Returning Faculty Stories Part Two

continuation of Returning Faculty Stories Part One

Long time Willamette Writers member Anthony St. Clair has attended our conferences for years. In fact, I first met Anthony at the 2010 Willamette Writers Conference. He has many favorite returning faculty, and was kind enough to tell me about four of them: Susan DeFrieitas, William Hertling, Luke Ryan, and Eric Witchey.

Discovering Core Character and Plot

“Every time I attend one of Susan’s talks,” he said, “I gain insights on science fiction and fantasy that I put to work in my own stories.” But more than that, Susan helps writers get to the “core character and plot elements that make for stronger, more compelling books.”

This year, Susan DeFrieitas will share her professional editor expertise in Live Editing Lab on Friday morning for the Revisions & Rewrites Track.

Marketing Strategies for Authors

In regards to William Hertling, Anthony said, “Will’s technical understanding of online marketing is matched only by his ability to convey that information in a way that any author can understand and put to work.”

William will offer two workshop for the Business and Marketing Track: on Friday he will teach how to maximize book sales and on Sunday he will partner with Annie Bellet to discuss marketing for self-published authors.

Beyond the Book

Anthony told me that Luke Ryan helps authors think about telling stories in mediums beyond the book such as graphic novels and television screenplays. “I’ve used Luke’s advice to continue building on the story-behind-the-story that I need to make my ongoing fantasy series richer and more engaging.”

Luke will present two workshops this year: Storytelling in the Next Dimension and The Business of Screenwriting.

Heart of the Story

Perhaps one of the most staunch Willamette Writers supporters, Eric Witchey has presented at many conferences, offered a multitude of Advanced Manuscript Critiques for our members, and offered workshops for many of our chapters all over the state.

Anthony said, “Eric helps authors get to the heart of their stories, and then gain the confidence and skill to get their heart of the story onto the page for the reader.”

Eric Wichey will offer four workshops for the Fiction Track at the 2016 Willamette Writers Conference this summer: The Power of the Irreconcilable Self, Using Premise to Hit Your Dramatic Targets, Controlling Story Layers with ED ACE, and Write a Story NOW.

If you have a returning faculty story, please email them to me at

By Gail Pasternack

Gail Pasternack

As Vice President and Secretary of Willamette Writers, Gail Pasternack is a member of the Executive Committee and helps run the daily affairs of Willamette Writers. She also records the minutes for all board meetings and the annual member meeting and chairs the Governance Committee. Gail is a writer, photographer, blogger, educator, foodie, and tango dancer. Contact her.