Current Classes

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Writing Classes

 Fall 2021

Hey everyone, I hope this finds you all safe and well and having a good summer. We have an exciting roster of writing classes, lectures, workshops and events coming up this Fall and Winter, so if now is the time to jump back into your writing life then join us! 

ALL CLASSES AND LECTURES WILL BE TAUGHT VIA EMAIL AND ZOOM

True, it’s not NEARLY as much fun as sitting with other writers in person, but Zoom classes give us a chance to be in the room with a gloriously wide array of creative minds, from all over the world and to attend classes from the comfort and safety of our own homes. Zoom is an easy-to-use online conferencing tool. You can join us by computer (just by clicking on a website link) or from your smart phone, using audio only, video or both. When you register for a class I will send you the Zoom link. You do NOT need a Zoom account to attend a class. 

AUGUST CLASSES

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10-Week Poetry Workshop

August 24 – October 26, 2021

Tuesdays 3-5pm Mtn Time

taught by Max Regan via Zoom

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Tuition is $480 and can be paid by check or by Pay Pal on the home page at www.hollowdeckpress.com

To Register please email Max at hollowdeckpress@mac.com

                            “In poetry, the light touch is the strong touch.”

                                                    -Marianne Moore

A poem can capture anything; a moment, a feeling, a memory, a story, a rant, a rave, a dream. This poetry class is for anyone who has an interest in writing more poems and wants a supportive and engaged community in which to experiment and explore the craft. In classes we will experiment with writing exercises and drafting poems in many different styles and forms. We will talk through our discoveries and find the next steps, using these 10 weeks to build a portfolio of working drafts. For poets who would like to publish their work we will also talk through the publishing process and share opportunities to submit poems to journals, magazines and other venues. 

In a Workshop Class our emphasis is on building ideas and drafts of poems and on giving and receiving focused and empowering weekly feedback between classes via email from a small group of peers, as well as from Max. This class is open to anyone interested in poetry; experienced poets, part-time poets and non-poets alike, as well as other lyric writers working in any genre, no experience necessary.

PLEASE NOTE: For any writer who wants to take BOTH the 10-Week Tues Poetry Workshop and the 10-Week Thurs Story Workshop we will happily offer a 20% discount on your combined tuition!

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10-Week Story Workshop

August 26 – October 28, 2021

Thursdays 3-5pm Mtn Time

taught by Max Regan via Zoom

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Tuition is $480 and can be paid by check or by Pay Pal on the home page at www.hollowdeckpress.com

To Register please email Max at hollowdeckpress@mac.com

    Together we will examine the structures and craft behind story; what makes a story work? What are it’s features? How do we shape characters and scenes, moments of conflict or discovery or resolution? This class is open to writers of Creative/ Narrative Non-Fiction and Memoir as well as writers of Short Stories, Novels and all forms of Fiction.

Whether we are telling true stories from our own lives or diving into our imaginations, every narrative writer needs to build strong craft and instincts for how to bring a story to life and hook the reader’s attention. Together we will look at examples from full length memoir, memoir essays, short stories, micro fiction and novels. We will talk about the Drafting Process and investigate how to turn an idea or memory into notes, how to turn notes into a draft, a draft into a finished text and then how to move that text out into the world. For writers who have public goals for their work we will explore magazines, journals, contests and other ways to submit their work for publication. 

In a Workshop Class our emphasis is on building story ideas and drafts and on giving and receiving focused and empowering weekly feedback between classes via email from a small group of peers, as well as from Max. This class is open to anyone interested in crafting vibrant and compelling stories, regardless of the level of your experience.

PLEASE NOTE: For any writer who wants to take BOTH the 10-Week Tues Poetry Workshop and the 10-Week Thurs Story Workshop we will happily offer a 20% discount on your combined tuition!

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Breaking Open The Book

On-Line Lecture Series

Exploring The Novel

The Plot

by Jean Hanff Korelitz

Friday August 27, 2021

3-5pm Mountain Time

taught by Max Regan via Zoom

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Breaking Open The Book On-Line Lecture Series 

 

Tuition is $45.  For folks over 60: $35.

THANK YOU to everyone who supported Team Spectrum in the past year, we are very grateful! Spectrum Center is closed now, so the Team Spectrum discount program for classes has ended.

   To Register please email Max at hollowdeckpress@mac.com

Tuition can be paid via Pay Pal on the home page at www.hollowdeckpress.com

Jake Finch Bonner is living a life he never expected. Instead of fame and fortune, this once-promising young author is teaching MFA seminars at an obscure university and barely making ends meet. Then abrasive, self-important Evan Parker arrives in Jake’s class with a one-of-a-kind plot that he’s confident will rocket him into the kind of success and stardom enjoyed by few in the literary world. And once Jake hears that story, he knows Evan is right, and Jake’s jealousy and self-pity are palpable. But Evan Parker doesn’t publish that book—Jake Bonner does. And someone knows whose plot he stole. Korelitz’s psychological thriller keeps the reader guessing even when the answers seem clear, and when the final piece clicks into place, what you see is the last thing you’d expect.

A New York Times Bestseller, and a Tonight Show Summer Reads Pick, Stephen King has called this book “Insanely readable.” 

“The plot of ‘The Plot’ ― the best thriller of the year (so far) ― is too good to give away”

Washington Post

Jean Hanff Korelitz is the author of the novels YOU SHOULD HAVE KNOWN (adapted for HBO as “The Undoing” by David E. Kelley, and starring Nicole Kidman, Hugh Grant and Donald Sutherland), ADMISSION (adapted as the 2013 film starring Tina Fey), THE DEVIL AND WEBSTER, THE WHITE ROSE, THE SABBATHDAY RIVER and A JURY OF HER PEERS. 

 “Breaking Open a Book” means we look not just at the story but also at the writer’s craft that brought it to life. What makes a novel work? How is the narrative shaped? What role does landscape and era play? Who is the main character and how do we relate to him? How does he change and transform? What are the turning points and plot twists? Who is the author and how was the book written, sold and received? And, most importantly what are the tools, techniques and writing experiments we can try in our OWN creative writing lives, based on the opportunities the book offers us? 

Together we will examine (as they say in the publishing industry) The Hook (what made the book into a bestseller?) The Cook (who is the author and how did she craft the text?) and The Book (what is the plot, structure, characters and style of the book?). If you have read the book already great, but even if you haven’t please feel free to join us! This novel is available in hardback, on kindle and as an audiobook.

All types of writers can learn great moves from studying a great book. Even if you never read novels this story will capture you. We welcome everyone, fiction and non-fiction writers, poets and readers of every kind! 

 

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The Memory Machine

1 Day Writer’s Craft Class

 

Saturday August 28, 2021

12-4pm Mountain Time

taught by Max Regan via Zoom

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Tuition is $100 and can be paid by check or by Pay Pal on the home page at www.hollowdeckpress.com

To Register please email Max at hollowdeckpress@mac.com

Each of us has a magnificent “memory machine” parked between our ears, hard-wired to our hearts, minds, and all of our senses. Even if you think your memory is faulty or inexact, your mind and body remember WAY more than you think! Your memories and lived experiences are a wonderful launching points for texts in any genre, and the more we activate our memory the stronger it gets. Together we will experiment with ways to reawaken your memory; to recall subtle and forgotten moments, objects, places and stories that might form the basis of interesting pieces of writing. We will write using the senses; music, colors, smells, objects, images, all of these things can trigger memory and open the gates to imagination, fiction, non-fiction, stories and poems. Open to writers in any genre.

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SEPTEMBER CLASSES

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Say It Like You Mean It:

The Art Of Writing Dialogue

 

1 Day Writer’s Craft Class

Saturday Sept 18, 2021

12-4pm Mountain Time

taught by Max Regan via Zoom

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Tuition is $100 and can be paid by check or by Pay Pal on the home page at www.hollowdeckpress.com

To Register please email Max at hollowdeckpress@mac.com

Stories and memoirs and poems don’t unfold in silence, sooner or later the characters who inhabit our work must SPEAK. And they don’t all speak the same way; they each talk, explain, confess, mumble, whisper, demand, collude, ask, invite and plead in unique and compelling ways. They speak to themselves, to one another, to the living and the dead. In any great novel, memoir or story, the text is populated with vibrant, unique characters. As writers, we create these characters based on people we know, people we imagine, and combinations between the two. Exciting characters have their own lives, histories, speech patterns, desires and fears, and they interact with one another in a way that is compelling and believable. Together we will examine what makes great characters, and invent some of our own. We will practice writing the physical description, gestures, monologue and dialogue that brings each of our characters to life. Open to writers in any genre.

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Breaking Open The Book

On-Line Lecture Series

Exploring The Literary Novel

On Earth We’re Briefly Georgeous

by Ocean Vuong

Friday Sept 24, 2021

3-5pm Mountain Time

taught by Max Regan via Zoom

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Breaking Open The Book On-Line Lecture Series 

Tuition is $45.  For folks over 60: $35.

THANK YOU to everyone who supported Team Spectrum in the past year, we are very grateful! Spectrum Center is closed now, so the Team Spectrum discount program for classes has ended.

   To Register please email Max at hollowdeckpress@mac.com

Tuition can be paid via Pay Pal on the home page at www.hollowdeckpress.com

From poet Ocean Vuong comes this highly acclaimed debut novel. The narrator is a young man in his late twenties, nicknamed Little Dog by his family, who is composing a long letter to his Vietnamese mother. Little Dog and his family grew up poor in Hartford, Connecticut, but their struggles do not end there. His mother still carries the burden of the war, as does his grandmother, and Little Dog’s struggles reach not only back to the traumas of Vietnam but forward in his efforts to fit in to a world that sees him as other. What is permanent is his desire to write, and of course his family. In order to survive, Little Dog has to receive and reject another kind of violence, too: he must see his mother through the American eyes that scan her for weakness and incompetence and, at best, disregard her, the way that evil spirits might ignore a child named for a little dog. There is a staggering tenderness in the way that Little Dog holds all of this within himself, absorbing it and refusing to pass it on. With a poet’s precision, Ocean Vuong examines whether putting words to one’s experience can bridge wounds that span generations, and whether it’s ever possible to be truly heard by those we love most.

“Disarmingly frank, raw in subject matter but polished in style and language, On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous reveals the strengths and limitations of human connection and the importance of speaking your truth.” —BookPage 

“[On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous] is one of the most beautiful novels I have ever read, a literary marvel and a work of extraordinary humanity. It is about who we are, and how we find ourselves in our bodies, in each other, in countries, on this earth: truly a masterpiece.”—Max Porter, Grief is the Thing with Feathers

Ocean Vuong is also the author of the critically acclaimed poetry collection, Night Sky with Exit Wounds, a New York Times Top 10 Book of 2016, winner of the T.S. Eliot Prize, the Whiting Award, the Thom Gunn Award, and the Forward Prize for Best First Collection. A Ruth Lilly fellow from the Poetry Foundation, his honors include fellowships from the Lannan Foundation, the Civitella Ranieri Foundation, The Elizabeth George Foundation, The Academy of American Poets, and the Pushcart Prize.

 “Breaking Open a Book” means we look not just at the story but also at the writer’s craft that brought it to life. What makes a literary novel work? How is the narrative shaped? Is this autobiographically inspired? In what way is the novel hybrid or experimental/ non-linear? What role does landscape and era play? Who is the main character and how do we relate to him? How does he change and transform? What are the turning points and plot twists? Who is the author and how was the book written, sold and received? And, most importantly what are the tools, techniques and writing experiments we can try in our OWN creative writing lives, based on the opportunities the book offers us? 

Together we will examine (as they say in the publishing industry) The Hook (what made the book into a bestseller?) The Cook (who is the author and how did he craft the text?) and The Book (what is the plot, structure, characters and style of the book?). If you have read the book already great, but even if you haven’t please feel free to join us! This novel is available in hardback, on kindle and as an audiobook.

All types of writers can learn great moves from studying a great book. Even if you never read literary novels this story will capture you. We welcome everyone, fiction and non-fiction writers, poets and readers of every kind! 

 

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OCTOBER CLASSES

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October 10-Day Bootcamp

Oct 1-10, 2021

taught by Max Regan via Email

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October 10-Day Bootcamp Class

generate new work and revise old work!

Tuition is $220 and can be paid by check or by Pay Pal on the home page at www.hollowdeckpress.com

To Register please email Max at hollowdeckpress@mac.com

 

The Bootcamp is an easy, email-based class for folks who want to generate some creative text and get a little support and feedback along the way. The daily craft notes in the October class have to do with exploring Imagination and are designed to support writers in both generating NEW texts as well as editing and revising older texts. You can send in daily work in ANY genre, fiction, non-fiction, poetry, memoir, fragments, wild ideas, journaling, lists, free writing, anything you choose.  

 

This 10-day intensive is designed to invite you to PLAY, to experiment wildly and practice writing daily. You might already have idea, story or project underway or you might be starting from scratch, writers of all interests and levels of experience are welcome. Students will receive 3 writing prompts from me everyday via email, as well as some craft notes on keeping your writing practice going. Each Bootcamp class has NEW daily exercises and you can use these prompts, change them or ignore them entirely and do your own thing; it’s completely up to you. Each student will generate 1,000 typed words each day for 10 days, and email their daily work to me by 12:01 (your local time) each night. I will print out and read the work each night and, when the 10-day class is over, I will schedule an optional 50 minute phone session with each student so we can discuss the work together and talk about the next steps for you as a writer. 

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The Indiepalooza Conference

sponsored by The Houston Writers Guild

 

Guest Lecture:

7-8pm Central Time, Friday Oct 8th, 2021

Guest Workshop:

10-12 Central Time, Sunday Oct 10th, 2021

taught by Max Regan via Zoom

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Annual Conference

Sponsored by the Houston Writer’s Guild in Houston TX

The full schedule, list of presenters, costs and details of this year’s conference will be posted soon on the HWG website, so if you are interested in attending the conference please contact HWG at https://www.houstonwritersguild.org/

 

This annual conference explores an array of tools and techniques for writers interested in Indie Publishing and it’s a thrill to be invited back to be a guest presenter via Zoom this year and to have a chance to support this great organization!

 

GUEST LECTURE: What The Heck is a Writing Coach and Do I Need One?

Friday Oct 8th 7-8pm Central Time

The terms and job titles of many of us in the literary industry can be endlessly confusing; what is a Developmental Editor? And what the heck is a Writing Coach and how do they help authors? Where do I find one and what kind of support do they provide? In this one hour lecture we will tackle all of these questions and more, focusing specifically on the ways in which a qualified Writing Coach might help you stay inspired, organized, informed and productive. There will be time at the end of this lecture to answer questions about how a coach might or might not be a good fit for your specific goals and projects.

GUEST WORKSHOP: The Art of Embedding: How To Bring Your Story to Life

Sunday Oct 10th 10-12 Central Time

Crafting a story, in Fiction or in Memoir, means passing along a huge amount of information to the reader. In this 2hr hands-on workshop we will investigate the art of embedding; exploring all the ways an author can let us SEE and HEAR key information in Scenework, not just stacking it all up in Narration. As crafters of story we will TELL the reader information we need them to KNOW but we will also SHOW the reader things we need them to SEE. Embedding is the art of learning to bring story information and facts TO LIFE so the reader can see more and be more invested in the characters, their history and the details of their world. We will look at some examples of writers who embed key information skillfully and then we will try some easy embedding exercises of our own! Open to writers in any genre, all levels of experience welcome. 

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Secrets and Lies

1 Day Writer’s Craft Class

Saturday Oct 16, 2021

12-4pm Mountain Time

taught by Max Regan via Zoom

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Tuition is $100 and can be paid by check or by Pay Pal on the home page at www.hollowdeckpress.com

To Register please email Max at hollowdeckpress@mac.com

The playwright George Bernard Shaw once said; “If you can’t get rid of the skeleton in your closet, you’d better teach it to dance.” This dance is often where great writing begins. Using humor, bravery, curiosity and playfulness we will unpack the idea of secrets and lies, using them as devices by which to create texts. For example; what secrets have you kept for others? How do you write a dialogue where one character is lying to another? What is a lie you wish you had told someone but didn’t? In class we will reference some texts inspired by real and imagined secrets and lies, and discuss how these forces, even in small ways, might help to shape poems, stories, memoirs, characters and plot lines. This class is open to writers in every genre, everyone is welcome.

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Breaking Open The Book

On-Line Lecture Series

Exploring The Gothic Novel

We Have Always Lived in The Castle

by Shirley Jackson

Friday Oct 29, 2021

3-5pm Mountain Time

taught by Max Regan via Zoom

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Breaking Open The Book On-Line Lecture Series 

Tuition is $45.  For folks over 60: $35.

THANK YOU to everyone who supported Team Spectrum in the past year, we are very grateful! Spectrum Center is closed now, so the Team Spectrum discount program for classes has ended.

   To Register please email Max at hollowdeckpress@mac.com

Tuition can be paid via Pay Pal on the home page at www.hollowdeckpress.com

Just in time for Halloween comes this literary classic by Shirley Jackson, a book that was first published in 1962 as a mystery novel and has gone on to become a key text in illustrating how adept female novelists are at writing in the horror/ psychological thriller genre. This book inspired many contemporary novelists, including Gillian Flynn, Ruth Ware, Jane Harper and others.

The story at first seems almost quaint; the narrator, 18-year old Merricat Blackwood, her elder sister Constance, and their ailing Uncle Julian live in a large house on extensive grounds, in isolation from the nearby village. Constance has not left their home in six years, going no farther than her large garden. Uncle Julian, who uses a wheelchair, obsessively writes and re-writes notes for his memoirs, while Constance cares for him. Through Uncle Julian’s ramblings, the events of the past are revealed, including what happened to the remainder of the Blackwood family and who is truly to blame. When a meddling cousin arrives hoping to steal the Blackwood fortune Merricat must decide what she’s willing to do to protect her family. This novel is ultimately about love, loyalty and what it really means to be an outsider, both in one’s community and in one’s own family.

“A witch’s brew of eerie power and startling novelty” —The New York Times

“I was thrilled by the genuine but meaningful strangeness of Shirley Jackson’s We Have Always Lived in the Castle.” —George Saunders

“Jackson’s novel is so wonderfully creepy that students usually feel subversive just for reading it. Add to that one of the most brilliantly realized unreliable narrators in fiction and the book becomes irresistible.” —Marlon James

Shirley Jackson was born in San Francisco in 1916. She first received wide critical acclaim for her short story “The Lottery,” which was published in 1948. Her novels–which include The Sundial, The Bird’s Nest, Hangsaman, The Road through the Wall, We Have Always Lived in the Castle and The Haunting of Hill House–are characterized by her use of realistic settings for tales that often involve elements of horror and magic. A graphic novel adaptation of “The Lottery” by Miles Hyman, her grandson, was published in 2016 (Farrar-Straus-Giroux). 

 “Breaking Open a Book” means we look not just at the story but also at the writer’s craft that brought it to life. What makes a novel work? How is the narrative shaped?  What role does landscape and era play? Who is the main character and how do we relate to her? How does she change and transform? What are the turning points and plot twists? Who is the author and how was the book written, sold and received? And, most importantly what are the tools, techniques and writing experiments we can try in our OWN creative writing lives, based on the opportunities the book offers us? 

Together we will examine (as they say in the publishing industry) The Hook (what made the book into a bestseller?) The Cook (who is the author and how did she craft the text?) and The Book (what is the plot, structure, characters and style of the book?). If you have read the book already great, but even if you haven’t please feel free to join us! This novel is available in paperback, on kindle and as an audiobook.

All types of writers can learn great moves from studying a great book. Even if you never read thriller/ mystery/ gothic novels this story will capture you. We welcome everyone, fiction and non-fiction writers, poets and readers of every kind! 

 

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NOVEMBER CLASSES

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8-Week Poetry Lab

 

     Tuesdays, Nov 2 – Dec 21, 2021

3-5pm Mountain Time

taught by Max Regan via Zoom

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Tuition is $380 and can be paid by check or by Pay Pal on the home page at www.hollowdeckpress.com

To Register please email Max at hollowdeckpress@mac.com

 

This Tuesday Poetry Lab picks up where our Fall Poetry Workshop leaves off so we can keep writing all the way towards the new year! In a Lab Class the emphasis is on wild exploration as poets more than on extensive weekly feedback outside of class, so put your mad scientist hat on and join us! In class we will address craft questions and poetry techniques and we will talk, strategize and write together. Homework prompts, ideas and exercises will be given week to week and poets will be challenged to experiment with new ways of seeing and new ways of writing. 

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8-Week Story Lab

 

     Thursdays Nov 4 – Dec 30, 2021

(NO CLASS ON THANKSGIVING THURS NOV 25th)

3-5pm Mountain Time

taught by Max Regan via Zoom

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Tuition is $380 and can be paid by check or by Pay Pal on the home page at www.hollowdeckpress.com

To Register please email Max at hollowdeckpress@mac.com

 

This Thursday Story Lab picks up where our Fall Story Workshop leaves off, allowing us to keep discovering, crafting and drafting Memoir and Fictions stories. In a Lab Class the emphasis is on exploring and writing together more than on giving extensive feedback outside of class. Together we will keep examining how essays, memoirs, stories and novels work, including experiments with hybrid forms and micro-forms. Homework week to week will invite story writers to dive more deeply into characters, descriptions, plots and takeaways, as well as creating goals and timelines to help keep longer projects moving forward.

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FA’21 11-Week Beyond Bootcamp class

 

     Mon Nov 8, 2021 – Sun Jan 23, 2022

taught by Max Regan via Email

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Tuition is $275 and can be paid by check or by Pay Pal on the home page at www.hollowdeckpress.com

To Register please email Max at hollowdeckpress@mac.com

 

For writers who want to build a weekly writing practice with some inspiration, structure and accountability as we move towards the New Year, then this might be the class for you!

The Beyond Bootcamp Class is a bridge class, it runs 11 weeks in the window of time between the 10-Day Oct Bootcamp and the 10-day Feb Bootcamp and moves from a focus on daily writing goals to weekly writing goals.

The class has three weekly components:

1. The Monday Morning Assignment Sheet

Every Monday morning for 11 consecutive weeks I will email out an assignment sheet, (much like the daily sheet you get during the regular 10-day Bootcamp class). It will have one craft idea to support your writing practice and three optional exercises. These will include things like Lead Lines, Prompts, Story Starters, etc. and can be used to create or expand work in any genre.

The assignment sheets for the Beyond Bootcamp class are unique, they include both Customized Curriculum (writing craft notes and exercises built in response to specific needs and questions asked by writers in the class) as well as Expanded Curriculum (including wild experiments, image-based exercises, text examples, publishing opportunities and writing craft articles and resources) .

2. The Sunday Night Text Submission

Writers in the Beyond Bootcamp class might choose to write every day, or they might only write a few days or a few pages during any given week. The key is to find a consistent and sustainable practice that works for YOU.

On Sundays simply choose up to 2000 words / 4 pages of the work you have written during the week and send it to me before midnight. (And remember, there is no minimum! Send whatever you got!) I will print it out, read it through and keep track of it in case you want to discuss the work in the future. Don’t worry, you are only sending your work to me, not to the whole class. You can use your weekly writing time to expand a text, start something new, edit a text into the next draft, whatever you choose. The idea here is to keep your MOMENTUM going! And if you are worried about forgetting to send in your text every Sunday don’t worry! I will be sending out a reminder each week by email.

3. The Bootcamp Conversation FB Group

The Bootcamp class conversation will move over to Facebook during this period, in a “closed” / private group, only open to folks in the Bootcamp Classes. When you register for the class just let me know if you would like to join this Facebook group, it is a place for folks in the Beyond Bootcamp class to share their daily experiences, ideas, techniques and challenges. It is also a way for you to ask me questions as we move through the class. Participating in the group is always optional, but it can be a great way to touch base with your fellow writers to share your experience.

Optional Follow-up Phone Sessions 

Unlike the regular Bootcamp classes, the Beyond Bootcamp Class does not include a built-in followup phone session. But as you write and send in work for these 11 weeks if you would like to chat with me about it in a Phone Session, just let me know, I’m always happy to schedule a time to talk!

Students can join the class ANYTIME over the 11 weeks, but unfortunately the class cannot be prorated. Follow up sessions by phone are always available at the regular rate of $90/hr. Tuition can be paid by check or paid by credit card via Pay Pal on the home page at www.hollowdeckpress.com

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Breaking Open The Book

On-Line Lecture Series

Exploring The Novel

Homegoing

by Yaa Gyasi

Friday Nov 19, 2021

3-5pm Mountain Time

taught via Zoom

Guest Lecturer: Diane Macklin

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Breaking Open The Book On-Line Lecture Series 

Tuition is $45.  For folks over 60: $35.

 To Register please email Max at hollowdeckpress@mac.com

Tuition can be paid via Pay Pal on the home page at www.hollowdeckpress.com

In Ghana, in the eighteenth century two half sisters are born into different villages, each unaware of the other. One will marry an Englishman and lead a life of comfort in the palatial rooms of the Cape Coast Castle. The other will be captured in a raid on her village, imprisoned in the very same castle, and sold into slavery.

 

One of Oprah’s Best Books of the Year and a PEN/Hemingway award winner, Homegoing follows the parallel paths of these sisters and their descendants through eight generations: from the Gold Coast to the plantations of Mississippi, from the American Civil War to Jazz Age Harlem. Yaa Gyasi’s extraordinary novel illuminates slavery’s troubled legacy both for those who were taken and those who stayed—and shows how the memory of captivity has been inscribed on the soul of our nation.

“Homegoing is an inspiration.” —Ta-Nehisi Coates

“Spectacular.” —Zadie Smith

Yaa Gyasi was born in Ghana and raised in Huntsville, Alabama. She holds a BA in English from Stanford University and an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, where she held a Dean’s Graduate Research Fellowship. She lives in New York City.

Guest Lecturer: DIANE MACKLIN is Writer, Poet and Storyteller who has a dynamic approach to engaging audiences – whether as a performing artist, keynote speaker, or workshop/residency leader. Her background in theatre, dance, and cultural mediation adds zest to her work, focusing on storytelling as a transformative and healing art form. She has performed from Massachusetts to California for venues such as Cincinnati’s Playhouse in the Park, National Association of Black Storytellers, Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, International Storytelling Festival’s Exchange Place, National Docent Symposium, and many more. As a performer, certified educator, and teaching artist, Diane believes in “Making a Difference, One Story at a Time!”

 “Breaking Open a Book” means we look not just at the story but also at the writer’s craft that brought it to life. What makes a novel work? How is the narrative shaped? What role does landscape and era play? Who is the protagonist and how do we relate to her? How does she change and transform? What are the turning points and plot twists? Who is the author and how was the book written, sold and received? And, most importantly what are the tools, techniques and writing experiments we can try in our OWN creative writing lives, based on the opportunities the book offers us? 

Together we will examine (as they say in the publishing industry) The Hook (what made the book into a bestseller?) The Cook (who is the author and how did she craft the text?) and The Book (what is the plot, structure, characters and style of the book?). If you have read the book already great, but even if you haven’t please feel free to join us! This book is available in paperback, on kindle and as an audiobook.

All types of writers can learn great moves from studying a great book. Even if you never read novels this story will capture you. We welcome everyone, fiction and non-fiction writers, poets and readers of every kind! 

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How To Publish Memoir Essays

1 Day Writer’s Craft Class taught via Zoom

 

Saturday Nov 20, 2021

12-2:30 pm Mountain Time

taught via Zoom

Guest Instructor: Harriet Reilly

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Tuition is $100  To Register please email Max at hollowdeckpress@mac.com

Tuition can be paid via check or by Pay Pal on the home page at www.hollowdeckpress.com

Want to learn the best way to shape up your short and long Creative Non-Fiction/ Memoir essays and send them out for publication? Want to understand how to find the magazines and journals that might be the best fit for your work? Then this is the class for you! Guest Instructor Harriet Reilly, a New Orleans based writer and teacher, will take us through the steps and answer our questions about the process.

(more details about this class are coming soon, so save the date and stay tuned for more information!) 

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DECEMBER CLASSES

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Writing Out Relationships

1 Day Writer’s Craft Class taught via Zoom

 

Saturday Dec 11, 2021

12-4 pm Mountain Time

taught by Max Regan via Zoom

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Tuition is $100 and can be paid by check or by Pay Pal on the home page at www.hollowdeckpress.com

To Register please email Max at hollowdeckpress@mac.com

No matter what type of story or poem you are creating, it likely has a relationship somewhere in the center. As human beings we are in relationship with people, communities, landscapes, objects and ideas from the moment we are born and the absence or presence of relationships stay central to our lives and the lives of our readers. An adventure novel might be focused on a relationship between a character and the wilderness or a storm or solitude. A memoir might be focused on a character’s relationship with their family, or their job or their faith or themselves or even their dog.  What relationships are central in your own stories and poems and projects? How are those relationships established and illustrated for the reader? How can the writing of those relationships be strengthened? How do they change or transform? 

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Breaking Open The Book

On-Line Lecture Series

Exploring The Romance Novel

A Virgin River Christmas

by Robyn Carr

Friday Dec 17, 2021

3-5pm Mountain Time

taught by Max Regan via Zoom

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Breaking Open The Book On-Line Lecture Series 

Tuition is $45.  For folks over 60: $35.

 To Register please email Max at hollowdeckpress@mac.com

Tuition can be paid via Pay Pal on the home page at www.hollowdeckpress.com

What the heck is going on with romance novels? Suddenly they seem to be everywhere. Amazon lists over 50,000 titles for the “Holiday Romance” category alone. From Robyn Carr, author of the Virgin River series, which was a blockbuster hot for Netflix last year, comes a holiday tale of war, grief and unexpected love. Last Christmas Marcie Sullivan said a final goodbye to her husband, Bobby. This Christmas she’s come to Virgin River to find the man who saved his life and gave her three more years to love him. Fellow marine Ian Buchanan dragged Bobby’s shattered body onto a medical transport in Fallujah four years ago, then disappeared as soon as their unit arrived stateside. Since then, Marcie’s letters to Ian have gone unanswered.

Marcie tracks Ian to the tiny mountain town of Virgin River and finds a man as wounded emotionally as Bobby was physically. But she is not easily scared off. As Marcie pushes her way into his rugged and reclusive life, she discovers a sweet but damaged soul beneath a rough exterior. Ian doesn’t know what to make of the determined young widow who forces him to look into the painful past and, what’s worse, the uncertain future. 

This book conversation is our chance to break down some of the myths and stereotypes about romance novels and the romance genre. Romance is one of the most commercially successful, highly adaptable and enduring genres in fiction. Romance appears in almost every other type of genre fiction; mysteries, paranormal, sci fi, fantasy, even westerns. But what makes a book a romance? Who writes and publishes them? Together we will talk through this example and others like it to get to the heart of what makes this genre work.

Even if you never read romance novels feel free to join us for this conversation. We welcome everyone, fiction and non-fiction writers, poets and readers of every kind! 

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2021 Annual Holiday Story Raffle!

Submit your 1000-word holiday story by Dec 24th and enter the raffle to win a $150 gift certificate to any HDP class or event in 2022!

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As a Thank You to everyone in the writing community who stuck together and kept working, especially those of you who supported us by jumping into a Hollowdeck class or event this year, we are SO deeply and profoundly grateful. So, as this year comes to a close, we again want to offer something FREE and FUN!

 

How does the raffle work? Does it cost anything to enter?

No, its FREE! Just choose one of the five Holiday Lead Lines below and write a short story of no more than 1000 words maximum. Use your imagination; any genre of fiction is welcome! Then sometime before midnight Dec 24th just email your story to Max at hollowdeckpress@mac.com and he will enter your name in the raffle. On Dec 25th Max will pull a name out of the santa hat and the winner will win a $150 Gift Certificate that can be used for any 2022 class, event, retreat, lecture or private coaching/editing session.

 

Does my story have to be about christmas?

Heck no! There are a lot of ways to celebrate the holiday season and a lot of different cultures and religions that all celebrate this time of year in awesome and unique ways, including those who don’t celebrate it at all! You are welcome to write about christmas if you want, or your story can be about hanukkah or kwanzaa or boxing day or solstice or about someone who hates the whole season! It can be about a dragon named santa or what might happen if space aliens invaded the mall. Your story can be a romance or a western or a retelling of A Christmas Carol with zombies, it can be serious, silly or anything in between, whatever floats your boat! Just give your story a TITLE and make sure your name is on it!

 

Is this a contest? Will my story win the prize if it’s the best one?

Nope, it’s a raffle, not a contest, stories will not be judged. That means EVERY eligible story that arrives by Dec 24th will be entered into the raffle. Each writer can only submit one story, so make it a fun one!

 

What kind of writing stuff would a $150 gift certificate buy me from Hollowdeck in 2022?

$150 is enough for 1 hr + 45 mins worth of private writing coaching/editing, or 3 monthly Breaking Open the Book Lectures, or 1.5 monthly Writer’s Craft Classes, or you can use the money towards a Bootcamp class or Beyond Bootcamp class or any intensive or retreat sponsored by Hollowdeck, whatever you choose!

 

What if I want to share my story with others?

I was hoping you’d ask!! You should definitely read your story to friends and family, but Max will also sent up a Facebook Group for those who want to post their whole 1000-word or less holiday story and let other writers in our community see what you wrote. To join the Facebook Group just drop Max an email and he will invite you in. Posting your story on the FB page is NOT required to be entered for the raffle, it’s just an option. All authors retain full rights to their stories, of course. So if you post your story please post it with your name and “©2021” It would be so much fun to read what you wrote!

 

Ok I’m in! What are the Lead Lines? Can I change them at all?

Sure thing, change them in any way you want! Here they are again, just choose one and go for it!

 

* Last night, sneaking home from my girlfriend’s house, I could have sworn I saw a reindeer….

 

* I finally told my mom that this year I’m doing something totally crazy for the holidays….

 

* It never snows here but every December something strange begins to happen….

 

* It started with the eggnog and ended two days later. Here’s what I remember…

 

* Every time I see the holiday lights go up I remember my Grandmother’s secret….

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STAY TUNED for the launch

of the NEW and IMPROVED Hollowdeck Press Website this FALL!

And Save The Date:

Classes and Events coming up in 2022:

JANUARY 4-DAY PROJECTS INTENSIVE: Jan 7-10, 2022

JUNE 10-DAY PROJECTS RETREAT:

Session 1: June 3-13, 2022

Session 2: June 17-27, 2022

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Private Coaching and Developmental Editing

 

Not every writer is looking for a class or a workshop, sometimes a person to person connection is what will support you the most. For editors this often begins with an in-depth conversation about where you are in your writing life or your specific project or idea, where you want to go and how to move forward with energy, organization and focus. Max helps writers set goals, deadlines, exercises, feedback and accountability structures designed to partner you through the Drafting Process as you bring your work to life. If coaching or editing would be useful to you check out the webpage at: https://www.hollowdeckpress.com/coaching-and-editing/

and drop Max a line at hollowdeckpress@mac.com

 

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A Note From Max:

In this unprecedented time we at Hollowdeck Press are committed to offering classes and lectures that might support, comfort, inspire and connect the members of our writing community. Creativity, self-expression and writing can be life lines as we move through this period of immense change, uncertainty and awakening. As a teacher, editor and writing coach I have never and will never turn away any writer due to an inability to pay. If you are one of the many folks who has lost their income or who is struggling with illness please reach out to me and I will find a way to support your creative work. 

Be well, I’m sending love and gentleness to you and yours,

-Max

www.hollowdeckpress.com

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