Posts Tagged With: SF Writers Conference

Talk to an Agent or Publisher

If you have a finished book one of the most helpful things you can do is talk to an expert.  That conversation can help you get good leads, good ideas and contacts!

To that end, check out Pitch-O-Rama this April 13th in San Francisco

On Pier 39 Swiss Louis

10th Annual Pitch-O-Rama: Meet the Agents, Editors, and Publishers, Saturday, April 13, 2013, 8:00 am – 12:00 pm Swiss Louis Restaurant, Pier 39, San FranciscoA tradition in San Francisco since 1936, with a panoramic view of the Bay. Cost: $60 members, $70 non-members, Continental Breakfast Included.Free Pre-Pitch Session 8:00- 9:00 am.  PLUS  Small Press Publishers Panel & Luncheon $35, 12:00 – 1:30 pm Brooke Warner of She Writes Press and Brenda Knight of Cleis Press & Viva Editions with two featured authors.  Must be registered to attend luncheon.

via Women’s National Book Association.

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Day of the Book Featuring, well, Me

Day of the Book – April 20, 2013

JFKU 100 Ellinwood Way, Pleasant Hill, CA

Time: 10-4

One of the advantages of creating a writers conference is that I get to speak.

Write your Book Now –  Catharine Bramkamp

You have a marvelous idea, you have the tools, but just how do you get started?  In this hands on workshop you will discover how to tap into your inner novelist or even tap into material  you have to create the book you want.

Catharine Bramkamp is a successful writing coach, author and podcaster. She is a dynamic speaker covering subjects as diverse as NaNoNowWhat?  to the Evolution of Language to working through writing blocks.   She works with clients creating both fictional works (three clients have published four books) and non-fiction (one client has published two books).


$35 with lunch

Faculty, staff, alumnae:  $25

Students: $20

Morning events open to the public 10-12

Panel discussion (lunch) 12-1

Literary salon 2-4

Of course there will be books for sale!

For early reservations contact: Catharine at

Day of the Book ink well

Day of the Book


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Find Your Tribe

We just interviewed Betsy Fasbinder author of Fire & Water, a dark love story.

She published her book with She Writes Press, a boutique publisher.  Betsy priced jobbing each piece of her book:  editing, cover design, book layout, print, uploading to Kindle, all the left brain activities that book publication requires and discovered that She Writes Press did it all in one shop and for less than hiring four or five different companies or individuals.  And she is quite happy with the results.

Fire & Water

Fire & Water

” She Writes Press consists of really smart people who know the industry and are also willing to collaborate with the author. They did not try to make the book into anything that it wasn’t.”

Betsy’s advice to the Newbie Writer:  Find your tribe. Writers understand writers, we understand what you are going through.  Find a few, find a bunch, but do find the support, writing is lonely, get you tribe.

Betsy has been awarded the Floyd Salas Award, a Jack London award and two East of Eden awards for both fiction and memoir pieces.  Four of her pieces have been produced as Readers’ Theater works in the historic Nevada Theater in Nevada City, California.  She is the also co-producer of The Women’s Writing Salon in Nevada County.

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Day of the Book


Day of the Book

April 20, 2013

JFKU 100 Ellinwood Way, Pleasant Hill, CA

Time: 10-4

 Come and celebrate the Day of the Book!  We are putting together a fantastic group of speakers/authors just for you!  So if you’re in the East Bay on Saturday, April 20th, Come by!

Featuring the artists who created

Banned & Recovered: Artists Intervention is a collective response by 37 artists to the conspicuous success of book challenges and bannings in U.S. schools and libraries and the real threats to the U.S. Constitution posed by the 2003 U.S. Patriot Act.

Artists created new works of art inspired by titles from the long list of banned and challenged books. The result is a spectacular collection of witty, whimsical, angry, and thought-provoking statements about the ramifications of censorship and the importance of free speech. Together, the works shed new light on problematic issues and engage visitors in a lively dialog about the power of art in the face of censorship.


What Is Your Big Idea? –   Beth Barany

Write your Book Now –  Catharine Bramkamp

Build Your Audience On-Line  – Stephanie Chandler

Women in the Air – Jeane Slone

GALACTIC EXODUS: A Science Fiction Documentary or History of the Future  – Michael Somers

Inheriting Identity: Fiction as Emotional Autobiography –  Elizabeth Rosner

Writing and Self-Publishing as Personal Expressions of Liberation and Autonomy.   – K. Tutashinda

Building a Vibrant Fictional World  – Tanya Egan Gibson

The Art of Spiritual Writing   Charles Burack, Ph.D

What’s Your Story? The Heart and Craft of Memoir Writing – Linda Joy Meyers



$35 with lunch

Faculty, staff, alumnae:  $25

Students: $20


Morning events open to the public 10-12

Panel discussion (lunch) 12-1

Literary salon 2-4

For early reservations contact: Catharine at

Oh, and look for information and tips here from the featured authors.

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The After Conference Fall Out

Do you feel brilliant and accomplished after a weekend writing conference?
I never do.  I walk out of the sessions thinking that I will never, ever be as:

  • Popular
  • Accomplished
  • Rich
  • Thin
  • Young

As the speakers.   Sometimes the above list makes me really, really depressed.  I ruminate over issues like:

  • I haven’t followed any of the information presented so I must be some kind of idiot.
  • What do I know about writing, I’ve only been doing it for 40 years (since I was very young)
  • What am I even doing here;  I should have taken up dentistry.

I believe this kind of doubt and anguish is fairly normal. You may feel the same way. Or you may be perfect and good for you, drop me a line and tell me how that feels.

But after a few days wallowing in my own, er, stuff, I snap out of it and think, okay, I’m going to act on all the good   advice:

  • fix the character arc in the novel
  • make a plan for  for social media (no, I am still not taking up twitter, I’ll leave that to Damien)
  • curate information to build my platform.

Like most adult learners, I needed to do everything wrong in my first draft so I could really hear and  understand the messages delivered by the more-famous-than-me-authors and maybe apply them to the third draft of my book.

In the end, I think, maybe I can improve, it just takes a few days for all of it to sink in.
I’m still working on getting younger.

Mark Hopkins, home of the SF Writers Conference

Mark Hopkins, home of the SF Writers Conference

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Helping Authors Create Successful and Sustainable Careers

Author Entrepreneurship Magazine | Helping Authors Create Successful and Sustainable Careers.

I was just talking with Beth, the editor of Author Entrepreneurship and she encourages submissions, and I encourage down loading and reading the magazine.  It’s all about authors and how to become more successful.  Conference season is almost here, so check this issue out!

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Ideas to Raise Your SEO

Here are a few of the suggestions of how to raise your  SEO  courtesy of  the speakers at the SF Writer’s Conference:

  • Place an ad for your website on Craig’s list.  You do need to renew every seven days, but it’s free.
  • Create an app  (this is quick, not free.  The free apps will display far less of you and far more of the paid ads, so you may need to spend in the neighborhood of $1,000 for the app)
  • Be a guest blogger in your field.  Some larger, popular blogs will take 500 word articles on topic relevant to their theme.  Check them out, figure out their style, submit.  You have an opportunity to post your bio and a link to your web site (just one link).
  • Conduct Free teleseminars and webinars relevant to your field and expertise.  Don’t have enough to say to fill in a few hours?  Recruit your friends, host a panel of experts.   Even if the webinar is free, require a sign up so you can capture names and emails for your own mailing list.
  • Give away an e-book, capture names and emails for your mailing list.  (Please, we’ve discussed this, don’t just throw together some crappy e-book filled with recycled material, or worse, a thinly disguised infomercial,  make it valuable, give something real away.)
  • SF Writers Conference

    Stephanie Chandler – speaker at the SF Writer’s Conference, Newbie Writers Podcast guest

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Tips from Guy Kawasaki

I met wonderful authors during my two days volunteering at the SF Writers Conference.  If you couldn’t attend, I’ll send along a few things I learned:

Guy Kawasaki


Guy Kawasaki  author of APE (Author, Publisher, Entrepreneur): How to Publish Your Book had this to say:

Build your platform while writing your book through curating

Curate in your field. Reach out through social media

What does that mean?

If you are writing a science fiction thriller, as you discover interesting research, photos, prototypes, post them to your blog, pin them, Facebook them.  You aren’t really mentioning your book at all during this activity. What you are doing is sharing your world and your knowledge with your readers, even if they aren’t yet your readers.

I found this an easier way to consider that dreaded platform requirement.

Instead of laboring to build a platform, shop for cool things to share.

Sounds better?  It is!

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