Words that paint pictures. Pictures that tell stories. Stories that change hearts.

Speaker Topics

Preparing for Your First -- or Twenty-First -- Writers Conference

Overwhelmed by the possibilities available at conferences? Not sure how to prepare a one-sheet? Don't even know what an elevator pitch is? Unsure of what to bring and still not look like a pack-mule laden down with an office full of papers and handouts? Donna will set your mind at ease, give you some pointers, and help you prepare your own materials without paying a fortune or tearing out your hair in the process.

Exercising the Right and Left Brain: Generating Ideas and Turning Them Into Stories

You sit and stare at the blank page and wonder why you thought you could write a book. You've got a great idea, but halfway through the book, you feel like your characters are drowning in boredom. Or perhaps you're nearing the end of your current project, and you keep dragging it out, not wanting to type "The End" because you know then you'll have to come up with a new story idea. Donna will explain why this paralysis happens and show several ways to get the juices flowing again so that you never need fear starting a new book or running out of ideas before you get to the end of your current project.

Identify, Inspire, and Ignite Your Passion To Write.

Writing isn't just about great ideas and flawless dialogue. Writing requires heart and passion, a desire to put the story down, and a drive to get it done. Donna will explore what gets your heart racing, how to translate that passion into a story others will love and relate to, and how to keep that passion alive during the difficult process of writing.

Writers Block: Tearing Down the Wall, Brick by Brick

Many circumstances can squelch the writing muse, including deadlines, fear, anxiety, and boredom. Donna will show you how to tell the difference between writers block and boredom, and will share some techniques to employ the next time you cannot seem to string together a coherent sentence.

Don't Let Your Subplot Sink Your Story

So you've come up with a great idea for a novel. You plot it out, flesh out your main characters, and start writing. But wait a minute--don't they have another life besides your story? Of course they do. And that other life is called a subplot. But sometimes subplots can take over. Or they reveal new things about your characters you never knew. Or they release minor characters who then try to take over the main plot. What is a writer to do? Find the balance between complex plot layering and simply tacking on other stories that don't contribute to your main plot.

Overcoming the Middle Muddle

If you're falling asleep writing the middle of your book, your readers will, too. Most likely you need some tips on beefing up the action, heightening the tension, developing the plot arc and character arc, and, if romance is involved, moving the characters forward in their love journey.

Creating Believable Characters

"They wouldn't do that!" -- you never want to hear that from a reader or your critique partners. And if you do, most likely it's because you haven't developed your character well enough and given them a good enough reason to react the way you've written them. This workshop will carry you through the reasons we need believable characters; a discussion of point of view; writing your characters credibly; and a discussion of writing dialogue that sounds true to the gender of the speaker.

Other topics available on request, including:

- Incorporating Your Christian Faith Into Your Fiction

- Refresh and Renew the Writers Muse

- Why Write?

I can also tailor a workshop to meet your individual needs. Please contact me.