I spent 34 years as a college writing instructor. A great deal of the research I did with my students went into Copy Boy. I love to talk to groups about the ideas that power plot and character and history.
Here are some talks I have given at middle school, university, library and museum events:
Needs and Wants: how to write a mystery with meat on its bones.
The art and science of resilience—how and why people survive and sometimes thrive in terrible times (the Depression, the Pandemic) and how others are ruined by them.
Ambition—how it can inspire and limit us.
Fact and Fiction—what is the difference and why it matters.
Gender roles and achievement, in literature and life.
Finding and defending identity: the biggest job of young adults.
Here are some topics I have presented to groups of technical professionals who write for work:
Say it Plain: write to be understood.
Tell a Story: use the dramatic arc to explain vividly.
Sentence Strategies: four tips that clarify and empower your prose.
Trends, Outliers, and Insights: what your readers want.