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The First Chapter: A Retreat for Prose Writers

  • 21 Oct 2017
  • 9:00 AM - 3:00 PM
  • Salisbury University, University House

Pat Valdata

Saturday, October 21, 2017

9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.

University House at Salisbury University

$60 early bird rate by October 1; $80 after October 1



This retreat uses a mix of discussions and writing exercises to help generate ideas for prose writers who would like to begin a novel or memoir. The course will cover writing as a practice, developing characters, and producing a first chapter. Participants will learn how to develop a writing practice that will help them begin a book and maintain enthusiasm while writing it, techniques for portraying fully developed characters and how to use the scene as a basis for writing the first chapter of their book.


Pat Valdata is an award-winning novelist and poet with an MFA in fiction writing from Goddard College. Her books include two novels, Crosswind and The Other Sister (2008 Árpad Academy gold medalist), and two poetry books, Where No Man Can Touch (2015 Donald Justice Poetry Prize) and Inherent Vice. Pat teaches online creative writing courses for the University of Maryland University College. She is a board member of the Eastern Shore Writers Association.

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