RIRW Retreat 2024 (on ZOOM)!


Friday, Feb. 2nd thru Saturday, Feb. 3rd, 2024

This year’s RIRW February ZOOM Retreat includes two stellar programs, one Friday night and one Saturday. Here is a LINK to our schedule.

Our Saturday headliner is award-winning editor Brenda Chin. After a lifetime career as an editor, much of it with Harlequin, she has vast knowledge of the kinds of structural mistakes writers often make when constructing a novel.

Workshop description: Do you remember the first time you studied Shakespeare? Before we even cracked open a book, my teacher made a point to introduce us to the Elizabethan world–and the kind of entertainment Elizabethan audiences expected. Back then, the heroic structure was all the rage—we’d see the heroine’s meteoric rise…and then their inevitable fall. Life was hard, and the stories of the time reflected it.But things are different now. North American audiences are looking for a different construction–and God help the author who doesn’t deliver.

In this three-hour workshop, we’ll focus on understanding just what our readers want from us, using Blake Snyder’s Save the Cat, Alexandra Sokoloff’s Stealing Hollywood, and Gwen Haye’s Romancing the Beat as a guide.

There is no formula for writing a good book. But if you know what beats readers are anticipating, you can delight them with your genius while still meeting the expectations they likely don’t even know they have.

Brenda’s bio: Award-winning editor Brenda Chin has worked in the romance industry for 35 years. Throughout her many years as a Senior Editor with Harlequin, she had the opportunity to work with some of the best writers in the business. After leaving Harlequin, Brenda joined Belle Books as the Editorial Director of ImaJinn Books, where she learned a whole new side to the business. Then she moved on to Entangled, joining the team as the Editorial Director of Entangled’s Brazen and Scorched lines. Now, Brenda is working as a freelance editor, working with numerous Indie authors, as well as taking on projects for Belle Books, Tule, Dreamspinner Press and DragonBlade Publishing. You can find her at www.brendachin.com, and on Facebook at Brenda Chin, Editor.

On Friday night, artist and former teacher Rebecca Gammons will introduce us to art journaling and lead us through creating our first page.


  • Create a multi-media memoir of your life
  • Create a multi-media exploration of your character(s)
  • Process challenging (or pleasant!) emotions


This is a craft activity that can become an art activity. The one rule is there are no rules. Anyone can do it.  

We will create a page together, step by step, on the theme of your choice. Learn a variety of ways to include written words in your work.

Pre-session information will be provided on suggested supplies to have on hand and a little more information on finding images to support your theme. Gathering some things ahead of time will give you a fuller experience of art journaling in the allotted time, but isn’t required to participate in the workshop.

Rebecca’s Bio: Rebecca Gammons is a life-long educator and has been crafting for decades. She grew up in Connecticut, but has lived in Oregon for many years. She likes to look at life creatively.

REGISTRATION COSTS $25 for RIRW members and $35 for non-members.

The Retreat’s fun and games begin at 6:30 PM Friday when we’ll get together for our pizza party (BYO), with Art Journaling at 7 PM sharp.

Fill out the online form below to register; once you hit Submit, that will take you to a separate page to pay.

BEFORE HITTING SUBMIT, please add RIRW.register@gmail.com, RIRW.org@gmail.com and Treasurer.rirw@gmail.com to your safe senders list so your confirmation will not get filtered out by your email program.