~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ “Stacy’s program was terrific. She kept her audience in rapt attention, and judging by the multitude of hands waving in the air at the program’s end, she also sparked quite a few imaginations. Stacy is a friendly, knowledgeable speaker and I would heartily recommend her.”
-- Marla Martin Woodbury Public Library Woodbury, Connecticut ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
PRESENTATIONS FOR STUDENTS:
These presentations are suitable for small groups
(up to 50) and can be tailored to upper elementary, middle school, or high school students.
Please allow 50 minutes or one class period for each presentation. I can schedule up to four
presentations in one day.
The Dictionary Game
In this group writing exercise, we will randomly select five
words (no cheating) from the fattest dictionary available. Using those five
words, we will begin a story that has all the basic elements a good story
setting character plot story
By the time we finish our story beginning, everyone will be
asking the question that’s music to any writer’s ears: “What happens
But we’ll interrupt that request to define and explore those
story elements, so we can learn how and why they make a story irresistible (and
prove that students can write their own irresistible stories, with or without a
really fat dictionary).
Researching Fiction: Getting the Facts Straight Even When You're Making Things Up
Research is required to write any book, even a contemporary, realistic novel. From train schedules and the cost of a train ticket to life in Italy during World War II, I'll discuss the kinds of research I did for my own novels, and how facts can make fiction come to life.
How an Idea Becomes a Book
Using samples from my books, I show the stages in
creating a book, from rough draft to revisions to finished book. I talk
briefly about research techniques and how students can use them in
their own projects.
There will be time for a question and answer period.
Every Life Tells a Story
A more in-depth exploration of researching and writing a
biography, using Sacagawea as an example. We discuss how to choose the best sources, and what to do if sources
provide conflicting information. We talk about how to find interesting
information that brings the past to life, and how to use creative writing
techniques to add spark to the story.
PRESENTATIONS FOR WRITERS:
Full Revelations of a Professional Storyteller (After Ten Years' Experience)
Story ideas can come from the most unlikely places. The secret is to be open to all possibilities.
How one story idea percolated for ten years, and finally came to life with the help of a 700-year-old legend and the advice of a 19th-century rat catcher.
Point of View in Fiction
In this workshop we’ll demonstrate how point of view (POV) is more than writing “I” or “he/she.” We'll try our hand at writing one scene from three different points of view: in first person; in third person “close” viewpoint, and in third person omniscient viewpoint. We’ll learn how POV affects narrative style, focus, and emotion in fiction.
Voice in Young Adult Fiction
"Voice" is the writer's personality on the page. In this hands-on workshop, we compare published examples of distinct voices in literature, and then try exercises that help each writer unlock his or her own unique writing personality.
Your Foot in the Door: Query Letters that Work
How do you get editors to read your stories even at "closed
houses"? With a great query letter! Learn when to send a query, what
information to include, and how a query is different from a cover letter.