Getting Your Middle Grade and Young Adult Novel Unstuck 2018

About us

An intimate workshop for middle grade and young adult authors looking to explore or revise and polish a work in progress.

Whether you’ve jotted down ideas for a novel but can’t get your story off the ground, you’re stuck in the middle of a draft with no idea of where to go next, or you’ve written most of the book but can’t figure out the ending, this workshop is designed to help! Two award-winning, New York Times best-selling authors and their guest, author Hannah Barnaby, will share their writers’ toolbox for getting unstuck, with a focus on character development, plotting and outlining, revision, journaling, and improvisation/play.

Before the workshop, participants will be asked to submit 10-12 pages from a work in progress and a brief synopsis or story description for critique. Participants will receive an initial one-on-one critique as well as individual “ask the editor” meetings with our guest editor, Kate Prosswimmer of Sourcebooks, with time for revision and additional writing in between.

Faculty blog posts:

Chris Tebbetts: Visual Outlining

Chris Tebbetts: As Simple As Possible: Three Ways To Tighten Your Prose

Preliminary schedule:

Day 1

Afternoon

Optional tour of Highlights for Children and Boyds Mills Press.

Arrival and check in.

Evening

Appetizers & Dinner

After Dinner:

Welcome, Intros, and Group Discussion: Where are you stuck? What stage of the process is most often sticky?

Journaling: Active introspection as a tool for getting unstuck: a discussion with Julie

Day 2

Morning

Breakfast.

Romeo at the Balcony: Persistence and Optimism in Pursuit of the Ideal: A lecture by Chris

Character Development: Discussion and workshop with Julie

Afternoon

Lunch. Possible discussion: craft book recommendations

Play and Improv: A workshop with Chris

Free Writing Time

Also: 20-minute Individual Manuscript Critiques with Julie and Chris

Evening

Appetizers & Dinner

After Dinner: Writing and Publishing: Self-moderated panel discussion and Q&A with Julie, Hannah, Chris

Day 3

Morning

Breakfast.

Plot and Outlines: A workshop with Chris

Chapters and Scenes that Propel the Reader: A workshop with Julie

Afternoon

Lunch. Possible discussion: fiction book recommendations

The Writer’s Toolbox, Strategies for Getting Unstuck, Part I: A workshop and discussion with Chris and Julie

Free writing time.

Evening

Appetizers & Dinner

After Dinner: Movie Night: Bird by Bird with Annie followed by a group discussion

Day 4

Morning

Breakfast.

Revision: A panel with Hannah, Chris, and Julie

The Writer’s Toolbox, Strategies for Getting Unstuck, Part II: A workshop and discussion with Chris and Julie

Afternoon

Lunch.

Plot Meets Character: finding the intersection between plot structure and character development to optimize your story: a lecture with Guest Editor Kate Prosswimmer from Sourcebooks

Free writing time

Also: scheduled one-on-one “Ask the Editor” consults

Evening

Appetizers & Dinner

After Dinner: Student Readings: optional but strongly encouraged! Participants may read aloud up to 750 words from their work in progress.

Day 5

Morning

Breakfast

Q & A with Kate Prosswimmer from Sourcebooks

Writing Prompts

Also: remaining one-on-one “Ask the Editor” consults

Goal-setting: Group discussion

Afternoon

Lunch and goodbyes.

Tags: one three two

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Book Now:

Getting Your Middle Grade and Young Adult Novel Unstuck 2018

at Highlights Foundation

  • Nov 4, 2018 - Nov 8, 2018 (5 days)

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