal Ballroom A-B)
  • Advanced POV – Heather Whitaker (Crystal Ballroom C)
  • Self Publishing for Fun & Profit – Doug Dandridge (Crystal Ballroom D)
  • Bookstores & Beyond: Marketing in the Age of Amazon – Darlyn Finch Kuhn & Brad Kuhn (Crystal Ballroom E)
  • First Page Pitchfest – Interactive panel – Advance registration required – (Royal Palm Ballroom)

8:30 PM – 10:00 PM Open Mic (Amphitheater)

The stage is set. The mic is hot. It’s your turn to shine and read a portion of your WIP or recently published work that just screams to be shared with our Open Mic crowd. The irrepressible Chris Hamilton will keep the show moving.

8:30 PM Writers Group Rendezvous (Waldolf)
Want to discover what can add even more sizzle to your meetings? This invitation is not just for group leaders. All interested members are welcome.

6:30 AM Registration and check-in opens

7:00 AM – 7:45 AM Genre Breakfast (Connect with authors who write in the same genre as you) Announcements at 7:30 AM (Crystal Ballrooms A – E)

7:00 AM – 6:30 PM Bookstore open for business

8:00 AM – 7:20 PM Silent Auction (Chambers)

8:00 AM – 8:50 AM Get to Know Steve Berry — Florida Writer of the Year – Booksigning will follow (Crystal Ballrooms A – E)

9:15 AM – 10:15 AM Workshops

  • 7 Things Every Writer Needs to Know to Become an Author – Keith Ogorek – (Crystal Ballrooms A – B)
  • Getting to Know Your Characters – Jenny Torres Sanchez (Crystal Ballroom C)
  • Book Promotion on a Budget – Nancy Cohen – (Crystal Ballroom D)
  • Settings & Descriptions: How Much is Enough & What’s Too Much? – Dan Alatorre (Crystal Ballroom E)
  • Liar, Liar! Pants on Fire – Panel (Royal Palm Ballroom)
  • Sharing Hope: Writing for the Inspirational Market – Carol Post (Amphitheater)
  • Critique 103 (1 hour – Advance registration required) – JoSelle Vanderhooft (Executive Board Room)

10:30 AM – 11:30 AM Workshops

  • From a Whisper to a Roar: Mastering Your Voice – Ben Hale (Crystal A – B)
  • Writing the Science Fiction Series – Doug Dandridge (Crystal Ballroom C)
  • Secrets to Writing Great Dialogue – Carla Norton (Crystal Ballroom D)
  • Help! My Book Isn’t Selling – Penny Sansevieri (Crystal Ballroom E)
  • Life of a Literary Agent – (Panel – Royal Palm Ballroom)
  • So You Want to be a Freelancer – Brad Kuhn (Amphitheater)

11:45 AM – 1:45 PM Awards Luncheon — Youth Writers RPLA Awards, President and Executive Vice President Awards, plus Annual Meeting (Crystal Ballrooms A – E)

2:00 PM – 3:00 PM Workshops

  • Publicize Your Way to Success – David Ivester (Crystal A – B
  • The Six Cs of Story Structure — It’s Not Everything, It’s Absolutely Everything – Steve Berry, Florida Writer of the Year (2 hours) (Crystal Ballrooms C – E
  • 5 Contract Issues for Writers – Anne Dalton (Amphitheater)

2:00 PM – 3:00 PM  Faculty Readings – (Royal Palm Ballroom)

3:20 PM – 4:20 PM Workshops & Panels

  • How to Sell Books by the Truckload – Penny Sansevieri (Crystal A-B)
  • The Six Cs of Story Structure — It’s Not Everything, It’s Absolutely Everything (Continued) – Steve Berry, Florida Writers of the Year (Crystal Ballroom C – E)
  • The Gong Show Pitchfest (Royal Palm Ballroom)
  • I’m Not a Scientist, But Story Physics Works for Me – Allison Maruska (Amphitheater)

4:40 PM – 5:00 PM Door Prize Drawing – You must be present to win. Be sure to bring your raffle tickets. (Crystal Ballrooms A – E)

5:15 PM – 6:15 PM Workshop

  • Pitching Hollywood — Michael Tabb (Amphitheater)

6:30 PM Registration & check-in closes

6:30 PM – 7:30 PM Royal Palm Literary Awards Reception (Royal Palm Ballroom)

7:30 PM – 10:00 PM Royal Palm Literary Awards Banquet (Crystal Ballrooms A – E)

6:30 AM Registration and check-in opens

7:00 AM – 10:30 AM Silent Auction Pickup (Chambers)

7:00 AM – 7:45 AM Genre Breakfast (Connect with authors who write in the same genre as you) Announcements at 7:30 AM (Crystal Ballrooms A – E)

8:00 AM – 11:20 AM Hangin’ With – Interviews with Authors/Faculty/Others (Executive Boardroom)

8:00 AM ­ 10:30 AM Bookstore open for sales

8:00 – 9:00 AM Workshops

  • How to Bring Your Novel to Life – Janice Hardy (Crystal Ballrooms A – B)
  • Bring That Action Scene to Life – L. E. Perez (Crystal Ballroom C)
  • Pace Your Story for Maximum Reader Enjoyment – Carol Post (Crystal Ballroom D)
  •  How to Find a Literary Agent and a Good One at That – Mark Gottlieb (Crystal E)
  • Manipulating the Hero’s Journey for a Better Book – Jennifer Allen (Royal Palm Ballroom)
  • Weird Characters, Strange Places and Tough Times: Writing New Southern Gothic – Darlyn Finch Kuhn (Amphitheater)

8:30 AM – 10:30 AM Bookstore Pick-up

9:00 AM – 9:30 AM RPLA Published Winners book signing (Capital 1 & 2)

9:20 AM – 10:20 AM Workshops

  • The Art & Science of Scene Structure – Heather Whitaker (Crystal A – B)
  • Criminal Minds: It’s Complicated – Micki Browning (Crystal C)
  • How to Write a Killer Romantic Suspense Novel – Emily Rodmell (Crystal Ballrooms C)
  • 50 Editing Mistakes Authors Make – Chantelle Osman (Crystal E).
  • What Writers Can Learn About Storytelling From Film – Sam Staley (Royal Palm Ballroom)
  • Outline Your Way to a Compelling Read – Dan Alatorre (Amphitheater)

9:30 AM Registration & check-in closes

10:45 AM – 11:45 AM Final door prizes and closing remarks (Crystal Ballrooms A – E)

  • Kick off “Where Does Your Muse Live?” Florida Writers Association, Volume 10

PLEASE NOTE: The conference schedule is subject to change without notice.

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