Challenge,  On Writing,  publishing,  workshops

I Wasn’t Clear

No Surprise I Suppose…

I didn’t really describe the focus on the new coast workshop very well, so got a bunch of good questions about it. So let me try this again here by answering some questions. Just reading these questions and answers might open your eyes to a world you hadn’t though of.

First, this is about how to expand and write extra stories and novels in your series. 

Okay, let me try to explain that. Kris is known for winning Reader’s Choice Awards at Asimov’s, Analog, and Ellery Queen magazines. Over 75% of those winning stories are side stories from one of her major series.

It is an art form to take one of your series and move off sideways with a short story or even a novel. But all good series have side stories in them. You first have to know how to look for them and then how to write them.

And in this new indie world, having extra stories or even side novels for your series fans can really be a promotion gold mine.

Kris and I realized a while back that very few writers knew how to do this well or were even capable of seeing where they had side stories. Kris is an expert since so many of her series side stories are nominated for or win awards.

Second, learning how to write side stories and exploration stories can often move your series forward.

Both Kris and I do this all the time. We write short stories or novellas to see where a series is going, to expand a character, to add in a certain element that doesn’t fit in a book. I often write short stories in series and then discover I have found a great novel in the story.

Exploration, once you understand how to do it and what to look for, can really move a series forward and give you more product at the same time.

In the short story challenge, I am always telling writers their story would make a good novel. Most tell me they never saw that and if I hadn’t pointed it out would have not seen it. Learning how to see these stories is part of what this workshop is about.

Third, this workshop is nothing at all like the online series workshop.

In fact, the two workshops would go well together. The online one is about the basics of writing series. The coast workshop is about how to expand and explore your own series with stories you might never have thought to write.

So with all that said, here is the information about the summer workshop again. Write me if interested or if you have questions. I really love the idea of helping Kris teach this intense craft and writing workshop here at the coast this summer and only ten writers can get in, plus four locals. So jump in if interested.


Writing Series Stories and Novels

July 21st- 28th, 2018

Taught by the multiple genre award-winning writer Kristine Kathryn Rusch (with a little help from Dean Wesley Smith). Both Kris and Dean have many successful series to their name in their forty-plus years of writing.

This will be an intense writing workshop on all the varied techniques that go into writing series stories and novels in all genres. There are lots of ways to expand and help your series with side stories and so on.

It will also have a reading list ahead of the workshop.

This workshop will not work directly on any series in progress, but instead on side stories and how to expand your series.

This workshop will teach you all the craft elements in writing series stories to go along with your series.

Workshop fee is $650.00.

Brand New Workshop. Just announced. Limited to only ten writers from out of the area. Four from locally.

First signed up and paid, first in.

This workshop starts at 7PM on Saturday, July 21st and goes late on the second Saturday, with check-out and travel home on Sunday.

Come spend a week on the beautiful Oregon Coast in the summer writing and learning.

It will be fun and an amazing learning experience.

More information at Coast Workshops tab on the right.

Or write me if you have questions. Don’t delay on this one. Got a hunch it will fill fast.


  • Vera Soroka

    I love this idea and see the potential. I wish I could take the course. I think it was Kris who I saw first doing this and right away saw the potential, especially in this indie world. And I see Kris got a novella published in Asimov. That was something. That would drive readers to that series and I see when you summit to magazines that those shorts can lead readers to your series.
    Right now I’m in love with a new show Electric Dreams. A series of short stories written by Philip Dick. Each short story is brought to life. I see the power of short story or novellas.

    • dwsmith

      Yeah, and actually she gets novellas published in Asimov’s all the time. It was the full novel that was part of her series in Asimov’s that was pretty cool. First time ever for the magazine to publish a full novel.

  • paladin3001

    Sounds like a great workshop. Time and distance though.
    I was thinking about this as I was writing one book. Ended up with a short story out of it. Tried dropping it into the WIP after it was done and felt clunky. Second book has a story idea niggling at the hind brain about a scene separate from the current situation, yet in a way ties into the story.

    • dwsmith

      And that’s exactly why this workshop. Knowing how to make these side stories work and tie into your series to add to the series. This can be learned. And wow does it help sales.