Recap: Advanced Writing Workshop with Alicia Rasley

Our September workshop was held on Sunday, September 10, 2017 and was an all-day (retreat-style) workshop. This meant we had one workshop from 10am-12:30pm, broke to all go to lunch together, and had a second workshop from 2:30-4pm.

The presenter, Alicia Rasley, is a bestselling and award-winning author of romance and women’s fiction. She has taught hundreds of writing courses online, also teaches writing at two state colleges, and advises students in a university writing center. Her book, The Power of Point of View, was a Writer’s Digest monthly selection. Alicia has served as a fiction and non-fiction editor for both large and small presses, 

In the morning workshop we went over pacing and tricks such as linking devices and motifs to help your story feel cohesive to the reader. She also took us through plotting in three acts and cause-and-effects and goal-oriented pacing. We also went through scene analysis and beats, using examples from the films Casablanca and Love Actually.

The afternoon workshop was on “Emotion without Sentimentality” where we explored ways to create emotional experiences for the readers. She started by nailing into our brains the fact that emotion is not about how we, the writer, feels, or even about how our character feels, but about how we can manipulate the reader to feel. We examined different poems during this workshop to see examples of emotional writing, and we looked at story design, scene design, and upbeat/downbeat structure to get the emotion across.

In addition to her fantastic delivery and examples, Alicia also prepared a 30 page handout for us to take home, with tons of additional information for us to read on our own time.

 For more about Alicia, check out: