Make the Most of the Classes

Countdown Week #5

Classes, Blue Ridge Conference

by Bethany Jett, @BetJett

How many times have you decided which classes you were going to attend at a conference, only to change your mind and second guess yourself one hundred times? And why, oh why, do the classes you want to take always coincide with other awesome classes you want to take?!

When you attend a conference that has a stellar faculty and incredible workshops, the pressure is on to take advantage of every drop of knowledge you possibly can. However, we don’t want you to feel stressed! Many of the classes will be recorded and those recordings will be available for purchase. Can I get a hooray?!

And if you’re having trouble figuring out exactly what classes to take, don’t worry. Chances are that once you get your schedule “set,” you’ll change your mind again! At the Blue Ridge Conference, we break down the classes into three types and each class is given a rating (Act I, II, or III) to indicate skill level for that specific class.

In today’s conference countdown post, we’ll review the different kinds of classes and class-levels that are offered, as well as answer some frequently asked questions.

Where can I find a list of the classes being offered?

You can find a list of the faculty members and the classes they’re teaching on the top menu Faculty and Classes. Faculty members are listed in alphabetical order by last name.

What are the different types of classes offered?

Continuing Classes

Continuing Classes are workshops that build upon each other. The material won’t be the same each day. You are not committed to attending each day’s class, but you may find yourself a little behind if you attend Day 1 and Day 3, but skip Day 2.

Some faculty members have outlined what will be taught on each day for their continuing class. If you have more than one continuing class you want to take and they are both at the same time, you can choose to skip one day’s class of material that you may already be comfortable with.


Workshops are stand-alone classes that are often presented more than once during a conference. The material is the same each time the workshop is taught, which gives you flexibility when choosing your class schedule.


Practicums are workshops or classes that have a hands-on element. Usually practicums are smaller in size and may require sign up in advance. Please note the individual practicum’s requirements in the class descriptions.

What do the “Acts” mean? 

We have writers at every career-level in attendance, from brand-new to bestseller. The classes are categorized into Acts to demonstrate appropriate skill-levels. This will help you choose the best classes for your conference experience.

Act I  classes are for beginning or new writers in that specific area. If you’re a bestselling novelist, you may choose to take an Act I beginning level poetry class.

Act II classes are for intermediate writers who may or may not be published in that specific area, but have writing experience.

Act III classes are for advanced writers who have published multiple books, articles, etc.

What if I have a 15-minute appointment (pitch meeting) scheduled during a class?

We’re excited for you to have the opportunity to pitch your work. The faculty members are used to having attendees come in and out during the workshops. It’s absolutely fine to schedule your 15-minute appointments during classes (you’ll sign up for the 15-minute appointments at the conference). If you have an appointment scheduled, try to sit near the back of the room so you can exit quietly.

Where can I find the schedule of the classes?

You can download the schedule of classes here. Please note, as the conference draws closer, there may be changes to the schedule, so please check back to ensure you have the most updated version.

Is there a worksheet I can use to plan my conference experience?

Why yes, yes there is! You can find a Class Schedule Worksheet here and on the Schedule page. Due to potential changes to the schedule, we recommend you write in pencil!

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask. Also, join us over in our Facebook group to continue the conversation (or start a new one!).

You can leave a comment by clicking here.

Bethany Jett holding eyes of hopeBethany Jett is an award-winning author, speaker, ghostwriter, and founder of JETTsetter Ink, a consulting and editing company. An avid learner, Bethany is working on her Master of Arts in Marketing: New Media and Communication. Her newest work, Through the Eyes of Hope is now available online and in retailers nationwide.

Bethany is a military wife and all-boys-mama who is addicted to suspense novels and all things girly. She writes on living a brilliant life at Connect with her on FacebookInstagram, and Twitter.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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