Past Meeting Presentations – 2014


Past Meeting Presentations – 2014

RCRW meetings include presentations on craft, the publishing industry and the writing life.

These are some of the wonderful speakers who visited RCRW in 2014. Please check our main Meetings page for forthcoming presentations.

October 11, 2014

Nancy Brophy

Story Arc for Fiction Writers, Plotters and Pantsers

Everybody approaches writing from a different perspective. Each brings a unique process which can change from book to book. Discussion and handouts on structuring a story arc (both external and internal) with emphasis on redeeming the antagonist and what the romance genre requires


Nancy Brophy has been writing romance for 10 years and has developed a structure that works for both plotters and pantsers with check list, exercises and character development.


September 13, 2014

C. Morgan Kennedy

World Building On The Run

Whether you write contemporary, historical, paranormal, or science fiction – a great story is always rooted in great world building. No offense to any of my writing friends, but I seem to write everywhere EXCEPT my home office! Using a tri-fold poster board or large dry erase board for my world building simply won’t work. After I discuss some world building fundamentals, I’ll give you some tips and tricks on how to design / create portable world building materials. Once your book is published, don’t let your world building sit on a shelf! Reuse it to help with your marketing and promotions to sell more books!


C. Morgan Kennedy –

C. Morgan Kennedy is the author of multicultural futuristic and steampunk novels. A self described ‘Blerd’ and Afrofuturist, Morgan puts her Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering to good use imagining all manner of gadgets for her stories. As the co-founder of Author Marketing 101, she seeks to demystify marketing fundamentals for the writing and small business communities. The ‘Author Marketing 101 Guide & Journal’ is currently available in both print and e-book formats.


August 9, 2014

Terri Reed

Layering Your Story

Layers aren’t just for cake! Our stories must be layered until they become wonderful confections to be consumed. Join author Terri Reed as we uncover the many layers that make a story something delicious and delightful.


Award winning, multi-published author Terri Reed discovered the wonderful world of fiction at an early age and declared she would one day write a book. Now she is fulfilling that dream and enjoys writing for Love Inspired. She is an active member of both Romance Writers of America and American Christian Fiction Writers. She resides in the Pacific Northwest with her college-sweetheart husband, two wonderful children, and an array of critters. When not writing, she enjoys spending time with her family and friends, gardening and playing tennis.

You can write to Terri at P.O. Box 19555 Portland, OR 97280 or visit her online at or email her at or leave comments on or OR


July 12, 2014

Sarina Dorie

Using Short Stories to Market Yourself as a Writer

One might ask why it would benefit you to shift your focus away from novel writing to short story writing. The number one reason is marketing. This is one more way to promote your novels and brand, while honing your craft and learning to write succinctly. Sure, you can continue to write blog posts and articles in magazines and sources read by other writers, but stories are another way to reach your fans. Not only that, but you can make money and win contests doing so. Come to this workshop to find out what markets are out there, what magazines and anthologies are looking for, and how to find them.


As a child, Sarina Dorie dreamed of being an astronaut/archeologist/fashion designer/illustrator/writer. After years of dedication and hard work, most of Sarina’s dreams have come true; in addition to teaching art, she is a writer/artist/fashion designer/ belly dancer. She has taught English overseas in South Korea and in the JET program in Japan, and works as a copy editor and copy writer. She has shown her art internationally and sold illustrations to magazines. Sarina’s soon to be published novel, Silent Moon, won second place in the Duel on the Delta Contest, second place in the Golden Rose, third place in the Winter Rose Contest and third in the Ignite the Flame Contest. Her unpublished novel, Wrath of the Tooth Fairy won first place in the Golden Claddagh and in the Golden Rose contests. She has sold short stories to over thirty magazines and anthologies including Daily Science Fiction, Cosmos, Penumbra, Sword and Laser, Perihelion, Bards and Sages, Neo-Opsis, Flagship, Allasso, New Myths, Untied Shoelaces of the Mind, and Crossed Genres to name a few.

Now, if only Jack Sparrow asks her to marry him, all her dreams will come true.

June 14, 2014

Garret Marco

Developmental Editing – Exploring Content through Themes, Setting, and Character

There’s a fickle step between first draft and editor-ready manuscript where an author has to decide which ideas are golden and which are heavy as lead and need to be transmuted. It’s hard to kill your darling and much easier to throw the baby out with the bath water – cutting clichés comes later. This workshop takes a look at the mysterious realm of developmental editing, both working solo and with a flesh-and-blood editor – a place where ideas still matter. Get ready to put that English degree to good use.


Garrett Marco is a writer and editor with seven years’ experience in literary journals. He is an Acquiring Editor at Soul Mate Publishing, a fiction editor at the literary journal The Grove Review, and a freelance editor working in Portland, Oregon. While trained in literary arts, Garrett’s passion is genre fiction. He searches for the elusive Science Fiction Romance and adores quality prose. He receives novel queries and requests for freelance editing at You can follow him on Twitter:@garrett_marco.


May 10, 2014

Linda Needham

Anatomy of an Emotionally Escalating Romance

One of the first rules we learn as romance writers is that the Emotional Conflict between the hero and heroine must not only be compelling enough to carry the relationship through the story, but that the Emotional Conflict must also escalate exponentially. Whaaaaa? Tough stuff, because if your reader fails to comprehend how the hero & heroine feel about the dangers that threaten the romance, the high-risk decisions they are forced to make, or the personal consequences of their individual actions, then your story will fail to incite the emotion necessary to sell your next book (which is the point, right?)

In this hands-on workshop you’ll learn how to enrich your external plot with a powerfully escalating emotional journey guaranteed to provoke your readers with angst, arouse them with meaning and make them first-in-line readers for your next book and every book that follows.


Linda Needham – USA Today bestselling author of ten historical romances — launched her writing career in early grade school, the moment she realized she could use her crayons to create her own stories. After joining RWA and Portland’s Cascade Chapter in 1988, finaling in the Golden Heart in 1989, winning for Long Historical in 1995 and selling to Avon Books that same year, Linda considers herself a poster-girl for RWA. She currently writes full time from her home in the hills north of Hillsboro, OR, where she also writes plays and musicals, gardens, tap dances, spoils her two grandkids, takes extended research treks with her husband and blazes trails through their 5-acre woodland with their Portuguese Water Dog.


April 12, 2014

A Dynamic Presentation by Oregon Regency Society

Static display of a Regency Era costume displayed on a dress form, a writing slope with quill and ink, a few costuming books and a tea caddy with a tea set, and some period correct fabrics.sponsored by the Oregon Regency Society

The Oregon Regency Society’s primary aim is to unite the groups and individuals dedicated to the appreciation of Jane Austen, Lord Byron, Beau Brummell, groups for English Country and Regency Dance, people that read and write Regency Romance, costumers specializing in Regency garments, and Historic reenactors and enthusiasts and so much more. We partake in events, workshops and educational opportunities to broaden our view of this all-too-short period in history. We celebrate the customs and costume of the time, and encourage all of our members to bring their own unique knowledge and skills to the table to share with others.;

March 8, 2014

Craft Your Story and Career Mini-Conference

Workshops and Presenters included:

Kristina McMorris – Maintain Pacing while Interweaving Historical, Factual, and Character Details in Fresh, Succinct Ways

Garrett Marco – Developmental Editing – Exploring Content through Themes, Setting, and Character

Sarina Dorie & Tanith Yates – Judge a Book by Its Cover

Kellie Grill –  Capture, Captivate, and Connect with your audiences as you speak from the stage

John Ellis – Personal Branding and Google Plus for Authors in 2014

Mark Montoya – It was a Dark & Stormy Night: Avoiding Clichés in Visual Language

Melissa McClone – Take Your Writing to the Next Level

February 8, 2014

**Cancelled due to inclement weather**

January 11, 2014

Dr. Maggie McVay Lynch

DIY Publishing: Riches or Money Pit and Time Sink?

Entering the indie publishing arena is darn scary–especially if you have spent your writing life dreaming of that big NY sale. Stories abound of those authors who are making hundreds of thousands of dollars. But when you talk to your friend who published her book, she tells you she is lucky to make $100 in a year. What is the truth? How hard is it really to do it yourself? What are the up front costs if you can’t do it yourself? How long does it take to really make money? This workshop will give you some real numbers on sales and costs–in both time and money.

The workshop will provide an easy DIY process—even for non-technical writers—which takes the least amount of time to process each book from word processor to print and ebook. You will also learn how to determine what indie services to pay for and why. Along the way, the presenter will share tidbits about the changing state of publishing, the importance and use of metadata for both print and ebook sales, and the decision-making processes any writer must undertake in determining what amount of time and effort she is willing to expend in the preparation and distribution of her work versus spending more time writing the next book.


Dr. Maggie McVay Lynch is an acclaimed technology teacher and academic computing executive who spent over 30 years in education and computing. After initial careers in corporate technology training, she spent eight years in executive management with two major software companies. Returning to graduate school later in life, she completed her doctorate degree in education, and then transferred her technology and teaching skills to Academia where she served in positions from Professor to Dean and eventually Chief Information Officer. She ended her career by consulting for both large and small universities, working with teachers and executives to identify appropriate technology for their needs.

Lynch has previously authored four textbooks by major publishers in London and NY. Also a fiction writer, she realized that far too many writers were choosing to self-publish by paying hundreds (and sometimes thousands) of dollars for technical assistance when they could learn to do it for under $50. Lynch’s most recent non-fiction work is DIY Publishing: A step-by-step guide to formatting and distribution for print and ebooks, At the end of 2013 Maggie had seven fiction titles and one non-fiction self-published; and her plan is to reach 12-13 fiction titles by the end of 2014.