The Literary Page Turner: Advanced Writer Weekend

Date(s): November 09, 2017 12:00 PM – November 12, 2017 12:00 PM
Cost: Workshop with Onsite Lodging: $899, Workshop Only: $699
Faculty: Katie Bayerl and Erin Harris
Maximum Class Size: 10 Lodging Spots, 6 Local Spots
How to Apply:Click Here to Apply

The Literary Page Turner: Advanced Writer Weekend

with Author Katie Bayerl and Folio Agent Erin Harris

Join author Katie Bayerl and agent Erin Harris for a long weekend of lectures, craft exercises, and workshop in Austin, TX.

Faculty Lectures:

High Concept With Heart with Erin Harris

What do agents mean when they talk about stories that have a strong hook or concept? What do they mean when they call a book literary? Increasingly, you may see agents asking for books that are both. We’ll spend some time defining the qualities of each type of book—and the point where the two intersect. Agent Erin Harris will share examples of recent books (for adults and young adults) that hit the sweet spot. She’ll also share exercises to help you sharpen your book’s concept in a way that will get agents’ and readers’ attention as well as exercises that help you infuse that concept with your own unique voice and emotional truth.

Driving with Both Pedals with Katie Bayerl

Have you ever tried to drive stickshift? The first time probably felt impossible, with lots of lurching and stalling until you found the right balance between the two pedals. Guess what? Writing a story that is both “literary” and a pageturner can feel the same way. You might begin with a mind-blowing plot concept, but soon the scenes feel mechanical and empty. Or maybe you get carried away exploring character and voice… but nothing actually happens in your scenes. Maybe you run into both problems sometimes. (I sure do!) We’re going to talk about that delicate balance of keeping the story fluid and engaging for readers, while not losing sight of that beating heart that will make them care in the first place. Author Katie Bayerl will share some tricks and exercises to help you attend to both levels of your story. The good news? When you find that balance, you’ll find the process of writing more fluid and fun too!

Writing Barn PB Intensive 2016Who Should Apply for this Advanced Writer Weekend Workshop?

  • published writers
  • writers with agents
  • writers who are getting personal rejections from agents and editors
  • SCBWI members and WLT members, and others who have attended classes, workshops, and conferences routinely
  • those looking to give and receive thoughtful and critical creative feedback


Faculty Bios

Katie Bayerl fell in love with books before she can remember and with teaching when she was just a teen. The writing books for teens part came a bit later. She jumped right in and hasn’t looked back.

Katie has degrees in education from Brown and Tufts universities and an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from Vermont College of Fine Arts. She has taught teens in a range of settings, worked as editor of a teen-generated magazine, and helped dozens of schools and nonprofits tell their stories. She currently leads the VCFA Young Writers Network and teaches creative writing classes at Boston’s GrubStreet. Her young adult novel A Psalm for Lost Girls (Putnam Books for Young Readers) has been selected as one of the most anticipated YA debuts of 2017 by Barnes & Noble and Bustle.

Erin Harris is a literary agent at Folio Literary Management who champions the careers of both debut and established authors, bringing a strong editorial eye and hands-on approach to her agenting practice. She received her MFA in Creative Writing from The New School and is a co-curator of the Brooklyn-based literary event series H.I.P. Lit.

At Folio, Erin represents YA, literary and book club fiction, and narrative non-fiction.  Her tastes are eclectic, but she tends to gravitate toward the ambitious, the bold, the socially relevant, and the full of heart.

Some of her authors include:

YA: VCFA graduate Katie Bayerl; MacDowell Colony Fellow Kit Frick; BEA Buzz Panel author Marie Marquardt

Literary & Upmarket Fiction: New York Times Editor’s Choice novelist Daniel Levine; Indie Next Pick author Erica Ferencik; Rona Jaffe Award Winner Natalie Haney-Tilghman; recipient of the John Simmons Iowa Short Fiction Prize Allegra Hyde

Narrative Non-Fiction: Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award Finalist Carla Power; Top 25 World Thinkers of 2015 Linda Scott

WORKSHOP with ONSITE LODGING: $899, includes:

  • Lodging provided Thursday through Sunday am on The Writing Barn grounds at The Book House in one of five bedrooms: Pulitzer, Booker, Printz, Newbery, and Caldecott. (No single occupancy rooms if the event sells out. The Pulitzer and Booker have two full-sized beds, all other rooms have two single beds. Each bedroom has a private bathroom. If you and a friend are both applying, please specify roommate request on your application form.)
  • Please see HERE for pictures of the rooms and grounds.
  • One dinner, three breakfasts, and two lunches. All vegetarian. (Three additional dinners not included in the price of the workshop will be off-site at local Austin area eateries/food trucks.)
  • Unlimited snacks and beverages, wine and beer included.
  • Airport shuttle to and from The Writing Barn for those traveling to Austin, at pre-arranged times.
  • Up to ten pages workshopped by Katie, Erin, and the Group

ADD ONS:12249874_954153107956648_1604373908775625636_n

  • If you care to extend your stay at The Writing Barn or Book House to retreat/write after the event, please inquire about discounted stays.
  • If you wish to have a Writer Massage in your room, during an evening, with one of Austin’s top massage therapists, the cost for an hour, full body massage is $100.
  • If you wish to schedule a headshot session with Author Headshot Photographer, Sam Bond of Sam Bond Photography on the arrival day, please contact her at
  • APPLICATIONS: Applications are taken on a rolling basis. To apply, fill out the application form here. Deadline to apply is September 23, 2017.