The benefits of writing retreats.
Recently, I had the privilege of spending 6 days with Nina Bruhns. She’s the Editorial Director and Senior Editor for Entangled Publishing’s DEAD SEXY books. She’s also a Bestselling romantic thriller author. She writes as both Nina Bruhns and Nikita Black and her books are absolutely sexy-thrilling.
A benefit of the small retreat setting was that I got to know the writer behind the book cover. Nina’s love of travel, not to mention that she’s also an archeologist (an Egyptologist), was inspiring as she has lived and worked all over the world.
During the Mt. Shasta retreat, in California, Nina talked about the ten types of movies and how romance writers often find themselves writing the same types of books over and over again.
Movie types include:
- Monster in The House
- Golden Fleece: Road movie.
- Out of the Bottle: Wish plus magic.
- Dude/Dudette with a Problem: Ordinary guy/extraordinary circumstances
- Rites of Passage
- Buddy Love
- Whydoneit? Villain plus why?
- The Fool Triumphant: Outsider triumphs by luck.
- Institutionalized: Band together for common cause.
- Superhero: Extraordinary guy/ordinary circumstances
She also presented her twist on Blake Snyder’s “Beats” for screenwriters (as detailed in Blake Snyder’s book, Save the Cat), which she has tweaked for romance writers and teaches her method at various retreats and conferences.
So if you’re a writer who wants to improve your writing craft and networking in a big way, I encourage you to check out your local RWA chapters for writing workshops and retreats. You’ll not only deepen your relationship with fellow authors, but, who knows, maybe you’ll bring home a new critique partner or a friend for life.
Check out some of this year’s writing retreat attendants’ talents, books, and websites below:
- Susan Hatler—YA (International Bestselling Author)
- Virna DePaul—Paranormal Romance and Romantic Suspense (Bestselling Author)
- Jill James—Contemporary Romance
- Grace Callaway—Erotic Regency (#1 Bestselling Author)
- Lee Lopez—Paranormal Romance
- Poppy Reiffin—Web Developer and E-book Designer, Contemporary Romance
- Vanessa Kier—Urban Fantasy and Romantic Thriller
- Maris Bennett—Columnist for Contra Costa Times
- Linda Livingston—Women’s Fiction with Romantic Elements
- Kristina Mathews
- Sam Bradley—Women’s Fiction with Romantic Elements
- Laura McCann—Contemporary Romance