Virginia Romance Writers (VRW), chapter #19 of Romance Writers of America® is an organization for writers of all levels, from unpublished writers working on their first manuscripts to award-winning, bestselling published authors. VRW holds monthly meetings. The chapter is dedicated to promoting excellence in romantic fiction. VRW offers innovative programs and workshops, and shares knowledge about the constantly evolving publishing world. VRW also helps writers grow their careers through networking opportunities.

As a chapter, VRW strives to reach as many Virginia romance writers as possibly by rotating our meeting venues each month. For more information about upcoming guest speakers and locations, check out the workshops page. Interested individuals may attend up to two meetings prior to joining the chapter. New members are always welcome.

Next Meeting

February 10, 2018

Sandston Branch Library
23 E. Williamsburg Rd.
Sandston, VA 23150-2011

Doors open: 10am
Meeting begins: 10:30am

Madeline Iva–Plotting Techniques to Save You Time & Make Your Writing Irresistible

Plot forms the backbone of your work-in-progress. But how robust is that skeleton? Sharpen your foundation with easy techniques as you learn Aristotle’s theory of drama in five minutes.

  • What’s an inciting incident?
  • How should I use backstory and flashbacks?
  • What are turning points and where do they go in my plot?
  • I have a lot of characters—when do I introduce them all?
  • Why are endings particularly challenging? What’s a coda?
  • What’s the difference between action arcs, narrative arcs, & character arcs–and how are they necessary in romance? 

We’re now living in a publishing world where rapid, efficient production is key to greater earnings. Learning how to implement plot structure at the beginning of your novel drafting process will save you hours of major revision time later.  

Some of Madeline’s examples will be drawn from these romances:

  • All I Ever Wanted by Kristin Higgins
  • The Spymaster’s Lady by Joanna Bourne
  • Dark Lover, by J.R. Ward
  • The movie “While You Were Sleeping”

Participants are encouraged (but not required) to read or watch any of these works in advance.

Madeline Iva is a fantasy/paranormal romance author with an MFA in creative writing from a top graduate program. A ‘teaching dork’, Madeline has been a professional creative writing instructor since 1997. Romances got her through grim times in high school; after leaving her job as a rhetoric professor in 2008, she joined the world of romance writers and never looked back. Now she lives in the Blue Ridge mountains with her one true love, two adorable tiny dogs, and a very wild cottage garden. In 2012, Madeline Iva started #LoveFest—the romance track at Virginia Festival of the Book. That same year she co-founded LadySmut.com, a blog devoted to sex, romance, and pop culture.



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