Schedule: 2024 Workshop

(Please note that this is an in-person event. We at Writing Day Workshops plan both online/virtual as well as in-person events. This next CWW is an in-person event happening in Washington DC [Arlington area] on March 23, 2024. See you there.)



Agent pitches and critique consultations overlap with the sessions below. The topics below are mostly set, but subject to change. There will be 2-3 classes/workshops going at all times during the day, so sometimes you may have your choice of what class you attend.

8:30 – 9:30: Check-in and registration at the event location.

BLOCK ONE: 9:30 – 10:30

1. Everything You Need to Know About Literary Agents and Writing an Awesome Query Letter. This workshop is a thorough crash course in dealing with literary agents. After quickly going over what an agent is and what they do for writers, we will discuss resources for finding agents, how to ID the best agents for you, query letter writing, as well as the most important things to do and not to do when dealing with representatives.

2. Leveraging Social Media To Build Your Author Brand. Building your author brand is essential for all aspiring authors, regardless of your writing level. You don’t have to wait to become published to begin building your author brand, and it doesn’t have to take a lot of time. Learn how to leverage smart content development strategy and social media management to build your platform.

BLOCK TWO: 10:45 – 11:50

1. Understanding the Publishing Industry in 2024 — From Hybrid Publishing to Artificial Intelligence and Everything in Between. Writers today have lots of choices and options, but that doesn’t mean your publishing journey is an easy path to navigate. How are traditional publishing and self-publishing changing? What kind of writer is attractive to an agent currently? What is hybrid publishing? How will A.I. (artificial intelligence) help or hurt writers in the years to come? Which social media sites and publishing resources are worth the time and effort in 2024? All these questions, and more, will be addressed during the speech.

2. Four Ways Book Authors Make Money from Publishers: How Authors Go from Fingers on Keyboard to Dollars in Bank Account. Examine the four major ways authors make money from traditional book publishing. This session, taught by a literary agent and attorney, will explain advances, royalties, subsidiary rights, and much more. If you’re curious how money works in the publishing process, this class is for you.

LUNCH ON YOUR OWN: 11:50 – 1:15

Lunch is on your own during these 85 minutes.

BLOCK THREE: 1:15 – 2:30

1. “Writers Got Talent”—a Page 1 Critique Fest, with participating literary agents and editors. In the vein of “American Idol” or “America’s Got Talent,” this is a chance to get your first page read (anonymously — no bylines given) with attending agents commenting on what was liked or not liked about the submission. Get expert feedback on your incredibly important first page, and know if your writing has what it needs to keep readers’ attention. All attendees are welcome to bring pages to the event for this session, and we will choose pages at random for the workshop for as long as time lasts. All submissions should be fiction or memoir—no prescriptive nonfiction or picture books, please. Do not send your pages in advance. You will bring printed copies with you, and instructions will be sent out approximately one week before the event.

2. How to Sell a Nonfiction Book Proposal. This session focuses on effective strategies for writing a nonfiction book proposal on any subject. Topics include industry standards, building your expertise, and how to prepare a winning proposal that demonstrates your understanding of the marketplace.

BLOCK FOUR: 2:45 – 3:45

1. Open Agent Q&A Panel. Several attending literary agents (and editors) will open themselves up to open Q&A from CWW attendees. Bring your questions and get them answered in this popular session.

2. Write Better, Right Now: What an Editor Learned by Critiquing 400 Manuscripts (and What Writers Can Take Away). Hear straightforward writing advice from a professional book doctor. In this seminar, we will touch on character, setting, plot, voice, dialogue, revision, word count, genre, and more. Improve your writing, so that fewer agents & editors response to your submission with “I didn’t connect with the writing,” and more respond with “Please send more of your work to consider.” Understand why agents (and editors, and readers) stop reading, and learn how to fix your writing mistakes as you overhaul and revise your work.

BLOCK FIVE: 4:00 – 5:00

1. Craft Amazing First Pages That Grab Readers (and Agents). Agents judge a book on its first chapter, first page, first paragraph, and yes even the first sentence. It’s incredibly important to start your book off right and immediately grab the agent (and reader) with intrigue and conflict. So what types of openings should you avoid? How do you create conflict and intrigue that pulls the reader in, and doesn’t seem forced? This class will explain what an agent needs to see on your opening pages to keep reading. 

2. 10 Evergreen Keys to Writing Success. Learn 10 things you can be doing right now that will help get your book(s) published and have more control over your writing destiny. This is a general course that addresses commonsense things any writer can do to give their work the best shot at getting published, such as writing the best thing they can, stealing from themselves to generate more content, and why writing for love and money is a good idea.


Agent & Editor Pitching: All throughout the day. (Register for the event here.)

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We will actually send attendees extra FREE pre-recorded classes as part of their attendance. In addition to getting the weekend’s classes to enjoy live and in person, we will also send you 5 more free recorded classes on the side, from amazing instructors. In the week leading up to your in-person conference, we will send all confirmed attendees these classes below, some of which will aid in your pitching efforts:

  1. “Tips on Pitching Literary Agents & Editors at an In-Person Event,” taught by literary agent Carlie Webber
  2. “Tips on Pitching Literary Agents & Editors at an Online Event,” taught by literary agent Carlie Webber
  3. “Talking Dollars and Cents — How Authors Make Money,” from our Tennessee Writing Workshop
  4. “Publishing Options: Pros and Cons of Both Traditional and Indie Publishing,” from our Atlanta Writing Workshop
  5. “Overcoming Failure: How to Strive for ‘Yes’ in the Face of a Hundred Nos,” from our Florida Writing Workshop