NZSA WebWorkshops – A series of webinars to enable ongoing professional development

This series kicked off with some workshops we had planned for the NZSA National Writer’s Forum 2020 and features writers and industry professionals offering virtual workshops on topics such as self-publishing, romance writing, poetry, structure, short stories, pitching, contract advice, dystopian writing and the business of writing.

All WebWorkshops are hosted on Zoom. Zoom is free to download 

Learn more about what to expect in a WebWorkshop in this article from the NZ Author magazine – Spring 2020.

Upcoming WebWorkshops – 2021 season

Writing Action: The Emotional and Dramatic Moment – Webworkshop – Paula Morris

10am to 12pm, Saturday 20 February 2021

In fiction, scenes are shaped by consciousness (the emotional moment) and action (the dramatic moment). Sometimes, in drafts of novels and stories, we can lose sight of one or the other. This webinar offers close reading of excerpts from published work to explore how to build and sustain rich, vivid scenes. 

 Paula Morris MNZM (Ngāti Wai) is an award-winning fiction writer and essayistShe teaches creative writing at the University of Auckland, and at schools and in community programmes. Paula is the founder of the Academy of New Zealand Literature ( serves on the Mātātuhi Foundation, Māori Literature Trust, New Zealand Book Awards Trust, and the Coalition for Books board. 

WEBWORKSHOP ATTENDANCE FEE: NZSA Members – $30. (Non-members – $60)

Sign up for this WebWorkshop

NZSA WebWorkshops are hosted on Zoom. Zoom is free to download


Tackling the ‘School Visit’ – Webworkshop – Melinda Szymanik

6pm to 8pm, Thursday 4 March 2021

So you’re new to school visits? You’ve published one or more books and suddenly a school has got in touch with you about coming to speak to their students, either directly or through Read NZ.

  • How does it work?
  • What should you charge?
  • What is expected of you?
  • What information do you need from the school?
  • And what do you need to tell them?

This session will answer all these questions and more, providing practical information on preparation for the event, ideal group sizes, technical requirements, what can be achieved in sessions, and how to manage any problems that might crop up.

Melinda Szymanik is a published author of numerous books for children including the award winning picture books The Were-Nana (2008) and Fuzzy Doodle (2016) and novel A Winter’s Day in 1939 (2013). Her short story collection Time Machine and Other Stories (2019) was a finalist in the 2020 New Zealand Book Awards for Children and Young Adults. Melinda has visited many primary, intermediate and high schools over the last fourteen years, participated in ‘speed date the author’ events and Storylines tours, and given workshops and talks.


Sign up for this WebWorkshop

NZSA WebWorkshops are hosted on Zoom. Zoom is free to download

Exploring poetic repetition – Webworkshop – Lynn Davidson

6pm to 8pm, Wednesday 24 March 2021

This workshop offers discussion of sample poems that use poetic repetition in different ways, and a writing exercise or two – so have a pen and paper handy. All levels welcome.

Wellington writer Lynn Davidson has recently returned from four years writing and teaching in Edinburgh. She will be the 2021 CNZ Randell Cottage Writing Fellow. Lynn’s most recent publication is a collection of poems, Islander, published by Victoria University Press in New Zealand and Shearsman Books in the UK. She won Poetry New Zealand’s 2020 Poetry Award and holds a PhD in Creative Writing.

WEBWORKSHOP ATTENDANCE FEE: NZSA Members – $30. (Non-members – $60)

Sign up for this WebWorkshop

NZSA WebWorkshops are hosted on Zoom. Zoom is free to download

Using Amazon ads to find your readers – Webworkshop – Deb Potter

6pm to 7.30pm, Tuesday 13 April 2021

A deep dive into Amazon advertising to market your self-published book. Find out how to use different ad types, how to tell what’s working and avoid giving more money back than you need to.

Deb Potter is an Amazon ads enthusiast. Her insights come from marketing her own and co-authored works, and coaching authors publishing in wider genres. Her book Amazon Ads for Authors gives introductory and advanced tools to get the best from the Amazon self-publishing platform. She admins the Facebook page: Authors Optimizing Amazon and Facebook Ads with four other experts. Deb is based in New Zealand and has day-job background in data and analytics, and social policy. She has a Masters in Creative Writing, a BA in Education and Social Policy and Certificates in both Children’s Literature and Journalism.

WEBWORKSHOP ATTENDANCE FEE: NZSA Members – $30. (Non-members – $60)

Sign up for this WebWorkshop

NZSA WebWorkshops are hosted on Zoom. Zoom is free to download

“Can I just say that I am so enjoying these online classes – so much better than having to go out in the cold, wrestle for a park etc. Please keep providing these! I live part of the time on a farm and it is just so wonderful to be able to participate in these sorts of things when I am not in the city. Makes all the difference!” 

Past WebWorkshops

Poetry’s Bare Essentials – with David Eggleton


The Business of Writing – with Nalini Singh

Starting Right: Drawing Readers into your World – with Bren MacDibble

From the First Sentence: A Workshop on Crime Writing – with Paddy Richardson

Introduction to Flash Fiction: The what, why and when of it – with Michelle Elvy

Ethical Storytelling – with Pip Desmond

Picture Book Magic – with Kyle Mewburn

Novel 101 – with Paula Morris

Poetry Masterclass – with Siobhan Harvey

The short story: character, setting, voice – with Catherine Chidgey

Writing as Manaakitanga – with Whiti Hereaka

Who Are You? Tina Shaw on Creating a Successful Protagonist

Getting through the hoops – with Siobhan Harvey, Geoff Walker, and Geraldine Warren

Making author life work for you – with James Russell

Psychology for Writers – with Darian Smith