For Writers

Are you a writer, trying to navigate the crazy world of the publishing industry? Then check out CJ’s new blog *Marketing with Heart*

There she shares promotional resources, motivational tools, and insights from marketing pros.  Start by downloading this FREE guide to online resources

Here are some of CJ’s articles on writing:

And some of her interviews:CJ with Lisa Gardner at ThrillerFest

CJ is available for live or on-line versions of her workshops and for keynote speeches. CJ has presented her workshops to groups such as: RWA National Conference, Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers, Oklahoma Writers Federation, Nittany Valley Writers, Phoenix’s Desert Rose, Left Coast Crime, and various RWA chapters.

She’s given keynote speeches at the Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers’ Colorado Gold Conference and Lowcountry RWA’s Writers Retreat. She has also taught Master classes in fiction writing to the Lowcountry RWA’s weeklong Master class and to the University of South Carolina at Beaufort.

If your group is interested in inviting CJ to join you, contact her here. She also welcomes requests from media, writing and reading groups, schools and civic groups.


Thrillers are hot! Look at any best-seller list and you’ll find an overwhelming number of thriller novels. What makes a thriller different from other genres? How can you use techniques common to thrillers to make your own novels compelling, no matter the genre? And where the heck do those thriller writers come up with those ideas?

Join award winning thriller author CJ Lyons for an in depth discussion of the thriller genre. Topics covered will include: the genre in general, plotting and pacing, research, the quirks of thriller characters, and more.


Join award-winning medical suspense author CJ Lyons as she explains the secrets to successful pitching, tips to engage an editor or agent through your query letter, and reveals the creation of a high concept.

CJ has received requests for manuscripts every time she pitched. She’ll help you feel more comfortable during your pitch session and more confident with your pitch. This workshop will help you polish your query letter, create a pitch, and prepare you for meeting an agent or editor.


Whether you’re a plotter or pantzer, you still need to tell a story. And to tell a compelling story, you need characters driven to take action. In this highly interactive workshop, National Bestseller CJ Lyons will show you how to let your character do the driving as you move your plot forward.

Using simple methods that students will not only remember but can also apply daily to their writing life, CJ will give you the tools you need to empower your creativity, amp up your plotting, and energize your writing!

Topics covered include: building the 3-D character, understanding motivation-conflict-goals and how they propel the plot, using hooks and building suspense, understanding the classic 3 Act structure, theme as a tool, and CJ’s three secrets to success.

TRAUMA 101 (live workshop)

Your character has been shot, stabbed, beat up–what happens now? Enter the world of Trauma 101 where award winning medical suspense author CJ Lyons will guide you through the world of trauma from initial injury to prehospital assessment to what really goes on inside a Trauma Center.

CHASING THE MUSE (live and online)

What is this thing called voice that editors are always looking for? How do you “find” it, how do you protect and cherish it, and most of all how do you use it as a driving force to get past plotting problems, writers’ block or any other obstacles in your way to a finished manuscript?

If you’re interested in the answers to any of these questions, join award winning author CJ Lyons as she discusses all of the above with an emphasis on how to find your own unique style and individual voice. She’ll share with you her three keys to success as well as tips from many outstanding authors and screenwriters. With CHASING THE MUSE, she’ll give you the tools you need to go from blank page to a finished work of fiction, including ways to pitch, to market, to avoid writers’ block and to deepen plot and character through the use of theme.

NO RULES-JUST WRITE! (live workshop)

What are the “rules” of successful fiction writing? Should you follow them?Or should you break them? Award-winning medical suspense author CJ Lyons will discuss the rules using examples from industry professionals. She will discuss head-hopping, genre-mixing, the toxic backstory dump, the hero and heroine’s meet and greet and other “rules”. CJ will give you the information you need to understand why the rules exist and when to ignore them and just write.

THRILLERS WITH HEART (live and online)

Thrillers are hot! And romance thrillers, Thrillers with Heart, are sizzling! What is the difference between mysteries and thrillers? How to add romance without slowing the pace? Explore the fascinating world of thriller fiction with award winning author CJ Lyons.