Workshops

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SouthWest Writers offers workshops to advance the skills and marketability of writers. Experienced instructors guide participants through lecture, example and, often, critique to increase the quality of their writing.

What is the difference between a workshop and a class? A workshop is one session. Any work required of the students is done during the 2-hour workshop. A class can be more than one session and usually includes assignments to be completed outside of class.

Workshops are usually held after the Saturday meetings in the same location. Until it’s safe to meet in person again, we’ll schedule workshops using the Zoom platform. For a schedule of all our events, go to this page.

What workshops would you like to see offered this year? Contact our Class/Workshop Coordinator at Info@SWWriters.com to let us know.


Join Us for a Workshop Via Zoom!


Submitting a Winning Entry

With Brenda Cole and Rose Marie Kern

  • Saturday, December 5
  • 12:30 – 2:30 pm
  • Platform: Zoom Live Meeting
  • $20 SWW members, $30 Non-members

This workshop with Rose Marie Kern and Brenda Cole will go over in detail how judges are required to score submissions to the SouthWest Writers Annual Contests. Participants will be provided with practice stories to score and are encouraged to submit a story of up to 500 words for the group to critique. Knowing what the gatekeepers are looking for — whether it be in a story contest, book contest, or when submitting work to publishers — gives you a leg up on the competition!

Instructors’ Bios:
Brenda Cole won her first writing contest at 13. Over the years she has become an award-winning author in nonfiction short stories. Brenda has been an educator for children from preschool through high school. Her multiple life sciences degrees led to teaching biology and Western Medicine at three different institutions. Currently she splits her time between writing, art projects and genealogy.

Retired air traffic control specialist Rose Marie Kern is an award-winning author, a conference speaker, and an active member of SouthWest Writers. In addition to penning five nonfiction books, she’s left her byline on hundreds of articles covering topics ranging from solar energy and organic gardening to those focusing on aviation.

To Register:
Call the SWW office (505-830-6034, Monday–Thursday, 9:00 am–noon) or use the Online Registration Form. (Our online payment portal utilizes PayPal, but you’ll be given an option to pay by credit card without signing into PayPal.)

The Zoom invitation link and the password will be emailed to those who purchase this workshop. For more information, please contact the workshop coordinator at programs@swwriters.com.


Starting Your Novel in 2021: Taking it Day by Day

With Jonathan Miller

  • Saturday, January 2
  • 12:30 – 2:30 pm
  • Platform: Zoom Live Meeting
  • $20 SWW members, $30 Non-members

Jonathan Miller will take a deep dive into the topics raised during his 10:00 am talk (“A Novel for the New Year”), focusing on how to have your novel ready to go before you even start writing. He will listen to Zoom pitches and give personalized advice to writers starting their novels for the year.

Instructor’s Bio:
Jonathan Miller’s first novel, Rattlesnake Lawyer, was published in 2000, and he has been involved with SWW ever since. He’s written several novels since releasing his first, many of which have won national and statewide acclaim. His novel Luna Law was a co-winner of the 2017 Hillerman Award for fiction at the New Mexico-Arizona Book Awards. His newest novel, The Shakespeare Incident, should be released from Artemesia Publishing later in 2021. Mr. Miller’s day job is as a criminal defense attorney.

To Register:
Call the SWW office (505-830-6034, Monday–Thursday, 9:00 am–noon) or use the Online Registration Form. (Our online payment portal utilizes PayPal, but you’ll be given an option to pay by credit card without signing into PayPal.)

The Zoom invitation link and the password will be emailed to those who purchase this workshop. For more information, please contact the workshop coordinator at programs@swwriters.com.


Workshop and Class Refund Policy
If you cancel one week before the beginning date of the workshop or class, you will receive a full refund. Cancellations after one week prior up to 24 hours prior to the beginning of the workshop or class will receive a credit only toward a future workshop or class of your choice. If you do not cancel or don’t show up for the workshop or class you will receive no refund and no credit. For multi-session classes, if you miss a class, you receive no refund. We pay our instructors based on how many students enroll, so you are part of that roll count if you don’t cancel as detailed above.


Workshops you might have missed:

2020

♦ How to Submit to the NMPW Annual Contest
with Loretta Hall
♦ Discovering Your Missing Ancestors
with Brenda Cole
♦ Wizard or Wannabe? How Writers Can Hire True Publishing Professionals
with Mary Neighbour
♦ What I Learned from Nancy Drew—Tools for Fast-Paced Plotting
with Chris Eboch
♦ Starting Right: A Fiction Building Block
with Sarah Baker
♦ Creating Compelling Characters: Make Your Readers Care!
with Elizabeth S. Layton
♦ Creating Book Covers
with Rose Marie Kern
♦ A Writer’s Building Block on Point of View
with Sarah H. Baker
♦ FREE: Critique Group Conversations via Zoom
with Various Moderators
♦ Pitch Your Novel Effectively
with Kirt Hickman

2019

♦ How to Submit to the NMPW Annual Contest
with Sherri Burr and Loretta Hall
♦ Productive Presentations
with Loretta Hall
♦ Preparing for a Writers Conference
with Sarah H. Baker and Rose Marie Kern
♦ Finding Online Work
with Rob Spiegel
♦ Support Your Local Bookstore…And it Will Support You
with Steve Brewer & John Hoffsis
♦ Writing a Short Story: From Beginning to End
with Johnny D. Boggs
♦ Writing about the Military
with Jim Tritten
♦ Putting Emotions into Your Characters
with Melody Groves
♦ Portals to the Multiverse: Access to Fresh Ideas for Science Fiction and Fantasy
with Betsy James
♦ How Setting Brings a Story and its Characters to Life
with Bob Kidera
♦ Social Media Marketing
with Elizabeth S. Layton

2018

♦ Creating Time and Place by Creating Language: Writing with a Sense of History
with Jack Woodville London
♦ Celluloid Aspirations Redux
with Marc Calderwood
♦ What I Learned from Nancy Drew
with Chris Eboch
♦ Pitch Your Novel Effectively!
with Kirt Hickman
♦ Writing Historical Fiction That Sells
with Sandra Toro
♦ Where’s the Funny Part?
with Steve Brewer
♦ Can You Relate? The importance of diverse relationships in your writing
with Judith Avila
♦ Creating Fictional Characters Who Stick with the Reader After the Book is Closed
with Robert D. Kidera
♦ Writing Realistic Action Scenes
with Melody Groves
♦ Spontaneous Writing
with Gerald Hausman
♦ Fueling Fantastic Fiction with Folklore
with Benjamin Radford
♦ Spinning Family Stories Into Submittable Gold
with Betty Moffett


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