PERFECT YOUR FIRST
How to Keep Your Reader Reading
Saturday, June 17th, 10:00am-4:00pm
The first two pages of your story or essay determine whether an agent or editor keeps reading, or sends a rejection. Two pages – that’s all you have to grab their interest! But what makes an editor stop, or keep going? Liz Prato will read the first two pages of your work in class and evaluate what works, and what doesn’t. The good news is, you won’t be left hanging. You’ll learn practical tools for sharpening the critical beginning of your piece, using published examples and classroom discussion. This fun and information-packed class is a rare opportunity to get an intimate look at what makes a piece stand out in the submission pile. (Short stories and essays preferred.) Maximum Class Size: 10
Where: Multnomah Arts Center, 7688 SW Capitol Hwy, Portland, 97219 (accessible building & classroom)
Liz provides one-on-one manuscript consultation to help bring your short stories and creative nonfiction to fruition. She gives your piece several in-depth reads and offers constructive feedback on the macro level (structure, plot, characters, etc.) and the micro level (sentences, language). She includes both a written summary and numerous helpful comments on the page. Private manuscript consultation is an efficient and intimate approach to helping you achieve your writing goals.
Up to 5,000 words: $125
Up to 6500 words: $150
More than that: Let’s talk.
* short stories and essays only,
no book-length projects.
"I am impressed with Liz’s passion and knowledge of the craft of writing, and her ability to give feedback that is specific, objective, and yet encouraging. She has helped me with short stories as well as longer pieces. She respects a writer's individuality and can help take you to another level of writing." -Valerie Wagner
"It sometimes happens that when you spend a long time in a story, things become muddy in the writing. Liz Prato saw what my story was becomming, asked questions whose answers had been left off the page, and others I hadn't thought to ask. Her feedback provided a focus the story so badly wanted. Liz reads with her whole heart and a remarkable knowledge of craft. I am forever grateful to have had my work in front of her." ---Matthew Robinson, author of "The Horse Lattitudes"
"Liz’s feedback was invaluable, especially her observations about the structure of my story. With her help, I was able to start the story more quickly and pare the themes down to the essential. At first, I was hesitant about investing the money in a consultation, but in the end, I was glad I did. You get such specific feedback that it's a very efficient way to improve your piece." -Betsy Porter
For more information, and
to schedule a critique, contact Liz.
Liz teaches at literary centers and festivals across the country. She has taught and presented at The Attic Institute (Portland), The Muse and the Marketplace (Boston), AWP, Lighthouse Writers (Denver), NonfictiNOW, Write on the Sound (Washington), South Coast Writers Conference (Gold Beach), Willamette Writers (Portland) and Wordstock (Portland).
Some of her most popular workshops include:
- The Ins & Out of Publishing in Lit Journals Whether you’re just starting to think about sending your writing out to literary journals, or you’ve already received a handful of rejections, this class will explain how the sometimes confusing submissions process really works. We'll cover researching and targeting markets, formatting work, how to interact with editors, whethjer to enter contests, decoding vague rejections, and what happens when you get accepted.
- Master Point of View: You, Me & Everyone We Know Writers often put more thought into the title of their story than choosing their point of view. But POV controls the intimacy, breadth and depth of your story. In this in-depth presentation, we’ll examine modern examples of how POV works in fiction & nonfiction, from the modern classics of Harper Lee, and Alice Walker to contemporary works from Junot Diaz, Jo Ann Beard and Nick Hornby. This talk will open up new worlds that will transform your writing and revising process.
When Small Presses Take You Big Places
Writing Outside the Box
“I attended Liz Prato’s mini-workshop on publishing, & it was great. I walked away with reassuring statistics on how many rejections to expect as opposed to acceptances, models for cover letters, an online source for literary journals, & lots of good, practical advice.”
~ Cindy Stewart-Rinier