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Join Sheila and Tobi for this synopsis writing workshop. This class is normally $75, but for those who order it through our website, it’s only $49.99!

We all hate writing a synopsis. Okay, maybe there are a few people out there who love writing synopses, but for most of us, the idea of writing a two-page, five-page, or ten-page synopsis for our completed manuscript meets with the same amount of enthusiasm as flossing, ironing, and diaper-changing. We know it has to be done but this is the author adulting task we dread.

Best-selling author SG Redling, and RWA Mentor of the Year, Tobi Doyle created this self-paced course to guide you step-by-step to create a rough draft of your synopsis. With over 20 engaging short videos, they break down each part and include assignments to create your synopsis draft.

This course is intended for fiction novel writers who have completed their manuscript. Plotters may use this course to create an outline for their novel. The course materials include transcripts for each of the videos and a pdf of the synopsis for SG Redling’s The Widow File. The course is intended to be used and reused every time the participant needs to write a synopsis.

Finally, participants will be given an opportunity to join the Intensive Genre Workshop Discord synopsis group and meet other writers. This community is intended to help writers meet other writers to get feedback, revise, and polish their work.

Writing a synopsis is hard. Let us help. Transcript to video can be found here.

Let us give a workshop for your organization!

New York Times Best Selling Author, Sheila Redling and RWA 2022 PRO Mentor of the Year, Tobi Doyle bring their writing craft knowledge and enthusiasm to your writing organization either in-person or via Zoom. Sheila, a hard-core pantser (or someone who writes to discover the story) and plotter Tobi, whose anxiety requires that she knows the major scenes and who the characters are before she can start writing, give engaging workshops that help any kind of writer in any stage of writing. If you have questions, please contact either Tobi or Sheila at AskIGW@gmail.com.

Do you have a story idea that you love but you want to add some oomph? Looking for a high-concept idea? Join Sheila and Tobi for a fun, creative workshop where you’ll create your own high concept idea…and learn how to maybe tweak your current work-in-progress to something a bit more elevated!

Attendees will learn: what makes a high-concept idea as well as exercises to come up with their own high-concept idea.

This one-hour workshop works best in person but can be done over Zoom. It works well with writers of all levels and writing styles.

Are your side characters running amok? Have they taken over the storyline like a bunch of sugared-up second graders? Is your main character frozen in place, refusing to do your bidding? Or worse, have they become boring? Sheila and Tobi will help you regain control of your narrative and get your characters back into place by figuring out roles, motivations, and goals. Mary Sues must die!


What Attendees Will Learn: Give your main characters agency and damage-driven motivation. Put them through the wringer. Raise the emotional stakes and get the most out of your side characters to drive the story forward.

This one-hour workshop is both plotter and pantser friendly. Great for novice and intermediate writers, and advanced writers will benefit from this character craft workshop. This workshop is available in-person and via Zoom.

Do your characters all sound alike? Are they saying too much or not enough? Are they losing your reader’s interest–and yours? Join Sheila and Tobi as they guide you through exercises and examples working to improve your dialogue!

What Attendees Will Learn: improving their dialogue, creating an insight into characters, improving the tension in the scene, and punctuation.

This one-hour workshop can be done in person or via Zoom and is great for all writing stages as well as pantsers and plotters.

Tobi talks plotting, story structure, and how to create an outline. Sheila would rather superglue her eyelids closed, but she’ll join us because even pantsers consider story structure and plot after their first draft is written.

What Attendees Will Learn: Story structure, where stuff happens in your story, how to outline the action and character growth and more!

This workshop is for novice or intermediate writers interested in learning about plotting. Pantsers will get the vapors. The workshop is an hour, but could be longer with a Q&A period.

Description: Writing a book is not like painting a barn. You can’t just force it. You need to keep your creative mind limber and lively. Unfortunately, daily stress can make that seem impossible. Sheila and Tobi will show you proven techniques to energize your imagination, revitalize your curiosity, and broaden your sensory vocabulary. 

What Attendees Will Learn: To make the most of small breaks to exercise your imagination. No matter how hectic your life, you can fit in multisensory games that will keep your creativity humming, the ideas flowing, and your muse happy.

The workshop is best in person but can work via Zoom with active participants. Because of the number of creative exercises we have, we can vary the length of time for your organization.

A book map is a visual guide to your book. It breaks your story down, chapter by chapter, scene by scene, so you can see exactly what you have—AND what you don’t. It allows you to be your own developmental editor.

What Attendees Will Learn: how to create a book map to visually track the plot, characters, conflict, and more, find pacing issues and unnecessary scenes, follow plotlines and discover plot holes, and track character growth throughout the story.

Pantsers LOVE this workshop, and plotters do too. One-hour workshop, but can be done as an all-day clinic. Best for pantsers with a completed first draft, and intermediate plotters. (New plotters will need to know something about story structures.)

Is your story falling flat? Got a saggy middle? Beta-readers not connecting with your characters? We’ll discuss how your characters’ emotional wounds drive your plot, hook your readers, and make your book a page-turner. They’ll help you create characters that stick with your reader!

Attendees Will Learn: to use the character’s emotional wounds to revise their manuscript and focus on creating an emotional connection between reader and character.

This one-hour writing craft workshop is perfect for writers of all levels and styles. 

18 questions that will help you define your story plot in order to create your synopsis or for plotters this is an amazing way to create your story outline. 

What Attendees Will Do: Answer 18 questions about the story they want to write or have written and thereby create a rough draft of their synopsis. 

We love to do this as a half-day clinic, but can shorten it to 90 minutes with the understanding that not everyone will have a rough draft completed. We prefer in-person but can do it via Zoom. This writing craft workshop is for anyone wanting to write a synopsis for their fiction work, or a plotter hybrid like Tobi that wants to use it to flesh out their story idea.

Want to create a compelling story with high conflict, tension, and emotion? A book that reader’s connect with and leave them with a book hangover? It starts with the connection between the character and the reader.

What Attendees Will Learn:  This hour-long workshop is an in-depth look at plotting your story, taking you step-by-step by starting with your characters’ emotional wounds to power their external and internal goals, motivations, and conflicts. Participants will learn how to make their plot points make an emotional impact that wow’s their readers.

This workshop is an hour-long and can be done via Zoom or in-person. Intermediate and advanced writers, either pantsers or plotters, will get the most out of this workshop. Pantsers should have a completed manuscript they would like to revise, or want to look at character development from a new perspective.

Great villains make a book memorable but how do you elevate your villain from a mustache-twirling cartoon character to a fully fleshed out human being your readers will love to hate? Join Sheila Redling, and Tobi Doyle as we discuss the balance and contrast needed to craft a villain that is the perfect foil for your main character.

What Attendees Will Learn: Using emotional wounds, baggage, and thwarted desires to understand the unique characteristics that make a great villain standout, including the powers of hubris, sympathy, and narrative tension.

This one hour workshop is scalable to a half-day clinic, which would include the emotional wounds workshop. Excellent for novice plotters, this workshop is also helpful for pantsers who have completed a manuscript.

Is your manuscript ready for submission? Sheila and Tobi will walk you through the submissions process including how to find an agent or publisher accepting non-agented manuscripts, and the basics of how to write a query letter, blurb, and synopsis. 

What Attendees Will Learn: How to make a submission package for their manuscript.

This workshop is entirely scalable for your organization. We can do a 90 minute presentation going over the highlights of what a submission package requires, or scale it up to a full day workshop where participants leave with a blurb written, or even their rough draft of their synopsis. It’s also available as a two day clinic where participants work on their submissions package and will leave with a rough draft.