Summer’s here!


While everybody else looks forward to summer reading, it’s time for us to think about summer writing. Summer, with all its conference offerings, might well be the aspiring author’s busiest season. Here’s what’s on the cards over the coming months:

The Squaw Valley Fiction, Non-fiction, and Memoir Writers’ Workshops are scheduled for July 6-13. Days are made up of morning workshops and individual consults. This is a rigorous conference with an emphasis on craft, held against a breath-taking backdrop.

On July 11, I’m teaching a one-day workshop at the Berkeley Writing Salon, You’ve Finished Your Book: Now What? As the title suggests, we’ll be discussing next steps and the best publishing strategies depending on what you would like to achieve.

The inaugural Book Passage Young Adult & Middle Grade Intensive Writing Weekend is scheduled for July 11-12, in Corte Madera. This is the first year that organizers of Book Passage’s beloved Children’s Writers and Illustrators Conference has decided to break it up into two events: one for MG/YA, and another one for picture books scheduled for September. I’ll be teaching on the 12th.

For five Sundays starting on July 19, I will be teaching a series of craft workshops at the San Francisco Writing Salon. Writing for Kids and Young Adults: Improve Your Craft will be chockablock full of exercises and discussion, with a different craft focus each week.

The Napa Valley Writers’ Conference is being held from July 26-31. This conference has a strong emphasis on fiction and poetry. Serious writing. Serious wine. What could go wrong?

My favorite “beginner’s conference,” The Mendocino Coast Writers Conference, is being held this year from August 6-8. I say “beginners” as no slight to its impressive faculty, but because this is the perfect conference on which to cut your teeth. Intimate, supportive, and collegial, the camaraderie here is second to none. It exerts such a strong pull that I’ll be there, although I’m not teaching.

If you’re ready to pitch by the end of the summer, the NY Pitch Conference is the venue for you. Known for its roster of Big Five editors, this conference focuses on the end of the writing process.

So, happy writing! And if you’re indeed happy with what you wrote, don’t forget that Glimmer Train has a few awards over the summer:

Their Very Short Fiction Award is open for submissions in July, and the The Glimmer Train  Short Story Award is open for submissions in August.

Good luck, and enjoy your summer!
Hope to see some of you,





Until we meet again…

Apologies for the long pause between posts. It’s summer conference time, which has me juggling presentations and priorities. But here’s a little something to keep you entertained. I’ll be back with tips for writers from my experiences at the AFCC. In the mean time, happy writing!