heartland writers archive

1999 Workshop

James N. Frey Fiction Intensive sponsored by the Heartland Writers Guild

    "How to Write a Damn Good Novel"
    June 8-13, 1999
    Wildwood Springs Lodge,
    Steelville, Missouri

Jim Frey can teach you How to Write A Damn Good Novel

Wildwood Springs LodgeAt the end of an extensive mystery writing workshop recently, one of the students paid Jim Frey the best compliment he could ever have received -- and she didn't even know him.  Five members of the mystery class were former Frey students. 

At the end of the workshop, the woman said, "It's obvious to me which of you have studied with Jim Frey.  You're all better writers than the rest of us, and you're much more adept at knowing what's wrong with a script.  I'm signing up for Frey this summer."

That unnamed writer had the right idea.

Registration Information:

(This event is over and is archived here for information purposes only.)

Enrollment is strictly limited to 20 writers who will be chosen by Mr. Frey based on manuscript samples.  The class is an intense, structured retreat featuring writing instruction and assignments, as well as dramatic critiquing of each writer's work.

The writers selected to participate will be invited to bring the first few chapters of their works in progress for critique.

Daily schedule:   

  • Mornings  - Writing Instruction
  • Afternoons - Writing time for assignment work
  • Evenings  - Intensive critiques

Cost of the Fiction Intensive is $500 and includes Lodging and 3 meals a day, beginning with Dinner Tuesday  night and ending with Lunch Sunday.

Wildwood Springs Lodge (interior)Wildwood Springs Lodge, Steelville, Missouri

Originally built as a luxury resort in the 1920s, the rustic Wildwood Springs Lodge is picturesquely situated on a bluff overlooking the  rolling green valleys of the Ozarks, only 90 minutes from St. Louis off Interstate 44. Entering its expansive main lobby is like walking into another era.

Accommodations for the Jim Frey Fiction Intensive will consist of single- or double-occupancy bedrooms/suites, shared showers, and shared or European-style bathrooms.  Breakfast, lunch and dinner are also included in the cost of the Intensive and will be served in the Lodge's magnificent dining room.

Wildwood Springs Lodge (pool)Phones and a television are located in the lobby only. The lodge's amenities include swimming pool, hot tub, hiking trails, horse shoes, ping pong, badminton and a host of other recreational activities, but that is of no concern to you because you're going to be too busy writing!  

Returning to the Heartland in 1999

frey.jpgAuthor and writing instructor James N. Frey has a rare talent for being able to explain to the beginner and professional alike how writing techniques work -- and why.  Selected Honored Teacher of the Year in 1994 for his novel writing classes at the University of California, Berkeley, Extension, his students have published novels of virtually every type -- young adult, romance, mystery, suspense, science fiction, fantasy, historical and literary. 

He also serves on the staff of the Squaw Valley Writer's Conference, and has been a featured speaker at numerous writer's conferences, including a one day workshop for Heartland Writers in 1997.  His 5-day Fiction Intensive workshop at Berkeley and at the Oregon Writers Colony draws writers from all over the country, and we are fortunate indeed that Mr. Frey has consented to bring that same extraordinary event to Missouri.

Frey's widely read How to Write a Damn Good Novel and its sequel, How to Write a Damn Good Novel, II: Advanced Techniques, a Writer's Digest Book Club Main Selection,  both were published by St. Martin's Press, and are two of the most often-used guides ever published for aspiring authors.  Says Donna Levin, author of Extraordinary Means, "James N. Frey has the genius of a true teacher: a thorough knowledge of his subject, combined with the ability to entertain while communicating that knowledge."

Enrollment is limited to 20 writers. Those selected to participate are required to have read Frey's book How to Write a Damn Good Novel. Reading How to Write a Damn Good Novel II: Advanced Techniques is not required but highly recommended for participants.


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