Posts Tagged ‘Philadelphia Writers Conference’

Good News for Insecure Writers…

Insecure Writers support group

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Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak.Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

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Writing Wednesday…Post PWC

Writing Wednesday

Typewriter Pink

Wednesday is the day I share what I have learned on my journey from writing to publication, marketing and writing and publishing again. If you have any questions please feel free to leave them in the comments and I will do my best to answer them. If you have any tips please share them with us in the comments…

Post Philadelphia Writers Conference

I hadn’t attended the Philadelphia Writers Conference for a few years because my schedule and life got in the way. This year I was determined to make it and I am so glad I did.

No matter where you are in your writing career, a beginner or a best- selling author I believe there is something we can all learn by networking with other writers.

The Philadelphia Writers’ Conference represents a broad range of writing categories, including fiction, nonfiction, and poetry, as well as editing and public relations.

The annual June conference attracts conferees from most of the United States as well as a few from Canada, although the core of attendance is still from the Tri-State area.

The conference was held at the Wyndham Philadelphia. I decided to stay in the hotel this year to get the complete conference experience. I was a bit disappointed that so many writers chose not to stay in the hotel.

Our room was beautiful but I have to say the service at the front desk and of the hotel in general was horrible. The restaurant was atrocious. We ordered lunch, only salads and after an hour and ten minutes we had still not received them and in fact they never arrived. We attended our afternoon workshops hungry.

I shared a room with Toni McCloe, a friend from the Lower Bucks Creative Explorers writing group. Toni is the author of Rude Awakening. (A powerful story with Philadelphia roots.)

We checked into our room at 8:30 Friday morning, dropped our suitcases off in the room and hurried down to the lobby to meet fabulous friends, Kelly Deeny, Helene Cohen Bludman and Cathy Sikorski.

PWC Friends

The opening speaker was Sara Shepard. Her bestselling young adult series, Pretty Little Liars, is loosely based on her experiences growing up on Philadelphia’s Main Line. The book series has also inspired the ABC Family television series of the same name.

author sara shepard book cover

 

In a more informal session later that day Sara shared some tips on protecting ourselves and our work should we be lucky enough to have interest from film or TV producers.

author sara shepard 2

The workshop that I got the most out of was short story writing facilitated by Fran Wilde. I signed up for this workshop because I needed some inspiration to get some of the shorter stories I have rolling around in my head on to paper, before I forget what those ideas are.

Fran Wilde writes science fiction and fantasy.   She’s taught writing and digital media at two colleges, a high school for the creative arts, and a long-distance program for young writers.

Her first novel, Updraft will be published by Tor in September 2015.

I also signed up for a Free Verse workshop. Ken Pobo teaches courses in literature and creative writing at Widener University, where he has won the prestigious Lindback Award for teaching. The award was well deserved he was very inspiring and his workshop sessions went SO fast. I used to love writing poetry. The last poem I wrote was for a memorial service for my brother who was murdered in a road rage attack. Since then I haven’t been able to write poetry. I needed inspiration to try again and for me the class was a success. Ken and other attendees have inspired me to try again.

Apples to Writers, a sort of writing prompt game was hosted by the brand new PWC Board President, Jim Knipp. Jim is the author of over a dozen short stories and several novels. I was so nervous to participate but it turned out to be a lot of fun. How could it not be, Jim is fabulous!

I love all writers and have very few favorites. Stephen Fried is one of my favorites so I was thrilled that he was the keynote speaker for Saturday’s Awards Banquet. Stephen is an award-winning investigative journalist and essayist, and an adjunct professor at Columbia University’s graduate school of journalism. He is the author of the highly praised books Thing of Beauty: The Tragedy of Supermodel Gia, Bitter Pills: Inside the Hazardous World of Legal Drugs, The New Rabbi, and Husbandry: Sex, Love & Dirty Laundry—Inside the Minds of Married Men.

author stephen fried

Stephen’s best-known magazine article is “Cradle to Grave,” his investigation into the deaths of all ten children of Marie and Arthur Noe, which led police to reopen the 30-year-old Philadelphia case as a murder investigation. The day after the story was released to authorities, the Noes were taken in for questioning and Marie Noe confessed, and later pleaded guilty to multiple charges of murder. For his role in the case, Fried received a medal—he became the first journalist ever to receive the Medal of Honor from the Vidocq Society, the elite international group of criminologists, pathologists and police investigators.

Fried’s wife, Diane Ayres is a fiction writer and the author of Other Girls. He shared some funny stories with us on what it is like to be a nonfiction writer living with a fiction writer.

I am a fan because Stephen writes about mental health, crime and the pharmaceutical industry and that is what I write and like his writing has done I can only hope that my work will one day make a difference the way his has.

Author Stephen Fried Cover

Another exciting but extremely nerve wracking event was the opportunity to pitch a literary agent. I have no idea why I let my friends talk me into it but I did and it went well. Do I have a new agent? Stay tuned, more on that experience later.

I also had the pleasure of meeting Ayesha Hamid, editor of Philadelphia Stories. I am looking forward to submitting an essay to them later this month.

Philadelphia Stories

Finally, I had the pleasure of meeting Facebook friend, Kerry Gans who is also fabulous as well as several other social media friends. I just love meeting people that I feel like I already know, in real life.

The conference was a great experience and I got out of it exactly what I needed which was the inspiration to go home and write like crazy.

Happy Writing,

Doreen

 

Writing Conferences…

A-to-Z ROAD TRIP

Writing Wednesday

Typewriter Pink

Wednesday is the day I share what I have learned on my journey from writing to publication, marketing and writing and publishing again. If you have any questions please feel free to leave them in the comments and I will do my best to answer them. If you have any tips please share them with us in the comment section.

 

Preparing for a Writers Conference

As writers one of the best investments we can make in our business/career is to attend as many conferences and workshops as we can afford. To get the most out of our investment we need to be prepared.

Have you followed all of the presenters, agents, the event itself and other attendees on social media? Learn as much as you can about each of them. You might be able to pick up a conversation starter that can break the ice. They might even remember something witty that you tweeted.

Bring plenty of business cards, pens and a notebook. When someone hands you a business card jot a note on the back of it, something to help you remember who the person was.  Do not bring written pitches to hand out.

pen and box

Prepare your pitch. Can you describe your manuscript in two to three sentences? Describe yourself and your book in ninety-seconds? This is the single most important thing you can do for yourself. Prepare that pitch and practice, practice, practice.

Dress appropriately. Agents and editors are professionals and they are looking for professional writers. You don’t have to suit up but I would say wear your best business casual.

Workshops Kara and Emily

Don’t monopolize an agents time. Everyone is there to meet them. They will not remember you favorably if you are a conversation hog. They want to meet everyone. Keep the ninety-second rule in mind and practice!

No matter where you are in your writing process there is always something to learn. Take the time to listen.

Relax, smile, socialize, make new writer friends and have fun!

Quote writer quote about haters

Who is going to the Philadelphia Writer’s Conference?

http://pwcwriters.org/why-the-philadelphia-writers-conference/2015-workshops-and-events/

I hope to see you there!

Happy Writing,

Doreen

The Stranger in My Recliner has a cover. It’s almost a real book!

Sophie Book Cover

 

 

 

Finally…

Friday Fragments are bits and pieces of your week that are usually brief; too short for a stand-alone post, but too good to discard. Collect humorous observations, “Heard” items, other small gems and put them together in a Friday Fragments post. Then leave a link to your Friday Fragments post and link back to our host Mrs. 4444 at Half-Past Kissin’ Time.

Friday Fragments Summer logo

It’s not too late to join in on the fun and we would love to have you!

Finally! The weather is a perfect 72 degrees, this morning. It feels like spring.

My granddaughter, Adriana Jean is 6-years-old today. She has brought so much joy and fun into our family. Six is so grown-up but she will always be the baby in her family. Her big brother Dominic will be 13 in two-weeks and her sister Allyson will be 20 in September. OMGoodness I am going to have a 20-year-old granddaughter, yikes!

Adriana Lost tooth

She lost her first baby tooth and was thrilled to find dollars under her pillow. I like her tooth fairy. Mine left a nickel and a pack of Trident.

I finally received the mock-up of the book cover for The Stranger in My Recliner. It is growing on me. Now I am anxiously waiting on the release date. I cannot wait to share Sophie’s story with everyone. What do you think of the cover?

Sophie Book Cover

What is going on in Texas? I have been praying for my friends and relatives who are dealing with flooding and no power and it is still raining. My uncle who lives in Texas had a 20-pound-racoon fall through his roof at 4:00 this morning. I hope his week gets better, he needs some sun.

Two weeks from today is finally the start of the Philadelphia Writer’s Conference. I haven’t attended for a few years now so I am really looking forward to listening and learning but most importantly I am looking forward to hanging out with some of my favorite writers. So excited!

And one week after that is finally our annual family beach vacation.

Of course I am hoping, finally for some kind of good news from the surgeon I am seeing on Tuesday about my pelvic congestion. I am praying for a non-invasive fix. I don’t want to miss the conference or the beach. Please think good thoughts for me.

TV has been pretty boring this week. I have new guilty pleasures. Married-The First Year-ended last week and one of the couples said they won’t be backL. ‘Arranged’ is a strange one but I am fascinated by the craziness and Married at First Sight has me hooked too. I am really rooting for these couples. These two are ending next week but Sunday is finally the season premiere of Halt and Catch Fire. This show kind of picks up where, Mad Men left off. It took a couple of episodes to get hooked but I love it now.

Halt and Catch Fire 1

I am finally, back to working on book #3, The Father’s Pain. This one may be my last nonfiction for awhile. I am looking forward to making some stuff upJ

This weekend will finally be quiet for us.  We need to rest-up. What are you up to?

Have a blessed weekend,

Doreen

Quote live each day the best

Writing Wednesday/Writer’s Conferences…

 

Writing Wednesday

Typewriter Pink

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On Wednesdays I like to share information I picked up on my journey to being published, marketing my first book, editing and preparing to be published again. Information that I wish someone would have shared with me, back then…

If you like the information I hope you will share it!

Writer’s Conferences

For someone who spends most of their life surrounded by four walls either in front of a computer screen or with their head buried in one book after another, venturing outside of those cozy, boxy walls can be frightening. The thought of leaving our comfort zones to attend a writer’s conference in person with other actual human beings can be as uncomfortable as fingernails on a chalkboard.

Just registering to attend a writer’s conference can be expensive. When you add on classes or workshops, dinner events, travel expenses, hotels and meals the costs can quickly make attending a financial struggle.

Are these conferences worth attending?

My opinion is yes, absolutely.

If you have chosen or you are considering choosing writing as a career, writing is your business. For any type of business to be successful there must be investments made in that business.

Reasons to attend:

  • You will get first hand information from publishers, editors and agents that you will be able to use immediately to further your writing career.
  • To learn the latest publishing trends and other information about the business side of writing and publishing.
  • The opportunity to meet with and pitch literary agents in person, they attend conferences looking for talent.
  • A chance to network with other writers some will be ahead of you in their careers and some will be behind you.
  • Learn about freelance opportunities.
  • Be inspired by your peers, the presenters and the speakers.
  • Social media is a good tool for writers but face to face communication with other writers, people who ‘get’ you is priceless.
  • Because we writers spend so much time alone the face to face communication with like minded souls at a conference is priceless.
  • The thought of attending can be intimidating especially if you are shy but if you can push yourself out of your comfort zone for just a few days you will make valuable contacts, gain experience, acquire knowledge and make lifelong friends.

*If you are not going to make the effort to speak to and get to know people, to put yourself out there and network then I wouldn’t spend the money to attend.*

To prepare for a conference you should have plenty of business cards made. Postcards are also good handouts and great for promoting your blog. If you have a finished manuscript, make several copies of the manuscript, several copies of your query and several of your proposal. You never know who you may run in to, in the hall. You should also practice your elevator speech, three sentences on what your book is about, a beginning middle and an end because you never know who may be riding the elevator with you. Dress comfortably but professionally.

Writing Wednesday conference photo2

Before you attend look up and learn as much as you can about the facilitators of any workshops or break-out sessions you are planning to attend. Write down any questions you have for them. Look up any agents, who will be attending, learn what genres they represent, a bit about their agency and who they represent. Check to see if any of your social media or blog friends are attending and make plans to meet-up with them.

Find out if the conference is holding any contests. These are usually planned well in advance, so check early and enter!

If you feel like you are too shy to get anything out of the conference take a friend with you.

If the cost is just too prohibitive for you to attend a big conference look into writing workshops being held in your area. Check your local universities or community colleges they often offer community learning opportunities that are affordable.

If you happen to live in the Philadelphia, South Jersey or Delaware area the Press Club of Pa. is offering a series of workshops for writers. The cost is only $25.00. There is more information on these workshops at the end of this post.

A List of some Writers Conferences:

https://www.awpwriter.org

https://sfwriters.org/2015

www.pikespeakwriters.com/ppwc

writersconference.com

www.unicornwritersconference.com

www.mounthermon.org/event/361

caldreaminwritersconf.org

lasvegaswritersconference.com

www.svwc.com/uncategorized/dates-for-svwc-2015

nonfictionwritersconference.com/2015-nonfiction-writersconference

newyorkpitchconference.com

writersdigestconference.com

www.sbwriters.com

pwcwriters.org

Find more here:http://www.shawguides.com

The Press Club of Pa. Workshops are being held the 4th Saturday of every month from 9a.m-12p.m at the beautiful Open Connections Campus in Newtown Square, Pa.For more information/registration http://www.thepressclubpa.orgOctober 25, 2014 Workshop 2: Style/Restyle Your Business/ Branding
  1. Look good, feel good
  2. How to interact at networking events
  3. Building confidence/ self esteem
  4. The best look for your business from store windows, social media, advertising, letterhead, employees and you…

After the workshop a fashion show on business wear and accessories for men and women. A business accessory fashion show, brief cases, laptop bags, letterhead, business cards, promotional products and more. Networking with stylists, printers and Club Representatives.

November 22, 2014 Workshop 3: How to Get Your Business, Book, Product, Service, Event or Non-Profit in the News, Part 1    

  1. Become an expert in your field
  2. Write a pitch
  3. Pitch the right person
  4. What to do when you get the call from a producer

Networking with media professionals, producers, editors and Press Club Representatives.

January 24, 2015 Workshop 4: Marketing/Advertising/Public Relations

  1. What is the difference among the three and how to make them work together for your business, product, service, book, non-profit and more.
  2. How to write an advertising plan
  3. How to write a PR plan
  4. Types of advertising: print, radio, TV, internet, social media

Networking after the workshop with Marketing, Advertising and P.R. Professionals and Press Club Representatives. February 28, 2015 Workshop 5: How the News Works

  1. The state of Journalism today
  2. How to recognize News vs. Opinion
  3. Processing the News
  4. Entertainment/Tabloid/ Shock and why it sells
  5. The Internet, Social Media, Cable TV and how they have changed the news

After the workshop questions and answers with a panel of journalists, TV news, radio and Press Club Representatives. March 28, 2015 Workshop 6: Part 2 of Get your business etc…in the news. Come on back and practice your Polished Pitch to Radio, Newspaper, T.V, and Magazine

  1. Quick refresher
  2. Have your pitch critiqued by professionals
  3. Prizes for different categories? Best dressed, best pitch, best presentation and more.

After the workshop networking with the professionals and Press Club Representatives.

April 25, 2015 Workshop 5: Writing Workshops

  1. Writing process, genres, your audience
  2. Editing, critique partners, writing groups
  3. Creating a platform/niche/ building a tribe
  4. Publishing today
  5. How and when to submit your manuscript
  6. Memoir writing; record your history

After the workshop: questions and answers with a panel of published authors, Press Club Representatives, Publishing Professionals, Editors and more…

May 23, 2015 Workshop 8: Book Fair – 10:00 am – 3:00 pm a whole day event!

  1. Author panels/ presentations with local authors
  2. Library Presentation
  3. Book store presentations
  4. Local Book Clubs
  5. Author Readings and Panel

Writer’s Conferences and the Insecure Writer’s Support Group…

 

Like most writers I can feel stressed out, from time to time, luckily for me, I have my friends at the Insecure Writers Support Group. #IWSG

The group meets on the first Wednesday of every month. Whether you need a shoulder to cry on or you have some great advice you would like to share, no matter where you are in your writing journey, you are welcome to join us.

InsecureWritersSupportGroup3

                              http://www.insecurewriterssupportgroup.com

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