Back to Calendar

"Curiosity Killed the Cat: Developing Characters through Their Core Values" with Jess Hagemann

Add to my calendar

St. Edward's University, Trustee Hall 303
3001 S. Congress Ave.
Austin, TX 78704

11/17/2018 From 10:00 AM to 1:00 PM


$49 for members (sign in for member pricing)

Registration for this class has closed. Walk-ins will be accepted as space allows at the member walk-in rate of $59 and non-member rate of $119.

What values drive your character’s every deed?

To talk about characters in a story is really to talk about character--or the values that our protagonists and antagonists hold most dear. A character’s character can be revealed in many ways: through physical appearance; body language; actions and reactions; and sometimes (but not always!) dialogue. Strongly defined values are what set characters apart, fleshing them out into fully realized, relatable (though not necessarily likable) ‘people’ who teach us something new about ourselves and the world we live in—even when that world is a parallel universe or a dystopian future.
In this class, participants will learn strategies for understanding the difference between negative, authentic, and aspirational core values that will help to write convincing characters every time, even and especially when those characters are the polar opposite of, or have completely different values from, the writer.



  • You're writing fiction in any genre.
  • You want your characters to feel more fully realized.
  • You're writing a character whose background is very different from your own.



Jess Hagemann is an award-winning author and accomplished biographer. She previously taught creative writing at Benedictine University before founding Cider Spoon Stories, a ghostwriting and editing company, in 2015. Cinestate will publish her debut novel Headcheese this December.



St. Edward's University, 3001 S. Congress Ave, Austin, TX 78704, Trustee Hall 303. You can find a St. Edward's University campus map here.



$49 members (sign in for member pricing)

$109 nonmembers


Before purchasing, please read all policies as noted below and on our Classes page.

Online registration will close at the end of Thursday, November 15. After that you can pay admission at the door with a check for the walk up rate - $59 for members and $119 for nonmembers - as long as seats are available. If your browser has difficulty with our website store, or if you prefer to mail in a check, click here for a class registration form. The document provides instructions on where to mail it.

Once a purchase has been made, tickets are not refundable and registration cannot be transferred to a different class or event. No exceptions will be made. If you purchase a ticket and then find you cannot attend, someone else can attend in your stead. Simply contact us at or 512-499-8914 and let us know so that we can update the class roster.



Our classes offer a combination of lecture and practical exercises, determined by the individual instructor, on focused aspects of the craft and business of writing. Your fellow participants will come from a range of writing experience, from beginners to people with MFA degrees and published books. WLT instructors, participants, and administrators all work together to create a welcoming, supportive environment.

If you haven't taken a class with us in recent years, feel free to give us a call at 512-499-8914 if you'd like to discuss whether our programming is the right fit for your needs.


This project is supported in part by the Cultural Arts Division of the City of Austin Economic Development Department. Visit Austin at


Writers' League of Texas classes and workshops are also funded in part by the Texas Commission on the Arts - Investing in a Creative Texas. For more information, go to


This project is also supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts. To find out more about how National Endowment for the Arts grants impact individuals and communities, visit


The Writers' League of Texas would like to thank St. Edward's University for its generous support and commitment to community, ongoing education, and the arts. Visit