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“Fuel Your Writing Practice” Class Package

October 16 2021 10:00 AM - November 20 2021 1:00 PM CDT

$196.00 – $436.00


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"Fuel Your Writing Practice" Class Package - Member
$ 196.00
"Fuel Your Writing Practice" Class Package - Non-Member
$ 436.00

$196 for members

$436 for nonmembers

Fuel your writing practice with these four fantastic classes taught by some of your favorite instructors.

This is the perfect package for any writer looking for tools to keep their writing momentum going. From challenging writer’s block to pre-writing to getting to the end, writers will find themselves better equipped to take on any writing project after these four classes. Everyone who purchases the package will get the chance to meet their fellow cohort in three virtual meet-ups. 

Before purchasing, be sure to check the dates. As always, there are no refunds on classes.

Each class can be purchased individually by clicking on the class title.

Can’t make it to every class? No worries! All registrants will have access to the class recordings for the duration of the package, plus an additional month.


Stacey Swann headshot“Banish the Block! Moving Past Fear and Finding Inspiration in Your Writing” with Stacey Swann

Saturday, October 16, 2021, 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. CDT

Do you feel called to write, but find it almost impossible to sit and face the blank page? Do you spend far more time avoiding writing (or worse yet, beating yourself up for avoiding writing) than actually sitting down to work? This feeling goes by many names: writer’s block, resistance, self-doubt, and fear (or we may mislabel it, saying we are just too busy or are natural procrastinators). But no matter what we call it, using various readings and prompts, this class will help you dismantle your personal fears and destructive attitudes and get you writing!

Stacey Swann’s debut novel Olympus, Texas—published in 2021 by Doubleday, W&N (UK), and Bompiani (Italy)—was a Good Morning America Book Club pick, an Indie Next selection, and longlisted for the Center for Fiction First Novel Prize. Swann holds an M.F.A. from Texas State University and was a Stegner Fellow at Stanford University. Her stories have appeared in Epoch, Memorious, Versal, and other journals, and she is a contributing editor of American Short Fiction.


Jennifer Ziegler headshot“Write Before You Write: Outlining, Planning, and Plotting” with Jennifer Ziegler

Saturday, November 6, 2021, 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. CST

Do you ever start a manuscript and end up lost in your own story? Or perhaps you know what is supposed to happen but still find that your writing is blocked?

Before launching into writing that exciting new book idea, it’s important to take key first steps that will help prevent project-killing situations. If you tend to get overwhelmed by your own story, find yourself written into logistical corners, or get told that your book is too “thin” or has “unrelatable characters,” this is the class for you. This class will identify common problems, prescribe remedies, practice helpful exercises, and discuss how you can keep going until “The End.” Discover the pre-writing steps you should take depending on you and your project. Participants will walk away with a clearer idea of what kinds of writers they are and how they need to approach and prepare for new writing projects, plus tips and tricks they can use before launching into a writing project.

Jennifer Ziegler is the author of more than 25 books, including everything from stand-alone novels to series work to TV tie-ins, that range in genre from quirky comedy to action-adventure to dystopian. Her books have been featured on the Lone Star List and International Reading Association’s Young Adults Choice list, recommended on NPR’s “Tell Me More,” optioned for film, and adapted into stage musicals. She also had the honor of serving as The Writers’ League of Texas’s Program Director for several years. Jennifer is currently on the faculty of the Vermont College of Fine Arts’ MFA WCYA program. She lives in Austin, Texas with her husband, author Chris Barton.


Sherri L Smith headshot“What Your Character Wants: Uncovering the Driving Force of Your Novel” with Sherri L. Smith

Saturday, November 13, 2021, 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. CST

How many times have you started writing a great story and gotten bogged down in the middle? How often have you chugged up that hill of rising action, only to lose steam? It doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with your story idea, but maybe you just haven’t asked the big question: What does my protagonist want? This class will help you excavate your characters’ deepest desires so you can rev that engine and get on with the story.

Sherri L. Smith is the author of nine award-winning books for young people, including the 2009 California Book Awards Gold Medalist, Flygirl,—a World War II adventure the Washington Post named a best book of the year. Her middle-grade historical fantasy The Toymaker’s Apprentice, and her contemporary YA noir mystery, Pasadena, are both winners of the Southern California Independent Booksellers Award. Her nonfiction book Who Were the Tuskegee Airmen? is part of the NY Times bestselling Who Was? series. Her novels appear on multiple state reading lists and have been named Amelia Bloomer, Junior Library Guild, Children’s Book Council, and American Library Association Best Books for Young People selections. She is the recipient of the University of Kansas Alyce Hunley Whayne Visiting Researchers Travel Award and was a judge for the 2014 National Book Awards in Young People’s Literature. Sherri currently teaches in the MFA Writing Program at Goddard College and the MFA in Children’s Writing Program at Hamline University. She returns to World War II with her newest novel, The Blossom and the Firefly, which tells the moving story of two Japanese teens— one a kamikaze pilot, the other a schoolgirl who serves on the base from which he will fly his final mission. Learn more at www.sherrilsmith.com.

“The Longest Mile: Finishing, Polishing, and Publishing Your Novel” with Gabino IglesiasGabino Iglesias

Saturday, November 20, 2021, 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. CST

Starting a narrative is relatively easy: having an idea or writing a single page is enough. Finishing a novel, however, is different. Fear increases as we approach the end. When is it done? How long should it be? What must the ending accomplish? When does editing truly begin? How and when should I pitch it to agents? What if indie presses or self-publishing are a better fit? In this workshop, we discuss everything you need to do in order to finish your manuscript and get it out in the world.

Gabino Iglesias is a writer, journalist, professor, and book reviewer living in Austin, TX. He is the author of ZERO SAINTS and COYOTE SONGS and the editor of BOTH SIDES. His work has been nominated to the Bram Stoker and Locus awards and won the Wonderland Book Award for Best Novel in 2019. His nonfiction has appeared in the New York Times and the Los Angeles Times. His fiction has been published in five languages, optioned for film, and praised by authors as diverse as Roxane Gay, David Joy, Jerry Stahl, and Meg Gardiner. His reviews appear regularly in places like NPR, Publishers Weekly, the San Francisco Chronicle, Criminal Element, Mystery Tribune, Vol. 1 Brooklyn, the Los Angeles Review of Books, and other venues. He’s been a juror for the Shirley Jackson Awards twice and has judged the PANK Big Book Contest, the Splatterpunk Awards, the horror category of the British Fantasy Awards, and the Newfound Prose Prize. He teaches creative writing at Southern New Hampshire University’s online MFA program, has offered writing workshops through institutions like On Stage Sacramento, the Writers’ League of Texas, Hub City Press, the las Vegas Writers Lounge, and others. He runs a series of low-cost online writing workshops. You can find him on Twitter at @Gabino_Iglesias.


Gabino Iglesias is a writer, editor, journalist, and book reviewer living in Austin, Texas. He is the author of Coyote SongsZero Saints, and Gutmouth. He is the book reviews editor at PANK Magazine, the TV/film editor at Entropy Magazine, and a columnist for LitReactor and CLASH Media. His nonfiction has appeared in places like The New York Times, the Los Angeles Review of Books, the LA TimesEl Nuevo Día, and other venues. The stuff that's made up has been published in places like Red FezFlash Fiction OffensiveDrunk MonkeysBizarro CentralParagraph LineDivergent MagazineCease, Cows, and many horror, crime, surrealist, and bizarro anthologies. When not writing or reading, he has worked as a dog whisperer, witty communications professor, and ballerina assassin. His reviews are published in places like NPRVol. 1 BrooklynCriminal ElementThe RumpusHeavy Feather ReviewAtticus ReviewEntropyHorrorTalkNecessary FictionCrimespree, and other print and online venues. He teaches at SNHU's MFA program. You can find him on Twitter at @Gabino_Iglesias.
Sherri L. Smith
Stacey Swann HeadshotStacey Swann’s debut novel Olympus, Texas—published in 2021 by Doubleday, W&N (UK), and Bompiani (Italy)—was a Good Morning America Book Club pick, an Indie Next selection, and longlisted for the Center for Fiction First Novel Prize. Swann holds an M.F.A. from Texas State University and was a Stegner Fellow at Stanford University. Her stories have appeared in Epoch, Memorious, Versal, and other journals, and she is a contributing editor of American Short Fiction.
Jennifer Ziegler headshotJennifer Ziegler is a writer, speaker, blogger, mother, spicy food lover, caffeine addict, and movie buff. Her early years were mainly spent trying, unsuccessfully, to copy hairstyles of famous female pop figures. But she also wrote—a lot. Underneath her bed you would find, among the detritus of discarded clothes and cookie wrappers, several spiral notebooks full of short stories, unfinished novels, elaborate doodles for future tattoos, and a comprehensive thesis on who was the cutest member of Duran Duran. She didn’t realize she was preparing for a career, but all that practice made writing feel comfortable, almost like a reflex (which, coincidentally, is a song by Duran Duran). Later, she received degrees in English and Journalism from the University of Texas at Austin and taught middle school language arts, all of which helped to inspire her. Now she writes fiction, teaches writing workshops, and presents at schools and literary events throughout the country. Her book How Not to Be Popular (Delacorte, 2008), has been named to the Lone Star Book List and was an International Reading Association’s Young Adults’ Choice. Other novels include Sass and Serendipity (Delacorte, 2011), which was recommended on the NPR show “Tell Me More,” and Alpha Dog (Delacorte, 2006), a finalist for the 2006 Teddy Award. Her new book, Revenge of the Flower Girls, will be published by Scholastic Press in June 2014.

Before purchasing, please read all policies as noted below and on our Classes page.

If your browser has difficulty with our website store, or if you prefer to mail in a check, click here for a class registration form. The document provides instructions on where to mail it. If you prefer this option, please email wlt@writersleague.org with a copy of the form as well. We are working out of our office at this time.

Class & Event Registration Policy

Once a purchase has been made, registrations are not refundable and cannot be transferred to a different class or event. No exceptions will be made. If you purchase a registration and then find you cannot attend the class or event, someone else can attend in your stead. Simply contact us at wlt@writersleague.org and let us know the name and contact information for the person who will be using the registration so that we can update the class or event roster.

Credit Card Transaction Handling Fee Policy

All credit card transactions will incur a 4% handling fee. If you’d prefer to pay by check for membership, a class, or an event, you can use the provided forms on the membership or event pages and mail to: WLT, P.O. Box 14355, Austin, TX, 78704.


Our classes offer a combination of lecture and practical exercises, determined by the individual instructor, on focused aspects of the craft and business of writing. Your fellow participants will come from a range of writing experience, from beginners to people with MFA degrees and published books. WLT instructors, participants, and administrators all work together to create a welcoming, supportive environment.

If you haven’t taken a class with us in recent years, feel free to email WLT Program Director Sam Babiak at sam@writersleague.org if you’d like to discuss whether our programming is the right fit for your needs.


Once you register for the class, you’ll receive an email with detailed instructions no later than 48 hours before the class date. You should expect 2-2.5 hours of direct teaching and 30 minutes of Q&A (for three hours total). If you need to leave the class early or can’t attend the class on that date, all registrants will have access to the recording for one week after the class date. No microphone or camera required, just an Internet connection capable of streaming video. All online classes are hosted on Zoom. To learn more about how Zoom works, click HERE. 

Plan to log in to the online platform several hours before the class so that you can update your software or any other settings required to access the platform. (Updates usually only take a few minutes, but you don’t want to wait until the beginning of class.) Questions? Email us at wlt@writersleague.org.

Cultural Arts City of Austin

This project is supported in part by the Cultural Arts Division of the City of Austin Economic Development Department. Visit Austin at NowPlayingAustin.com.

Texas Commission on the Arts

Writers’ League of Texas classes and workshops are also funded in part by the Texas Commission on the Arts – Investing in a Creative Texas. For more information, go to www.arts.texas.gov.

National Endowment for the Arts

This project is also supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts. To find out more about how National Endowment for the Arts grants impact individuals and communities, visit www.arts.gov.

Mid-America Arts Alliance

This project is supported in part by the Mid-America Arts Alliance. For more information, go to www.maaa.org.


October 16 2021 10:00 AM CDT
November 20 2021 1:00 PM CDT
$196.00 – $436.00
Event Categories:


Online via Zoom