A preview of what’s in store…

Registration is still open for the Writing Excuses Workshop and Retreat at Capitol Reef Field Station in Utah from June 27 to July 2, 2022.

You can go off the grid with WXR instructors Mary Robinette Kowal and Dan Wells, as well as retired astronaut Dr. Cady Coleman, for a writing retreat focused on astronomy and space exploration.

Here’s a preview of what’s in store for this amazing retreat:

Astronaut Life with Dr. Cady Coleman
Retired astronaut Cady Coleman worked with Mary Robinette Kowal on her Lady Astronaut novels. She talks about life in space with an eye to what a writer needs to know.

Lessons from Space about Personifying Goals
Often a character’s goals are either so amorphous or so cerebral that it’s hard for a reader to invest, but one of the things we’ve learned from NASA rovers Spirit and Opportunity is that people will invest in personified science. Join Mary Robinette Kowal to learn to use the same tricks in fiction to externalize conflicts and make achieving goals more emotionally powerful.

Making Space for Action
In order for readers to know what’s happening in a scene, they need to know what the environment is like, whether it’s a hill, a room, or the outside of a spacecraft. In addition to what you need to know for action on the ground, Dan Wells shares how being in space adds an extra dimension to think about when writing.

Scientifically Plausible Planets
Whether you are writing fantasy or science-fiction, knowing how to create scientifically plausible worlds is a useful skill. Instead of replicating Earth or making something that will throw the reader out of the story, Dan Wells talks about how to dig into richer ground.

How to write a spacewalk with Mary Robinette Kowal and Dr. Cady Coleman
Sending your characters on a spacewalk? Mary Robinette Kowal and Dr. Cady Coleman discuss the realities of the experience as well as how to capture the moment on the page. Learn techniques that you can use in translating other real-world events into compelling prose.

In addition to seminars, there will be plenty of time for Q&A with the instructors, playing games, and chatting with fellow writers, plus opportunities to enjoy the night sky during the darkest week of the month at a certified Dark Sky Location!


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