The 2019 Writers Conference of Dallas: October 26, 2019

screen-shot-2014-07-23-at-12-58-51-pm.pngWriting Day Workshops is excited to announce The 2019 Writers Conference of Dallas — a full-day “How to Get Published” writing event in Dallas, TX, on October 26, 2019.

This writing event is a wonderful opportunity to get intense instruction over the course of one day, pitch a literary agent or editor (optional), get your questions answered, and more. Note that there are limited seats at the event (150 total). All questions about the event regarding schedule, details and registration are answered below. Thank you for your interest in the 2019 Writers Conference of Dallas!

(If you know you want to attend, and don’t need the info below, you can click straight through to the Google Forms registration to get started: http://bit.do/dallasregistration)

WHAT IS IT?

This is a special one-day “How to Get Published” writing workshop on Saturday, October 26, 2019, at the DoubleTree by Hilton DFW Airport North (DFWIN). In other words, it’s one day full of classes and advice designed to give you the best instruction concerning how to get your writing & books published. We’ll discuss your publishing opportunities today, how to write queries & pitches, how to market yourself and your books, what makes an agent/editor stop reading your manuscript, and more. No matter what you’re writing — fiction or nonfiction — the day’s classes will help point you in the right direction. Writers of all genres are welcome.

This event is designed to squeeze as much into one day of learning as possible. You can ask any questions you like during the classes, and get your specific concerns addressed. We will have literary agents onsite to give feedback and take pitches from writers, as well. This year’s faculty so far includes:

  • literary agent Natascha Morris (BookEnds Literary)
  • literary agent Caroline George (CYLE Literary Elite)
  • literary agent Shannon Hassan (Marsal Lyon Literary)
  • literary agent Annie Bomke (Annie Bomke Literary Agency)
  • and possibly more agents to come

By the end of the day, you will have all the tools you need to move forward on your writing journey. This independent event is organized by coordinator Kimiko Nakamura of Writing Day Workshops, with help from The Lone Star Writers Group.

EVENT LOCATION & DETAILS

9:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m., Saturday, October 26, 2019, at the DoubleTree by Hilton DFW Airport North (DFWIN), 4441 W John Carpenter Freeway, Irving, TX 75063.

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WORKSHOP SCHEDULE (SATURDAY, OCTOBER 26, 2019)

8:00 – 9:00: Check-in and registration at the event location.

9:00 – 10:00: “An Overview of Your Publishing Options Today, taught by Sean Fletcher (bio below). This workshop examines the two largest routes any writer can take with their book: traditional publishing and self-publishing / e-publishing. We will examine the upsides of both routes, the challenges with both, and the next steps no matter what you decide. In today’s publishing world, a writer has to understand what they’re in for before they send their book out. This session is designed to prepare them for what’s to come and what options exist.

Screen Shot 2014-06-13 at 10.12.02 AM10:15 – 11:30: “Everything You Need to Know About Agents and Query Letters,” taught by agent Shannon Hassan (bio below). This workshop is a thorough crash course in dealing with literary agents. After quickly going over what an agent is and what they do for writers, we will discuss resources for finding agents, how to ID the best agents for you, query letter writing, as well as the most important things to do and not to do when dealing with representatives.

11:30 – 12:45: Lunch on your own. There are several restaurants within quick driving distance on the block.

12:45 – 2:00: “Writers’ Got Talent: A First Pages Critique-Fest.” In the vein of American Idol or America’s Got Talent, this is a chance to get your first page read (anonymously — no bylines given) with our 4 attending agents commenting on what was liked or not liked about the submission. Get expert feedback on your incredibly important first page, and know if your writing has what it needs to keep readers’ attention. (All attendees are welcome to bring pages to the event for this session, and we will choose pages at random for the workshop for as long as time lasts.)

Screen Shot 2014-06-13 at 10.07.06 AM2:15 – 3:15: “Improve Your Writing: The Basics of Self-Editing and Revision,” taught by event co-coordinator Kimiko Nakamura. Writing your manuscript’s first draft is a huge step, but only a primary one. Now it’s time to look at your creation and slowly make it amazing through overhauls, self-editing, and revision. Remember that good writing is rewriting. In this class, you’ll learn to identify your writing’s flaws (and fix them) — such as tense and POV issues, when to cut and shorten your length, and what makes some writing crackle.

3:30 – 4:30: “You, the Protagonist: Developing Your Character (Author) Brand,” taught by agent Caroline George (bio below). To find success as digital age authors, writers must develop lasting brands that showcase their personality, writing style and target audience. In this workshop, Caroline leads attendees through various steps to help them determine their personal brands, social media voices and plans for further development.

All throughout the day: Agent & Editor Pitching.

PITCH AN AGENT!

Screen Shot 2019-09-03 at 12.13.34 PM.pngCaroline George is a literary agent with CYLE Literary Elite. She is a generalist, and seeks many genres of fiction, including: picture books, middle grade contemporary, middle grade sci-fi/fantasy, YA contemporary, YA sci-fi/fantasy, historical, women’s, mystery, thriller, romance, adult science fiction and fantasy, Christian/inspirational fiction, horror literary fiction, and mainstream fiction. Regarding nonfiction, she likes memoir, inspirational, self-help, and socially relevant titles. Caroline commits her time and energy to telling stories in their many forms. As a Belmont University graduate with a double-major in publishing and public relations, Caroline aims to pursue a career committed to helping authors, publishers and organizations project their stories to their publics. She spends her time blogging, writing for various magazines and authoring young adult fiction books (her current publications include “The Prime Way Trilogy” and “The Vestige”). She considers herself a not-so-southern Georgia peach, coffee-junkie, bona fide goofball and delights in being best known for writing the phrase, “Coffee first. Save the world later.”

Screen Shot 2019-08-24 at 11.07.05 AM.pngShannon Hassan is a literary agent with Marsal Lyon Literary Agency. Shannon brings a depth of business and editorial experience to her role as agent, having worked in publishing and law for more than a decade. She represents: authors of literary and commercial fiction, young adult and middle grade fiction, and select nonfiction. With respect to fiction, she is drawn to fresh voices, compelling characters, and crisp prose, and enjoys both contemporary and historical settings. For nonfiction, she is interested in exceptional narratives from authors with strong platforms. Based in Boulder, Colorado, she is also eager to hear from authors with a unique perspective on the West. A sample of books Shannon has represented: THE MASK COLLECTORS, a literary thriller by Iowa Short Fiction Award-winner Ruvanee Vilhauer (Little A), INSIGNIFICANT EVENTS IN THE LIFE OF A CACTUS, an award-winning middle grade series by Dusti Bowling (Sterling), THE SILENCE BETWEEN US, a young adult contemporary by Alison Gervais (HarperCollins), DIE YOUNG WITH ME, an ALA award-winning memoir by Rob Rufus (Simon & Schuster), THOSE WHO PREY, a YA thriller by Jennifer Moffett (Atheneum), WHOLLY UNRAVELED, a memoir by Keele Burgin (Little A), THE WORLD’S GREATEST ADVENTURE MACHINE, a middle grade fantasy by Frank L. Cole (Penguin Random House), GIRLS ON THE LINE, a multicultural young adult novel by Jennie Liu (Lerner), and A LIGHT OF HER OWN, a historical novel by Carrie Callaghan (Amberjack). Before becoming an agent, she was the Acquisitions Editor at Fulcrum Publishing, and prior to that, a corporate attorney at Arnold & Porter in New York. She received her JD from Harvard and her BA from George Washington University, and she serves on the board of The Dairy Arts Center.

Screen Shot 2019-08-24 at 11.04.11 AM.pngNatascha Morris is a literary agent with BookEnds Literary. Natascha spent most of her childhood in a leather chair with her nose in a book. Formerly an editorial assistant at Simon & Schuster, her passion for books across genres and her desire to finding amazing talent drove her to make the transition from editorial to literary agent. Her editorial philosophy stems from the idea that all books should be well written and entertaining. Some of her favorite authors include Molly Idle, Sherwood Smith, Ann Rinaldi, Sabaa Tahir, and Meg Cabot. A Texas native, Natascha can often be found hunting for the best Tex-Mex in New York. Outside of reading, she is interested in urban farming and cooking. Natascha is primarily looking for: picture book, middle grade and young adult manuscripts across most genres, including contemporary, mysteries, thrillers, fantasy, historical fiction, and narrative nonfiction. She is also looking for artists that speak to her creatively. (She is closed to YA & MG science fiction, specifically.) She is not a good fit for adult literary fiction, horror, true crime, or serious nonfiction.

Screen Shot 2019-09-03 at 12.14.41 PM.pngAnnie Bomke is a literary agent and the founder of Annie Bomke Literary Agency. Annie is a literary agent with over a decade of experience in the publishing industry. Her clients include the Anthony Award-nominated crime writer John Copenhaver, and the Barnes & Noble bestselling cozy mystery author Libby Klein. She represents a wide range of projects—from hard-nosed business books to otherworldly historical novels. Annie has loved the publishing industry since her internship at Zoetrope: All-Story, a literary magazine founded by Francis Ford Coppola. Authors have called her the pH test for good writing, and a bedrock for literary quality control. She is looking for: adult and YA fiction and nonfiction, including commercial and literary fiction, upmarket fiction, mysteries (from hilarious cozies to gritty police procedurals and everything in between), historical fiction, magical realism, women’s fiction, psychological thrillers/suspense, literary/psychological horror, self-help, business, health/diet, cookbooks, memoir, relationships, current events, true crime, psychology, prescriptive nonfiction, and narrative nonfiction. She’s a sucker for locked room mysteries, books set in the Victorian era, books about evil children, and unreliable narrators. In any genre she is looking for character-driven stories. She is especially interested in books that feature diverse characters. She is not interested in representing picture books, chapter books or middle grade.

 

 

      New agents may be added for the 2019 event at any time. Check back.

These one-on-one meetings are an amazing chance to pitch your book face-to-face with an agent, and get personal, individual feedback on your pitch/concept. If the agent likes your pitch, they’ll request to see part/all of your book — sending you straight past the slush pile. It also gives you an intimate chance to meet with an agent and pick their brain with any questions on your mind.

(Please note that Agent/Editor Pitching is an add-on, separate aspect of the day, for only those who sign up. Spaces are limited for these premium meetings, and pricing/detail is explained below.)

PRICING

$169 — EARLY BIRD base price for registration to the 2019 WCOD and access to all workshops, all day, on Saturday, October 26, 2019. As of spring 2019, event registration is now OPEN.

Add $29 — to secure a 10-minute one-on-one meeting with any of our literary agents in attendance. Use this special meeting as a chance to pitch your work and get professional feedback on your pitch. (Spaces limited.) If they wish, attendees are free to sign up for multiple 10-minute pitch sessions at $29/session — pitching multiple individuals, or securing 20 minutes to pitch one person rather than the usual 10. Here are four quick testimonials regarding writers who have signed with literary agents after pitching them at prior Writing Day Workshops events. (Our bigger, growing list of success stories can be seen here.)

Screen Shot 2018-11-26 at 11.11.29 AM.png“I met my client, Alison Hammer, at the 2017 Writing
Workshop of Chicago and just sold her book.”
– literary agent Joanna Mackenzie of Nelson Literary

Screen Shot 2017-05-02 at 11.47.54 PM.png“Good news! I signed a client [novelist Aliza Mann]
from the 2017 Michigan Writing Workshop!”
– literary agent Sara Mebigow of KT Literary

Screen Shot 2018-11-05 at 12.56.10 PM“I signed author Stephanie Wright from
the 2018 Seattle Writing Workshop.”
– literary agent Kathleen Ortiz of New Leaf Literary

Screen Shot 2018-05-17 at 9.07.44 PM“I signed an author [Kate Thompson] that I
met at the 2017 Philadelphia Writing Workshop.”
– literary agent Kimberly Brower of Brower Literary

Screen Shot 2016-10-16 at 2.54.50 PM.png“I signed novelist Kathleen McInnis after meeting her
at the 2016 Chesapeake Writing Workshop.”

– literary agent Adriann Ranta of Foundry Literary + Media

Add $69 — for an in-depth, personal critique of your one-page query letter from Chuck Sambuchino, former longtime editor of the GUIDE TO LITERARY AGENTS for writer’s Digest Books. (This rate is a special event value for WCOD Workshop attendees only.) Registrants are encouraged to take advantage of the specially-priced critique, so they can send out their query letter with confidence following the workshop. Also, if you are meeting with an agent at the event, you’re essentially speaking your query letter aloud to them. Wouldn’t it be wise to give that query letter (i.e., your pitch) one great edit before that meeting?

Add $89 — for an in-depth personal critique of the first 10 pages of your novel. Spaces with faculty for these critiques are very limited, and participating attendees get an in-person meeting at the workshop. Options:

  • Screen Shot 2018-12-11 at 11.26.14 AM.pngMystery, thriller, suspense, science fiction, fantasy: Faculty member Sean Fletcher, a developmental editor and agent scout, will get your work in advance, critique the first 10 double-spaced pages of your story, meet with you for at least 10 minutes at the workshop to discuss his thoughts, and pass along written critique notes at the meeting. Sean is a developmental editor and agent scout with Andrea Hurst and Associates LLC. He has also taught and co-taught workshops on developmental editing and book marketing at the PNWA conference in Seattle, the NILA MFA Residency, and RWA San Jose chapter, among many other venues. Sean assists authors in building multidimensional characters, engaging plots, original voices, and deep themes across all age groups. When not editing he is an author of Amazon best-selling YA fantasy, as well as middle grade. 
  • Screen Shot 2019-09-03 at 1.55.55 PM.pngRomance (any subgenre or heat level), young adult (all kinds) women’s fiction, contemporary fiction, domestic suspense: Faculty member Roni Loren, a published romance novelist, will critique the first 10 double-spaced pages of your story, meet with you for at least 10 minutes at the workshop to discuss his thoughts, and pass along written critique notes at the meeting. Roni wrote her first romance novel at age fifteen when she discovered writing about boys was way easier than actually talking to them. Since then, her flirting skills haven’t improved, but she likes to think her storytelling ability has. She writes full time from her cozy office in Dallas, Texas where she puts her characters on the therapy couch instead. She is a two-time RITA Award winner and a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author. 
  • Screen Shot 2019-08-30 at 12.55.25 PM.pngYoung adult fiction (all kinds) and middle grade fiction (all kinds): Faculty member Sean Easley, a published kidlit novelist, will critique the first 10 double-spaced pages of your story, meet with you for at least 10 minutes at the workshop to discuss his thoughts, and pass along written critique notes at the meeting. Sean Easley is the author of the middle grade series THE HOTEL BETWEEN (Simon & Schuster). He’s worked with kids and teens for well over a decade, listening to their stories, and somehow ended up with a Master’s degree in education along the way. Now he’s a full-time writer living with his wife and son in Texas.
  • Screen Shot 2019-09-12 at 10.58.47 PM.pngChildren’s picture books: Faculty member Eve Porinchak, a former literary agent and current writing coach, will get your work in advance, critique your children’s picture book, and pass along written critique notes. Picture book submissions should be 1,000 words maximum, and your submission can come with or without illustrations. Unlike other critiquers helping our Dallas workshop, Eve will not personally be at the event. That means you will get your notes emailed from her, and she can talk with you via Skype or phone in place of an in-person consultation. Eve is a former literary agent for Jill Corcoran Literary, and the author of ONE CUT, a teen true crime book that launch the imprint Simon True for Simon & Schuster.

How to pay/register — Registration is now open.


To register by Google Forms, click on the link below to fill out the form. Once you submit the form and let us know everything you want at the conference, you will get instructions on how to pay by PayPal or check.


http://bit.do/dallasregistration

Once the Google form is complete and payment is made (either check or PayPal), you will have reserved a seat at the event.

If you have any issues with the Google form, or would simply rather talk with someone via email, just reach out to workshop organizer Kimiko Nakamura via email: WDWcoordinator@gmail.com. She can pass along registration information to you, and give instructions on how to pay by PayPal or check. Once payment is complete, you will have a reserved seat at the event. The Writers Conference of Dallas will send out periodic e-mail updates to all registered attendees with any & all news about the event. Because Kimiko plans different workshops, if you email her, make sure you note that you’re inquiring about the Dallas workshop specifically.

REGISTRATION

Because of limited space at the venue of the DoubleTree by Hilton DFW Airport North (DFWIN), the workshop can only allow 125 registrants, unless spacing issues change. For this reason, we encourage you to book sooner rather than later.

Are spaces still available? Yes, we still have spaces available. We will announce RIGHT HERE, at this point on this web page, when all spaces are taken. If you do not see a note right here saying how all spaces are booked, then yes, we still have room, and you are encouraged to register.

How to Register: Registration is now open.


To register by Google Forms, click on the link below to fill out the form. Once you submit the form and let us know everything you want at the conference, you will get instructions on how to pay by PayPal or check.


http://bit.do/dallasregistration

Once the Google form is complete and payment is made (either check or PayPal), you will have reserved a seat at the event.

If you have any issues with the Google form, or would simply rather talk with someone via email, just reach out to workshop organizer Kimiko Nakamura via email: WDWcoordinator@gmail.com. She can pass along registration information to you, and give instructions on how to pay by PayPal or check. Once payment is complete, you will have a reserved seat at the event. The Writers Conference of Dallas will send out periodic e-mail updates to all registered attendees with any & all news about the event. Because Kimiko plans different workshops, if you email her, make sure you note that you’re inquiring about the Dallas workshop specifically.

Refunds: If you sign up for the event and have to cancel for any reason, you will receive 50% of your total payment back [sent by check or PayPal]. The other 50% is nonrefundable and will not be returned, and helps the workshop ensure that only those truly interested in the limited spacing sign up for the event. (Please note that query editing payments are completely non-refundable if the instructor has already edited your letter.)

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