Quebec Writers' Federation Workshops

Fall Session 2017
UNDER THE CROSSCHECK MICROSCOPE: PREPARING A YA MANUSCRIPT FOR TAKE-OFF
Workshop leader: Lori Weber

Saturday November 11, 2017, 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
QWF Office – 1200 Atwater Avenue, Room 3, Westmount, QC

Workshop fee: $80 for QWF members; $100 for non-members
Cost of QWF membership (annual) and workshop: $115
Payment is due within one week of registration to confirm your spot.
For more information, or to register:
(514) 933-0878 or workshops@qwf.org


This workshop will focus on YA fiction, but is entirely applicable to any other form of fiction, including picture books. Editing is editing and good writing is good writing, no matter the genre.This workshop will focus on YA fiction, but is entirely applicable to any other form of fiction, including picture books. Editing is editing and good writing is good writing, no matter the genre.

You’ve written your masterpiece and you’re excited to see it in print. The next step is to send it out, right? Wrong. The next step is a thorough and careful reread and edit. Much like the final crosscheck that flight attendants perform before take-off, the crosschecking of a manuscript is essential to help lift it from the nasty slush-pile most manuscripts land in.

It is difficult to edit your own work – after months or even years of labour, you grow blind to it. Editing is also the part of the writing process that many writers like least and, therefore, don’t spend enough time on. This workshop will offer tips on how to consciously scrutinize your own work and give it the time it needs to be take-off ready.

There is nothing worse than a premature submission. Impressions count in this industry and once an unpolished manuscript has been sent out, it is hard to resubmit to the same publisher. The final crosscheck will ensure that you are submitting work at its very best.

We will focus on four areas:

  • sentence-level wordiness and flatness (tighten & brighten);
  • authenticity of voice (do characters sound their age; are their voices consistent, varied, and interesting; is there a clear point-of-view);
  • plot and structure (does the story drag; should there be more action up front, should key events be moved around);
  • and the all-important opening (which is, after all, all an editorial assistant will read).
We obviously will not be crosschecking all these things in everyone’s work in one day, but we will practice each element, with exercises, giving new writers the confidence to continue the work at home. We can also look at websites, submission guidelines, and cover letters and I can give advice and answer the numerous questions first-timers often have about this intimidating but exciting process.

Participants should bring their manuscripts, finished or not, and a red pencil. Be prepared to put your work under the crosscheck microscope and raise it to the next level. A package of handouts on the editing process will be available for you to take home. Buckle your seatbelts; it may be a bumpy ride, but the destination will be worth it. This workshop will focus on YA fiction, but is entirely applicable to any other form of fiction, including picture books. Editing is editing and good writing is good writing, no matter the genre.


Trevor Ferguson

Lori Weber is a native Montrealer who has written eight young adult novels, including If You Live Like Me and Yellow Mini; one middle-grade novel called Lightning Lou; and one picture book, My Granny Loves Hockey. She has also published poetry, short fiction, and essays in various Canadian journals. She has been teaching English Literature and Creative Writing at John Abbott College for twenty-one years, and has been a QWF mentor four times, as well as a QWF workshop leader several times. She is currently at work on a historical novel for youth set during WWII. She is an obsessive re-writer and editor of her own work. In fact, it’s her favourite part of the writing process. lori-weber.com

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Registration Information

To register, email [ workshops AT QWF DOT org ].

Payment Information

Payment is due within one week of registration to confirm your spot. Payment options are listed in the column to the right.

Please familiarize yourself with our
cancellation policy.

QWF workshop cancellation policy

Read about QWF and accessibility:

QWF and accessibility

For more information:

(514) 933-0878
[ workshops AT QWF DOT org ]
www.qwf.org

QWF gratefully acknowledges the assistance of the Canada Council for the Arts.

Canada Council for the Arts / Conseil des Arts du Canada