In this 6-week intensive class, Suzy Vitello will identify your writing strengths and help you capitalize on them. 100% Online, Available Everywhere!
Your Instructor: Suzy Vitello
Where: Online — Available everywhere!
When: This class is not currently enrolling. To be notified when it is offered again, Click Here
Enrollment: 16 Students Maximum
To lead this powerful six-week intensive class, Portland's "best kept secret" of the writing stars, Suzy Vitello, will give you a diagnostic assignment, followed by a "readout" that analyzes your writing strengths in terms of six major areas: The Hook, Plot Promise, Structure, Character Voice & Introduction, POV/tense choices, and Language/ Mechanics. Each student writer will gain a concrete understanding of what he or she does best (their "differentiator"), and will receive specific directions on what to do to capitalize on those strengths in service to hooking an agent or publisher.
What This Class Covers
Weekly Lecture Highlights:
Week 1: Find your sweet spot (a personalized approach).
Week 2: Launch your narrative with authority.
Week 3: Show-don’t-tell strategies you’ve never heard.
Week 4: Hook-up like a pro (or at least like a NYT bestseller).
Week 5: Is your opening working? The litmus test.
Week 6: How to get an agent to request a “full.”
Expanded Weekly Outline:
Week 1: Come Here Often?
The inaugural lecture/assignment will focus on your seductive strengths RIGHT NOW. As part of the kickoff, you will be invited to send your first three pages to Suzy Vitello, who will analyse in terms of both strengths and weaknesses and give it to you straight up, rating your pages like an agent/editor/reader will. You will be encouraged to go forth based on your particular strengths, and as for the weaknesses? Each week you’ll get a new tool for your belt.
Week 2: Join the Mile High Club
The first paragraphs of a manuscript need to do more than “hook the reader.” They need to serve as the launch for the entire trip. As writers and pilots, this week we’re going to inspect our engines: the turbine, compressor, and combustion chamber. Whether we’re flying a propjet, or a lumbering airbus, we should have the same agenda: get enough speed and fuel to take off and soar for as long as it takes to reach our destination.
Week 3: Now That I’ve Got You Where I Want You
We know it when we read it, don’t we? A successful scene that sucks you in? Is it all smoke and mirrors? Yes. Yes, it is. Learn how to flex your narrative muscle by playing with distance, objects, voice and tone.
Week 4: The Hookup
This week we’ll dive into the mechanics of the all-important hook. We’ll look at examples from the work of my high-powered, best-selling writing group and then experiment on our own work, in a granular, sentence-to-sentence way.
Week 5: Does This Paragraph Make Me Look Fat?
You’ve written, revised, and revised again. Do your opening chapters work? Are they seductive enough? Now is the time to invite new eyes to see. This week you’ll invite a virgin Beta reader to opine on your seduction and give him some specific things to consider in order to inform your next revision. We will also find a time that works for all or most of your class for an hour-long group conference call.
Week 6: Pour Me a Double
Whether you want to attract the attention of an agent, a publisher, or your final readers, the game is the same. Get them to turn the page! We’ll return to the initial “readout” in this final week, and look at the gains you’ve made, as well as recommendations for follow-up attention. You’ll get a personalized Rx from the den mom for the road to success!
Goals Of This Class
- Understand and leverage your strengths as a writer: find your sweet spot and exploit it
- Find the right opening for your book -- one that bursts with energy and promise
- Understand the power in cutting the typical “throat clearing” out of your opening, and get moving from the first sentence
- Produce three chapters (or up to 45 pages) that will get you a request for a full manuscript
LitReactor offers a unique approach to a writing education: You study what you want, when you want, at your own pace. We bring in veteran authors and industry professionals to host classes covering a wide range of topics in an online environment that’s interactive and flexible. You get detailed feedback on your work and take part in discussions in a judgement-free zone. It doesn’t matter if you’re a beginner or an experienced writer, our workshops are about working together to achieve your writing goals.
Where do classes take place?
Entirely online. So, anywhere you have Internet access.
Are there certain times when the whole class needs to "meet" online?
Nope. Our students come from all over the globe. Everything is posted online and accessible 24/7. (We do occasionally schedule phone chats, but try to reach a consensus on timing.)
What does a typical class consist of?
It varies, but nearly all our classes include weekly lectures, homework assignments, peer reviews, critiques from instructors, and discussion forums.
How much experience do you need to take a class?
Beginner or pro, everyone is welcome. We encourage all skill levels.
Got more questions? Click here for an extended FAQ.
And click here to explore a sample class that shows our layout and features.