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Conference- Thursday Schedule
Thursday — September 12, 2019
Registration Desk Opens
Registration Desk

7:00 am – 8:00 pm


Writer's Cafe & Registration Area

7:30 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.

Coffee & Tea

(Breakfast concessions available for purchase)


Cascade 1 & 2


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The Emotional Craft of Fiction: How to Tell the Story Beneath the Surface
Grand Ballroom 3

9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.

Presented by: Donald Maass


$125.00 for conference registrants

$200.00 without conference registration

The emotional effect of fiction on readers is a craft.  Based on psychological research and study of what makes novels emotionally gripping, this intensive workshop takes participants beyond showing or telling to create an emotional journey for readers—one unseen but nevertheless deeply felt and ultimately unforgettable. This is an intensive, hands-on workshop for serious fiction writers.  Participants should bring a Work In Progress and writing materials.

From Author to Screenwriter in a Few Hours!

Northwest 2

9:00 a.m. 12:00 p.m.

Presented by: Kim Hornsby

Master Class included in conference registration

$50.00 without registration

Hollywood loves book adaptations, and it’s not as hard to do as it looks. Have you thought about adapting your book to a screenplay but didn’t know where to start? In this workshop, you will discover how to boil down a story to the key scenes to transfer to a script format. You’ll learn about the three-act structure, script formatting, dialogue, slug lines, and lean narrative, and you’ll examine blockbuster movies adapted from books. Come prepared to adapt a story, book, or play.

A Plotting Class even Pantsers Love: Seven story-models from Aristotle to Netflix

Northwest 3

9:00 a.m. 12:00 p.m.

Presented by: Damon Suede

Master Class included in conference registration

$50.00 without registration

Even when a happy ending is certain, a great plot keeps your writing fresh while amplifying your voice. Learn how to craft a surefire structure and launch your story. We’ll go beyond the bullet points. Rather hammering one “true” blueprint, we’ll break down major story models from Aristotle to Netflix, identify their seven shared points, and help you develop your won narrative strategy.

Don’t Blow Your Cover

Evergreen 1 & 2

10:00 a.m. 11:30 a.m.

Presented by: Donna Cameron and Holly Harmon


Authors who want potential buyers and readers to pick up their books in a store, or click to them online, need to be very intentional about both design and text choices. In this session we will explore some of the factors authors must consider often in partnership with their publisher as they undertake the cover development process. Whether publishing traditionally, self-publishing, or hybrid, authors must be involved in ensuring that their book’s cover sends the right message about content, intended audience, and the author’s professionalism.

Scrivener Unraveled: Capture and Organize your Ideas, Anywhere, Anytime

Evergreen 3 & 4

10:00 a.m. 11:30 a.m.


Presented by: Brian Mercer

If you’ve been intimidated by this powerful writing software, then learn how to document research, organize world building, storyboard, outline, and create your prose using a single, streamlined interface and let Scrivener’s iPad and iPhone options capture and synchronize your ideas.

Publishing Popular Fiction — What Makes It "Commercial?"

Northwest 1

10:00 a.m. 11:30 a.m.


Presented by: Danielle Marshall
What is the difference between genre, literary, or commercial fiction? Danielle Marshall, who publishes commercial fiction, will break it down for you. Popular fiction need net be any less impactful or of lower quality, but there are a few hallmarks that will give your work the potential to reach the widest audience possible.

Lunch Break

Writer’s Café & Registration Area

12:00p.m.– 1:00 p.m.

(Lunch concessions available for purchase)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

Conference Prep: How to Get the Most Out of the Conference

Northwest 3

12:00p.m.– 1:00 p.m.

Presented by: Pam Binder, Jim Harris, and Maria Philips

This is your opportunity to meet conference attendees, learn the workshops that best fit your journey as an author, and ask questions on how to make your conference a success.                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

Branding with Intent

Evergreen 1 & 2
1:30 p.m. 4:30 p.m.

Presented by: Steena Holmes

Master Class included in conference registration

$50.00 without registration

Your brand is your promise that you make to readers - breaking that promise could be detrimental to your career. We will go beyond the “talk” of what a brand is and create a foundation for you to build a brand that not only keeps that promise you will be making to your readers but to also find new ones. This masterclass is for every author who is struggling with their branding - whether you are a first time author or an established one looking to “rebrand”.

A Dialogue About Dialogue

Evergreen 3 & 4

1:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Presented by: Wendy Kendall and Avis Adams

Master Class included in conference registration

$50.00 without registration

Effective dialogue is real conversation, only better. Great dialogue moves the story along and can be an integral tool for managing the pacing of scenes. This workshop crosses all genres and includes presentation of researched information, combined with examples from published authors, live demonstrations of dialogue examples spoken between the co-presenters, and hands-on exercises. We will also detail Ten Specific Dialogue Tips, a list of what your characters should never say, how to develop characters through dialogue, how to use dialogue as a tool for managing point of view, as well as the important dialogue mechanics that include dialogue tags, exposition, and grammar.

Dinner Break

4:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.


Pitch Fest

Northwest 1, 2 & 3

5:00 p.m - 7:00 p.m.

Northwest 1

Pitch Fest: Nonfiction – Pizza party included for workshop attendees only

Presented by: William Kenower and guest authors

Before you can write a great pitch, you must know your story inside and out. Join William Kenower, author of the nonfiction books, Fearless Writing and Write Within Yourself, and author coaches as he helps demystify the art of pitching your story to agents, publishers and friends.


Northwest 2 & 3

Pitch Fest: Fiction – Pizza party included for workshop attendees only

Presented by: Gerri Russell, with guest authors

Before you can write a great pitch, you must know your story inside and out. Answer questions in preparation for writing your pitch and you’re off to a great start. Join New York Times best-selling[ author Gerri Russell and her author coaches as she helps demystify the art of pitching your story to agents, publishers, and friends

Keynote Dessert Reception followed by Autograph Party

Grand Ballroom 2 & 3

7:30 p.m

Keynote Speaker: Greg Bear

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Thursday Session: Keynote Brit Bennett

9/24/2020 » 9/27/2020
2020 PNWA Conference

PNWA 2020 Friday: Marketing, Publishing and Diversity in Writing

PNWA 2020 Saturday Session: The Craft of Writing

How To Adapt A Novel Into A Pilot And Episodic Season

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Office: Writers' Cottage 317 NW Gilman Blvd., Ste. 8, Issaquah, WA 98027

Open Monday-Friday from 10am-3pm

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Mailing: PMB 2717 - 1420 NW Gilman Blvd, Ste. 2,
Issaquah, WA 98027

Phone: (425) 673-2665