Legal Issues in Publishing
Publishing isn’t just editing and designing a book and turning it out to the public. This panel will cover legal topics in publishing, including intellectual property rights and contracts, as well as libel and slander. Authors will learn about protecting their work and themselves from plagiarism, requesting the use of another’s work in their own, learning what contracts are actually saying, and identifying and avoiding contentious statements in their work.
Self-Publishing: The Good, The Bad & The Ugly
With the difficulty of approaching publishers, many writers turn to self-publishing as a way to introduce their work to the world. In this panel, writers will hear from self-published authors and other professionals on their experiences in the world of self-publishing—both the positive and the negative. Topics will range from researching distribution platforms to hiring editorial and design services versus doing these tasks yourself.
The State of Diversity in Publishing
Diversity is becoming a well-known issue in publishing with movements such as We Need Diverse Books and Diversity in YA. This panel will address the barriers to diversity in the publishing industry. Discussions will include the representation of diverse characters in literature, the challenges faced by minority authors, and solutions for breaking past these barriers.
Doing the Research: Preparing to Approach Publishers & Literary Agents
Approaching a publisher or literary agent can be an intimidating task. This panel will feature a range of publishing experts and agents who will discuss what writers can do to prepare themselves, including how to research a publishing company’s submission guidelines and how to determine if an agent represents the same kind of work a writer produces.
Writing Outside Yourself
You know you want to write a diverse story, but you worry about sounding cliché or insincere. For those concerned about writing from—and including—perspectives outside of your own experiences, this workshop will help you find ways to give those voices life without sounding like you are checking traits off a list.
Writing Good Dialogue
Writing effective dialogue is a tricky and crucial aspect of writing a good story. Stilted, unrealistic dialogue can turn readers off and make it nearly impossible to bring them back into the thread of the narrative. Our workshop will assist you with writing dialogue that doesn’t distract from the story itself.
If you plan to participate in this workshop, please send a writing sample to firstname.lastname@example.org by February 2. The sample must be between 1 and 1.5 pages, and it should showcase extensive dialogue. You may submit a personal piece or that of someone else, but please do not submit professionally published samples.
Crafting a Query Letter
The ever-intimidating query letter—it is how you present your manuscript and yourself to the publishers and agents you hope to work with. Because it is very important to make your first impression your best impression, you will use your own manuscript to learn what does and doesn’t work when approaching publishing professionals.
Building an Online Presence
Social media is king, and having an online presence is acknowledged as critical to building success. This workshop will go over online strategies and encourage you to work with your interests and strengths. (Hate Twitter but love pictures? Use Instagram instead!) By knowing the platforms available and leveraging your personal strengths, even the most tech-averse person can build an online persona that works for them.