The 2017 Chesapeake Writing Workshop: Washington, DC (Sept. 9, 2017)

Screen Shot 2015-12-30 at 1.37.26 AMAfter a successful 2015 & 2016 events in DC, Writing Day Workshops is excited to announce The 2017 Chesapeake Writing Workshop — a full-day “How to Get Published” writing event outside Washington, DC on September 9, 2017.

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 2017 Chesapeake Writing Workshop!

WHAT IS IT?

This is a special one-day “How to Get Published” writing workshop on Saturday, September 9, 2017, at the Hilton Arlington. 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 agent faculty so far includes:

  • literary agent Amanda Jain (Inklings Literary)
  • literary agent Mark Gottlieb (Trident Media Group)
  • literary agent Regina Brooks (Serendipity Literary)
  • literary agent Mike Hoogland (Dystel, Goderich, and Bourret)
  • literary agent Cynthia Kane (Capital Talent Agency)
  • literary agent Eric Smith (P.S. Literary)
  • literary agent Kimberly Brower (Brower Literary & Management)
  • literary agent Anna Sproul-Latimer (Ross Yoon Literary)
  • and many more to come

By the end of the day, you will have all the tools you need to move forward on your writing journey.

EVENT LOCATION & DETAILS:

9:30 a.m. – 5 p.m., Saturday, September 9, 2017 — at the Hilton Arlington,  950 North Stafford Street, Arlington, Virginia, 22203.(703)528-6000.

Screen Shot 2016-02-23 at 3.14.49 PM.png

THIS YEAR’S SESSIONS & WORKSHOPS (SEPT. 9, 2017):

What you see below is a quick layout of the day’s events. We will have a more detailed workshop page (with instructor names) soon. The schedule below is mostly set, but is subject to change.

Please Note: There will be 2-3 classes/workshops going at all times during the day, so you will have your choice of what class you attend at any time. The final schedule of topics is subject to change, but here is the current layout:

8:30 – 9:30: Check-in and registration at the event location.

BLOCK ONE: 9:30 – 10:30

1. An Overview of Your Publishing Options Today. This workshop examines traditional publishing vs. self-publishing / e-publishing.

2. Keys to Writing Great Young Adult & Middle Grade Fiction. This session will discuss the tips and tricks for making middle grade and YA novels great.

3. How to Write, Sell, and Market Your Memoir. In this session, you’ll learn what sells (and why), and how you can get your memoir published.

Screen Shot 2015-12-30 at 1.44.34 AMBLOCK TWO: 10:45 – 11:50

1. Get Rid of Negative Talk and Naysayers. Get your over your own self-doubt as well as any outside negative voices, and find the time & passion to just write.

2. Everything You Need to Know About Agents and Query Letters. This workshop is a thorough crash course in dealing with literary agents.

3. Ten Tips for Writing Great Mysteries, Thrillers, and Crime Fiction. This presentation will teach you how to keep readers—including agents and editors—turning pages late into the night.

LUNCH ON YOUR OWN: 11:50 – 1:15

Lunch is on your own during these 85 minutes.

BLOCK THREE: 1:15 – 2:30

1. “Writers Got Talent”—a Page 1 Critique Fest. This is a chance to get your first page read (anonymously — no bylines given) with attending agents commenting on what was liked or not liked about the submission.
   
2.  Nonfiction Intense: Book Proposal Tips. If you are trying to create an awesome nonfiction book proposal, this presentation is for you.

3. Picture Book Intensive: Advice on Selling Your Children’s Book. In this session, we’ll discuss questions to consider before sending a picture book manuscript out in the world.

BLOCK FOUR: 2:45 – 3:45

1. How to Self-Publish Your Book Now and Do It Right. You’ll learn how to: prepare your manuscript, design your cover, format your paperback interior & ebook, register with desired retailers/distributors, and much more.

2. Ten Keys to Writing Success. Learn 10 things you can be doing right now that will help get your book(s) published and find success.

3. Talking Fantasy and Science Fiction. A panel of attending literary agents will be discussing the genres of science fiction and fantasy — i.e., how to write and sell speculative fiction.

BLOCK FIVE: 4:00 – 5:00

1. Author Social Media and Blogging. This session includes easy-to-understand advice on social media (Twitter, Facebook, more), blogging, and other simple ways you can market your work online.

2. Talking Craft and Revision. This session will discuss common manuscript problems as well as tools you can use to create the manuscripts that will get the attention you want from agents and editors—and readers.

3. How to Write and Pitch Romance in Today’s Market. This session will address important topics and tips for writers of romance.

SESSIONS END: 5:00

At 5 p.m., the day is done. Speakers will make themselves available by the workshop’s Barnes & Noble station for a short while to sign any books for attendees.

Agent & Editor Pitching: All throughout the day.

————-

PITCH AN AGENT:

Screen Shot 2016-10-12 at 3.29.24 PM.pngAmanda Jain is a literary agent with Inklings Literary. Amanda is primarily interested in adult fiction in the following categories: historical fiction (in all genres), women’s / book club / upmarket fiction, romance (particularly historical, suspenseful, or with a comedic bent), and mysteries (particularly historical or cozy, or historical cozies). She also seeks narrative nonfiction in the areas of social history, archaeology, art history, material culture, etc. She is also interested in select YA and middle grade projects with unique hooks and a strong voice. In all cases, what Amanda is most looking for is a story that completely immerses the reader in the world of the book. She wants to feel the sun on her shoulders, smell the smoke of the battlefield, and hear the horses galloping in the distance. Learn more about Amanda here.

Screen Shot 2016-01-20 at 10.18.49 AM.pngRegina Brooks is a literary agent with Serendipity Literary Agency. She seeks young adult and middle grade fiction. In nonfiction, she is open to any subject where the author has a great platform, but especially enjoys memoir, health, how-to, business / finance, relationships, biography, cooking, and science. At the workshop, she will also be teaching on memoir writing. Learn more about Regina here.

Screen Shot 2016-10-27 at 6.51.02 PM.pngMike Hoogland is a literary agent with Dystel, Goderich, and Bourret Literary. He is currently looking for: thrillers (especially domestic), suspense, science fiction, fantasy, upmarket women’s fiction, and children’s lit of all kinds (young adult, middle grade, and picture books), as well as a wide range of narrative nonfiction. Learn more about Mike and his background here.

Screen Shot 2016-11-26 at 1.34.12 PM.pngKimberly Brower is a literary agent with Brower Literary & Management. She is interested in commercial and upmarket fiction, with an emphasis in general/book club fiction, psychological thrillers, contemporary romance, women’s fiction, and young adult (all genres). However, she is always looking for books that she wants to stay up all night reading, unable to put them down, regardless of what genre an author classifies it as. She loves stories that bring her into a world she doesn’t want to leave and characters that have strong character arcs. Learn more about Kimberly here.

Screen Shot 2016-10-20 at 10.54.05 AM.pngCynthia Kane is a literary agent with Capital Talent Agency. She is seeking: young adult, children’s, nonfiction, memoir, commercial fiction (but no science fiction or fantasy). Cynthia has been involved in the publishing industry for more than ten years. She has worked as a development editor for different publishing houses and individual authors and have seen more than 100 titles to market. Learn more about Cynthia here.

Screen Shot 2015-07-27 at 12.53.51 PMEric Smith is a literary agent with P.S. Literary. He is eagerly acquiring fiction and nonfiction projects. He’s actively seeking out new, diverse voices in young adult (particularly sci-fi and fantasy), new adult, and literary and commercial fiction (again, loves sci-fi and fantasy, but also thrillers and mysteries). In terms of nonfiction, he’s interested in cookbooks, pop culture, humor, essay collections, and blog-to-book ideas. Learn more about Eric here.

Screen Shot 2016-05-02 at 11.24.11 AM.pngAnna Sproul-Latimer is a literary agent with Ross Yoon Literary. Specializing in nonfiction of all kinds (including memoir and narrative nonfiction), she particularly loves working with clients who are driven by curiosity: exploring new worlds, uncovering hidden communities, and creating new connections with enthusiasm so infectious that national audiences have already begun to pay attention. Learn more about Anna here.

Screen Shot 2016-12-01 at 4.02.36 PM.pngMark Gottlieb is a literary agent with Trident Media Group. Mark represents all genres of fiction, nonfiction, middle grade, young adult, children’s picture books, and graphic novels. Learn more about Mark here.

        More 2017 agents to be announced as they are confirmed. You can sign up for pitches at any time, or switch pitches at any time, so long as the agent in question still has appointments open.

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 2017 CWW and access to all workshops, all day. As of October 10, 2016, 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 some testimonials from 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 2015-11-29 at 3.01.32 PMI signed with my agent, Patricia Nelson, after
meeting her at the Arizona Writing Workshop.”
– writer Axie Oh

Screen Shot 2015-11-29 at 3.05.52 PM“I officially signed with agent Renee Nyen of KT
Literary. I met her at the Colorado Writing
Workshop.” – writer Jessie Hilb Akos

Screen Shot 2016-02-27 at 1.31.47 PM.png“After taking pitches at the Michigan Writing
Workshop, I signed writer Kyle Prue as a new
client.” – literary agent Veronica Park

Screen Shot 2016-04-12 at 10.59.25 AM.png“After taking pitches at the Alabama Writing
Workshop, I met Erin Hollis at a pitch session, and
she is now my newest client.” – agent Julie Gwinn

Add $69 — for an in-depth, personal critique of your one-page query letter from Chuck Sambuchino, one of the day’s instructors. (This rate is a special event value for Chesapeake Writing 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 $79 — 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:

  • Critique options: Information coming soon.

How to pay/register — Registration is now open. Reach out to workshop organizer Jessica Bell via email: writingdayworkshops@gmail.com, and she will provide specific instructions for payment and registration to get you a reserved seat at the event. Payment is by either PayPal or check. Because Jessica plans different workshops, make sure you note that you’re inquiring about the DC workshop specifically.

REGISTRATION:

Because of limited space at the venue, the workshop can only allow 150 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: The easy first step is simply to reach out to workshop organizer Jessica Bell via email: writingdayworkshops@gmail.com. She will 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 CWW will send out periodic e-mail updates to all registered attendees with any & all news about the event. Because Jessica plans different workshops, make sure you note that you’re inquiring about the DC 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 and manuscript editing payments are completely non-refundable if the instructor has already edited your letter.)

Screen Shot 2014-06-12 at 4.10.21 PM

Thank you for your interest in the 2017 Chesapeake Writing Workshop.

Get to Know an Agent in Attendance: Mike Hoogland of Dystel, Goderich, and Bourret

Screen Shot 2016-10-27 at 6.51.02 PM.pngMike Hoogland is a literary agent with Dystel, Goodrich, and Bourret Literary.

He is currently looking for: thrillers (especially domestic), suspense, science fiction, fantasy, upmarket women’s fiction, and children’s lit of all kinds (young adult, middle grade, and picture books), as well as a wide range of narrative nonfiction.

Michael joined DG&B after completing a foreign rights internship at Sterling Lord Literistic. Before pursuing a career in publishing, Mike studied at Colgate University and graduated with a degree in political science and the intention to work in government. He interned with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, but soon realized his interests and passions were better suited to a career in the publishing industry. After Colgate, Mike went on to gain a valuable education at the Columbia Publishing Course and discovered his passion for the agenting side of the business.

Get to Know an Agent in Attendance: Amanda Jain of Inklings Literary

Screen Shot 2016-10-18 at 11.35.13 AM.pngAmanda Jain is a literary agent with Inklings Literary.

Amanda has loved books for as long as she can remember. When she was a kid, Amanda always had her head in a book. In her room, in the car, in the bathtub, wherever. She probably would have brought a book to the dinner table every evening if that was allowed.

After earning a BA in English, she worked in the trade department at W. W. Norton for seven years before leaving to pursue graduate studies. She graduated in 2011 with a MA in the history of decorative arts. Amanda then joined Inklings in 2014, first as an intern and then as Michelle’s assistant.

Amanda is primarily interested in adult fiction in the following categories: historical fiction (in all genres), women’s / book club / upmarket fiction, romance (particularly historical, suspenseful, or with a comedic bent), mysteries (particularly historical or cozy, or historical cozies), and narrative nonfiction in the areas of social history, archaeology, art history, material culture, etc. She is also interested in select YA and MG projects with unique hooks and a strong voice.

In all cases, what Amanda is most looking for is a story that completely immerses the reader in the world of the book. She wants to feel the sun on her shoulders, smell the smoke of the battlefield, and hear the horses galloping in the distance.

Amanda is NOT the agent to query with picture books, memoirs, self-help, poetry, erotica, science fiction and fantasy, horror, or inspirational fiction.

Get to Know an Agent in Attendance: Cynthia Kane of Capital Talent Agency

Screen Shot 2014-12-18 at 1.12.09 PMLiterary agent Cynthia Kane of Capital Talent Agency will be participating in the DC workshop.

She is seeking: young adult, children’s, nonfiction, memoir, commercial fiction (but no science fiction or fantasy).

About Cynthia: “I’ve been involved in the publishing industry for more than ten years. I have worked as a development editor for different publishing houses and individual authors and have seen more than 100 titles to market. I worked with Michael Gross, New York Times best-selling author, as a researcher on 740 Park: The Story of the World’s Richest Apartment Building and Rogues Gallery: The Secret History of the Moguls and the Money That Made the Metropolitan Museum. I have also written for national and international publications and have served as a writing instructor at the Writopia Lab in Washington, DC, and have run several writing workshops at public libraries in the area and Politics & Prose Bookstore. I received my B.A. in Literature from Bard College and M.F.A. in Creative Nonfiction from Sarah Lawrence College.”

 

Get to Know an Agent in Attendance: Mark Gottlieb of Trident Media Group

Screen Shot 2016-12-01 at 4.02.36 PM.pngMark Gottlieb is a literary agent with Trident Media Group.

Mark attended Emerson College and was president of its Publishing Club, establishing the Wilde Press. After graduating with a degree in writing, literature & publishing, he began his career with Penguin’s VP. Mark’s first position at Publishers Marketplace’s #1-ranked literary agency, Trident Media Group, was in foreign rights. Mark was EA to Trident’s chairman and ran the Audio Department. Mark is currently working with his own client list, helping to manage and grow author careers with the unique resources available to Trident. He has ranked #1 among literary agents on publishersmarketplace.com in overall deals and other categories.

Mark represents all genres of fiction, nonfiction, middle grade, young adult, children’s picture books, and graphic novels.

Get to Know an Agent in Attendance: Regina Brooks of Serendipity Literary Agency

Screen Shot 2016-01-20 at 10.18.49 AM.pngRegina Brooks is a literary agent with Serendipity Literary Agency.

She seeks: young adult and middle grade fiction. In nonfiction, she is open to any subject where the author has a great platform, but especially enjoys memoir, health, how-to, business / finance, relationships, biography, cooking, and science.

Equally at home in the technical world of engineering as in the literary world of writing and editing, Ms. Brooks has over a decade of experience in senior positions at major publishing houses including John Wiley & Sons Inc. and the McGraw-Hill Companies. She is a graduate of the Howard University Publishing Institute in Washington DC. Prior to her publishing career she worked as an aerospace engineer for NASA Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, MD, and made history as the first African-American woman to receive a Bachelors of Science Degree in Aerospace Engineering from the Ohio State University. She has been highlighted in several national and international magazines and periodicals, including Forbes, Media Bistro, Writers and Poets, Essence Magazine, Writers Digest Magazine, The Writer, and Sister2Sister magazine and a host of others.  

Ms. Brooks is a member of the Association of Author Representatives (AAR) and has edited over 100 published books, and is the author of Writing Great Books For Young Adults (Sourcebooks) the Essence Magazine 2004 Quick Pick children’s book Never Finished! Never Done!, published by Scholastic Inc. and You Should Really Write A Book: How to Write, Sell and Market Your Memoir (St. Martin’s Press). She has been highlighted in several national and international magazines and periodicals, including Forbes, Media Bistro, Writers and Poets, Publishers Weekly, Essence Magazine, Writers Digest Magazine, The Writer, and Sister2Sister magazine.

Get to Know an Agent in Attendance: Eric Smith of P.S. Literary

Screen Shot 2015-07-27 at 12.53.46 PMEric Smith is a literary agent with P.S. Literary.

Eric began his publishing career at Quirk Books in Philadelphia, working social media and marketing on numerous books he absolutely adored. Eric completed his BA in English at Kean University, and his MA in English at Arcadia University. A frequent blogger, his ramblings about books appear on BookRiot, The Huffington Post, Barnes & Noble’s Teen Reads blog, Paste Magazine’s Books section, and more. A published author with Quirk Books and Bloomsbury, he seeks to give his authors the same amount of love his writing has received. Follow him on Twitter: @ericsmithrocks

Eric is seeking: Eric is eagerly acquiring fiction and nonfiction projects. He’s actively seeking out new, diverse voices in Young Adult (particularly sci-fi and fantasy), New Adult, and Literary and Commercial Fiction (again, loves sci-fi and fantasy, but also thrillers and mysteries). In terms of nonfiction, he’s interested in Cookbooks, Pop Culture, Humor, essay collections, and blog to book ideas.