Young adult author to visit UT to sign books, lead writing workshop

October 31, 2018 | Events, News, UToday, Library
By Bailey Sparks

“If you put work on a page, you are a writer,” said Leslie Welch, dispelling the notion of an aspiring writer.

The young adult author will share insights and provide encouragement when she visits the University Tuesday, Nov. 6, for a book signing and writing workshop.


Welch is the author of the acclaimed debut novel “The Goodbyes.” The 2016 book is about unrequited love that inspires a musician to stardom — and the power of goodbye.

She will sign books at the Barnes & Noble University Bookstore from noon to 2 p.m.

Following the book signing, Welch will conduct a writing workshop in Carlson Library Room 2024 from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. on “How to Draft Your Novel.” She will discuss starting a log line, building a plot, creating memorable characters, developing a platform, and finishing your first draft.

The book signing and workshop are part of the University’s involvement in National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). The November event is a challenge to write 50,000 words in 30 days.

“NaNoWriMo is a fantastic resource for all writers because you have to make a lot of compromises to get it done, and it forces you into a creative state you couldn’t otherwise access with unlimited time,” said Welch, who has participated in the event the past 13 years.

“‘The Goodbyes’ was written on NaNoWriMo,” she continued, “and I was 10,000 words short on the last day. I sat in Panera Bread for 10 hours, my butt was numb, my hands were sore, but I finished that book. If I can do it, you can, too.”

Welch was born in Toledo and moved to Philadelphia in her preteen years. She graduated from Penn State and resides in the Washington, D.C., area.

She offered advice for authors hailing from the Toledo area: “Write what you know. I know you think your setting is boring; it isn’t. It will feel real if you write from your daily experience in the Midwest.”

More information about NaNoWriMo and Welch’s visit can be found at the University Libraries website. Learn more about Welch at the author’s website.

To register for the writing workshop, , or to participate in NaNoWriMo, contact Lucy Duhon, associate professor in University Libraries, at or 419.530.2838.

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