Interviewing Your Character – In this exercise-driven workshop, Jan demonstrates various interviewing techniques she has used to develop characters who will draw readers deeper into the book by helping readers to experience the story through the characters’ eyes. (Based on Jan’s book, Creative Characterization.)
Creative Characterization – Through letter-writing, photo prompts and point of view exercises, Jan demonstrates methods to develop characters who will better drive a story. Workshop includes several exercises. (Based on Jan’s book, Creative Characterization.)
Elements of Fiction – Through discussion and exercises, Jan covers plot, setting, character, conflict, symbol and theme–all important components of any story or novel. (This workshop can be customized to cover as a summary in an hour, or as a six-week workshop which covers each element in detail.)
Social Media Marketing – Venturing into social media can be intimidating, but once you cross the threshold of fear, you’ll find there’s a whole world out there for you to touch and explore. From blogging to Facebook to Twitter to Pinterest and more, there are countless ways for you to communicate with others and Jan will show you how. (Duration: Social Media Marketing can be presented as a broad overview of social media at 45-60 minutes, or a tailored workshop with “how-to” details.)
Why Historical Fiction?—Hindsight is 20/20. But how can we best gain historical hindsight? Using examples of historical facts vs. historical fiction, Jan will demonstrate how historical fiction can be an effective means of remembering history as readers experience events through a character’s eyes.
Haiku: The Power of Brevity – Haiku, one of the most powerful forms of poetry, can express an entire story in only seventeen syllables. Jan has written this form for many years and sees haiku as a metaphor for life. Many of her haiku are included in her book, Life: Haiku by Haiku. In this workshop, she will discuss the haiku of traditional Japanese masters including those of Basho, Buson and Issa. Participants will also have the opportunity to write (and share) their own haiku.
NOTE: The above workshops are exercise-driven, therefore, the duration is flexible and can fit a time slot of anywhere from 45 minutes to 90 minutes. (Audio-visual needs: Microphone. Author can provide projector and screen for PowerPoint if necessary.)
Historical Fiction Blogging—Jan’s blog, www.theredkimono.com, discusses history and historical fiction, as well as cultural issues relative to her book, The Red Kimono. Many of her posts tie history to current events. In this workshop, she will discuss available resources for blogs, how to promote blogs, and why historical fiction blogs are important to both authors and readers. This presentation will also include an introduction to some of Jan’s favorite history/historical fiction blogs. (NOTE: Duration: 45-60 minutes. This presentation is primarily discussion. It is NOT a “how to set up your blog” workshop.)
Wearing the Red Kimono – Through excerpts and photographs, Jan Morrill will speak about what she learned about her family, her culture and the history of internment while writing The Red Kimono, a historical fiction about the clash of cultures during World War II. (Duration: 45-60 minutes. Audio-visual needs: Microphone. Author can provide projector and screen for PowerPoint if necessary.)