Outline Your Novel: Building a Story with Solid Bones
Perhaps you've wondered how novelists keep track of so many character arcs, plot twists, unfurling mysteries, and other narrative elements, while also crafting these various threads into elegant, well-paced and developed narratives? Perhaps you're feeling the unwieldiness of your book as it grows, unsure of how to move forward, or maybe it's going great and you're excited to dive even deeper into the mechanics of your plot. Whatever the reason, there are myriad reasons to pause in the process and spend some time developing an outline, or strengthening the one you have: Outlines allow you to juggle the multiple threads of your story in a way that will later make the process much easier, allowing you to more easily develop mysteries and other exciting twists, and to above all save time in the writing process. Outlines are also where MUCH of the creativity and imaginative fun of novel-writing happens, contrary to popular belief. In this class, you'll be guided through writing all parts of a comprehensive three-act outline for your book, which will bring order and structure to your story, and help you move forward in the writing process with confidence and more ease. Writers will leave with a complete three-act outline.
We'll begin by looking at the "shape" of some masterful novels (Americannah, Song of Achilles, Pride & Prejudice, among others). We'll talk about the three-act structure: What it is, where we see it in these works, and how to use it in our own. Then, through a series of in-class outlining exercises and with the help of several templates, participants will be given time to work on developing their own outlines. Lastly, we'll talk about strategies for moving forward with your three-act outline and how to use it to best help you in the writing process. Writers will leave the workshop with a solid Three Act outline. All levels. Limited to 15 writers.
For: Novel and memoir writers at any stage of the process. Ideal for writers who have a clear story in mind, and who have already given thought to the major events of the story, but perhaps have struggled with holding everything in their minds or figuring out the right order. Also useful for writers who have a first draft and want to scrutinize and reevaluate their structure and flow of narrative. Fine for writers who are just coming to an idea, though come prepared to do more heavy-lifting imaginative work (but this can be the most fun too)!
WHEN: Saturday, March 13 (1 - 4pm EST)
WHERE: Online, via Zoom video conference (live)
ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR
JOY BAGLIO is the founder/director of Pioneer Valley Writers' Workshop. Her short fiction has appeared in Tin House, American Short Fiction, The Iowa Review, TriQuarterly, Gulf Coast, PANK, SmokeLong Quarterly, and elsewhere. She's the recipient of fellowships and awards from from Yaddo, The Elizabeth George Foundation, Bread Loaf, Vermont Studio Center, The Speculative Literature Foundation, among others, and her flash fiction has been recognized by the Wigleaf Top 50 (Very) Short Fictions.
RECEIVING THE ZOOM LINK: For one-day workshops, we send out the link to attend the Zoom session 1 - 2 days before the event, via email. For multi-week workshops, you should receive info and the link about 3 - 5 days before. Please mark your calendars when you first register and look for our emails. If you don't see the email in your inbox on the day before the class, please check your spam and junk mail folders (and search all folders) for an email from firstname.lastname@example.org before contacting us. We have found that very often our emails end up in those folders. This is based on your own email settings, and you can prevent this by adding our email as a contact.
ONLINE SESSIONS happen remotely, via Zoom video conference. All you need is a laptop, computer, or phone with functioning audio and a webcam. Those who RSVP receive directions and a link to "join" the session via email (please see above note about receiving the Zoom link). All online instructors will log on to the video conference a few minutes before the start of the session, so please plan to log on early if you'd like assistance! We'll do everything in our power to help you get comfortable with the Zoom format, though we are not able to offer technical assistance beyond basic Zoom orientation.
REFUND & CREDIT POLICIES AT PVWW
Because of non-refundable fees that we, PVWW, must pay for every transaction that happens, we are not able to give full refunds to those who register then withdraw from a workshop or class. If you withdraw from a workshop ten days or more before the start of the class: You'll receive full credit toward another workshop or class of equal value OR a refund minus 10%. If you withdraw from a workshop nine days before the start of the class up until 48 hours before: You'll receive full credit toward another class OR a refund minus 30%. If you withdraw from a workshop less than 48 hours before the start of a class or after the class has begun: We are not able to offer you credit toward another class or a partial refund, unless in the case of a medical emergency. If we have to cancel a class for any reason, you will receive a full refund, or if you choose, a credit in the amount of your payment, to be used for any future PVWW class. Anyone who does not specify whether they would like a refund or a credit for a cancelled class within 3 months will automatically be refunded. Please contact Joy (email@example.com) for all matters concerning credit and refunds.