Friday, November 2nd

Keynote Event, 6:30pm - 9pm

  • Doors open at 6:30pm, light refreshments with beer and wine
  • Program begins at 7pm, welcome from Dr. Ivan Harrell, TCC President, and keynote address including Q&A with Dave Boling
  • Dave Boling will sign books beginning at 8pm
  • Doors close at 9

Keynote Address

A Writer’s Journey
At age 53, journalist Dave Boling sensed impending troubles for the newspaper business and thought it wise to examine alternatives. As a fallback plan, he gave fiction-writing a try. While still writing four newspaper columns a week, he dedicated every free moment to crafting his first novel, the award-winning, historical-fiction debut “Guernica,” which was published around the world. It was another step in Boling’s unusual progression from blue-collar laborer to journalist to author. In addition to his second novel, “The Lost History of Stars” (2017), he has published three sports books and two collaborative memoirs. His co-authored “The Warner Boys,” will be published in the fall of 2018. It is a collaboration with former Seahawk star Curt Warner (and his wife, Ana) accounting their lives raising twin autistic sons. His message to aspirational authors is clear: No matter your age or work background, getting published is always a possibility.

Saturday, November 3rd






Doors open (Continental Breakfast provided)

9:30 – 10:20am

Dave Boling

A Writer’s Conscience

10:30 – 11:20am

AC Fuller

Advanced Marketing for Indie Writers

Anna Alexander/ Wendy Kendall/ Dean Wells

Popular Fiction Genres Panel

Wayne Ude

What You Can Do with First Person

11:30 – 12:20pm

AC Fuller

5 Stages of Editing

Dean Wells

Writing Short Fiction

Wayne Ude

Creating your Writing Persona

12:20 – 1:00pm


1:00 – 1:50pm

Ryan Petty

Your Best Author Business Plan in Ten Easy Steps

Joe Ponepinto

Your First Pages

Regina Sadono

Art and Science of Narrative Structure

2:00 – 2:50pm

Wendy Kendall

Making Social Media Smart Media

Joe Ponepinto

Moment to Moment

Christine Dubois & Leslie Adkins-Hall

Writers Helping Writers

3:00 – 3:50pm

Dean Wells

Crafting a Strong Plot

Joe Ponepinto

Finding an Agent: Resources and Strategies

Christine Dubois

Overcoming Obstacles

4:00 – 4:30

Closing remarks

Conference Session Descriptions


A Writer’s Conscience: Pinned to a cork board next to author Dave Boling’s computer in his home office is the transcript of John Steinbeck’s 1962 Nobel Prize acceptance speech. Underlined is a portion in which Steinbeck cites his theories on a writer’s obligation. “The writer is delegated to declare and celebrate man’s proven capacity for greatness of heart and spirit — for gallantry in defeat, for courage, compassion and love.” Through the challenges of selecting topics, creating characters and plotting their stories, Boling finds it crucial to maintain a guiding principle, a “true north” writer’s compass by which he steers his works. This pledge by Steinbeck is one, among others, he will discuss in his presentation.


Advanced Marketing for Indie Writers: Self-publishing is an increasingly viable option for writers to get their books into the world, but many new authors experience frustration when their books don't sell as well as they'd hoped. In this workshop the presenter will talk through advanced marketing techniques for indie writers.

Alexander, Kendall, Wells

Popular Fiction Genres Panel - Mystery, Romance, and Science Fiction: A panel discussion on what makes a story mystery, romance, or science fiction and how writers create their stories to fit.


What You Can Do with First Person: Explore the range of first person narrators and special problems in first person, including two of the greatest: reliability and time.


The 5 Stages of Editing: This workshop walks attendees through a step-by-step process that will demystify the editing process and empower writers to make massive improvements to their manuscripts before hiring an editor, submitting to agents, or self-publishing.


Writing Short Fiction: Writing short fiction is a great way to practice your craft and start to build a name for yourself. You've built your world, plotted your arcs, and your characters are ready to spring to life. Now all you have to do is convey it all in just a few thousand words. Discover how in this intreactive session.


Creating Your Writing Persona: Your persona tends to be wiser, more objective, more fully aware than you know your daily self to be – and it can see straight through to the truth about your characters, your material, your stories, your poems...keeping you at your best. We’ll explore ways to create your persona and develop how it shows up on the page.


Your Best Author Business Plan in Ten Easy Steps: This workshop will guide you in developing your best possible business plan, one that is custom-fit to your personal needs, interests, and opportunities as a writer... and accomplish the task in 10 days or less. The workshop offers a simple 10-step method based on two books by the presenter.


Your First Pages: Nothing is more critical to publishing success than having a compelling opening for your story. If your first pages don’t grab a reader, an agent, or a publisher, they’ll move on to the next submission. This session will help writers understand how to craft effective openings that keep readers engaged.


Art and Science of Narrative Structure: Participants will refine a premise, create a log line, identify a main character, and map out the main character's journey from beginning to end in 12 steps and 3 acts.


Making Social Media Smart Media: Learn the advantages of different modes of social media, and the ways to select a mix that effectively establishes a productive social media presence. Then apply what you’ve learned to design your personalized social media plan.


Moment to Moment - The Sensory Origins of Fiction: Characters who fully convey their sensory experiences make stronger connections with readers and result in more effective fiction. This session reinterprets how writers can better use the physical senses to examine their characters’ emotional states, create character sympathy, and express deeper meaning in stories.

Adkins-Hall, Dubois                            

Writers Helping Writers: A writer’s group can make you a better writer, but what you get out of it depends on what you put in. Two veteran writers group leaders share do’s and don’ts for group success. Learn how to give and receive feedback, find or start a group, resolve differences, and more.


Crafting a Strong Plot: More goes into your story than simply rolling the dice to tell you what happens next. We will discuss how to develop strong logical narratives that will engage your readers and propel your story organically from beginning to end.


Finding an Agent - Resources and Strategies: The average literary agent receives 50 to 100 or more queries on a daily basis. This session will provide advanced tips to help writers, especially those without significant publishing records, break through the avalanche of queries and get their manuscripts requested.


Overcoming Obstacles: What's stopping you from becoming a successfully published writer? For most people, the biggest obstacles are inside. Learn to overcome procrastination, perfectionism, writer's block, fear of success/failure, lack of confidence, and more.