vic digenti

Vic DiGenti is the instructor for this up-beat and fast-paced interactive workshop.

Now Open for Registration!

Writers today face an uphill climb. The competition is fierce, the learning curve steep. There’s no magic wand, but by learning the basic techniques for crafting a novel, the beginning writer can quickly flatten the learning curve.

For both beginning writers and more advanced pros looking for new insights, this workshop provides writers with the tools needed to craft their own novel—a novel that will grab a reader’s attention and keep them turning pages.

Here are some of the topics covered:

  • Elements of plot and structure
  • Creating characters that sizzle
  • Secrets of good dialogue
  • Crafting strong beginnings, middles and ends
  • Writing in scene
  • Tips for self-editing

Don’t put your writing dreams on hold—let the Novel in a Day Workshop show you how to turn rejection slips into royalties.

Vic DiGenti is the instructor for this up-beat and fast-paced interactive workshop. As Parker Francis, he writes the Quint Mitchell Mystery series. He’s also written the award-winning adventure/fantasy Windrusher trilogy. Vic is a Florida Writers Association Regional Director, and co-director of the Florida Heritage Book Festival & Writers Conference.

Space is limited. Reserve your place now.

When: August 30, 2014, 9:00 AM – 4:30 PM
Where: Community Clubhouse, Winter Park FL 32792 -  MAP
Fee: $89.

  • Registration fee includes a 30-page workbook.
  • Workshop starts promptly. Please come up to 30 minutes early to network and settle in.
  • We’ll break for lunch. Brown bag it, or purchase lunch from any of several nearby restaurants.
Register Online

Register by Mail: Make your check payable to MAD about Words. (Sorry, we can only take credit card payments online.) Please include your full name, address, phone number and email address. Mail your information and payment to MAD about Words, P.O. Box 5057, Winter Park FL 32793-5057

Vic DiGenti is a superb instructor and offered a well-organized, interactive workshop. Great takeaway. A good session for both novice and experienced writers. —Nancy F.

Very fresh outlook, but also realistic about what it takes to write a novel. DiGenti was quirky and made a very productive workshop.” —Victoria C.

Vic DiGenti is a great speaker and covered all the material you could want. Group work and matching handout were very helpful.—Shannon B.

I have not had such an enjoyable time or learned more at a workshop of any kind in many years. The day was fun, informative and interactive. The information provided was on point, made logical sense and is immediately applicable to my writing. —Nick V.

Terms of Registration:You must be age 18 or older to participate. Special offers and discounts cannot be combined. Refunds cannot be issued for cancellations unless we receive your written refund request two weeks before the workshop date. Fees for returned checks and cancellations apply. If, at our discretion, the workshop is canceled, refunds will be issued. Your registration is confirmed via email from MAD about Words.

Writers can come up with a lot of reasons for not finishing a first draft, and some of them even sound plausible. I know the real reasons. (And I’ve got a solution.)

  1. Fall in love with the thrill of new ideas, but don’t fall in love with the work it takes to execute them.
  2. Need to begin at the beginning and make it perfect before you move on.
  3. Wait to find the time to write.
  4. Leave the work before you can get through a difficult patch of writing.
  5. Abandon the current writing project for a new and better writing project.
  6. And then abandon that project for another one.
  7. Seek praise from others, show embryonic work, and then be broken by how people react to it.
  8. Write as if you’re being watched.
  9. Decide too soon what the piece is about, and don’t allow yourself to wander off the trail you’ve set.
  10. Compare your writing to the writing of others.
  11. Judge and discount your work prematurely—early in the draft or even before you get anything down on paper.
  12. Talk about it instead of writing it.
  13. Think  about it instead of writing it.
  14. Think you need to write in a certain order. “I can’t write the next scene—chapter, line, paragraph—until I write this one.”
  15. Think it should be easy.
  16. Think it’s easy for other people but not you.
  17. Think you’ve got to get it right the first time.
  18. Think you’ll run out things to say.
  19. Think your writing doesn’t matter.
  20. Think you need to know in the beginning how it all turns out in the end.
  21. Romanticize writer’s block.

Does any of this sound familiar?

I have, at one time or another, taken just about every route on the list. And I still wander some of those paths.

The last one–romanticizing writer’s block–is delusional. We might feel we’re members of some cool writer’s club, even when we’re not producing work, if we have writer’s block. (Heck, movies are made about it. ) But we don’t feel quite so cool when we admit to what writer’s block really is—crippling fear and anxiety.

All the behaviors I’ve listed above are based in fear and anxiety.  But once you cop to being scared and understand that it’s normal to feel anxiety about a writing project in development, it can get easier to move forward in spite of these feelings. It would be healthier, I believe, if writers would talk honestly with each other about how scary writing can be, instead of romanticizing the idea of writer’s block.

Here’s the road to finishing that first draft: Get comfortable with discomfort.

When you start a new writing project, you can’t be sure how it will turn out. No one is, even the pros. Uncertainty is inherent in the writing process. Accept the discomfort of uncertainty, make friends with it, invite it to sit next to you as you work, but don’t let it grow into the kind of fear and anxiety that stops you from writing what you are meant to write. Easier said than done, I know.

A version of this post originally appeared on the Florida Writers Association blog.