Conversations about author craft

A regular open house for the author community

Books by Authors A.I. authors
A few of the books written by Authors A.I. authors.

By the Authors A.I. team

Author Brett Battles
Cheers to all the aspiring and published authors in the house.

Welcome to First Draft Friday! We have a big team of authors here at Authors A.I. with lots of opinions to share — and we’d like to hear from you! Please join us for our every-other-week online conversation about author craft on Facebook Live and YouTube Live. It’s open to all members of the author community.

Rather than doing webinars, we think it’s better to have a freewheeling back and forth. So we’ll do this as a live-stream on our Facebook group — please join our community!

Each month we’ll bring in guests — a fellow author, editor or entrepreneur — to talk about the craft of novel writing and storytelling.

There are lots of sites that can help you with your book marketing, and we encourage you to learn the inside tricks of self-publishing. But there are few places devoted to writing craft.

So please return here and we’ll list upcoming events on topics such as narrative arc, pacing, character development, writing tips — and lots more.

Upcoming First Draft Fridays

FDF #17: How hot should your romance novel be?

Date: 20210212

Host: Alessandra Torre with Guest Bron Whitley

Details: At 5pm ET, romance authors Bron Whitley and Alessandra Torre will discuss heat levels in different romance subgenres. Learn tips on building chemistry among characters in sweet and steamy ways, along with some do’s and don’ts of writing romantic scenes.

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FDF #17: How hot should your romance novel be?

Authors Bron Whitley and Alessandra Torre

FDF #16: Increasing your writing speed

Date: 20210129

Host: Alessandra Torre with Guest Chris Fox

Details: At 5pm ET, bestselling author Chris Fox will discuss how to get the most out of your writing time by increasing your writing speed. Learn tips and effective habits to improve your daily word count and ask questions in this live discussion.

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FDF #16: Increasing your writing speed

Authors Chris Fox and Alessandra Torre

Past First Draft Friday Events

FDF #15: Forbidden Sins of Your First Page

Date: 20210115

Host: Editor and Author Tex Thompson

Details: Author Tex Thompson discusses some common pitfalls of a novel’s first pages, and how to kick yours into proper place. Learn about exposition, pacing, whether or not to use a prologue, and using unexpected emotions to hook a reader.

Authors Tex Thompson and Alessandra Torre

Writing mistakes to avoid in your novel

Date: 20201211

Host: Fiction Editor Susan Barnes

Details: Book editor Susan Barnes reveals the most common missteps that authors make. These mistakes can cause poor reviews, lost sales, and readers abandoning your novel midway through. In this half-hour event, Susan teaches how to avoid common pitfalls and what to watch our for when you’re writing and rewriting a draft.

FDF #13: Bringing your location to life

Date: 20200925

Host: Romance author Maria Luis

Details: On this First Draft Friday, bestselling author Maria Luis joins host Alessandra Torre. Maria shares how to use your location in the same way that you do your characters – to help bring your book to life!

Authors Maria Luis and Alessandra Torre

FDF #12: Self-Editing Steps for Authors

Date: 20201030

Host: Romance author Penny Reid

Details: Learning how to improve your manuscript is an important skill for any author to have. On this First Draft Friday, USA Today bestselling romance author Penny Reid and Authors A.I. CEO Alessandra Torre discuss self-editing. Penny will share the steps she takes in her own self-edit process.

Bestselling author Penny Reid and Alessandra Torre

FDF #11: Getting Cozy with Mysteries

Date: 20201031

Host: Mystery authors Sara Rosett and Tonya Kappes

Details: These bestselling mystery authors have an open discussion about writing in the mystery genre. They’ll share tips for appealing to mystery readers, what those readers expect in a novel, and what to avoid when penning a mystery novel.

Mystery authors Sara Rosett and Tonya Kappes

FDF #10: Four-Act Fiction

Date: 20200925

Host: Author Alessandra Torre

Details: Lou Aronica, Publisher of The Story Plant and New York Times bestselling author, and John Adcox, author and CEO of Gramarye Media discuss a four-act structure, and tips on how to use it in your fiction-writing.

Authors Steffanie Holmes and Lucy Score

FDF #9: Skeletons in Your Plot

Date: 20200925

Host: Romance author Lucy Score

Details: Don’t have time (or the will) to create detailed book outlines in advance? Paranormal romance/urban fantasy author Steffanie Holmes will share her skeleton draft method. Steff writes a first draft for a book in a few days without any kind of plan or outline.

Authors Steffanie Holmes and Lucy Score

FDF #8: Flawed Heroes & Virtuous Villains

Date: 20200911

Host: Romance author Alessandra Torre

Details: Bestselling British crime and thriller author Andy Maslen discusses the art of creating complex, believable, three-dimensional characters, starting with your protagonist and antagonist.

Authors Alessandra Torre and Andy Maslen discuss creating complex characters on First Draft Friday.

FDF #7: The turn-key technique to creating memorable characters

Date: 20200828

Host: Romance author Alessandra Torre

Details: Where do you start when creating characters for a new book or series that your readers will love? Veteran authors Judith Lucci and Fiona Quinn — who have more than 40 bestsellers between them — discuss a little-known technique they use to harness memory, sensory perception and logic to build engrossing characters and scenes.

Authors Judith Lucci and Fiona Quinn in conversation with Alessandra Torre.

FDF #6: The secret sauce of great editing

Date: 20200814

Host: Fantasy author Charlie N. Holmberg

Details: What are the benefits of working with a professional book editor? Jason Kirk and Charlie Holmberg discuss how good editors can teach authors to “fish” and improve their self-editing skills with each succeeding manuscript. Jason is the award-winning editor of 100+ books with 20 years of editing and publishing experience.

Author Charlie Holmberg and editor Jason Kirk discuss the long-term benefits of working with a professional book editor.

FDF #5: Productivity tips for authors

Date: 20200731

Host: Thriller author Danielle Girard

Details: Legal thriller author Robin James has a special superpower: writing through distractions. She and Danielle offer tips on how to be more productive with your writing and how to power your way to success.

Thriller authors Danielle Girard and Robin James offer productivity tips for writers.

FDF #4: Can A.I. make your next novel a bestseller?

Date: 20200717

Host: Alessandra Torre

Details: Matthew Jockers, PhD, co-author of The Bestseller Code and co-founder of Authors A.I., talks about how artificial intelligence can help authors enhance their storytelling and sell more books. Dr. Jockers is a pioneer in the applications of machine learning to the study of fiction. He is the creator of the groundbreadking new A.I. tool Marlowe.

Dr. Matthew Jockers talks with author Alessandra Torre about how A.I. can help authors in the rewrite process.

FDF #3: Using A.I. to help with story beats

Date: 20200703

Host: Alessandra Torre & JD Lasica

Details: James Rosone, a bestselling military thriller author, recently turned to writing a military sci-fi series. He discusses how he uses an artificial intelligence to help his storytelling at key parts of the rewrite process.

Thriller/sci-fi author James Rosone discusses how he uses A.I. to improve his novel’s story beats with Alessandra Torre and JD Lasica.

FDF #2: Nailing character development

Date: 20200619

Host: Alessandra Torre

Details: Romance author Alessandre Torre discusses how authors can flesh out their character development with veteran editor/publisher Lou Aronica.

Torre and Aronica discuss what goes into successful character development.

FDF #1: What are your biggest writing challenges?

Date: 20200605

Host: Alessandra Torre

Details: Romance author Alessandre Torre and historical romance author Cecelia Mecca discuss some of the top challenges they face as they write their fiction.

Here’s a 30-minute video of our kickoff First Draft Friday chat about author craft.

Have a topic you’d like us to tackle? Know an author who would make a good guest? Let us know!

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