Study Along Science Fiction Mystery Workshop January 2024

A Fun Look at Writing Science Fiction Mystery Stories

Study Along with the Las Vegas Science Fiction Mystery Craft Workshop.

Starting in 2023, Dean and Kris will be doing a series of really fun workshops in Las Vegas. They are limited to only 15 people attending. We have six planned out with Dean teaching three and Kris teaching three. They will be writing heavy and a ton of fun.

And we screen who we let into the in-person workshops to make sure the work and pressure will not hurt anyone, but instead help them learn and advance their writing.

What happens, in general at these workshops is that there is a reading list about two months ahead that gets sent to everyone, both in the Vegas workshops and the Study-Along workshops. Everyone must have it all read by the workshop. It is not a small list and we have reasons for each story and book on the list. Just the reading list in a learning experience.

Then two weeks ahead of the workshop or so you get a story assignment to a specific topic to write. Stories are due as the workshops start.

Then over the four days in Las Vegas you write two or more short stories, do a bunch of exercises and craft things focused on helping you get better at the topic of the workshop. We talk about the books you read in depth, also about the assignments and the stories in the two sessions a day of meetings. And we have lectures about the topics to help the writers move forward.

Great fun and very craft and writing focused.

Study Along Workshops

Since the in-person Vegas workshops are very limited and also you must qualify and be in the right place in your writing, many writers either don't qualify yet or can't make the trip to Vegas for one reason or another. And with six really fun topics, you might not be able to make more than one or two. But you can take all six as study-along classes.

So Kris and I have come up with a way to allow writers of any skill level to study along. It won't be the full in-person workshop by a long ways, but it will still be pretty nifty. And cheaper.

First, you will get the same reading list that we send out two months ahead. Same deadline to get it all read.

You will get the first story assignment. It must be turned it at exactly the same time as the writers in Vegas will turn their stories in.

We will do short videos about the reading books that will be released a little each day. (Writers in Vegas will also have access to all this as well for review later.)

We will do a series of recorded videos that will be opened up each day talking about learning the topic of the workshop, similar to regular online workshops.

In the study-along will get the short story assignments and deadlines at exactly the same as the Vegas writers. We will respond to your short stories.

Only the Vegas writers will get all the other craft assignments and hear the lectures and how that all builds. But the Study Along students will get our comments recorded about each book in the reading list and recorded lectures on the topics plus comments on the stories.

If you are signed up, I will send you a direct email through Teachable when the reading list is put up here and also when the first short story assignment is posted. So no worries that you will miss something if you sign up now. Just make sure your email is turned on for Teachable.

The videos will always be on your dashboard to return to at any time.


If you are signed up for this Study Along class or the Vegas class, and would like to learn more on how to write a novella in this topic, we are offering a special extra class you can sign up for.

We will do numbers of videos as an extension of the Vegas Class or the Study Along class focused on how to write longer, essentially a novella that is a fantasy caper novella.

You will have two weeks from the last day of the class to watch the videos and write a novella and turn it in and we will read it.

You must have taken either the Vegas class or the Study Along to take this novella class. And it is NOT part of the Lifetime Study Along. It is extra.

Your Instructor

Dean Wesley Smith
Dean Wesley Smith

With over twenty-three million copies of his books in print, USA Today bestselling writer Dean Wesley Smith now brings you original fiction every month for the past three years in his own magazine, Smith’s Monthly.

Dean wrote over twenty-five original Star Trek novels, the only two original Men in Black novels, plus Spider-Man, X-Men, Iron Man novels, and others. He wrote many gaming novels including Final Fantasy.

He wrote novels and stories under almost fifty pen names and did scripts for Hollywood as well as being an editor for various magazines. He lives in Las Vegas with his wife, writer Kristine Kathryn Rusch. You can follow his writing life at

Course Curriculum

  General Introduction to Study Along Workshops
Available in days
days after you enroll
  Reading List
Available in days
days after you enroll

Frequently Asked Questions

When does the course start and finish?
For lectures and classic workshops, the course starts now and stays on your dashboard for as long as you like! They are completely self-paced online course - you decide when you start and when you finish. For the monthly regular workshops, each has a start date and each week's lectures will appear on the same day. After the course is finished it will remain on your dashboard for as long as you like.
How long do I have access to the course?
How does lifetime access sound? After enrolling, you have unlimited access to this course for as long as you like - across any and all devices you own.
How do I contact someone about a course?
If you have any questions at all about anything in a course, simply email dean with the word "workshop" in the subject line. His email is [email protected]

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