Sharing the path to dreams

Author Elaine Ousten will be facilitating four workshops for budding writers.

Capricorn Coast author Elaine Ousten is stepping up to help other budding writers to reach for the stars.

With a Master of Letters in Creative Writing, 13 popular books published and many years of experience conducting workshops, Elaine is ready to teach others all about planning, starting and finishing a writing project.

Elaine said the four writing workshops scheduled for 11 May, 8 June, 13 July and 10 August are an opportunity to develop your story or manuscript with guidance all the way.

“The knowledge gained from attending the workshops can be applied to all writing projects, from short stories to a 100,000-word novel and everything in between,” she said.

As a member of the bi-annual Capricorn Coast Writers Festival (CCWF), Elaine said sharing her skills and knowledge is a pleasure and one she is well equipped for.

“I first began writing in earnest at around 12 years of age in year seven at school,” Elaine said.

“My teachers always used my compositions as demonstrations for the rest of the class.

“I had a lot of encouragement from both home and school although one teacher once commented that it was a terrible shame I couldn’t spell well.

“That was sufficient encouragement to improve my spelling and begin my journey into writing children and young adult’s books.”

At the age of 60, Elaine decided to get serious about her writing career and signed up to complete her master’s in creative writing.

“My first book was published in 2010 after having struggled to find a publisher that would accept my copy even though many gave me very positive feedback,” she said.

“It was an unknown subject. Undeterred, and with my experience in graphic design, I decided to begin my own publishing company.

“I now have books which have been picked up by schools and public libraries as well as the general public.”

“My early book on Australian Mega-Fauna in now in the year 7 curriculum.

“I write predominately for young people and fantasy is my favourite genre.”

In addition to the four workshops, Elaine will offer evaluation meetings at each workshop so you can map your progress and learn your strengths and weaknesses.

“With these practical exercises you can arm yourself with the tools and frameworks to support your story,” Elaine said.

“You will learn how to face your writing fears and guide your ideas into a workable narrative.

“Successful completion of the course will leave you with a comprehensive plan to guide your first draft.”

Workshops

Saturday, 11 May – Turning your idea into a story includes where to start and how to build your story into a compelling read.

The course includes:

* Exploring the nine building blocks that make a compelling story that no one can put down.

* Establishing the best point of view for your story

*The importance of strong characters

* Setting, and much more.

Saturday, 8 June – Developing characters includes developing strong, believable characters that your reader either loves or hates, depending on your intention.

This workshop examines the many personality types we meet and shows you how to portray them effectively.

For crime and mystery writers, the character workshop includes an examination of criminal types and what drives them to commit crimes.

Saturday, 13 July – World Building includes when we read a novel with a graphic description of the setting, we are transported to that place.

If the description is too brief, then we have no idea what physical situation our characters are in and we lose interest.

In this workshop, you will be given examples of how that is done and exercises on creating a setting that transports us to the world of your story.

Saturday, 10 August – Plotting – Hook your reader includes Plotting: This workshop will cover the importance of structure.

It doesn’t matter if you are a ‘plotter’ or a ‘pantser’ this workshop will help make sure your story flows and doesn’t go off track.

Hook You Reader will demonstrate what will make your reader stayed glued to the pages until their eyes can’t stay open anymore?

We examine the six key things that will help you achieve that and make your reader feel compelled to read on.

The next Capricorn Coast Writers Festival will be held in late June 2025.

Location – Fig Tree Galleries workshop space, 31-35 Normanby Street, Yeppoon

Workshops – 1.30pm-4.30pm

Evaluation sessions – 1pm-1.30pm and 4.30-5pm

Cost $45 per workshop

For more information email elaine@elainejousten.com or visit the website www.elainejousten.com