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Craft Classes

Craft Classes

Classes to help you better your writing prowess.

Can You Hear Me Now? Developing Character Voice

If you've been striving to write professionally any amount of time, you've likely encountered the term writing 'voice.'

What is it? Can we buy some off Amazon?

There's what's called 'author voice' but there's also what we refer to as 'character voice.'

For instance, when it comes to author voice, one could reasonably pick up two novels and easily discern which one Stephen King wrote and which one J.K. Rowling wrote.

How? The authors leave a sort of stylistic fingerprint.

A similar effect also can happen with characters when authors do the hard work and craft them well.

If we craft a truly dimensional character, the reader should be able to read a bit of dialogue or a snippet of narrative and automatically KNOW which character has the stage.

This is accomplished by crafting a full-bodied, fully formed, masterfully developed VOICE.

What IS character voice and why is it important? That's what this class will cover.

• What is the 'born on page one' problem, and how do we fix it?

• What's the relationship between setting and character voice? How do we make the most of that?

• How is the character's attitude and character's voice related?

• How is a character's opinions and that character's voice related?

• How do we deal with accent and dialect in a way that enhances the fictive dream?

• What's the relation between action beats and character voice?

• What are some expert techniques for expressing character voice?

And MORE....

Price: $45.00

Date: December 13, 2018

Available Spaces: Unlimited

ON DEMAND Bring on the BINGE: How to Plot & Write a Series

Class Title: ON DEMAND Bring on the BINGE: How to Plot & Write a Series

Instructor: Kristen Lamb

Price: $55 USD Standard

Where: From Your PC (and certain other smart devices)

When: At Your Convenience

About the Class:

Series are HOT, HOT, HOT! Readers want to fall in love with our stories, our worlds, and our characters.

What do they want even MORE?

For the experience to NEVER END...EVER. When readers fall hard for a cast of characters or a world or a storyline, they want to remain in that dreamscape as long as humanly possible.

So let's give them what they want!

Series are a fantastic way to build a loyal and evangelical fanbase. Also, statistically, authors who have more titles for sale have far greater odds of making more money.

Connect these book titles together into a series? Who can resist just one...more...ride?

Another advantage to series? The small screen television business is BOOMING. From HBO to Netflix, to Amazon to the Hallmark Channel and more, producers are on the hunt for series that WOW.

Why? Because when they option a series it makes their business way simpler. They already have stories that a) are a proven commodity b) are simpler to translate to the screen and that c) come with the bonus of a ready-made fanbase.

Winner, winner, chicken dinner.

Michael Connelly's Harry Bosch and Mickey Haller (a.k.a.The Lincoln Lawyer) books, Robert Galbraith's Cormoran Strike private detective series, Diana Gabaldon's Outlander, George R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire  (a.k.a. Game of  Thrones), and the list goes on.

Every genre has a breakaway series ignites a fanbase and that very often can also set fire to the small screen audiences as well.

If you're not yet excited about writing a series? Check if you have a pulse!

In this class we'll cover a LOT of territory:

  • The different types of series;
  • How to turn your standalone into a series;
  • How to plot a series ahead of time;
  • Ways to make each book fresh and unique;
  • Elements that make a series HIGHLY ADDICTIVE;
  • How to tease out spin-off series;
  • And more!

 

About the Instructor:

Kristen Lamb is the author of the definitive guide to social media and branding for authors, Rise of the Machines—Human Authors in a Digital World. She’s also the author of #1 best-selling books We Are Not Alone—The Writer’s Guide to Social Media and Are You There, Blog? It’s Me, Writer.

She’s also the author of the highly acclaimed mystery-thriller The Devil’s Dance.

Kristen has written over twelve hundred blogs and her site was recognized by Writer’s Digest Magazine as one of the Top 101 Websites for Writers. Her branding methods are responsible for selling millions of books and used by authors of every level, from emerging writers to mega authors.

 

Price: $55.00

Date: September 29, 2019

Available Spaces: Unlimited

The Art of Character: Writing Characters for a SERIES ON DEMAND

The Art of Character: Writing Characters for a SERIES

Instructor: Kristen Lamb

Price: General Admission $65.00 USD

Where: ON DEMAND (at your computer)

When: ANYTIME YOU LIKE!

Class Description:

Series are HOT, HOT, HOT! Readers want to fall in love with our stories, our worlds, and our characters.

Which is where we'll focus during this class.

CHARACTERS are critical when it comes to creating a series readers want to BINGE. 

When readers fall hard for a main character or a cast of characters, they want to remain in that dreamscape as long as humanly possible because they CARE. They've become vested in what happens to their favorite character(s).

So let's give them what they want!

The disconnected series is only as strong as the core character (e.g. Jack Ryan).

What makes readers crave the next book and the next and the NEXT? A strong core character who's relatable and flawed, but simultaneously larger than life.

The connected series requires an entire cast that can help the story go the distance from inciting incident to the final book and BIG BOSS BATTLE (e.g. Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, The Hunger Games).

As we've already talked about, series are a fantastic way to build a loyal and evangelical fanbase. Also, statistically, authors who have more titles for sale have far greater odds of making more money.

Connect these book titles together into a series? Who can resist just one...more...ride?

Another advantage to series? The small screen television business is BOOMING. From HBO to Netflix, to Amazon to the Hallmark Channel and more, producers are on the hunt for series that WOW.

Why? Because when they option a series it makes their business way simpler. They already have stories that a) are a proven commodity b) are simpler to translate to the screen and that c) come with the bonus of a ready-made fanbase.

This is a THREE HOUR CLASS that will come with notes and a template to help you create your characters and keep them organized and evolving.

In this class we'll cover a LOT of territory:

  • How to create a hero/heroine for the disconnected series (e.g. Tess Gerritsen's Rizzoli & Isles)
  • Crafting the larger than life character readers can't help but fall for (e.g. Detective Harry Bosch)
  • Creating a dimensional CAST for your disconnected series
  • Crafting supporting characters that drive your MC's character arc
  • How to create a hero/heroine for the connected series (e.g. Harry Potter)
  • Balance the party
  • Crafting a larger than life cast of characters that can build your series' momentum
  • And more!

All from the comfort of HOME at YOUR computer!

About the Instructor:

Kristen Lamb is the author of the definitive guide to social media and branding for authors, Rise of the Machines—Human Authors in a Digital World. She’s also the author of #1 best-selling books We Are Not Alone—The Writer’s Guide to Social Media and Are You There, Blog? It’s Me, Writer.

She’s also the author of the highly acclaimed mystery-thriller The Devil’s Dance.

Kristen has written over twelve hundred blogs and her site was recognized by Writer’s Digest Magazine as one of the Top 101 Websites for Writers. Her branding methods are responsible for selling millions of books and used by authors of every level, from emerging writers to mega authors.

 

 

Price: $65.00

Date: October 1, 2019

Available Spaces: Unlimited

ON DEMAND: Beyond Bulletproof HOLIDAY Barbie: Strong Female Characters for a Modern World

Class: Beyond Bulletproof HOLIDAY Barbie

Regular Price: $55.00 USD Standard

SALE PRICE: $25 USD Standard

Where: On YOUR Computer

When: ON DEMAND

Female characters have evolved from 'damsel in distress' to the 'hardcore badass.' Problem is, fictional females escaped one boring mold only to end up in another even MORE boring mold.

But with lipgloss AND karate!

Strong female characters fascinate audiences on the page and on the screen. From Atomic Blonde to Wonder Woman, Special Agent Scully to Dr. Laura Isles, women can exude power and danger in a variety of ways.

Sadly, the badass female has devolved into a tired trope with the depth of a puddle.

This class is to challenge the concept of the dangerous woman as protagonist and antagonist. Creating a powerful woman involves more than handing her weapons, a black belt, and a terminal case of RBF (Resting B$#@% Face).

    • Expanding 'who' the dangerous woman IS;
    • Still waters run DEEP;
    • Broadening backstory;
    • Motives matter;
    • The 'Tomb Raider' effect;
    • Combat, weapons, tactics;
    • Expanding her 'arsenal';
    • Generating authentic dramatic action/tension;
    • Making the dangerous dame 'likable';
    • AND MORE...

As an author, competitive shooter, and former combatives instructor, there are few characters I LOVE more than a kickass female action hero. Conversely, fewer things vex me more than the tired cookie-cutter female action hero trope. Women can be powerful in a myriad of ways, beyond hand-to-hand combat and shooting everyone in the FACE.

This said, while we'll explore a wide variety of powerful women, if you long to write that female action hero, this class will (hopefully) make sure you do her justice.

About the Instructor

Kristen Lamb is the author of the definitive guide to social media and branding for authors, Rise of the Machines—Human Authors in a Digital World. She’s also the author of #1 best-selling books We Are Not Alone—The Writer’s Guide to Social Media and Are You There, Blog? It’s Me, Writer. She’s just released her highly acclaimed debut mystery-thriller The Devil’s Dance.

Kristen has written over twelve hundred blogs and her site was recognized by Writer’s Digest Magazine as one of the Top 101 Websites for Writers. Her branding methods are responsible for selling millions of books and used by authors of every level, from emerging writers to mega authors.

Price: $25.00

Date: November 20, 2019

Available Spaces: Unlimited

ON DEMAND: Why are We HERE? Scenes that HOOK

Class Title: Why are We HERE? Scenes that HOOK

Price: $55.00 USD Standard

Use New20 for $20 off

Where: At Your Computer (or on supported devices)

Date: ON DEMAND

Instructor: Maria Grace

Class Description: 

All stories are comprised of component parts, namely scenes. Though the term 'scene' might not seem super sexy, it is the fundamental building block of all great stories.

Knowing where and when to start a scene, where to stop, what to reveal or keep secret is all part of the magic that traps the reader in the fictive dream and won't let them go.

Crafting scenes that hook is what will make YOUR stories stand out amidst the millions of self-published books being churned out every year.

Strong scenes make for superlative STORYTELLING.

This class will cover:

  • What is a scene and why is it important?
  • The MRU-the smallest unit of scene
  • Scene and Sequel—what are they and why both are crucial
  • The key parts of a good scene
  • What story functions do scenes accomplish?
  • How to evaluate scenes during the editing phase 
  • How to improve weak scenes
  • And MORE!

About the Instructor:

Maria Grace is the author of 23 books. She has a PhD in Educational Psychology and is a 16-year veteran of the university classroom where she taught courses in human growth and development, learning, test development and counseling. None of which have anything to do with her undergraduate studies in economics/sociology/managerial studies/behavior sciences.

 

She has one husband, earned two graduate degrees and two black belts, raised three sons, danced English Country dance for four years, is aunt to five nieces, is designing a sixth Regency-era costume, blogged seven years on Random Bits of Fascination, has outlines for eight novels waiting to be written, attended nine English country dance balls, and shared her life with ten cats.

Price: $55.00

Date: November 26, 2019

Available Spaces: Unlimited

ON DEMAND Dark Arts: HOLIDAY SPECIAL Building Your Villain

Dark Arts: Building Your Villain

Instructor: Kristen Lamb

Price: General Admission $55 USD

HOLIDAY PRICE: $25

Where:  On Your Computer (Or Supported Devices)

When: On Demand

Class Description:

Villains are some of the most powerful characters in all of literature. Create them well and they become the substance of legend. Fail to craft them properly, though, and the reader is left with a dull, mustache-twirling plot puppet.

Flat, lifeless and...forgettable.

This class is designed to train you to dig deep into the human psyche to craft villains readers won't be able to stop talking about.

Superlative villains make for high stakes, high tension, and a knuckle-biting, page-turning read (regardless of genre).

Virtually any genre can employ (or deploy) the villain, and this class will show you how to use your villain(s) to craft a story readers won't be able to put down.

About the Instructor:

Kristen Lamb is the author of the definitive guide to social media and branding for authors, Rise of the Machines—Human Authors in a Digital World. She’s also the author of #1 best-selling books We Are Not Alone—The Writer’s Guide to Social Media and Are You There, Blog? It’s Me, Writer.

She’s also the author of the highly acclaimed mystery-thriller The Devil’s Dance.

Kristen has written over twelve hundred blogs and her site was recognized by Writer’s Digest Magazine as one of the Top 101 Websites for Writers. Her branding methods are responsible for selling millions of books and used by authors of every level, from emerging writers to mega authors.

Price: $25.00

Date: December 3, 2019

Available Spaces: Unlimited

Tick Tock: How to Plot Mystery Suspense Series

Class Title: Tick Tock: How to Plot Mystery Suspense Series

Instructor: Kristen Lamb

Price: General Admission $55.00 USD

Where: Bad Lamb Academy Portal (Big Blue Button)

When: THURSDAY, December 12th  7:00-9:00 p.m. EST (NYC TIME)

Class Description:

Mystery, thriller, suspense are all kissing cousins. They are also a multi-billion dollar industry.

Best news of all? Some of the biggest household names in modern fiction have emerged from this genre. Nora Roberts, Janet Evanovich, James Patterson, T. Jefferson Parker, Michael Connelly, and Tess Gerritsen, to name a few.

Mystery suspense is designed to hook fast, hook hard and take off like a runaway freight train your readers can't escape until the end. These are ALSO the sort of books fans inhale as quickly as authors can write them. Thus, the faster we can write, the better the odds of creating a passionate, evangelical fanbase.

How do we create fresh, new stories that will stand out against over a million books self-published every YEAR? How can we write fresh stories with the same hero/heroine book after book without boring ourselves and disappointing fans?

No one wants to ingest literary leftovers.

What can we offer that is the same but different? How do we hook the reader with the opening lines and never offer a logical place for a bookmark?

Like romance, readers have certain expectations of this genre family. This class will train you how to meet those expectations, then offer more. Something readers didn't even know they wanted until they read YOUR story.

This class will cover:

  • What are the genre expectations?
  • How can we dig through the fat layer of tropes to find the gold?
  • How do we create intriguing characters readers will love?
  • How can we surprise readers time and time again?
  • How can we turn a standalone into a series?
  • Where do we mine for the gold and the GEMS?
  • All this and MORE...

Price: $55.00

Date: December 12, 2019

Available Spaces: Unlimited