Historical Novel Society Conference, St. Petersburg, FL, June 2013

The Vinoy® Renaissance St. Petersburg Resort is a historic landmarkThe Vinoy® Renaissance St. Petersburg Resort is a historic landmark


The Historical Novel Society Conference will take place at the Vinoy Hotel in St. Petersburg, FL, from June 20 to June 23rd. I'll be co-leading, with Mary Burns, a workshop on Book Trailers. The conference meets in the U.S. and the U.K. on alternate years, so register by the May 25th deadline!





A dazzling array of historical writers will be attendance, including Anne Perry,Donna Russo Morin, Stephanie Dray, Heather Webb, Jeannie Mackin, Steve Berry, David Blixt, Kris Waldehrr, Maryka Biaggio, Deborah Swift, Michelle Cameron, Mitchell J. Kaplan, and many others. For the latest on who

is attending and what they have written, click here.

Our workshop is entitled Book Trailers: From Powerpoint to Ipad apps, and meets on Saturday, June 22nd, from 8:15 to 9:45 am. Here is the workshop description:

Book trailers are great marketing tools and a fabulous addition to your book's webpage. Trailers spark discussions about your topic and draw readers to your site.  Book trailers can be expensive, but a short, simply designed book trailer is not hard to make, using the resources most writers already have.
We will start with some guidelines for a good trailer concept.  Bring a synopsis (no more than 250 words) of your book and if you are daring, your first draft of a book trailer script, and we will help you refine it in class.
Once you have a script we will walk you through the basics of finding free music and images and creating a powerpoint-slide show book trailer (there will be copious handouts).
For the more cinematically ambitious we will look at ways to make a live-action movie with an ipad, and how to use stop-motion, animation, and other effects with easy-to-find apps.

Bring your book concept (250 words or less) and something to write with for the hands-on portion of the workshop.

Other panels cover other marketing issues such how to do a public reading, how to do a blog tour, indie publishing. There are panels on writing topics like writing sex scenes, combat scenes, writing about religion, witchcraft, dialect and slang, historical settings, commercial versus literary historical fiction, and many more. In addition there are sessions with agents and editors that work with historical fiction writers. Attendees can schedule meetings with them and also participate in "cold reads" where agents read the first two pages of your work. Before the conference begins there is a day of workshops with Charlotte Cook on pitching and your first five pages.

It's not all work, either. There's a costume show and Diana Gabaldon will do readings from sex scenes.