The Muse 2014 | Sessions

Please register in advance for Sessions 1-8. For all other offerings here, including the A La Carte sessions, you do not need to pre-register. For A La Carte sessions, you may simply decide which to attend when you arrive at the conference. Please note that we may make a few changes to the schedule if we must.

Use this drop-down menu to view:

yesmuse2014session1a6

1A: Between Fiction and Non-Fiction


9:00am-10:15am on Friday, May 2nd

While it's generally assumed that fiction writers can write nonfiction, nonfiction writers - whether they don't want to, or think they can't - don't tend to write fiction. Yet if fiction is to nonfiction what our dreams are to our daily lives, aren't they joined? If so, does content dictate form, or form dictate content? And what is the difference? Have you ever tried to write the same "material" as fiction and nonfiction and had more success with one than the other? We have. This discussion aims to focus on what we've discovered about the pluses and minuses.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 6
Presenter(s):

James Carroll (Author)
James Carroll James Carroll is Distinguished Scholar-in-Residence at Suffolk University, and a columnist for the Boston Globe. He is author of ten novels and seven works of non-fiction, including Jerusalem, Jerusalem: How the Ancient City Ignited Our Modern World. (2011).

Carroll was born in Chicago in 1943, and raised in Washington where his father, an Air Force general, served as the Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency. Carroll attended Georgetown University before entering the seminary to train for the Catholic priesthood. He received BA and MA degrees from St. Paul’s College, the Paulist Fathers’ seminary in Washington, and was ordained to the Catholic priesthood in 1969. Carroll served as Catholic Chaplain at Boston University from 1969 to 1974, then left the priesthood to become a writer.

In 1974 Carroll was Playwright-in-Residence at the Berkshire Theater Festival in Stockbridge, MA. In 1976 he published his first novel, Madonna Red, which was translated into seven languages. Subsequent novels include the New York Times bestsellers Mortal Friends (1978), Family Trade (1982), and Prince of Peace (1984). His novels The City Below (1994) and Secret Father (2003) were named Notable Books of the Year by the New York Times. Carroll’s essays and articles have appeared in The New Yorker, Daedalus, The Daily Beast and other publications. His op-ed page column has run weekly in the Boston Globe since 1992, and it also appears in the International Herald Tribune.

Carroll’s memoir, An American Requiem: God, My Father, and the War that Came Between Us, received the 1996 National Book Award in nonfiction and other awards. His book Constantine’s Sword: The Church and the Jews: A History, published in 2001, was a New York Times bestseller and was honored as one of the Best Books of 2001 by the Los Angeles Times, Christian Science Monitor, and others. It was named a Notable Book of the Year by the New York Times, and won the Melcher Book Award, the James Parks Morton Interfaith Award, and National Jewish Book Award in History. A feature-length documentary film based on Constantine’s Sword, directed by Oscar-nominated Oren Jacoby, was named a “Critic’s Pick” by The New York Times and Best Documentary of 2008 by Film Comment.

In 2002, Carroll published Toward A New Catholic Church: The Promise of Reform, and, in 2004, Crusade: Chronicles of an Unjust War. In 2006, he published House of War: The Pentagon and the Disastrous Rise of American Power, which the Chicago Tribune called “the first great non-fiction book of the new millennium.” Among its honors is the first PEN-John Kenneth Galbraith award. In 2009, he published Practicing Catholic, advancing Church reform. In 2012, Doubleday published Vatican II: The Essential Documents, translated by Norman Tanner, with introductions by Carroll and Pope Benedict XVI. In 2014, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt will publish his novel Warburg in Rome.

Carroll has been a Shorenstein Fellow at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University; a Fellow at the Center for the Study of Values in Public Life at the Harvard Divinity School; The Richman Visiting Professor at Brandeis University; holder of the McDonald Chair at Emory University; a trustee of the Boston Public Library; and a member of the Dean’s Council at the Harvard Divinity School. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and an Associate of the Mahindra Humanities Center at Harvard University. Carroll holds honorary degrees from, among others, the University of Massachusetts at Lowell, Suffolk University, Brandeis University, Lehigh University, and Claremont Graduate University. He will deliver the 2014 Paul Tillich Lecture at Harvard University.

James Carroll lives in Boston with his wife, the novelist Alexandra Marshall. They have two grown children. His website is jamescarrol.net.

1A: Between Fiction and Non-Fiction

Alexandra Marshall (Author)
Alexandra Marshall Born in Western Pennsylvania and raised in the near suburbs of New York City, Alexandra Marshall graduated from Wheaton College in 1965 with a BA in French while studying modern dance at the New England Conservatory. The following year she studied Japanese classical dance in Kyoto, returning to New York to work at the Japanese Consulate and study Japanese at the New School. In 1966 she married her first husband, Timothy Buxton, and they moved to Stanford University, where she worked at the International Students Center. She then earned an MA in French from Columbia University Teachers College, and taught French the next year at a public junior high school in Exeter, NH. In 1970 the couple led a group of college students to Ghana, West Africa for Operation Crossroads Africa, a program that JFK called "the progenitor of the Peace Corps." Her husband died there at age 28.

Returning to the US she moved next to New Haven, intending to enter a doctoral program in American Studies. She began to write instead, however, educating herself by reading American, British, and Canadian contemporary fiction, and by completing two "practice" novels. With a next move to Amherst, MA, she wrote "human interest" stories for the Daily Hampshire Gazette and completed a third novel, Gus in Bronze, which was published by Knopf and in condensed form by Redbook magazine. She then moved to Boston, where her literary agent introduced her to another client, the writer James Carroll. Married since 1977, they have remained in Boston, where they have raised their two children.

In addition to her six books, Ms. Marshall has been a Film Critic for The American Prospect, a guest columnist for The Boston Globe, and her essays, feature stories, travel journalism, and opinion pieces have appeared in many literary journals, newspapers, and magazines. A relative newcomer to short fiction, her first short story appeared in an issue of Ploughshares guest-edited by Alice Hoffman, and was cited as one of "100 Other Distinguished Stories of 2003" in The Best American Short Stories.

She has taught writing in two of Harvard's extension programs and to MFA students at Emerson College. In 1989, she and James Carroll founded, with Pamela Painter and Robie Macauley, the Ploughshares International Fiction Writing Seminar held for nine years at Emerson's Kasteel Well in The Netherlands.

Since the creation in 1991 of the Max Warburg Curriculum, Ms. Marshall has supervised the selection of "Courage in My Life" essays written by sixth-graders in the Boston Public Schools. Now adopted by many independent schools as well, these essays are published in an annual collection called The Courage of Boston's Children.

Alexandra Marshall is the author of five novels: The Court of Common Pleas (Houghton Mifflin, 2001), Something Borrowed (Houghton Mifflin, 1997), The Brass Bed (Doubleday, 1986), Tender Offer (Knopf, 1981), and Gus in Bronze (Knopf, 1977). She has also published a nonfiction book, Still Waters (Morrow, 1978), written in conjunction with the PBS "Nova" film of the same title.

1A: Between Fiction and Non-Fiction

yesmuse2014session1b16

1B: The End: Or, I'm Really Almost Very Close To Being Just About Nearly Done With My Novel


9:00am-10:15am on Friday, May 2nd

The novel is the long distance run of the writing world. The writing process takes years, and it's all too easy to lose sight of the finish line, where it is and when we are there. Sometimes, amid the frustration and the urge to just be done with it, we think we are done long before we really are. We rush scenes, take shortcuts, ignore that nagging voice in the back of our heads that says not yet, not really, and we send a novel off before it is really finished. Or maybe we spend months retreading the same ground yet making little difference, endlessly revising the same passages, getting lost inside our own work so that it feels like maze which actually has no endpoint. How then do we know when we are really at The End? In this session, we will explore the challenges that come with trying to finish a novel, and discuss strategies for knowing when we are really, finally, done.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 16
Presenter(s):

Tova Mirvis (Author)
Tova Mirvis Tova Mirvis is the author of three novels, Visible City, The Outside World and The Ladies Auxiliary, which was a national bestseller. Her essays have appeared in many anthologies and been published in newspapers and magazines such as The Boston Globe, The New York Times Book Review, Commentary, Good Housekeeping, and Poets and Writers, and her fiction has been broadcast on National Public Radio. She is the recipient of a Massachusetts Cultural Council Award and has been a Visiting Scholar at Brandeis University's Women's Studies Research Center. She lives in Newton, MA with her three children.

1B: The End: Or, I'm Really Almost Very Close To Being Just About Nearly Done With My Novel

yesmuse2014session1c14

1C: Embrace the Unlovely: Making Characters Less Likable and More Compelling


9:00am-10:15am on Friday, May 2nd

It's a common fallacy that your characters must be likable. Not so. What they must be is interesting. In this session, we will look at examples of memorable jerks, discuss two keys to create strong characters – make them engaging and recognizably human – and present principles and strategies to leverage what's least cuddly about your characters to make them compelling, sympathetic, and memorable.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 14
Presenter(s):

Ron MacLean (Author)
Ron MacLean Ron MacLean is author of the novels Headlong and Blue Winnetka Skies and the story collection Why the Long Face? His fiction has appeared widely in magazines including GQ, Narrative, Fiction International, Night Train, Other Voices, Drunken Boat, Best Online Fiction 2010, and elsewhere. His stories have been anthologized. Ron has received fellowships from Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, The Millay Colony, and Dorland Mountain Arts Colony, and he is a frequent writer-in-residence at The Chautauqua Institution's Summer Writers Workshop. He is a recipient of the Frederick Exley Award for Short Fiction and has been nominated for multiple Pushcart Prizes. He holds a Doctor of Arts from the University at Albany, SUNY, and teaches at Grub Street. See his work at www.ronmaclean.net.

1C: Embrace the Unlovely: Making Characters Less Likable and More Compelling

yesmuse2014session1d49

1D: To Chart Out in Points: the Necessity of an Outline for your Novel


9:00am-10:15am on Friday, May 2nd

Writers often hate to outline their novels, feeling the practice constrains creativity and saps inspiration. But why set out on "the long sea voyage," as Melville called novel-writing, without some sort of chart to your destination? The Webster's definition of plot is "to chart out in points," and Jenna Blum will show you how to chart a novel while remaining inspired.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 49
Presenter(s):

Jenna Blum (Author)
Jenna Blum Jenna Blum is the New York Times and internationally bestselling author of The Stormchasers and Those Who Save Us, which, in addition to being a New York Times bestseller, was the #1 bestselling book in Holland from 2011-2012. Jenna is also one of Oprah’s Top Thirty Women Writers. Jenna has taught creative and communications writing for Boston University and Grub Street Writers, where she has run fiction, novel and master novel workshops since 1996; currently Jenna contributes her Writer On the Road column for Grub Daily. An East Coaster born & bred, Jenna has lived the past two years with photographer Jim Reed and their black Lab, Woodrow, in Wichita, Kansas, where Jenna wrote the screenplay for Those Who Save Us (now under option). Jenna’s latest fiction, a novella called The Lucky One is forthcoming in a WWII anthology entitled Grand Central, published by Penguin in July 2014. For more information, please visit Jenna at jennablum.com; follow her on Twitter: @Jenna_Blum; and find her on Facebook at facebook.com/jenna.blum.

1D: To Chart Out in Points: the Necessity of an Outline for your Novel

yesmuse2014session1e2

1E: Essentials of the Memoir


9:00am-10:15am on Friday, May 2nd

For one year now, as part of Grub Street's Memoir Incubator, a group of writers has met weekly at Grub Street to conceptualize, draft, and revise their memoir manuscripts. Along the way, we’ve distilled the process of completing a memoir draft into its essentials, from finding the story hidden in your life, to understanding structure, to developing real people into characters, and how to end a story when real life has no ending. These practical and fundamental discussions are designed to move you forward on your memoir.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 2
Presenter(s):

Alexandria Marzano-Lesnevich (Author)
Alexandria Marzano-Lesnevich Alexandria Marzano-Lesnevich was recently named a 2014 National Endowment for the Arts Fellow in Creative Writing. She is writing a book of combined family memoir and literary journalism about a Louisiana murder and death penalty case entitled Any One of Us. An essay adapted from the book was published in Oxford American and recognized as "notable" by Best American Essays 2014; it also appears in the anthology True Crime. In support of Any One of Us, Alexandria has received a Rona Jaffe Award and fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, Yaddo, the Millay Colony for the Arts, Blue Mountain Center, Vermont Studio Center, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and the Ragdale Foundation, as well as a work-study scholarship to the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference. Her writing appears or is forthcoming in The New York Times, Iowa Review, Salon, Oxford American, Los Angeles Review, TriQuarterly Online, Bookslut, Fourth Genre, Bellingham Review (as the winner of the Annie Dillard Award for Creative Nonfiction), and many other publications. Alexandria earned her JD at Harvard Law School, her BA at Columbia University, and an MFA in Nonfiction Writing from Emerson College. She lives in Boston and teaches at Grub Street and Harvard's Kennedy School of Government. Visit her online at www.alexandria-marzano-lesnevich.com.

1E: Essentials of Narration in Memoir

Option 10: Lessons from the Memoir Incubator

yesmuse2014session1h43

1H: The Strategic Writer


9:00am-10:15am on Friday, May 2nd

There’s the muse and the marketplace, and then there’s you. Sometimes writers forget that the latter is the key driver for having not merely a winning book but a sustained, successful career. You spend countless hours working on your books and thinking about marketing, and you should. But without also being crystal clear on your goals, and making an honest assessment of your skills and resources, your path forward can be driven by tactics and anxiety instead of a thoughtful, coherent and personal strategy. It is possible to map out a plan that that draws on your strengths, aligns with your values and priorities, and gives you energy and joy. With the guidance of a literary agent and an editor of a small press, this session will get you started.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 43
Presenter(s):

Eve Bridburg (Literary Agent)
Eve Bridburg Eve Bridburg founded Grub Street in 1997 with the goal of creating a supportive yet rigorous place to study writing beyond the halls of academia. The experiment was a success from the beginning, convincing Eve that there was a great desire in Boston for a literary arts center where emerging and established writers could inspire and teach students at all levels of development. In 2005, hungry for a new adventure, Eve joined the Boston office of The Zachary Shuster Harmsworth Literary and Entertainment Agency as literary agent. Eve developed, edited, and sold a wide variety of books to major publishers including Random House, HarperCollins, Penguin, Grand Central, Abrams, and St. Martins. Her titles include Donovan Campbell’s New York Times Best Seller Joker One, Blogger Matt Logelin’s New York Times Best seller Two Kisses for Maddy, Kirsten Menger-Anderson’s critically acclaimed short story collection Doctor Olaf Van Schuler's Brain, and Len Rosen’s Edgar-nominated thriller All Cry Chaos. Eve also developed a list of expert-driven parenting, health, and spiritual titles by working closely with experts and collaborative writers in an effort to bring cutting edge thinking and research to trade audiences.

Returning to Grub Street as Executive Director in April 2010, Eve’s mission has been to expand Grub Street’s offerings to better educate and equip writers to take full advantage of the new opportunities ushered in by the digital age. She wants to make Grub Street the most dynamic ecosystem for writers in the country. Under her leadership, Grub Street has doubled in size, relocated to a beautiful new space, launched new, innovative programming, and expanded scholarship opportunities and outreach. Eve’s work leading Grub Street has recently been recognized by the National Arts Strategies when they selected her to join their Chief Executive Program, a two-year initiative designed to unleash the collective power of 100 of the top executive leaders in the cultural sector to re-imagine the potential of cultural institutions and to figure out how they can contribute to civil society in the 21st century. Eve was also named one of Boston’s 50 most powerful women by Boston Magazine in 2010. Eve has presented on publishing, the future of publishing, and on what it takes to build a literary arts center at numerous conferences, including AWP, O’Reilly’s Tools of Change, Grub Street’s own The Muse and the Marketplace, Whidbey Island Writers Conference, The Sanibel Island Writers Conference, and Writers at Work. Before starting Grub Street, Eve attended Boston University’s Writing program on a teaching fellowship, farmed in Oregon, ran an international bookstore in Prague and graduated Phi Beta Kappa with awards for academic excellence in Philosophy and Religion from Colgate University.

1H: The Strategic Writer

Marketplace Clinic

Michelle Toth (Editor)
Michelle Toth Michelle Toth is the author of Annie Begins, an Amazon.com bestselling novel, and founder of SixOneSeven Books, a small press based in Boston which she runs together with Andrew Goldstein, author of The Bookie’s Son. Established with the idea of “writers publishing writers,” SixOneSeven Books’ additional titles include Girls I Know by Douglas Trevor (2013), Veronica’s Nap by Sharon Bially, and Twelve Weeks by Karen Lee Sobol. A graduate of Harvard Business School, Michelle is currently the head of human capital for a leading investment management and technology development firm in New York City. Michelle is a long-time member of the board of directors of Grub Street, and divides her time between NYC and Boston.

1H: The Strategic Writer

Marketplace Clinic

yesmuse2014session1j16

1J: Query Lab


9:00am-10:15am on Friday, May 2nd

Important: Please read this description carefully before signing up, and bring all necessary materials to the session if you wish to share your query letter.

Most agencies receive at least a hundred query letters each week, yet respond positively to a very select few. Do you know the secrets to writing a winning query? Do you want to know the most common reasons for rejection? In this session, agents Sorche Fairbank and Stephen Barr will give direct feedback on audience query letters and use them as examples to discuss both effective and ineffective strategies for getting an agent or editor interested in your work. The goal will be to make your query letters as powerful as possible. If you want your query letter considered, please bring a ONE-PAGE hard copy to the session. Query letters will be chosen at random by a volunteer and put on an overhead projector. After your query letter is read by the agents and the audience, the agents will discuss it, troubleshoot, and offer advice that is both specific to your project and general enough for the rest of the audience to benefit. Given the volume of submissions, we cannot guarantee that your query letter will be read. The point is not to get through as many queries as possible, but to thoughtfully evaluate your ideas and offer concrete suggestions from which all will benefit.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 16
Presenter(s):

Sorche Fairbank (Literary Agent)
Sorche Fairbank Since establishing Fairbank Literary Representation in 2002, Sorche Elizabeth Fairbank has had the pleasure of working with a dynamic and varied list, representing best-selling authors, Edgar recipients, award-winning journalists, and of course one of her favorite kinds of client – the debut author. Tastes in novels tend toward literary fiction, international voices, and women’s voices. On the nonfiction side, books that tackle current events and topical and societal issues with a narrative treatment. She has a strong interest in women’s voices and class and race issues, quality lifestyle books (food, wine, design), memoir that goes beyond the me-moir, and humor, gift books, and pop culture. Subjects and genres not of interest by Sorche and Fairbank Literary include: sci-fi and fantasy, children’s and YA, self-help, romance, or sports fiction. Actively seeking fiction (literary, international, and damn good), humor and pop culture, food/cooking, and compelling memoir.

Authors and books represented by Fairbank Literary include: O. Henry Prize winner Charlotte Forbes; Pulitzer nominee & Los Angeles Times Cairo Bureau Chief Jeffrey Fleishman; Edgar winner Rex Burns, Matthew Frederick and his best-selling 101 Things I Learned series; Eudora Welty prize winner Miroslav Penkov (East of the West), Jonathan McCullough’s A Tale Of Two Subs: An Untold Story Of World War II, Two Sister Ships, And Extraordinary Heroism; Essayist Jessica Handler; New Yorker cartoonist Drew Dernavich; Sharron Kahn Luttrell, author of Weekends With Daisy. Humor and gift book clients include Chuck Sambuchino (How To Survive a Garden Gnome Attack; Red Dog, Blue Dog), Terry Border (Bent Objects Empire), and Carl Warner (Carl Warner’s Food Landscapes).

1J: Query Lab

7H: Rejection, Rejection: Why It's Happening to You and How to Avoid It

Stephen Barr (Literary Agent)
Stephen Barr Stephen Barr spent the first 21 years of his life in Southern California, and the only thing he really knew about publishing before he moved to New York City was Robert Downey Jr’s portrayal of Terry Crabtree in Wonder Boys—he’s an editor, and he flies into Pittsburgh (wearing a big, comfy-looking east coast coat) to coax a second novel out of his troubled but probably brilliant author, and then come the hijinks. That sounded pretty swell to Stephen, so he read Wonder Boys on the flight over to New York, and over the course of six or seven months of interviews and internships, he realized that he still wanted the coat and the authors, but would be more comfortable playing the role (so to speak) of their agent (though editing is perhaps his favorite thing in the whole wide world, and he works very closely with his clients to polish and perfect their manuscripts before and after submission). Stephen landed at Writers House in 2008, became its biggest fan about four seconds later, was promoted to senior agent in 2013, and just got his coat back from the dry cleaner.

1J: Query Lab

yesmuse2014session1k20

1K: Industry Guide to Publishing: Fiction


9:00am-10:15am on Friday, May 2nd

Now more than ever you need to understand the inner workings of the marketplace before sending your hard-earned work of fiction to anyone (an agent, an editor, a publicist, a self-publisher). Do you know the difference between literary and commercial fiction? Or what makes your novel “up-market?” Is your novel “quiet,” and is that a bad thing? What’s the market for historical fiction, “category fiction,” short story collections, or books by male novelists about the male experience? Should you even try to categorize your work for agents and editors? Do fiction writers need a platform and, if so, how do you establish one? How much should you be tweeting? These and other timely questions will be answered by a quartet of agents with many years of experience in the business.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 20
Presenter(s):

Katherine Fausset (Literary Agent)
Katherine Fausset Katherine Fausset is a literary agent with Curtis Brown, Ltd., where she has worked since 2006. She represents commercial and literary fiction, and non-fiction. In fiction, she particularly loves explorations of family dynamics; morally-complicated protagonists; humor; and rich descriptions of place. Recent books by her clients include Benjamin Percy’s Red Moon, Laura van den Berg’s The Isle of Youth, Lisa Brackmann's Hour of the Rat, Ioan Grillo’s El Narco: Inside Mexico’s Criminal Insurgency, Cynthia Hand’s Boundless (the third in the New York Times-bestselling Unearthly series), Kyle Minor’s Praying Drunk, Nina McConigley’s Cowboys & East Indians, Emily St. John Mandel’s The Lola Quartet, and Elise Juska’s The Blessings. She has worked in publishing since 1998 and lives with her husband and son in Brooklyn, New York.

Ayesha Pande (Literary Agent)
Ayesha Pande Ayesha Pande has worked in the publishing industry for almost twenty-five years. Before Before launching her boutique agency nine years ago, Ayesha was a senior editor at Farrar Straus & Giroux. She has also held editorial positions at HarperCollins and Crown Publishers. She is a member of AAR (Association of Author’s Representatives), PEN, the Asian American Writer’s Workshop, and sits on the advisory board of the German Book Office. She has attended numerous writing conferences including Muse and the Marketplace, Aspen Summer Words and the Miami Writer’s Institute. She has taught college level courses in editing. She holds a master’s degree from Columbia University. She represents a wide array of fiction, YA and nonfiction, including the international bestselling author Shilpi Gowda, Pen/Bingham Award winner Danielle Evans, YA authors Sheba Karim and Elizabeth Richards among many other talented writers.

Adam Schear (Literary Agent)
Adam Schear Adam Schear is a graduate of Tulane University and the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law. He began his publishing career at the William Morris Agency and joined DeFiore and Company in 2009. He is interested in literary fiction and well crafted commercial fiction, work that captivates the reader with both its prose and its plot, humor, YA, smart thrillers, historical fiction, and quirky debut literary novels. For non-fiction he is interested in popular science, politics, popular culture, and current events.

Stéphanie Abou (Literary Agent)
Stéphanie Abou Growing up in France, Stéphanie Abou always knew that she wanted to dedicate her life to being the passionate advocate that authors need. She planned on a career in journalism until she interned for a few months at Farrar, Straus and Giroux in New York City, and realized that literary agenting was her calling. A lover of storytelling above all else, she likes for both her fiction and non-fiction to be character driven, with a strong voice and emotional undercurrent. Stéphanie believes in the transformative power of literature, and while losing oneself in the narrative is a must, she likes fiction one can learn from and non-fiction that entertains. She is particularly attracted to works that focus on a singular experience as the original point of entry into a deeper, more universal topic. Many of her authors have become New York Times, National and International bestsellers, and she believes in a close partnership both editorially and business-wise with her clients.

Tim Horvath (Special Guest)
Tim Horvath Tim Horvath is the author of Understories, published by Bellevue Literary Press, which won the New Hampshire Literary Award for Outstanding Fiction for 2012-13. His work also appears in journals such as Conjunctions, Fiction, and the Normal School. He teaches in the BFA and MFA programs at the New Hampshire Institute of Art, and can be contacted at www.timhorvath.com.

Option 8: On Not Knowing Where to Begin

yesmuse2014session2a0

2A: Make Me Laugh or I'll Cry


10:30am-11:45am on Friday, May 2nd

For the writer, humor can function as laughing gas. Not only because funny writing can make people crack up, but because the best humor reveals truths, heightens perceptions of reality, and permits the un-sayable, to be said. A reader, in the grips of laughter is less likely to feel pain, and when they do, more likely to forgive, nay, even thank you for the experience. Or, as Oscar Wilde said, “If you want to tell people the truth, make them laugh, otherwise they'll kill you. Humor can also free you up as a writer. It is easier to attack dark, deeply personal material, as well as political and philosophical issues under cover of humor. Not only that, humor is also a useful tool for developing character, creating tone and pacing. No joke, why aren’t you using it?

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 0
Presenter(s):

Elissa Schappell (Author)
Elissa Schappell Elissa Schappell is the author of two books of fiction, most recently Blueprints for Building Better Girls, which was chosen as one of the “Best Books of the Year” by The San Francisco Chronicle, The Boston Globe, The Wall Street Journal, Newsweek/Daily Beast and O Magazine, and Use Me, a Los Angeles Times “Best Book of the Year,” a New York Times “Notable Book,” and runner up for the PEN/Hemingway award. She is co-editor with Jenny Offill of two anthologies, The Friend Who Got Away and Money Changes Everything. Her fiction, non-fiction and criticism has appeared in many publications including The Paris Review, The New York Times Book Review, SPIN, BOMB, One Story, and anthologies such as The Mrs. Dalloway Reader, Lit Riffs, Cooking and Stealing, Bound to Last and The KGB Reader. Currently, she is a Contributing Editor and the “Hot Type” columnist at Vanity Fair, a former Senior Editor at The Paris Review and a Founding-editor, now Editor-at-Large of Tin House magazine. She teaches in the MFA Creative Writing program at Columbia and in the low-residency program at Queens in NC. She lives in Brooklyn.

2A: Make Me Laugh or I'll Cry

yesmuse2014session2b1

2B: Crafting a Powerful Memoir that Will Sell


10:30am-11:45am on Friday, May 2nd

If you've ever been told that "you should really write a book" and you've decide to give it a try then this workshop is for you! It hones in on the three key measures necessary for aspiring authors to conceptualize, sell, and market their memoirs. We will explore the six major memoir categories while discussing the essential framework for anyone wanting to write a commercially viable memoir. You’ll also learn how to write a memoir book proposal.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 1
Presenter(s):

Regina Brooks (Literary Agent)
Regina Brooks Regina Brooks is the founder and president of Serendipity Literary Agency LLC, based in Brooklyn, New York. She represents a diverse base of award-winning clients in adult and young adult fiction, nonfiction, and children's literature, including: three-time National Book Award finalist, Newberry Honor Winner and the Coretta Scott King Honor and the 2006 Michael Printz Honor Award-winning author Marilyn Nelson; winner of the Coretta Scott King/John Steptoe New Talent Award, Al Roker’s Book Club for Kids author Sundee Frazier; Stonewall Book Award Winner, Bil Wright.

Brooks is a former Executive Editor at John Wiley and Sons and McGraw-Hill.

She is the author of several books including, Never Finished Never Done (Scholastic) , Writing Great Books for Young Adults (Source Books) You Should (Really) Write a Book: Writing, Selling, and Marketing your Memoir (St. Martin’s Press) and a well-received blogger for the Huffington Post. Brooks is also on the faculty of the Writer’s Digest University, Harvard University publishing course, The Discovery Channel’s Media Boot Camp for Doctors, the Whidbey Island Writers MFA program and teaches annually at more than twenty worldwide conferences. She has been highlighted in several national and international magazines and periodicals, including Forbes, Media Bistro, Writers and Poets, Essence Magazine, Ebony, Jet, Women on Writing, Writers Digest Magazine, and The Writer. She is the owner of Possibiliteas.co, a tea company of master-blended teas developed for creative minds. She is always interested in new and emerging writers. www.serendipitylit.com

2B: Crafting a Powerful Memoir that Will Sell

yesmuse2014session2c23

2C: Creating Powerful Prose After Grief or Trauma


10:30am-11:45am on Friday, May 2nd

Robert Frost wrote, “no tears for the writer, no tears for the reader,” but what are the craft elements we can use to bring emotionally difficult material to the page and create powerful work? In this class, we will discuss leading examples of well-written prose about grief and trauma, and explore prompts to help us arrive at the little-known continuation of Frost’s quote: “No surprise for the writer, no surprise for the reader.”

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 23
Presenter(s):

Jessica Handler (Author)
Jessica Handler Jessica Handler is the author of Braving the Fire: A Guide to Writing About Grief (St. Martins Press, December 2013.) Her first book, Invisible Sisters: A Memoir (Public Affairs, 2009) is one of the “Twenty Five Books All Georgians Should Read.” Her nonfiction has appeared on NPR, in Tin House, Drunken Boat, Brevity, Newsweek, The Washington Post, and More Magazine. Honors include residencies at the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation, a 2010 Emerging Writer Fellowship from The Writers Center, the 2009 Peter Taylor Nonfiction Fellowship, and special mention for a 2008 Pushcart Prize. She has written on the topic of writing through grief for The Writer magazine and Psychology Today online, and has been a featured speaker in grief and writing workshops nationwide. She has been featured in Vanity Fair with seven other fabulous southern female writers. Her website is www.jessicahandler.com.

2C: Creating Powerful Prose After Grief or Trauma

yesmuse2014session2d17

2D: Writing the Omniscient Narrator


10:30am-11:45am on Friday, May 2nd

The omniscient narrator, who knows all and sees all, is a hugely powerful tool to have in your writers' toolbox. Yet for many authors, it's a daunting point of view to tackle. How do you establish this tricky voice--and why would you want to, anyway? Through close readings of passages that use the omniscient voice--from classic authors like Dickens and Tolstoy to more modern examples such as Elizabeth Strout and Arundhati Roy--we'll look at how you can establish an omniscient viewpoint in your own work, what you can do with it, and when it makes sense for a story.

This session is for writers who've struggled with writing the omniscient voice--and for those who've always wanted to try. We'll focus on works of fiction, but narrative nonfiction writers may also find this session helpful.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 17
Presenter(s):

Celeste Ng (Author)
Celeste Ng Celeste Ng is the author of the novel Everything I Never Told You, forthcoming from Penguin Press (June 2014). Her stories and essays have appeared in One Story, TriQuarterly, Five Chapters, Bellevue Literary Review, The Millions, and elsewhere, and she has been awarded the Pushcart Prize, the Hopwood Award, and a scholarship to the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference. She earned her MFA from the University of Michigan (now the Helen Zell Writers’ Program at the University of Michigan) and has taught writing at the University of Michigan and Grub Street in Boston. Celeste is a blogger for the Huffington Post and was previously blog editor for the writing website Fiction Writers Review. She lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

2D: Writing the Omniscient Narrator

yesmuse2014session2e0

2E: Essentials of the Novel


10:30am-11:45am on Friday, May 2nd

According to Henry James, "Character determines incident. Incident reveals character." This seminar focuses on these two cornerstones of the novel—character and incident (or plotting), and the ways one creates the other. We will discuss how to discover your protagonist's greatest flaws and desires, how these characteristics determine the incidents that mark your novel's beginning, and how to follow your protagonist's desire to form the backbone of your book. Examples and a short writing exercise will help you flesh out your characters and streamline your structure.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 0
Presenter(s):

Michelle Hoover (Author)
Michelle Hoover Michelle Hoover teaches writing at Boston University and Grub Street. She has published short stories and novel excerpts in numerous journals, including Prairie Schooner, The Massachusetts Review, Confrontation, StoryQuarterly, and TriQuarterly. She has been the Philip Roth Writer-in-Residence at Bucknell University, a MacDowell Fellow, and the 2005 winner of the PEN/New England Discovery Award for Fiction. Her work has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and published in Best New American Voices. Her debut novel, The Quickening, was shortlisted for the Center for Fiction's Flaherty-Dunnan First Novel Prize, was a Finalist for the Indies Choice Debut of 2010 and Forward Magazine's Best Literary Book of 2010, and is a 2010 Massachusetts Book Award "Must Read" pick. She is a 2014 National Endowment of the Arts Fellow, awarded for her upcoming second novel, Bottomland.

2E: Essentials of the Novel

Option 11: Lessons from the Novel Incubator: Narrative Distance

yesmuse2014session2f0

2F: Taming the Unruly First Draft


10:30am-11:45am on Friday, May 2nd

There are two main types of novel writers: those who write a short, skeletal first draft and must then flesh it out; and those who write a sprawling, everything-but-the-kitchen-sink draft, and must then excavate the story from within a mass of extraneous pages. Through exercises and examples, this workshop will provide strategies for both types of writers to tame their unruly beasts, be they stubborn, skinny drafts or the extra-wide, expansive variety.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 0
Presenter(s):

Lisa Borders (Author)
Lisa Borders Lisa Borders is the author of two novels, The Fifty-First State and Cloud Cuckoo Land, chosen by Pat Conroy as the winner of River City Publishing's Fred Bonnie Award for Best First Novel in 2002. Cloud Cuckoo Land also received fiction honors in the 2003 Massachusetts Book Awards. Her essay "Enchanted Night" was published in Don't You Forget About Me: Contemporary Writers on the Films of John Hughes (Simon & Schuster, 2007). Lisa's short stories have appeared in Kalliope, Washington Square, Black Warrior Review, Painted Bride Quarterly, Newport Review and other journals. She has received grants from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, the Somerville Arts Council and the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, and fellowships at the Millay Colony, Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, Hedgebrook and the Blue Mountain Center. Lisa lives in the Boston area and teaches at Grub Street, where she developed the Novel in Progress workshops and co-developed, with Michelle Hoover, the Novel Incubator program. She also works as a cytotechnologist. More information on Lisa and her work is available at lisaborders.com.

2F: Taming the Unruly First Draft

yesmuse2014session2g32

2G: Promotion and Publicity for the Fiction Writer


10:30am-11:45am on Friday, May 2nd

Now more than ever, authors are expected to be their own publicists, and build their own audiences, both before and during the publication of their books. If they can’t, they often need to find someone who can help them with this process. This session is designed for the writer who is under contract for a book, or has published a few stories or even a full-length work or two – and, of course, the writer who plans to do so ASAP. Topics discussed include concrete strategies that authors can employ to get the word out about them and their work, the role of the publicist at small and large houses, book clubs and blogs, and how not to feel embarrassed or self-conscious or about the necessary self-promotion you’ll have to do to survive in the changing landscape of publishing.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 32
Presenter(s):

Crystal Patriarche (Special Guest)
Crystal Patriarche Crystal Patriarche, founder of SparkPoint Studio and its leading BookSparks division, has an extensive 14 year background building a simultaneous career in both public relations and publishing. She has built and executed PR campaigns for established brands such as Microsoft, Ford, SheKnows.com, other Fortune 500 companies and start ups as well as hundreds of authors and major publishers. She is known for her creativity, fresh perspective, passion and results—all of which make referrals the top driver of her business. Crystal’s life-long love of reading and literature, combined with her PR expertise in high-tech and start up industries and her digital expertise fueled the growth of her industry-leading BookSparks division.

7L:Promotion and Publicity for the Non-Fiction Writer

Taryn Roeder (Special Guest)
Taryn Roeder Taryn Roeder is the Associate Director of Publicity at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. She manages the Boston-based team and works on the publicity campaigns for dozens of fiction and nonfiction books each year. Taryn's bestselling authors include Paul Tough, Temple Grandin, the late Anthony Shadid, Peter Schweizer, and Justin Torres. She was previously at Island Press working on all environmental titles, and spent time at Warner Books, the Vineyard Gazette, and the Boston Book Review. She has a BA in English from Barnard College, Columbia University, and an MFA in creative writing from the University of Maryland. She speaks frequently around town about publishing and publicity at Tufts, Emerson, Grub Street, Boston Book Builders, etc. and lives in Cambridge with her two young sons who really, really want a puppy.

Randy Susan Meyers (Author)
Randy Susan Meyers The dark drama of Randy Susan Meyers' novels is informed by her past work with criminal offenders and families impacted by emotional and family violence. The Massachusetts Center for The Book named her internationally bestselling debut novel, The Murderer's Daughter one of the “2011 Ten Best Works of Fiction,” noting “From the very first page and straight on until the last, the clear and distinctive voice of Randy Susan Meyers’ The Murderer’s Daughters will have you enraptured and wanting more—even though self-preservation may curl you into a ball to shield yourself from the painful circumstances of the two sisters. This is a heart-breaking and powerful novel.” Her second novel, The Comfort of Lies, a national bestseller, was described by the Boston Globe as, “sharp and biting, and sometimes wickedly funny when the author skewers Boston’s class and neighborhood dividing lines, but it has a lot of heart, too. Meyers writes beautifully about a formerly good marriage — the simple joys of stability, the pleasures of veteran intimacy — and deftly dissects just how ugly things can get after infidelity.” Her third novel, Accidents of Marriage, releases September 2014. Meyers is a founding member of ‘Beyond The Margins’ writing site, co-author of What To Do Before Your Book Launch with MJ Rose, and teaches writing at Grub Street. Meyers, the mother of two grown daughters, was born in Brooklyn, New York. She lives in Boston with her husband.

5M: Building a Novel With Great Bones

yesmuse2014session2h58

2H: Non-Fiction Idea Clinic


10:30am-11:45am on Friday, May 2nd

Important: Please read this description carefully before signing up, and bring all necessary materials to the session if you wish to share your non-fiction book idea.

In this session, the moderator (an established writer) will offer a brief preamble of the art of the non-fiction idea. Then, you will get two minutes to share your own idea for a non-fiction book for the audience, the moderator, and a panel of experts. The experts are agents and/or editors with years of experience working with non-fiction writers to turn their book proposals into reality. After you read your idea (preferably from a prepared text), the agents and editors will ask you follow-up questions and troubleshoot your idea. You will discuss issues of platform, expertise, the viability of the idea itself, and other elements of the non-fiction market. Please note that presenters will be chosen at random from names submitted in a hat at the start of the session. (Unfortunately, given the volume of submissions, we can not guarantee that your name will be called). This is a fun event that aims to be respectful of your idea and illuminate the process a writer goes through when she is developing an idea with an agent and/or editor. The point is not to get through as many writers as possible, but to thoughtfully evaluate your ideas and offer concrete suggestions from which all could benefit.

Though most people will be reading ideas for full-length books, you may also read an idea for a feature story or article to assess its viability with the panel of experts.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 58
Presenter(s):

Emi Ikkanda (Editor)
Emi Ikkanda Emi Ikkanda is an Associate Editor at Henry Holt & Company and her list includes Time Magazine contributor Carla Power’s forthcoming book If The Oceans Were Ink, an eye-opening memoir built around the year the secular journalist spent studying the Koran with her longtime friend, the renowned Islamic scholar Mohammad Akram Nadwi. Emi has also worked on the publication of books by President Jimmy Carter, John Banville, Bill McKibben, Rick Atkinson, Tony Horwitz, Annette Gordon-Reed, Jill Abramson, and Elaine Sciolino. Emi pursues nonfiction narratives, humorous or moving memoirs, and reportage projects that explore subcultures, multiculturalism, race, science, war, history, adventure, food, and the arts. She is also seeking upmarket voice-driven fiction, particularly novels with strong multicultural, historical, mid-20th century noir, slipstream, or folktale elements. She is drawn to emotionally rich stories that center on family secrets, loss, disappearances, or unusual friendships or marriages. In fiction or nonfiction, she loves discovering a lost chapter in history, going on a journey, and exploring hidden worlds.

Peter Blackstock (Editor)
Peter Blackstock Originally from England, where he worked as a literary scout, consulting for foreign publishers and for film, Peter Blackstock moved to the New World and to Grove Atlantic in 2011. He began as assistant to the publisher, Morgan Entrekin, and is now an associate editor, working on his own list as well as with house authors. His list includes literary fiction, thrillers, nonfiction, and plays, including books in translation. Books Peter has published include the debut novel Fobbit, which was named a New York Times notable book of the year and shortlisted for the Los Angeles Times Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction, the New York Times bestseller Full Service, the historical thriller Then We Take Berlin, which was named one of the Top 10 Mysteries/Thrillers of Fall 2013 by Publishers Weekly, and The Revisionist, a play by Academy Award-nominated actor Jesse Eisenberg. Upcoming titles include the Booker-longlisted The Marrying of Chani Kaufman by Eve Harris, A History of the Future by James Howard Kunstler, and Shark by Will Self. Peter was a fellow at the 2010 Turin and 2011 Moscow book fairs, and has also attended fairs in London and Frankfurt. He has been a guest at Art OMI’s Ledig House writers’ residency, and was featured as an “up and coming editor” in the Association of Authors’ Representatives Fall 2011 newsletter. He studied German and Russian at Oxford University and lives in Manhattan. Aside from books, he is interested in running, theatre, film, food blogs, and discovering restaurants in Queens and beyond.

Miriam Altshuler (Literary Agent)
Miriam Altshuler Miriam Altshuler established her own agency in 1994 after twelve years as an agent at Russell & Volkening. She focuses on literary and commercial fiction and nonfiction. Fiction writers she represents include Robb Forman Dew (National Book Award winner), Doug Trevor, Maya Lang, Alice Lichtenstein, Donna Freitas and Kevin McIlvoy. Her nonfiction authors include New York Times bestselling author Andrew Carroll, journalist, Marja Mills, Harriet Brown, Adina Hoffman (winner of the 2010 Wingate Literary Prize), Wednesday Martin, Janna Malamud Smith, and New York Times columnist Alina Tugend. Miriam also represents writers of young adult and middle grade fiction, including National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature, and bestselling author, Walter Dean Myers. Most important to her are the quality of the writing and how the subject is approached.

Jeff Kleinman (Literary Agent)
Jeff Kleinman Jeff Kleinman is a literary agent, intellectual property attorney, and founding partner of Folio Literary Management, LLC, a New York literary agency which works with all of the major U.S. publishers (and, through subagents, with most international publishers). He’s a graduate of Case Western Reserve University (J.D.), the University of Chicago (M.A., Italian), and the University of Virginia (B.A. with High Distinction in English). As an agent, Jeff feels privileged to have the chance to learn an incredibly variety of new subjects, meet an extraordinary range of people, and feel, at the end of the day, that he’s helped to build something – a wonderful book, perhaps, or an author’s career. His authors include Garth Stein, Eowyn Ivey, Robert Hicks, Charles Shields, Bruce Watson, Neil White, and Philip Gerard.

Nonfiction: especially narrative nonfiction with a historical bent, but also memoir, health, parenting, aging, nature, pets, how-to, nature, science, politics, military, espionage, equestrian, biography.

Fiction: very well-written, character-driven novels; some suspense, thrillers; otherwise mainstream upmarket commercial (i.e. book club) and literary fiction.

No: children’s, romance, mysteries, westerns, poetry, or screenplays, novels about serial killers, suicide, or children in peril (kidnapped, killed, etc.).

For more information about Jeff (including interviews, books sold, and so forth), please go to www.foliolit.com/jeffkleinman.

3J: Buy This Book!

Michael Blanding (Special Guest)
Michael Blanding Michael Blanding (www.michaelblanding.com) is a senior fellow at the Schuster Institute for Investigative Reporting at Brandeis University, and an award-winning journalist and author specializing in narrative non-fiction. His first book, The Coke Machine: The Dirty Truth Behind the World’s Favorite Soft Drink (www.thecokemachine.com) was published by Avery/Penguin in 2010. His upcoming book, The Map Thief, a true-crime narrative about international map thief E. Forbes Smiley III, is due out from Gotham/Penguin in spring 2014. Previously, he was a senior writer and editor for Boston magazine, and he continues to write magazine articles for the likes of The Boston Globe Sunday Magazine, The Nation, Consumers Digest, Forbes, and other publications.

Option 2: Mapping Your Story: A Hands-On Exploration of Cartographic Storytelling

yesmuse2014session2j47

2J: Choosing Partner Publishing: An Agent-Author Discussion


10:30am-11:45am on Friday, May 2nd

New authors face a vast number of publishing options, from the traditional to do-it-yourself, with many new models in between. How do you decide which route is right for you? Come hear the experiences of one author and her agent who looked at all the choices and together chose a partner publishing approach, one that provides the stamp of quality and the industry knowledge gained of experience, while also offering more control, flexibility and profit for the author. Bring your questions, and an open mind!

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 47
Presenter(s):

April Eberhardt (Literary Agent)
April Eberhardt April Eberhardt, a self-described “literary change agent” and author advocate, founded her own agency to assist and advise authors as they navigate the increasingly complex world of publishing. Her agency specializes in building long-term strategies with authors, which often include a blend of traditional and independent (formerly known as "self-") publishing. April works with authors who recognize the need for professional support, and the importance of publishing in the highest-quality way regardless of route. She holds an MBA in Finance and Marketing from Boston University and a CPLF from the University of Paris.The agency's website is www.aprileberhardt.com.

In addition to working with authors of full-length novels, April also works with short story writers, with a particular focus on linked collections. After five years as head reader for Zoetrope: All-Story, she currently serves as a reader for The Best American Short Stories Series published annually by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

2J: Choosing Partner Publishing: An Agent-Author Discussion

6L: 50 Shades of Publishing: An Agent's Perspective

Anjali Mitter Duva (Author)
Anjali Mitter Duva Anjali Mitter Duva is a writer who grew up in France and has family roots in Calcutta, India. After completing graduate studies at MIT and launching a career in urban planning, she found the call of storytelling too great to resist. A switch to freelance writing and project management allowed her more time for her own creative pursuits. Her first novel, Faint Promise of Rain, is due out with She Writes Press in October 2014. She is a co-founder of Chhandika, an organization that teaches and presents India’s classical storytelling kathak dance. Anjali lives near Boston with her husband and two daughters, and is at work on her second novel, set in 19th century Lucknow.

2J: Choosing Partner Publishing: An Agent-Author Discussion

yesmuse2014session2k37

2K: Literary Idol


10:30am-11:45am on Friday, May 2nd

Important: Please read this description carefully before signing up, and bring all necessary materials to the session if you wish to have your work read aloud.

In this freewheeling session, a trained actor will perform the first page of YOUR unpublished manuscript for the audience and a panel of three judges. The judges are agents with years of experience reading unsolicited submissions. When one of the agent judges hears a line that would make her stop reading, she will raise her hand. The actor will keep reading until a second judge raises his hand. The judges will then discuss WHY they would stop reading, and offer concrete (if subjective) suggestions to the anonymous author. If no agent raises his/her hand, the judges will discuss what made the excerpt work so well. All excerpts will be evaluated *anonymously,* though, at the end of the session, a winner will be chosen from the group of excerpts that did not elicit any raised hands, and that winner will receive a free Grub Street membership.

Please bring THE FIRST 250 WORDS of your manuscript (fiction or non-fiction only, please) double-spaced, to the session, TITLED, with its GENRE marked clearly at the top. You will leave it in a box at the front of the room, and the manuscript will be chosen randomly by the actor. (Unfortunately, given the volume of submissions, we can not guarantee that yours will be read aloud).

This is a fun event that aims to be respectful of your work and illuminate the process an agent goes through when she receives a new piece of fiction or non-fiction. The point is not to get through as many writers as possible, but to thoughtfully evaluate the work at hand and offer concrete suggestions from which all could benefit. Please be aware that some lines may cause laughter or scorn; in other words, this session is not for the thin-skinned!

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 37
Presenter(s):

Kathleen Nishimoto (Literary Agent)
Kathleen Nishimoto Kathleen Nishimoto began her career in the Literary Department at William Morris Endeavor after graduating from Brown University with a BA in Comparative Literature. She represents both literary and commercial fiction as well as some narrative nonfiction, with a focus on voice-driven material. She considers adult and young adult material, and likes unusual characters or storylines, sometimes with a darker edge.

Kathleen has worked with such talent as Sian Griffiths, S.L. Jennings, Cheri Johnson, Peyton Marshall, Neil McMahon, Coco Rocha, Adam Stein, and Jacqueline Woodson.

Kathleen has a strong interest in the changing book industry, managing WME’s groundbreaking new digital arm. She also handles all magazine and first serial submissions for the department.

Born in New Hampshire, Kathleen currently resides in New York City.

Allison Hunter (Literary Agent)
Allison Hunter Allison Hunter, a native of the San Francisco Bay Area, began her publishing career in 2005 working for the Los Angeles-based literary publicity firm, Kim-from-L.A. She joined the InkWell team in New York City in 2010, and is actively acquiring literary and commercial fiction, memoir, narrative nonfiction, cultural studies and prescriptive titles, including cookbooks. She especially loves fiction that spans multiple generations and nonfiction aimed at a female audience.

Her authors include journalist Emily Matchar (author of Homeward Bound, Simon & Schuster), novelists Anne-Marie Casey (No One Could Have Guessed the Weather, Amy Einhorn Books) and Megan Mulry (A Royal Pain and If The Shoe Fits, Sourcebooks), writers and bloggers Katie Heaney (Never Have I Ever, forthcoming from Grand Central) and Anne Helen Petersen (Scandals of Classic Hollywood, forthcoming from Plume) and Tiffany Beveridge, creator of the viral Pinterest phenomenon "My Imaginary Well-Dressed Toddler Daughter," whose book How To Quinoa is forthcoming from Running Press. She has also worked with writer/director/actress Lena Dunham, novelists Julie Orringer and Ivy Pochoda and chefs Daniel Boulud, Danny Bowien, David Chang, Gabrielle Hamilton, David Kinch, Andy Ricker and Christina Tosi.

Allison has a B.A. in American Studies and Creative Writing from Stanford University and a J.D. from the University of Chicago Law School.

Daniel Smetanka (Editor)
Daniel Smetanka Daniel Smetanka has worked in the publishing industry for over twenty years. As an Executive Editor at Ballantine/Random House, Inc., he acquired and published award-winning debut books including The Ice Harvest by Scott Philips and Among the Missing by Dan Chaon, a 2001 finalist for the National Book Award. He is currently an Executive Editor for Counterpoint/Soft Skull Press, one of the largest independent presses in the country and one of the few located on the west coast, where he has edited works by Thomas Steinbeck, Linda Gray Sexton, James Brown, Scott Phillips, Janna Malamud Smith, Craig Nova, Neil Jordan, Dana Johnson, Karen E. Bender, Joshua Mohr, Emma Woolf, Ilie Ruby, Maria Hummel, Andrea Portes, Frank Browning, and John N. Maclean. He is based in Los Angeles.

Ann Collette (Literary Agent)
Ann Collette Ann Collette was a freelance writer and editor before joining the Rees Literary Agency in 2000. This background makes her particularly interested and able to work with debut authors. Her list includes books by New York Times bestselling author, NEIBA Book Award winner 2013, 2012 Boston Authors Society Award for Fiction winner, 2012 New England Society of New York Award for Fiction Winner,and Macavity Award Nominee for Best Mystery of 2012 B. A. Shapiro; Oprah's "Fall 2012 Unputdownable Mysteries" author Mark Pryor; Anthony Nominee Vicki Lane; RT Award Nominees Clay and Susan Griffith; Steven Sidor; National Bestseller Carol Carr; and natural remedies mystery author Chrystle Fiedler. She likes thrillers, literary, commercial women's fiction, mystery, suspense, horror and vampire fiction; in non-fiction, she prefers narrative non-fiction, military and war, work to do with race and class, and work set in or about Southeast Asia. She also represents cookbooks. Ann does not represent children's, YA, sci-fi, or high fantasy.

3F: The 12 Do's and Don'ts of Writing Crime Fiction

Steve Almond (Author)
Steve Almond Steve Almond is the author of ten books of fiction and non-fiction, three of which he published himself. His memoir Candyfreak was a New York Times Bestseller. His short stories have appeared in the Best American and Pushcart anthologies. His most recent collection, God Bless America, won the Paterson Prize for Fiction and was short-listed for The Story Prize. His journalism has appeared in the New York Times Magazine, GQ, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, and elsewhere.

7E: Essentials of Process

8K: Everything You Wanted to Know About DIY Publishing (But Were Afraid to Ask)

yesmuse2014session3a6

3A: First, Second, Third: Point of View in Fiction


1:30pm-3:30pm on Friday, May 2nd

Choosing a POV also chooses the place a story is told from, and why. The right point of view for a given story or novel, then, is vital, and while it seems as if the choices would be obvious, sometimes they are not, and we choose wrong, and so it is that some of our writing struggles could be solved by changing or addressing the choice of POV. This class will look over the basics to each of the choices, and the pros and cons of each, before detailing possibilities ranging from writing exercises for troubleshooting POV, to making the decision to use multiple POV, I.e., the stereoscopic narrative. There will be handouts with examples, and some guided writing, so please bring a notebook and a pen (or a laptop).

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 6
Presenter(s):

Alexander Chee (Author)
Alexander Chee Alexander Chee is the author of the novels Edinburgh and The Queen of the Night, forthcoming from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in the fall of 2014. His essays and stories have appeared in Tin House, TriQuarterly, Apology, Adult, The Paris Review Daily, Departures, and The Morning News, among others. He is a recipient of the Whiting Award and a NEA Fellowship in Prose, as well as residencies from The MacDowell Colony, Leidig House, and Civitella Ranieri. He has taught at Amherst College, the Iowa Writers Workshop, Columbia University, amd Sarah Lawrence College, and is currently a visiting writer at the University of Texas, Austin, as a part of the New Writers Project.

3A: First, Second, Third: Point of View in Fiction

yesmuse2014session3b6

3B: Establishing Authority


1:30pm-3:30pm on Friday, May 2nd

From the first sentence, we know if we are in confident, capable hands. The best writers establish authority immediately. By authority I mean that there is a clear sense of control, and that this confidence is earned with particular language, tone, detail, cadence, and most importantly by creating urgency, and by answering the simple question of “why should I keep reading?” In this session we will go through numerous examples from stories, novels, essays, creative nonfiction, memoir, and mixed genre to single out what gets readers to turn the page.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 6
Presenter(s):

Rob Spillman (Magazine Editor)
Rob Spillman Rob Spillman is Editor and co-founder of Tin House, a fifteen-year-old bi-coastal (Brooklyn, New York and Portland, Oregon) literary magazine. Tin House has been honored in Best American Stories, Best American Essays, Best American Poetry, O’Henry Prize Stories, the Pushcart Prize Anthology and numerous other anthologies. He is also the Executive Editor of Tin House Books and co-founder of the Tin House Literary Festival, now in its twelfth year. His writing has appeared in BookForum, the Boston Review, Connoisseur, Details, GQ, Nerve, the New York Times Book Review, Rolling Stone, Salon, Spin, Sports Illustrated, Time, Vanity Fair, Vogue, among other magazines, newspapers, and essay collections. He is also the editor of Gods and Soldiers: the Penguin Anthology of Contemporary African Writing, which was published in 2009.

3B: Establishing Authority

yesmuse2014session3c19

3C: Beginning the Young Adult Novel


1:30pm-3:30pm on Friday, May 2nd

Beginnings are crucial. In life, they're irreversible. But with our novels, we can edit to make them more exciting, dramatic, intriguing. Who is at the center of my story? What do they want? What are the obstacles? Am I moving too slowly? Should I pick up my pace? Do I believe in my story enough to live with it for months or perhaps longer? We will do a quick exercise or two to get us writing. After that, writers will have the opportunity to have their first two pages discussed by Bil and the rest of the class. If you would like to participate, please email your first two pages to grant@grubstreet.org with the subject line "For Bil Wright's Session 3C" by Friday, April 18th. Bil will pre-select a few manuscripts to discuss in a relaxed and constructive atmosphere. Please note that you do not have to submit a manuscript to attend this session, and that not all manuscripts will be discussed.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 19
Presenter(s):

Bil Wright (Author)
Bil Wright Bil Wright is a novelist (Lambda Literary Award, American Library Association Stonewall Award for Putting Make-Up on the Fat Boy). His other novels include the highly acclaimed When the Black Girl Sings, (Junior Library Guild Award Selection) and Sunday You Learn How to Box, (New York Public Library Choice for Young Readers and a Coretta King Celebrating the Dream Award). Mr. Wright is the librettist for This One Girl's Story (2011 GLAAD NOMINEE), which also won Best Ensemble of the New York Musical Theatre Festival. His plays include Bloodsummer Rituals, based on the life of poet Audre Lorde, (Jerome Fellowship) and Leave Me a Message (San Diego Human Rights Festival premiere). He is the winner of a LAMI (La Mama Playwriting Award). Wright is an Associate Professor of English for City University of New York (CUNY).

3C: Beginning the Young Adult Novel

yesmuse2014session3d0

3D: The Writer's Life: Finding the Extraordinary in the Everyday


1:30pm-3:30pm on Friday, May 2nd

This session will focus at ways of transforming daily observations into powerful, sellable essays. We will read two to three essays in advance of class, including one by the presenter, and discuss why they work. We will take an event in our personal lives from the past week, and discuss ways to shape it into an engaging essay. There will be some guided in-class writing. Although we won't have time to discuss everyone's writing individually, participants will leave the class with the beginning of a strong essay.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 0
Presenter(s):

Alysia Abbott (Author)
Alysia Abbott Alysia Abbott grew up in San Francisco’s Haight-Ashbury, the only child of gay poet and writer, Steve Abbott. After graduating from New York University, she worked at the New York Public Library before receiving her MFA in Creative Non-Fiction from New School University. Her articles and essays have appeared in Real Simple, Vogue, Marie Claire, OUT, Slate, Salon, TheAtlantic.com, and Psychology Today, among other publications. In 2009, she left NYC to attend Harvard University as a Neiman Affiliate. While there, Alysia began work on Fairyland: A Memoir of My Father. Her first full-length book, Fairyland was completed with the help of a Ragdale Fellowship and the staff at W.W. Norton.

3D: The Writer's Life: Finding the Extraordinary in the Everyday

yesmuse2014session3e0

3E: Essentials of the Personal Essay


1:30pm-3:30pm on Friday, May 2nd

The personal essay is about the art of personal revelation. The writer faces memory, and sometimes harsh emotional realities, and relays what wisdom can be gleaned from these experiences to the reader in a compelling way. For those interested in writing short personal essays for the likes of the New York Times “Modern Love” or “Lives” or the Boston Globe Magazine’s “Coupling” columns; specialized places like Brain, Child, The Good Men Project and Ladies' Home Journal; for literary journals such as The Sun and The American Scholar; and for edgier venues such as Salon.com’s “Life” section, this seminar will teach the basics. We'll discuss ideal lengths and forms for each venue; ways to begin an essay with an attention grabbing lead; and how to write unforgettable scenes and character details. Equally important is finding a story to tell, with a clear narrative arc, as well as how to stretch and compress time and settle on a unique topic with thematic focus. We’ll try to cover all these topics by looking at exemplary personal essays, then try in-class exercises to practice a couple techniques ourselves. For all writers looking to examine the personal essay with an eye to write their own captivating, gripping works of their own.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 0
Presenter(s):

Ethan Gilsdorf (Author)
Ethan Gilsdorf Ethan Gilsdorf is a journalist, memoirist, critic, poet, teacher and author of the award-winning travel memoir investigation Fantasy Freaks and Gaming Geeks: An Epic Quest for Reality Among Role Players, Online Gamers, and Other Dwellers of Imaginary Realms. Based in Somerville, Massachusetts, Gilsdorf writes regularly for the New York Times, Boston Globe, Salon.com, BoingBoing.net, PsychologyToday.com, Washington Post and wired.com. He has published hundreds of articles, essays, op-eds and reviews on the arts, pop culture, gaming, geek culture and travel in dozens of other magazines, newspapers, websites and guidebooks worldwide. He has also contributed to the writing and craft books Braving the Fire: A Guide to Writing About Grief and Loss; Create Your Writer Platform: The Key to Building an Audience, Selling More Books, and Finding Success as an Author; the textbook Reading Culture: Contexts for Critical Reading and Writing (8th edition). An award-winning poet, he has also published dozens of poems in literary magazines and anthologies. As an expert on geek culture, Gilsdorf frequently appears on TV, radio and Internet media, including PBS Off Book, The Discovery Channel, the French TV network Arte, and several nationally-syndicated National Public Radio programs and in documentary films. He lectures at universities, schools, libraries, film festivals, and book festivals worldwide, and performs in bars and reading series. Gilsdorf is co-founder of Grub Street's Young Adult Writers Program (YAWP) and teaches creative writing and journalism workshops for adults at Grub Street, where he also serves on the Board of Directors. Follow Ethan’s adventures at http://www.ethangilsdorf.com and Twitter @ethanfreak.

3E:Essentials of the Personal Essay

yesmuse2014session3f16

3F: The 12 Do's and Don'ts of Writing Crime Fiction


1:30pm-3:30pm on Friday, May 2nd

You have to know the rules before you can break them. In this class, established literary agent Ann Collette will discuss the fundamentals of mystery and thriller writing in an easy-to-grasp format, emphasizing the basic elements to include and the cliches to avoid. Each of the Do's and Don'ts will be elaborated upon in the class, where a give-and-take between instructor and participants will be encouraged. Participants who want to will receive a critique of the first page of their novel (either in progress or completed) on the spot. A handout listing all 12 Do's and Don'ts will be provided, so note-taking won't be necessary!

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 16
Presenter(s):

Ann Collette (Literary Agent)
Ann Collette Ann Collette was a freelance writer and editor before joining the Rees Literary Agency in 2000. This background makes her particularly interested and able to work with debut authors. Her list includes books by New York Times bestselling author, NEIBA Book Award winner 2013, 2012 Boston Authors Society Award for Fiction winner, 2012 New England Society of New York Award for Fiction Winner,and Macavity Award Nominee for Best Mystery of 2012 B. A. Shapiro; Oprah's "Fall 2012 Unputdownable Mysteries" author Mark Pryor; Anthony Nominee Vicki Lane; RT Award Nominees Clay and Susan Griffith; Steven Sidor; National Bestseller Carol Carr; and natural remedies mystery author Chrystle Fiedler. She likes thrillers, literary, commercial women's fiction, mystery, suspense, horror and vampire fiction; in non-fiction, she prefers narrative non-fiction, military and war, work to do with race and class, and work set in or about Southeast Asia. She also represents cookbooks. Ann does not represent children's, YA, sci-fi, or high fantasy.

3F: The 12 Do's and Don'ts of Writing Crime Fiction

yesmuse2014session3h32

3H: What Every Literary Writer Needs To Know About the Digital Disruption: A Town Hall Debate


1:30pm-3:30pm on Friday, May 2nd

While we cheer on great self-publishing genre writers, and revel in every author's new ability to take control of his or her own career, we ask ourselves this quite urgent question: what will become of the writer of literary fiction in the digital age? To help answer this question, Grub Street has gathered a group of industry figures who, along with the audience, will debate this question in a vigorous, unique town hall format moderated by publishing journalist and consultant Porter Anderson, former CNN anchor and senior producer. We will discuss why we don't hear more about literary authors charging ahead on the force of digital's self-directed energies, and what literary authors can learn from genre writers in this area; whether literary fiction can cultivate its audience in social media as readily as other genres; whether digital distribution supports literary as well as it does romance, mystery and historical fiction; whether there's more that our great digital publishing platforms (Amazon, Kobo, etc.) can do to support literary fiction and its writers; how agents can work as partners with literary authors; how much literary authors themselves must embrace the digital realities. In the town hall format, the audience is as much a part of the debate as the presenters. Together, we will engage in a room-sized debate set "in the round," actively engaging audience members to share their ideas, questions, concerns, manifestos and challenges.

Town Hall Participants:

  • Eve Bridburg, Grub Street
  • Jon Fine, Amazon
  • Christine Munroe, Kobo
  • Rachel Fershleiser, Tumblr
  • Steve Almond, author
  • Jane Friedman, Scratch Magazine
  • April Eberhardt, agent
  • Ben Samuel, Electric Lit
  • Matt Cavnar, Vook
  • Kathy Meis, Bublish

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 32
Presenter(s):

Porter Anderson (Special Guest)
Porter Anderson Porter Anderson (@Porter_Anderson), BA, MA, MFA, is a journalist, speaker, and consultant specializing in book publishing and its digital disruption.

He is programming the first-ever BookExpo America (BEA) setting for entrepreneurial authors, the uPublishU AUTHOR HUB, for the trade-show floor of #BEA14, May 29-31, 2014.

He is speaking at the Klopotek Publishers Forum 2014 in Berlin this spring, and his Porter Anderson Media consultancy is a Media Partner with the London Book Fair #LBF14. He also has spoken this year at the all-new London Author Fair and at Bath Spa University in the UK, as well as at the debut of PubSmart, a new conference for writers in his hometown, Charleston.

Anderson's weekly "Porter Anderson Meets" newsmaker interview is read in London's The Bookseller and conducted live on Twitter with the hashtag #PorterMeets.

His "Writing on the Ether" column is read at JaneFriedman.com.

His Issues on the Ether, a column and live discussion hashtagged #EtherIssue, is read on the international Publishing Perspectives site produced by the Frankfurt Book Fair.

Anderson’s media outlets have included CNN-USA, CNN International, CNN.com, and The Village Voice, The Dallas Times Herald, and many others.

His diplomatic posting to Rome with the United Nations made him the World Food Programme’s first Creative Advisor and Multimedia Manager. He also served as Executive Producer with INDEX: Design to Improve Life, the Danish government's program to award international humanitarian design.

More is at PorterAnderson.com.

3H: What Every Literary Writer Needs To Know About the Digital Disruption: A Town Hall Debate

7K: How to Catch The Reviewer's Eye

yesmuse2014session3j16

3J: Buy This Book!


1:30pm-3:30pm on Friday, May 2nd

In this fun, informative and interactive session co-led by agents and editors, participants are assigned roles in a publishing house; they “sell” their manuscripts to the Editorial Board (i.e., to other attendees). Fast-paced and educational, this workshop will not only explain how publishing works, but more importantly will force attendees to view their work dispassionately, from the eyes of an editor (or agent). The object of the session is to learn how to think like a publishing professional, and how to “position” your book in the marketplace.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 16
Presenter(s):

Jeff Kleinman (Literary Agent)
Jeff Kleinman Jeff Kleinman is a literary agent, intellectual property attorney, and founding partner of Folio Literary Management, LLC, a New York literary agency which works with all of the major U.S. publishers (and, through subagents, with most international publishers). He’s a graduate of Case Western Reserve University (J.D.), the University of Chicago (M.A., Italian), and the University of Virginia (B.A. with High Distinction in English). As an agent, Jeff feels privileged to have the chance to learn an incredibly variety of new subjects, meet an extraordinary range of people, and feel, at the end of the day, that he’s helped to build something – a wonderful book, perhaps, or an author’s career. His authors include Garth Stein, Eowyn Ivey, Robert Hicks, Charles Shields, Bruce Watson, Neil White, and Philip Gerard.

Nonfiction: especially narrative nonfiction with a historical bent, but also memoir, health, parenting, aging, nature, pets, how-to, nature, science, politics, military, espionage, equestrian, biography.

Fiction: very well-written, character-driven novels; some suspense, thrillers; otherwise mainstream upmarket commercial (i.e. book club) and literary fiction.

No: children’s, romance, mysteries, westerns, poetry, or screenplays, novels about serial killers, suicide, or children in peril (kidnapped, killed, etc.).

For more information about Jeff (including interviews, books sold, and so forth), please go to www.foliolit.com/jeffkleinman.

3J: Buy This Book!

Jill Schwartzman (Editor)
Jill Schwartzman Jill Schwartzman is an Executive Editor at Dutton, part of the Penguin Random House Group, where she acquires platform, publicity, and voice-driven nonfiction, with a focus on pop culture, memoir, humor, music, biography, and narrative nonfiction.

Her Fall 2013 list features Nick Offerman's Paddle Your Own Canoe, a memoir peppered with salty treatises about the state of manhood from the star of NBC's hit show Parks and Recreation, and Tracey Garvis Graves's second novel, Covet, the follow-up to her 2012 New York Times and USA Today bestseller On the Island, which has sold more than 500,000 copies in trade paperback and e-book editions.

Other forthcoming titles include Long Mile Home, the definitive book on the Boston Marathon bombings, written by Boston Globe reporters Scott Helman and Jenna Russell, published to coincide with the first anniversary of the bombing, and Romance Is My Day Job, a memoir about a Harlequin editor's unlikely real-life romance. Previously published titles at Dutton include Duran Duran bassist John Taylor's New York Times, USA Today, Globe and Mail, and Publishers Weekly bestseller In the Pleasure Groove and former Fox News insider Joe Muto's memoir, An Atheist in the FOXhole.

Before joining Dutton she was a Senior Editor at Hyperion and a Senior Editor at Random House Trade Paperbacks. Her list has featured the New York Times bestsellers Stuff White People Like by Christian Lander, White Girl Problems by Babe Walker, Rafa by Rafael Nadal, and Happy Accidents by Jane Lynch.

3J: Buy This Book!

6K: Industry Guide to Publishing: Non-Fiction

yes50

Option 1: Essentials of Writing for the YA Audience


3:45pm-4:45pm on Friday, May 2nd

My novel has a teenager in it—does that mean it’s YA? In this seminar, we will discuss the defining characteristics of contemporary young adult literature, from the distinctive teen voice, to coming-of-age elements like rebellion, experimentation, and sex, to forward-moving action, to hope-filled endings. We’ll compare excerpts from YA and adult novels and engage in writing exercises that encourage you to channel your inner adolescent. We will also examine variations within the genre itself; fragmented and fresh, or lyrical and literary, YA is an exciting place to be.

Type: Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Elaine Dimopoulos (Special Guest)
Elaine Dimopoulos Elaine Dimopoulos’s debut novel for young adults will be published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in Spring 2015. Elaine has served as the Boston Public Library Children’s Writer-in-Residence and as a Saint Botolph Club Artist Fellow. A graduate of Yale, Columbia, and Simmons College, she teaches children's literature and writing for children at Boston University and Simmons. Her blog on children’s books, The Picky Reader, is hosted by mommybites.com. Elaine is represented by Edward Necarsulmer IV at Dunow, Carlson, & Lerner. To learn more, visit elainedimopoulos.com or follow @ElaineDimop.

Option 1: Essentials of Writing for the YA Audience

yes50

Option 2: Digital Lit: Why Online Journals Deserve More Respect--Insider Info, Community, Submissions


3:45pm-4:45pm on Friday, May 2nd

Have you ever wondered about the status of online journals versus print journals? Editors from Solstice: A Magazine of Diverse Voices and Talking Writing, two national online journals, founded in Boston, discuss the ever-growing vital world of online literature. The editors will cover how to negotiate the online lit world, the high quality and diversity of writers online, the publication of eBooks, submission standards, and how online publications are helping literature to thrive. They will present visuals to illustrate multi-media online advantages: photography, performance poetry, also audio. A controversial panel with an emphasis on audience participation and questions.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Lee Hope (Special Guest)
Lee Hope Lee Hope is editor-in-chief of Solstice: A Magazine of Diverse Voices, a Best of the Net award-winning journal. She is the recipient of a Pennsylvania Council on the Arts Fellowship, and a Maine Arts Commission Fellowship for Fiction. She has published stories in numerous literary journals, such as Witness, The New Virginia Review, The North American Review, Beloit Fiction Journal, Epiphany and others. Her fiction has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize. She founded a low-residency MFA program, and was a co-founder of Pine Manor’s MFA program. She has taught creative writing at various universities and is president of the Solstice Institute, a nonprofit in the service of creative writers. Lately, she teaches for Changing Lives Through Literature, which brings literature to people on probation and parole.

Option 2: Digital Lit: Why Online Journals Deserve More Respect--Insider Info, Community, Submissions

Martha Nichols (Special Guest)
Martha Nichols Martha Nichols is editor-in-chief and co-founder of Talking Writing, a Boston-based online literary magazine and nonprofit organization. She is a longtime journalist and freelance writer, and has published in Utne Reader; Brain, Child Magazine; Salon; and other journals and newspapers. A former editor at Harvard Business Review, she's currently a contributing editor at Women's Review of Books and a guest blogger for Modern Parenthood at the Christian Science Monitor. She teaches in the journalism program at the Harvard University Extension School.

For more about Martha, visit her blog, Athena's Head.

Option 2: Digital Lit: Why Online Journals Deserve More Respect--Insider Info, Community, Submissions

yes50

Option 3: Because It's Not Called Storyshowing: How to Show AND Tell in Your Fiction


3:45pm-4:45pm on Friday, May 2nd

Like many of the so-called "rules" of fiction, beginning writers are often implored to show, not tell. But what a character tells can be as fascinating and activating to a narrative as what the story scenes show. In this session we will examine how published authors utilize telling as a way to manage time in a story, reveal character, and transition readers between scenes, with a particular emphasis on the 1st-person retrospective narrative mode. Participants are encouraged to work with a current story or novel project and, through a guided writing exercise, rewrite the story's first paragraph to include more, and better, telling.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Dawn Dorland Perry (Special Guest)
Dawn Dorland Perry Dawn Dorland Perry was born in rural Iowa to a farmer’s daughter and a librarian. She graduated from Scripps College and Harvard Divinity School and launched her life as a writer at Grub Street while working as a visual effects and editorial producer. Dawn earned her MFA in fiction from the University of Maryland (anticipated June 2014) where she received full funding as a teaching fellow, earned distinction for her undergraduate fiction workshop, and studied with the writers Maud Casey and Howard Norman. Dawn's flash fiction has been published by The Drum, and her personal essay, "Why I Write," featured on the Grub Street blog. An itinerant, she has lived in Germany, the Dominican Republic, Boston, Botswana, Washington, DC, and Los Angeles, where she currently resides with her husband and pit bull. Dawn is at work writing stories.

Option 3: Because it's not called storyshowing: How to Show AND Tell in Your Fiction

yes50

Option 4: Narrative as Time Machine: World Building in Historical Fiction


3:45pm-4:45pm on Friday, May 2nd

In addition to the goal common to most novels – to tell a gripping story featuring compelling characters – historical fiction aims to transport a reader back in time. In this interactive discussion class, we’ll examine the strategies some of the great historical novelists of the past and present have used to achieve this special method of time travel. We’ll finish up with a brief writing exercise introducing a surprisingly practical way to incorporate historical world-building techniques into your own writing. Note: while the focus of this class is historical novels, the techniques discussed can easily be applied to world building in other fictional genres as well.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Tim Weed (Special Guest)
Tim Weed Tim Weed attended Middlebury College and earned an MFA at Warren Wilson College, where he had the privilege of working closely with some of America’s most accomplished contemporary writers. His short fiction has appeared in Colorado Review, Gulf Coast, Boston Fiction Annual Review, and many other literary journals and anthologies. Tim’s fiction has been nominated for the Best of the Net and Pushcart anthologies, and shortlisted for the Autumn House Fiction Prize, the Lewis-Clark Press Discovery Award, the Lightship International Short Story Prize, the Glimmer Train Short Story Award for New Writers, the Richard Yates Short Story Awards, and others. His essays and articles, mostly on travel, the outdoors, and the writing craft, have appeared in national magazines including The Morning News, Cross Country Skier, Backcountry, Empirical, Writer’s Chronicle, Grub Street Daily, and National Geographic’s Intelligent Travel blog. Based in Vermont, Tim is a lecturer in the MFA in Creative and Professional Writing program at Western Connecticut State University and serves as a featured expert for National Geographic Expeditions in Cuba, Spain, Portugal, and Patagonia. His first novel will be published by Stephen Roxburgh at namelos in Fall 2014. Read more at www.timweed.net.

Option 4: Narrative as Time Machine: World Building in Historical Fiction

yes50

Option 5: Publishing in Literary Magazines: Where Do I Begin?


3:45pm-4:45pm on Friday, May 2nd

The landscape of literary magazines can be overwhelming. With over 2,000 journals on the market, how does a writer know where to submit? Is it better to aim for prestigious journals and hope to catch the eye of literary agents? Or is it better to submit to journals with high acceptance rates? Should writers submit to dozens of journals at once or focus on a specific journal? What are the advantages of publishing online? Which editors give writers feedback on their work? What should go in the cover letter? We will answer these questions and more, giving you the information you need to start publishing in (and enjoying) literary magazines.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Becky Tuch (Special Guest)
Becky Tuch Becky Tuch is the founding editor of The Review Review. Since founding the website in 2008, she has spoken about her love of literary magazines with The Somerville News, Writer's Relief, The National Writing Project, and Ploughshares. In 2011 and 2012 The Review Review was chosen by Writer's Digest Magazine as "Best of the Best" among 101 Best Websites for Writers.

Becky has received literature fellowships from The MacDowell Colony and The Somerville Arts Council. Her fiction has placed first in contests sponsored by Moment Magazine, Briar Cliff Review and Byline Magazine, and has been short-listed for a Pushcart Prize and Glimmer Train's Very Short Fiction Award. Other stories and essays have appeared or are forthcoming in numerous literary magazines including Virginia Quarterly Review, Graze, Hobart, Eclipse, Folio, Night Train, Quarter After Eight, HTMLGiant, Blueline and elsewhere. In 2011, 2012 and 2013 her work was included in The Drum's audio series at The Boston Book Festival. In addition to founding The Review Review, she is one of the founders of the literary blog, Beyond the Margins.

Option 5: Publishing in Literary Magazines: Where Do I Begin?

yes50

Option 6: Baby Weight: Moms Who Write Share Tips


3:45pm-4:45pm on Friday, May 2nd

Join Katrin Schumann, co-author of Mothers Need Time-Outs, Too: It's Good to Be a Little Selfish, it Actually Makes You a Better Mother, Celeste Ng, author of Everything I Never Told You (Penguin, 2014), Jennifer De Leon, editor of Wise Latinas: Writers on Higher Education (University of Nebraska Press, 2013), and Nadine Kenney Johnstone, author of memoir Nine Babies on Ice (SUNY, 2014) for a discussion on how to have a successful writing career while bringing up babies. Topics to be discussed include: carving out time to write, dealing with guilt (about time and money), the importance of staying fresh and connected, and why it's vital to be professional and persistent (and kind to yourself). Panelists will also share practical tips and resources--from inspirational prompts to publication opportunities to marketplace do's and don'ts. Bring a notebook!

Type: Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Katrin Schumann (Special Guest)
Katrin Schumann Katrin Schumann is the co-author of The Secret Power of Middle Children and Mothers Need Time-Outs, Too. She has been featured on the Today show, Talk of the Nation and in The Times, as well as other national and international media outlets. Current works-in-progress include a novel of psychological suspense, a book on parenting strategies that can make or break affluent children, and on-going editorial work for editors, agents and writers. For the past ten years she has been teaching fiction and nonfiction, most recently at Grub Street and a local women’s prison, and running parenting focus groups and surveys. She helped design and run Grub Street’s innovative program for debut authors, "The Launch Lab." Before going freelance, she worked at NPR, where she won the Kogan Media Award. Schumann has been granted fiction residencies at the VCCA, the Norman Mailer Writer's Colony and the VSC. Awarded scholarships to Oxford and Stanford Universities, she studied literature, modern languages and journalism. Schumann was born in Freiburg, Germany, grew up in New York City and London, and now lives in Massachusetts.

Marketplace Clinic

Celeste Ng (Author)
Celeste Ng Celeste Ng is the author of the novel Everything I Never Told You, forthcoming from Penguin Press (June 2014). Her stories and essays have appeared in One Story, TriQuarterly, Five Chapters, Bellevue Literary Review, The Millions, and elsewhere, and she has been awarded the Pushcart Prize, the Hopwood Award, and a scholarship to the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference. She earned her MFA from the University of Michigan (now the Helen Zell Writers’ Program at the University of Michigan) and has taught writing at the University of Michigan and Grub Street in Boston. Celeste is a blogger for the Huffington Post and was previously blog editor for the writing website Fiction Writers Review. She lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

2D: Writing the Omniscient Narrator

Jennifer De Leon (Author)
Jennifer De Leon Jennifer De Leon is the winner of the 2011 Fourth Genre Michael Steinberg Essay Prize. Her stories and essays have appeared in Ploughshares, Brevity, Ms., Briar Cliff Review, Poets & Writers, Guernica, The Best Women’s Travel Writing 2010, and elsewhere. She has published author interviews in Granta and Agni, and she has been awarded scholarships and residencies from the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, Hedgebrook, Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, Vermont Studio Center, and the Sandra Cisneros Macondo Writers’ Workshop. The editor of the anthology, Wise Latina: Writers on Higher Education (University of Nebraska Press, 2013), she is also working on a memoir and a novel.

7J: What is Ethnic Writing?

Option 7: Baby Weight: Moms Who Write Share Tips

Nadine Kenney Johnstone (Special Guest)
Nadine Kenney Johnstone Nadine Kenney Johnstone teaches at Framingham State University and Grub Street, Inc. She received her MFA from Columbia College Chicago. Currently, she is at work on a memoir about facing death while on her quest to create life through IVF (to be published by SUNY Press next year). Nadine's writing has appeared in Pank, The Drum, Chicago magazine, and Hair Trigger, among other publications. She has worked in all aspects of writing: as a literary magazine editor, reporter, fiction contest judge, story performer, and creative writing instructor. Find her writing advice at Beyond The Margins, The Review Review, and monthly at Grub Street Daily. A Chicago native and Massachusetts transplant, Nadine spends her free time exploring New England with her husband, their young son, and their dog.

Option 7: Baby Weight: Moms Who Write Share Tips

yes50

Option 7: Researching Fact for Fiction


3:45pm-4:45pm on Friday, May 2nd

Writing fiction is telling the truth under imagined circumstances. Whatever your story is about--a heart surgeon, an Olympic luge racer, ancient Babylon, or astrophysics--you have some homework to do. How much research is enough? How do you know which facts to include and which to leave out? What if you find sources with conflicting information? If you have a scene in a faraway place, do you have to go there? How reliable is the internet? How do anecdotes, interviews and first person narratives factor in? In this panel discussion, we’ll explore the world of exploring the world!

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Juliette Fay (Author)
Juliette Fay Juliette Fay’s latest novel, The Shortest Way Home, was chosen as one of Library Journal‘s Top 5 “Best Books of 2012: Women’s Fiction.” Juliette’s first novel, Shelter Me, was a 2009 Massachusetts Book Award “Must-Read Book,” a Target Bookmark Club selection, and on the American Booksellers Association’s Indie Next list. Her second, Deep Down True, was short-listed for the Women’s Fiction award by the American Library Association.

Juliette received a bachelor's degree from Boston College and a master's degree from Harvard University. She lives in Massachusetts with her husband and four children. When she’s not trying to keep track of her kids or daydreaming about her next story, Juliette can be reached on her website, www.juliettefay.com; on Facebook at Juliette Fay, author; and on Twitter @juliettefay.

Option 8: Researching Fact for Fiction

Lisa Genova (Author)
Lisa Genova Lisa Genova graduated valedictorian from Bates College with a degree in Biopsychology and has a Ph.D. in Neuroscience from Harvard University. She is the author of the New York Times Bestselling novels Still Alice, Left Neglected and Love Anthony.

Still Alice spent over 40 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list, was chosen as one of the thirty titles for World Book Night 2013, and it is currently being adapted into a major motion picture starring Julianne Moore.

Left Neglected was the #1 Indie Next Pick for January 2011 and was chosen by the Richard and Judy bookclub in the UK.

Love Anthony was an October 2012 Indie Next pick and a People Magazine Great Read.

Lisa has appeared on the Dr. Oz Show, the Diane Rehm Show, CNN, Chronicle, Fox News, and Canada AM and was featured in the Emmy award-winning documentary film, To Not Fade Away.

Lisa’s fourth novel is about Huntington’s Disease. She lives with her family on Cape Cod.

Option 8: Researching Fact for Fiction

Maryanne O'Hara (Author)
Maryanne O'Hara Maryanne O'Hara is the author of Cascade, a 2013 Massachusetts Center for the Book “Must Read” and MA Book Award fiction finalist, and a “pick” at People Magazine, Slate Magazine, The Boston Globe, Library Journal, and more. She was the longtime associate fiction editor at Ploughshares, and has had short fiction published in periodicals like The North American Review, Five Points, Redbook, and in several anthologies. A graduate of Emerson College's MFA program, where she won the Graduate Dean's Award, she has been a recipient of grants from the St. Botolph Club Foundation, the Massachusetts Cultural Council, and her story collection has been a finalist for the Flannery O’Connor Award for Short Fiction, and the Iowa Short Fiction Award. A citizen of both the United States and Ireland, she currently lives by a river near Boston.

Option 8: Researching Fact for Fiction

B.A. Shapiro (Author)
B.A. Shapiro B.A. Shapiro is the New York Times bestselling author of six novels (The Art Forger, The Safe Room, Blind Spot, See No Evil, Blameless and Shattered Echoes), four screenplays (Blind Spot, The Lost Coven, Borderline, and Shattered Echoes) and the non-fiction book, The Big Squeeze. In her previous career incarnations, she directed research projects for a residential substance abuse facility, worked as a systems analyst/statistician, headed the Boston office of a software development firm, and served as an adjunct professor teaching sociology at Tufts University and creative writing at Northeastern University. She likes being a novelist the best. She began her writing career when she quit her high-pressure job after the birth of her second child. Nervous about what to do next, she confessed to her mother, “If I’m not playing at being superwoman anymore, I don’t know who I am.” Her mother asked, “If you had one year to live, how would you want to spend it?” The answer: write a novel and spend more time with her children. And that’s exactly what she did. Smart mother. After writing ten novels and raising her children, she now lives in Boston with her husband Dan and her dog Sagan. She’s working on yet another novel but has no plans to raise any more children.

Option 8: Researching Fact for Fiction

yes49

Option 8: How to Win Grants and Fellowships


3:45pm-4:45pm on Friday, May 2nd

So you know you want to devote time to your writing... but you don't have the funds. What's a writer to do? Apply for a grant! There are actually grants out there for aspiring and emerging writers to sit on your butt and write all day. This session will walk you through that daunting process of researching and applying for grants and fellowships. We'll talk about how to create a research plan, what to highlight in your application, and how to keep your sanity through the whole process.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Patricia Park (Special Guest)
Patricia Park Patricia Park was born and raised in New York City and teaches at CUNY Queens College.

She received her BA in English from Swarthmore College and her MFA in fiction from Boston University. Her essays have appeared in the New York Times, Guardian, Slice Magazine, Fourth Genre, and others. A former publicist with the Random House Publishing Group, Avalon Publishing Group, and Columbia University Press, she has worked with numerous New York Times bestselling authors including Amy Tan, Anne Perry, and the late Harvey Pekar. She is the recipient of writing fellowships with Fulbright, The Center for Fiction, The American Association of University Women, and The Korean Literature Translation Institute. She is a Novel Incubator alum, and her debut novel Re Jane is forthcoming from Penguin/Viking.

Option 9: How to Win Grants and Fellowships

yes50

Option 9: My First Time


3:45pm-4:45pm on Friday, May 2nd

Publishing your first book: you've spent years dreaming and writing and odds are the first book you'll publish will be the third or fourth you've written. When that opportunity comes, your expectations will be met with the realities of publishing a first novel. Some will be met, some will be dashed, small surprises along the way may even exceed your vision of getting published. Novelists Owen King (We're All In This Together) and Kelly Braffett (Save Yourself) will recount their journey leading up to publication. Moderated by Jaime Clarke, co-owner of Newtonville Books.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Jaime Clarke (Author)
Jaime Clarke Jaime Clarke is the author of the novels We're So Famous and Vernon Downs, editor of Don't You Forget About Me: Contemporary Writers on the Films of John Hughes, Conversations with Jonathan Lethem, and Talk Show: On the Couch with Contemporary Writers, as well as co-editor of No Near Exit: Writers Select Their Favorite Work from Post Road Magazine and, with Dennis Lehane, Boston Noir 2: The Classics. He is a founding editor of the literary magazine Post Road, now published at Boston College, and co-owner of Newtonville Books, an independent bookstore in Boston.

Option 10: My First Time Panel

Kelly Braffet (Author)
Kelly Braffet Kelly Braffet is the author of the novel Save Yourself (August 2013, Crown Publishing). Her previous works include the novels Josie and Jack and Last Seen Leaving, and her writing has been published in The Fairy Tale Review, Post Road, and several anthologies. She attended Sarah Lawrence College and Columbia University and currently lives in upstate New York with her husband, the author Owen King.

Option 10: My First Time Panel

Owen King (Author)
Owen King Owen King is the author, most recently, of the novel Double Feature, a New York Times Book Review "Editor's Choice." Publications in which his writing has appeared include Grantland, One Story, and Prairie Schooner. He lives in New York and is married to the novelist Kelly Braffet.

Option 10: My First Time Panel

yesmuse2014session4a22

4A: Watching the Clock: On Some Aspects of Time in Fiction


9:00am-10:15am on Saturday, May 3rd

In his essay, “Quickness,” Italo Calvino writes, “A story is an operation carried out on the length of time involved, an enchantment that acts on the passing of time, either contracting or dilating it." It’s a big subject, time, and you can find yourself, pretty quickly, flailing around in stormy philosophical waters: What is time anyway? Does it exist? I won’t be answering those questions; in fact, I’m kind of sorry I even brought them up. What I will be talking about are some very specific aspects of narrative time that writers, this writer certainly, contend with. These are: chronology, emotional time, and the endlessly complex relationship of the past to the present. These aspects of time don’t, unfortunately, magically arrange themselves in fiction; like everything else, they must be coaxed into a kind of design. This will be a combination of lecture and discussion, with several close readings, which will include Virginia Woolf's Mrs. Dalloway and others. (Note: no pre-reading required).

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 22
Presenter(s):

Maud Casey (Author)
Maud Casey Maud Casey is the author of the novels The Shape of Things to Come, a New York Times Notable Book, Genealogy, and The Man Who Walked Away; and a collection of stories, Drastic. She is the recipient of the Calvino Prize and has received residency fellowships from the Fundación Valparaiso, the Hawthorden International Retreat for Writers, Château de Lavigny, Villa Hellebosch, and the Dora Maar House. She lives in Washington, D.C., and teaches at the University of Maryland and in the low-residency M.F.A. program at Warren Wilson.

4A: Watching the Clock: On Some Aspects of Time in Fiction

yesmuse2014session4b25

4B: Non-Fiction Quests and the Missing Whale Problem


9:00am-10:15am on Saturday, May 3rd

All writers of nonfiction are detectives of sorts, interrogating sources, searching for clues—and for good material. But the mysteries that most fascinate are often those most difficult to illuminate. Without the fiction writer’s liberty to invent, what can you do when the facts are uncertain, or when testimonies conflict, or when the record is incomplete? How do you narrate the elusive or the unknown? One strategy: turn the search itself into the story. We'll look at a few examples of the form and at strategies for shaping and structuring the nonfiction quest, and we'll consider solutions to a common condition that I like to call The Missing Whale Problem--what to do if after taking your reader on this journey, this hunt, you fail to find whatever it was you went searching for?

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 25
Presenter(s):

Donovan Hohn (Author)
Donovan Hohn Donovan Hohn is the author of Moby-Duck: The True Story 28,800 Bath Toys Lost at Sea and of the Beachcombers, Oceanographers, Environmentalists, and Fools, Including the Author, Who Went in Search of Them, a New York Times Notable Book and the runner-up for both the PEN/John Kenneth Galbraith Nonfiction Award and the PEN/E.O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award. His work has appeared in Harper's, The New York Times Magazine, AGNI, Outside, The New York Times Book Review, and The Best Creative Nonfiction, among other publications. For his essays, he received a Whiting Writers' Award and a National Endowment of the Arts Creative Writing Fellowship. A former senior editor of Harper's and features editor of GQ, he now teaches in the writing program at Wayne State University in Detroit.

4B: Non-Fiction Quests and the Missing Whale Problem

yesmuse2014session4c34

4C: From Bennington to Book Tour


9:00am-10:15am on Saturday, May 3rd

In this session, author Jamie Quatro, author of I Want To Show You More, one of the most critically-acclaimed debuts of 2013, will give a brief talk summarizing her own journey from MFA candidate in 2009 (with no publications) to debut author of a story collection. Topics covered will include: applying to MFA programs, pros/cons of the MFA, submitting work to journals, cover letters, preparing a manuscript (including ordering short stories), finding an agent, the submission to publishers/sales process, contracts, working with an editor, title wars, book jacket wars, asking for blurbs, getting reviewed, the book tour, and more. The session will include ample time for Q&A related to any stage of the journey.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 34
Presenter(s):

Jamie Quatro (Author)
Jamie Quatro Jamie Quatro’s debut story collection, I Want To Show You More (Grove Press), is a New York Times Editors’ Choice and Indie Next pick. Her work has appeared in The O.Henry Prize Stories, New York Times Book Review, The Kenyon Review, Tin House, Ploughshares, AGNI, McSweeney’s, and elsewhere. A finalist for the Katherine Anne Porter Prize in Short Fiction, she is the recipient of fellowships from Yaddo, The MacDowell Colony, Sewanee, and Bread Loaf. Quatro holds graduate degrees from the College of William and Mary and the Bennington College Writing Seminars, and is a Contributing Editor at The Oxford American Magazine. She lives with her family in Lookout Mountain, Georgia.

4C: From Bennington to Book Tour

yesmuse2014session4d20

4D: Historical Fiction and How to Get Away with it


9:00am-10:15am on Saturday, May 3rd

As all writers know, before we can suspend a reader's disbelief we often struggle to suspend our own. Particularly acute writerly anxieties, however, tend to beset the historical novelist. How certainly can we "know" what we write when it lies beyond our own experience? How closely should we cleave to research? How far can we stray from the facts? This lecture will reflect, anecdotally, on some of the pitfalls of historical fiction, and how we might o'er leap them.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 20
Presenter(s):

Peter Ho Davies (Author)
Peter Ho Davies Peter Ho Davies is the author of the novel The Welsh Girl and the story collections The Ugliest House in the World and Equal Love. His work has appeared in Harpers, The Atlantic Monthly, and The Paris Review, among others, and his short fiction has been widely anthologized, including selections for Prize Stories: The O. Henry Awards and Best American Short Stories. In 2003 Granta magazine named him among its “Best of Young British Novelists.” Davies is a recipient of the Pen-Malamud Prize for excellence in the short story as well as fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts. The Ugliest House in the World won the John Llewelyn Rhys and PEN/Macmillan prizes; Equal Love, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year, was also a finalist for The Los Angeles Times Book Prize; The Welsh Girl was long-listed for the Man Booker Prize. Born in Britain to Welsh and Chinese parents, Davies now lives in Ann Arbor, and teaches in the MFA Program at the University of Michigan.

4D: Historical Fiction and How to Get Away with It

yesmuse2014session4e8

4E: Essentials of Voice


9:00am-10:15am on Saturday, May 3rd

Voice is a powerful tool in crafting narrative. It's also one that's slippery to talk about. What constitutes voice? How does it differ from point of view? How do you make voice distinctive, but not distracting? In this seminar, we'll use samples taken from both fiction and nonfiction to discuss these foundational considerations. As time allows, we'll use writing exercises (amenable to both prose genres) to experiment with how developing voice can help us take the stories we tell further.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 8
Presenter(s):

Rita Zoey Chin (Author)
Rita Zoey Chin Rita Zoey Chin holds an MFA from the University of Maryland, where she won a Katherine Anne Porter Prize and an Academy of American Poets Award. A recipient of a Bread Loaf waiter scholarship, Rita taught creative writing at Towson University before moving to Boston, where she teaches at Grub Street, mentors teenage girls, and rides her mischievous horse. Her work has appeared in Tin House, Guernica, The Rumpus, Blackbird Review, Freerange Nonfiction, New York Arts Magazine, and elsewhere. Her memoir, Let the Tornado Come, is forthcoming from Simon & Schuster in June 2014.

4E: Essentials of Voice

yesmuse2014session4f33

4F: Sentiment and Sentimentality


9:00am-10:15am on Saturday, May 3rd

Sentimental is often a dirty word in literary fiction, and it's a fine line between writing that inspires a genuine emotional connection and writing that alienates with overt manipulation. How do good writers successfully walk that line, and how can developing writers avoid the pitfalls of writing that is too sentimental? Kristin Duisberg, author of the novels The Good Patient and After, both of which tackle difficult emotional subject matter, will offer examples and exercises to stimulate discussion and offer a framework for going forward with your own stories.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 33
Presenter(s):

Kristin Waterfield Duisberg (Author)
Kristin Waterfield Duisberg Kristin Waterfield Duisberg received her undergraduate degree from Bowdoin College and her master’s degree in creative writing from Boston University. She has taught creative writing at Boston University and the Boston-based Grub Street Writers’ Workshop and worked as a writer for J.P Morgan, Massachusetts General Hospital, and the University of New Hampshire. Having spent most of her life in New England, she returned recently to the seacoast New Hampshire college town where she grew up, where she lives with her husband, two children, and two exceedingly hairy golden retrievers. In addition to writing fiction, Duisberg is the editor-in-chief of the University of New Hampshire Magazine. After is her second novel; she is also the author of the critically acclaimed book, The Good Patient (St. Martin’s Press).

4F: Sentiment and Sentimentality

yesmuse2014session4g18

4G: Ten Steps to a Kickass Essay


9:00am-10:15am on Saturday, May 3rd

We all have read memoirs that take our breath away, but how does a writer manage to produce that effect in under 3000 words? Too often, when writers try to write an essay, they stumble on common pitfalls like cramming too much information into too small a space, giving too much back story, or trying to write an essay for a particular column rather than writing an emotionally true one. In this workshop Ann will tell you how to avoid these obstacles. We'll read essays by writers like Jonathan Lethem and Joanne Beard. Then Ann will give you the ten steps that will help you write a kickass essay.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 18
Presenter(s):

Ann Hood (Author)
Ann Hood Ann Hood is the author of the bestselling novels The Knitting Circle, The Red Thread, and Somewhere Off the Coast of Maine; the short story collection, An Ornithologist's Guide to Life; and the memoir Comfort: A Journey Through Grief, which was a New York Times Editor's Choice and was named one of the top ten non-fiction books of 2008 by Entertainment Weekly. She recently edited the anthology, Knitting Yarns: Writers Writing About Knitting. She has won Best American Spiritual, Food, and Travel Writing Awards and two Pushcart Prizes. Her most recent novel, The Obituary Writer, was an Oprah Pick, the November Book Club book for The Ladies Home Journal, and named as one of the top ten books of 2013 by Amazon.com. She lives in Providence, RI.

4G: Ten Steps to a Kickass Essay

7D: How To Be Your Own Best Editor

yesmuse2014session4h23

4H: Crossing Paths: The Map of Opportunity in Story


9:00am-10:15am on Saturday, May 3rd

The word “plot” first meant “a piece of ground,” and soon extended to “the ground plan of a building, city, field, farm, or any area of the earth’s surface; a map, a chart.” Story is deeply territorial, and aspects of plot that worry writers, like coincidence, chance, and contrivance, can be understood and improved as you explore your “ground plan.” We’ll talk about how writers build in plausibility and discover opportunities, as characters cross paths, meet or miss each other, and encounter obstacles that test and reveal their intentions. We’ll look at how to develop and explore the map of your story (novel, short story, memoir, narrative nonfiction, drama) to build your incidents, complicate scenes, and shape a coherent journey.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 23
Presenter(s):

Lynne Barrett (Author)
Lynne Barrett Lynne Barrett is the author of the story collections Magpies (Gold Medal, Florida Book Awards), The Secret Names of Women, and The Land of Go, and co-editor of Birth: A Literary Companion. She has received the Edgar Award for best mystery story and an NEA Fellowship. Her work appears in Fifteen Views of Miami, Real South, Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, The Southern Women’s Review, Delta Blues, One Year to a Writing Life, and Blue Christmas. Her essay in The Review Review, “What Editors Want,” was featured in the L.A. Times and reprinted Glimmer Train’s digest. She teaches in the MFA program at Florida International University, and edits The Florida Book Review. Learn more about Lynne at www.lynnebarrett.com.

4H: Crossing Paths: The Map of Opportunity in Story

7A: The Measure of Change: The Short Story

yesmuse2014session4j25

4J: Ask the Marketing Director


9:00am-10:15am on Saturday, May 3rd

In this session, literary agent Emma Sweeney and Wendy Sheanin, Director of Marketing at Simon & Schuster, will discuss what really happens to your book when it's discussed in those oft-cited but rarely glimpsed marketing meetings. How does the marketing team assess or predict how a book will fare in bookstores? How do they decide how to package and promote it? How much do they take into account the writer's platform? The focus of the conversation will be to help writers understand the process their manuscripts or recently-acquired books of fiction or non-fiction will go through when it reaches the marketing team.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 25
Presenter(s):

Emma Sweeney (Literary Agent)
Emma Sweeney Emma Sweeney is the owner of Emma Sweeney Agency LLC, a boutique literary agency based in New York City. ESA has had six New York Times bestsellers and represents authors who have won The Booker Prize and the American Book Award, been short-listed for the National Book Award and the Orange Prize, and are Guggenheim Fellows as well as the recipients of NEA grants. ESA specializes in general fiction, historical fiction and narrative nonfiction projects including memoir, history, science and religion.

Emma Sweeney is a member of the Association of Authors' Representatives and the Women's Media Group, where she served as president in 2003. She graduated from the University of California at Berkeley with a BA in English Literature. Emma is also a writer whose own books include Tulipa (Artisan, 2000) and As Always, Jack (Little, Brown, 2002; Back Bay Books, 2003; Axios Press 2012).

4J: Ask the Marketing Director

Wendy Sheanin (Special Guest)
Wendy Sheanin Wendy Sheanin began her career in books as events manager at A Clean, Well-Lighted Place for Books in San Francisco, where she produced 1200 events in 6 years. While her heart remains in San Francisco, she moved to New York in 2007 to become senior marketing manager at Simon & Schuster. Since 2009, she's been director of marketing for Simon & Schuster's adult publishing group. She has worked with all the adult imprints at Simon & Schuster, and has worked on such bestsellers as Little Bee, Still Alice, The Light Between Oceans, In the Shadow of the Banyan, The Rosie Project, and The Emperor of All Maladies. A passionate reader, when she falls in love with a book, she's relentless about sharing it with other readers--but in a good way.

4J: Ask the Marketing Director

yesmuse2014session4k77

4K: The Independent Editor: (Why) Do I Need One?


9:00am-10:15am on Saturday, May 3rd

How does a writer know when her book is ready to be shown? How do you get the attention of agents? What's the difference between an in-house editor and an independent editor? Members of 5E: Five Editors, Five Perspectives will discuss the evolving role of independent editors in a fast-changing publishing landscape. We will talk about how and why publishing is changing at a rapid pace and what that means for writers. We will distribute a sample of a query letter that works and a sample of a query letter that agents will ignore, and discuss why one is better than the other. As a group of veteran former in-house editors, we are being brought into the editorial process by publishers, by literary agents, and by individual authors. We will discuss the editing at each stage of the process.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 77
Presenter(s):

Jane Rosenman (Special Guest)
Jane Rosenman Jane Rosenman has been an Executive Editor at Houghton Mifflin, Scribner Publishing, and St. Martin's Press. Prior to that, Jane worked as Editorial Director of Washington Square Press as well as being a Senior Editor at Pocket Books. From 2008 till March of 2011, she worked part-time acquiring for Algonquin Books while also starting to work as an independent editor for literary agents and individual writers.

Jane is equally comfortable in, and passionate about, both fiction and nonfiction. On the fiction side, she has edited writers such as Andrea Barrett, Elinor Lipman, Bret Lott, Nicole Mones, Howard Norman, Martha Southgate and Meg Wolitzer. On the nonfiction side, she has edited memoir (Alice Sebold's Lucky), and parenting titles (Wendy Mogel's The Blessing of a Skinned Knee: Using Jewish Teachings to Raise Self-Reliant Children). In narrative nonfiction, Jane edited Ben Yagoda's About Town: The New Yorker And The World It Made. She acquired David Kirby's Evidence of Harm: Mercury in Vaccines and The Autism Epidemic, Gal Beckerman's When They Come For Us We'll Be Gone, Meryl Gordon's Mrs. Astor Regrets: The Hidden Betrayals of a Family Beyond Reproach, and Michael Wex's Born to Kvetch: The Yiddish Language and Culture In All Of Its Moods.

As a freelance editor, Jane Rosenman has worked with Mira Bartok on her highly acclaimed, NBCC Award winning memoir, The Memory Palace (The Free Press, 2011; ) with novelists Marjan Kamali on Together Tea (Ecco Spring 2013) and Rita Leganski's The Silence of Bonaventure Arrow (Harper Perennial 2012.) Jane also worked with Quincy Troupe and Earl Monroe on Earl the Pearl (Rodale Spring 2013), with Raquel Cepeda on her memoir Bird of Paradise: How I Became Latina (Atria 2013) and has edited Jennifer Fulweiler's upcoming memoir Something Other than God: How I Passionately Sought Happiness and Accidentally Found It (Ignatius, April 2014).

4K: The Independent Editor: (Why) Do I Need One?

Joan Hilty (Special Guest)
Joan Hilty Joan Hilty is an independent editor and packager of fiction and nonfiction, specializing in comic books and graphic novels. She was previously a senior editor at DC Comics, developing, acquiring and editing award-winning DC properties and, for the Vertigo imprint, creator-owned books, including numerous winners and nominees for Harvey and Eisner Awards. She is also a cartoonist and illustrator whose work has appeared in Ms. Magazine, The Village Voice, and Women's Review of Books, and will be featured in the upcoming The Brown Reader (Simon & Schuster, May 2014); she created and drew the nationally syndicated comic strip Bitter Girl from 2001-2012. Her clients include Viacom, Dark Horse, IDW Publishing, Boom! Studios, Macmillan, Forbes Media, A&E Networks, and authors published by Tor, Hachette and Scholastic. She is on the Illustration Faculty at the Maryland Institute College of Art and the Independent Studies Program Faculty at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in NYC. She is a founding member of the independent editorial group 5E, whose members have collective decades of executive experience at Holt, Doubleday, Algonquin, Open Road Media and Random House and have lectured at Center for Fiction in NYC and the Miami Writers Institute; this is their first appearance at Grub Street.

4K: The Independent Editor: (Why) Do I Need One?

Patricia Mulcahy (Special Guest)
Patricia Mulcahy Patricia Mulcahy formed the editorial consulting service Brooklyn Books in 1999 after over twenty years in book publishing. She started as a temp at Farrar Straus and Giroux and left as Editor in Chief at Doubleday, where her authors included bestselling crime writer James Lee Burke. Her freelance clients have included musician and impresario Quincy Jones; former White House advisor Karen Hughes; television journalist Andrea Mitchell; Acumen Fund CEO Jacqueline Novogratz; and Room to Read founder John Wood. She is the co-author of the book It Is Well with My Soul: The Extraordinary Life of a 106-Year–Old Woman, by Ella Mae Cheeks Johnson (Penguin, 2010), and Making Masterpiece: 25 Years Behind the Scenes at Masterpiece Theatre and Mystery! on PBS (Viking, November 2013). See www.brooklynbooks.com for more information.

4K: The Independent Editor: (Why) Do I Need One?

Marjorie Braman (Special Guest)
Marjorie Braman After a successful 26-year career in publishing, Marjorie is now a freelance editor, working with writers to get the best manuscript possible. She began her career as an editorial assistant and worked her way up through the ranks to Sr. V. P. and Publishing Director at HarperCollins, then V. P. & Editor in Chief at Henry Holt. She has worked as a consultant at the e-book publisher, Open Road Integrated Media. Some of authors she’s worked with include Michael Crichton, Elmore Leonard and Sena Jeter Naslund. She has worked on narrative non-fiction, memoir, and history and has edited many New York Times and National bestsellers, award-winners and notable debuts. Recently, she published an essay in Publisher's Weekly on the changing role of the in-house editor, called "What Ever Happened to Book Editors." It was one of the most popular back of the book essays Publisher's Weekly has published. For further information, go to: www.marjoriebraman.com

4K: The Independent Editor: (Why) Do I Need One?

yesmuse2014session4l21

4L: Write Your Way to a Media Platform


9:00am-10:15am on Saturday, May 3rd

As the media has gone increasingly digital and content-hungry, a whole new category of press opportunities for authors has emerged: writing articles, opinion pieces and guest blog posts for high-profile outlets like The Millions or The Huffington Post. In fact, contributing pieces to big online outlets is becoming the new “it” media opportunity and one of the hands-down smartest ways to build a media platform that will get you noticed.

But what should you write? Where should you submit it, and how? In this session, a publicist will walk you through the process, give you examples you can learn from and the tools to start writing your way to a media platform.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 21
Presenter(s):

Sharon Bially (Special Guest)
Sharon Bially Sharon Bially, founder of BookSavvy PR, is a publicist with over 20 years of experience and the independent author of the novel Veronica’s Nap. In addition to BookSavvy, she directs media relations for big businesses as a consultant to MBS Value Partners. Before MBS, Sharon spearheaded and led the book services division of Farrell Kramer Communications as vice president of the firm. She's led classes for Grub Street, is a regular contributor to the Grub Street Daily and to the popular blog Writer Unboxed.

Sharon has a master’s degree from Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs, lived and worked for over a decade in France and remains a hopeless francophile. She’s a soccer and gymnastics mom to two boys, takes ballet and vocals classes and daydreams about having a pied-à-terre in Paris or Provence.

4L: Write Your Way to a Media Platform

yesmuse2014session5a23

5A: On Beauty


10:30am-11:45am on Saturday, May 3rd

What do we do with beauty? How do we understand it? Is it even a legitimate category? What uses have writers made of beauty and to what ends? Is beauty simply another word for lyricism or might it have broader, deeper definitions and deployments? Beauty as an aesthetic, beauty as strategy, beauty as resistance, beauty that generates plot, character, and formal innovation: these are some of the aspects of the beautiful in literature that we will consider. Most of us, when we come to the page, want to create beauty, but somehow we don't talk about it all that much. In this session, we will.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 23
Presenter(s):

Stacey D'Erasmo (Author)
Stacey D'Erasmo Stacey D’Erasmo is the author of the novels Tea, A Seahorse Year, and The Sky Below, and the nonfiction book The Art of Intimacy: The Space Between. Her novel Wonderland is forthcoming in spring 2014. She is a former Stegner Fellow, the recipient of a 2009 Guggenheim Fellowship in Fiction, and the winner of an Outstanding Mid-Career Novelist Prize from the Lambda Literary Foundation. Her essays, features, and reviews have appeared in The New York Times Magazine, The New York Times Book Review, The Boston Review, Bookforum, The New England Review, and Ploughshares, among other publications. She is an associate professor of writing at Columbia University.

5A: On Beauty

yesmuse2014session5b18

5B: Snapshots of Life: Approaching the Micro-Essay to Write Compelling Nonfiction Prose


10:30am-11:45am on Saturday, May 3rd

Flash fiction or the prose poem have been useful structures to create compressed narrative, but nonfiction writing too can take advantage of this form, which I will call the micro-essay. These brief narratives are lyrical and poetic but they can also tell a story and use conventions typically seen in prose, such as dialogue and even plot. Given the popularity of nonfiction, the micro-essay is an excellent alternative to the longer essay, which sometimes struggles to find its way to publication because of its length. The micro-essay, just as poignant and satisfying, can also be more marketable. But the focus of this craft class is to mine the smaller moments of memory and experience to write resonant, sensory image-driven pieces that, like a photograph, are worth a thousand words even if the actual word count is one-forth that number.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 18
Presenter(s):

Rigoberto González (Author)
Rigoberto González Rigoberto González is the author of thirteen books of poetry and prose, and the editor of Camino del Sol: Fifteen Years of Latina and Latino Writing. He is the recipient of Guggenheim and NEA fellowships, winner of the American Book Award, The Poetry Center Book Award, The Shelley Memorial Award of The Poetry Society of America, and a grant from the New York Foundation for the Arts. He is contributing editor for Poets & Writers Magazine, on the executive board of directors of the National Book Critics Circle, and is associate professor of English at Rutgers-Newark, the State University of New Jersey. For ten years he wrote a monthly book review column for The El Paso Times of Texas, the only column in the nation’s newspapers dedicated exclusively to Latino literature.

5B: Snapshots of Life: Approaching the Micro-Essay to Write Compelling Nonfiction Prose

yesmuse2014session5c19

5C: Turning Yourself into a Character


10:30am-11:45am on Saturday, May 3rd

In personal essays, no word is more commonly seen than “I,” but writers often convey less than they think with this one letter. How do we turn ourselves into strong characters, with complexity and rich inner lives, in our personal writing? Working from her essay “The Thin Pink Line," Krista will describe techniques for building yourself into a strong character and then lead participants through an exercise that applies these strategies.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 19
Presenter(s):

Krista Bremer (Author)
Krista Bremer Krista Bremer is an American author whose award-winning essays have appeared in national and international magazines and news outlets including O: The Oprah Magazine, CNN, MSN, MORE, The Sun, and The Sunday Times (London).

Her work has been featured on National Public Radio, and she has appeared in the PBS series Arab American Stories. She has also participated in a debate at the Cambridge Union, and her work has been translated and reprinted all over the world.

In 2009 she was one of six American writers to receive a Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers' Award, a $25,000 prize to support emerging women writers in the United States. She is the recipient of a Pushcart Prize, a North Carolina Arts Fellowship, and a scholarship to the Bread Loaf Writer’s Conference. She lives in North Carolina with her husband Ismail and their two children and works as associate publisher of The Sun.

5C: Turning Yourself into a Character

yesmuse2014session5d12

5D: The Art & Skill of Revision


10:30am-11:45am on Saturday, May 3rd

Once you’ve finished a first draft, the real writing begins—in revision. Focusing on elements of Character, Dialogue, Setting, Point of View, Structure, Plot, Description and Voice, award-winning writer and editor Hannah Tinti walks students through a step-by-step process to identify their weaknesses, improve their work and make good writing become great.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 12
Presenter(s):

Hannah Tinti (Author)
Hannah Tinti Hannah Tinti is a writer, editor and teacher.

Her short story collection, Animal Crackers, has sold in sixteen countries and was a runner-up for the PEN/Hemingway award. Her best-selling novel, The Good Thief, is a New York Times Notable Book of the Year, recipient of the American Library Association’s Alex Award, winner of the The Center for Fiction’s First Novel Prize, and winner of the Quality Paperback Book Club’s New Voices Award. She is now finishing a new novel.

Hannah has worked at bookstores, magazines, publishing houses, and literary agencies. In 2002 she co-founded the award-winning magazine One Story and for the past 12 years has been its Editor in Chief. In 2009 she received the PEN/Nora Magid award for excellence in editing. In 2011, she joined the Public Radio program, Selected Shorts, as their Literary Commentator, interviewing authors and actors about the importance of literature and reading.

Hannah is also a celebrated teacher of creative writing. She co-founded Wishing Stone Workshops and the Sirenland Writers Conference in Italy. She currently teaches at Columbia University’s MFA program and at the Museum of Natural History in New York City.

She grew up in Salem, Massachusetts and lives in Brooklyn, New York.

5D: The Art & Skill of Revision

8J: Writing for One Story

yesmuse2014session5e37

5E: Essentials of Structure


10:30am-11:45am on Saturday, May 3rd

Every story needs structure, a framework on which to build drama and emotional connection. While the right structure can certainly help pull a reader through a story, it can also help push a frustrated writer through a difficult draft. In this seminar, we’ll discuss-- supplemented with exercises and examples-- how structures from classic to experimental can organize an author's thoughts into an effective fiction or non-fiction piece.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 37
Presenter(s):

Adam Stumacher (Special Guest)
Adam Stumacher Adam Stumacher's fiction has appeared or is forthcoming in Granta, The Kenyon Review, The Sun, Night Train, Massachusetts Review, Five Chapters, TriQuarterly, and elsewhere, was anthologized in Best New American Voices, and won the Raymond Carver Short Story Award. He holds degrees from Cornell University and Saint Mary's College and was a fiction fellow at the University of Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing. He has been awarded a tuition scholarship from Bread Loaf and residencies from the Vermont Studio Center, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, Spiro Arts, and others. He has taught creative writing at MIT, the University of Wisconsin, Saint Mary's College, and Grub Street, and he has many years experience as a teacher in inner city high schools, for which he was awarded the Sontag Prize in Urban Education. He is the author of a short story collection, The Neon Desert, and is currently working on a novel, entitled A Liar's Opus.

5E: Essentials of Structure

yesmuse2014session5f34

5F: How Best To Tell My Story? Fiction, Non-Fiction, Journalism, or Blog--the Pros, the Cons, The Differences


10:30am-11:45am on Saturday, May 3rd

When you want to write about something—whether yourself, another topic, or both (marriage, motherhood, sex, death, family, religion, money, obesity…) what’s the best way to approach it? We will look at a treatment of one subject in various genres and discuss the advantages and disadvantages—and the major requirements/characteristics—of each.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 34
Presenter(s):

Cathi Hanauer (Author)
Cathi Hanauer Cathi Hanauer is the author of three acclaimed novels, Gone (Atria/Simon & Schuster, 2012), Sweet Ruin (Atria/Simon & Schuster, 2006), and My Sister's Bones (Delacorte, 1996), and the editor of the # 10 New York Times bestselling essay collection The Bitch in the House: 26 Women Tell the Truth about Sex, Solitude, Work, Motherhood and Marriage (Morrow/Harper Collins, 2002), which was called out in Deborah Felder's A Bookshelf of Our Own: Must-Reads for Women along with works by Mary Wollstonecraft, Jane Austen, Virginia Woolf, Grace Paley, Betty Friedan, Cynthia Ozick, Toni Morrison, and Susan Faludi. She has written articles, essays, and/or reviews for The New York Times, Elle (where she’s currently a contributing writer), O, Self, Glamour, Whole Living, Martha Stewart Living, Mademoiselle, Parenting, Child, Redbook, and other magazines; she was the monthly books columnist for both Glamour and Mademoiselle and wrote the monthly advice column "Relating" in Seventeen for seven years. She has taught writing at The New School in New York, and at the University of Arizona in Tucson, as well as privately. In 2003, Hanauer and her husband, writer and editor Daniel Jones, started the New York Times’ popular “Modern Love” column, which Jones then took over. Hanauer lives in Northampton, Massachusetts, with Jones and their daughter and son.

5F: How Best To Tell My Story? Fiction, Non-Fiction, Journalism, or Blog--the Pros, the Cons, The Differences

yesmuse2014session5g25

5G: The Blazing Thing: Imagination in Fiction


10:30am-11:45am on Saturday, May 3rd

In his essay “Telling Tails,” Tim O’Brien points out: “In fiction workshops, we tend to focus on matters of verisimilitude largely because such issues are so much easier to talk about than the failure of imagination … So we nibble at the margins, shying away from the central difficulty.” We often hear the word “imagination” in the context of writing fiction—she has a great imagination!—but what does it really mean for a work of fiction to be imaginative? How can we make our own work more so? This class will strive to engage that “central difficulty.”

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 25
Presenter(s):

Laura van den Berg (Author)
Laura van den Berg Laura van den Berg is the author of the story collections What the World Will Look Like When All the Water Leaves (Dzanc Books, 2009), which was a Barnes & Noble “Discover Great New Writers” selection and shortlisted for the Frank O’Connor International Award, and The Isle of Youth (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2013). A New York Times Editors’ Choice, The Isle of Youth was named a “Best Book of 2013” by NPR, Amazon, The Boston Globe, The New Republic, and O, The Oprah Magazine and was a Nylon Magazine Book Club selection. Her first novel, Find Me, is forthcoming from FSG in 2015. In recent years, Laura has taught in the creative writing programs at George Washington University, Goucher College, Johns Hopkins University, and Emerson College, and her stories have been received a Pushcart Prize and an O. Henry Award (2014). A Florida native, she currently lives in the Boston area.

5G: The Blazing Thing: Imagination in Fiction

yesmuse2014session5h31

5H: Truth (and Lies) in Fiction


10:30am-11:45am on Saturday, May 3rd

Fiction tells us truths in fabrications, is most honest through its lies, and never fails to keep us guessing what is real and what is make believe. How can we effectively pull the wool over our reader's eyes, and most importantly, how can we say something honest in the process?

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 31
Presenter(s):

Kristopher Jansma (Author)
Kristopher Jansma Kristopher Jansma grew up in Lincroft, New Jersey. He received his B.A. in The Writing Seminars from Johns Hopkins University and an M.F.A. in Fiction from Columbia University. His critically-acclaimed debut novel, The Unchangeable Spots of Leopards, was published by Viking/Penguin in March of 2013. He writes the Literary Artifacts column for Electric Literature’s blog, "The Outlet” about loving books in a digital age. His work has also been published in The Believer, Slice Magazine, the Blue Mesa Review, The Millions and The New York Times. He is a Creative Writing Lecturer at SUNY Purchase College and lives in Brooklyn with his wife and son.

5H: Truth (and Lies) in Fiction

yesmuse2014session5j44

5J: Not Just Cat GIFS: Using Tumblr to Build Literary Community


10:30am-11:45am on Saturday, May 3rd

You have a website and a bunch of social media platforms -- it's exhausting! So why do you keep hearing about Tumblr? It might be because it's home to 170 million blogs. Or because it's known for being a passionate network of nerds, readers, and superfans. Or because it's full of teens and 20-somethings looking for their next favorite writer. We'll talk about how you can join this book-loving community in only a few minutes and use it to build your audience, even if you aren't John Green, Neil Gaiman, or Rainbow Rowell (yet!). This session is led by Rachel Fershleiser, Director of Publishing Outreach at Tumblr and NYT best selling author.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 44
Presenter(s):

Rachel Fershleiser (Special Guest)
Rachel Fershleiser Rachel Fershleiser works on Tumblr's outreach team, specializing in publishing, nonprofit, and cultural organizations. Previously she was the Community Manager at Bookish and the Director of Public Programs at Housing Works Bookstore Cafe, where she now serves on the board of directors. She is also the co-creator of Six-Word Memoirs and co-editor of the New York Times Bestseller Not Quite What I Was Planning and three other books.

5J: Not Just Cat GIFS: Using Tumblr to Build Literary Community

yesmuse2014session5k64

5K: Literary Idol: Star Author Edition


10:30am-11:45am on Saturday, May 3rd

Renowned author Anita Shreve will perform the first page of YOUR unpublished manuscript for the audience and a panel of her distinguished fellow writers: Elinor Lipman, Stephen McCauley, and Mameve Medwed. When one author hears a line that would prompt her to stop reading, she will raise her hand. Shreve will keep reading until a second author raises his hand. All of the authors, including Shreve, will then discuss why the lines gave them pause and offer craft-based and constructive suggestions to the author. All excerpts are read and evaluated anonymously. Note to participants: Please bring THE FIRST 250 WORDS of your manuscript double-spaced, titled, with its genre (fiction or nonfiction only, please) marked clearly at the top. Given the volume of submissions, we can’t guarantee that yours will be read aloud. This session is not for the thin-skinned!

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 64
Presenter(s):

Anita Shreve (Author)
Anita Shreve Anita Shreve is the author of sixteen novels. She lives in both Maine and Boston.

2F: Literary Idol: Star Author Edition

Mameve Medwed (Author)
Mameve Medwed Born in Maine and named for two grandmothers, Mamie and Eva, Bangor’s “other” writer (after Stephen King), Mameve Medwed is the author of five novels, Mail, Host Family, The End of an Error, How Elizabeth Barrett Browning Saved My Life (2007 Massachusetts Book Award Honors in Fiction) and Of Men and Their Mothers. She has published essays in three anthologies: How to Spell Chanukah (Algonquin), My Bookstore (Black Dog and Leventhal) and What My Mother Gave Me (Algonquin). Her short stories, essays, and book reviews have appeared in, among others, the New York Times, Gourmet, Yankee, Redbook, Playgirl, The Boston Globe, Ascent, The Missouri Review, Confrontation, Newsday and The Washington Post.

She and her husband (who met in nursery school) have two grown sons and live in Cambridge.

Literary Idol: Star Author Edition

Stephen McCauley (Author)
Stephen McCauley Stephen McCauley is the author of six novels including The Object of My Affection, Alternatives to Sex, and Insignificant Others. He has also published two novels under the pen name Rain Mitchell. Three of his novels have been made into feature films. He is currently Associate Director of Creative Writing at Brandeis University.

5K: Literary Idol: Star Author Edition

Elinor Lipman (Author)
Elinor Lipman Elinor Lipman is the author of 13 books of fiction and nonfiction, including The Inn at Lake Devine, Isabel's Bed, The Family Man, and most recently The View From Penthouse B and I Can't Complain: (All Too) Personal Essays. Her rhyming tweets were collected and published by Beacon Press as Tweet Land of Liberty: Irreverent Rhymes from the Political Circus. She was the 2011-12 Elizabeth Drew professor of creative writing at Smith College, and is a board member and trustee of PEN-America. Her novel, Then She Found Me, was adapted into a 2008 feature film, directed by and starring Helen Hunt.

5K: Literary Idol: Star Author Edition

yesmuse2014session5l47

5L: Loglines: Selling Your Book in a Single Sentence


10:30am-11:45am on Saturday, May 3rd

“What’s your book about?” Do you completely dread this question - knowing you are either about the bore the person with a long-winded plot description or do your masterpiece an injustice by cramming it into a generic ‘blank meets blank’ answer? A top-notch Logline is a writer’s most important asset – invaluable for query letters, for keeping laser focused on what makes a story unique, and for having the perfect elevator pitch ready to go. Learn the secret to crafting this vitally important sentence, and experience on-the-spot help as Lane takes rough Loglines direct from the audience and demonstrates how to mold them into the perfect selling tool.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 47
Presenter(s):

Lane Shefter Bishop (Literary Manager & Producer)
Lane Shefter Bishop Lane Shefter Bishop is a multi-award winning producer/director who has received numerous accolades for her work including an Emmy®, six Telly Awards, a Videographer Award, three Communicator Awards, a Sherril C. Corwin Award, an Aurora Award, a New York Festivals Award and the DGA Fellowship Award for Episodic Television.

Currently, Ms. Bishop is CEO of Vast Entertainment, a book-to-screen company with numerous projects in development, including feature films: Reboot (Peter Chernin/Chernin Ent) for Fox 2000, Bloody Mary: Origins (Neal Moritz/Original Films), The Fallen (Film Engine), The Last Apple (Ineffable Pictures) and The Duff (McG/Wonderland) for CBS Films; the TV Movie Choke (Dick Clark Productions) for Lifetime, which Ms. Bishop will also be directing. Other projects include television series like Stripped (John Davis Ent), and Confessions of a Sociopath (Scott Stuber Productions). Additionally, Ms. Bishop co-produced the film Assassination Games for MPCA. Ms. Bishop is also the former EVP of Motion Pictures/Television at TwinStar Entertainment.

Ms. Bishop began her work in the industry at Moxie Productions, where she produced and directed projects for such networks as ABC, Showtime, HBO and MTV. She has directed numerous television shows and five feature-length motion pictures, including The Day Laborers (aka Los Jornaleros) which was distributed through HBO and Blockbuster.

Ms. Bishop holds a B.A. in Literature from UC Santa Barbara and an M.F.A. in Production from USC's School of Cinema/Television. She is a director-member of the Directors Guild of America and the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.

5L: Loglines: Selling Your Book in a Single Sentence

yesmuse2014session5m51

5M: Building a Novel With Great Bones


10:30am-11:45am on Saturday, May 3rd

Whether writing one’s first novel or fifth, writers can get lost in the morass of researching and sketching their novels. For those beginning a novel (or those who have begun many a book, but never finished) this session will provide an approach for building the framework for your novel, using the “how do you eat an elephant” approach: one bite at a time. A step-by-step method, moving from initial idea to “what if,” to concept paper, characterization, indexing and building a spine, leads to a skeleton on which to construct one’s novel.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 51
Presenter(s):

Randy Susan Meyers (Author)
Randy Susan Meyers The dark drama of Randy Susan Meyers' novels is informed by her past work with criminal offenders and families impacted by emotional and family violence. The Massachusetts Center for The Book named her internationally bestselling debut novel, The Murderer's Daughter one of the “2011 Ten Best Works of Fiction,” noting “From the very first page and straight on until the last, the clear and distinctive voice of Randy Susan Meyers’ The Murderer’s Daughters will have you enraptured and wanting more—even though self-preservation may curl you into a ball to shield yourself from the painful circumstances of the two sisters. This is a heart-breaking and powerful novel.” Her second novel, The Comfort of Lies, a national bestseller, was described by the Boston Globe as, “sharp and biting, and sometimes wickedly funny when the author skewers Boston’s class and neighborhood dividing lines, but it has a lot of heart, too. Meyers writes beautifully about a formerly good marriage — the simple joys of stability, the pleasures of veteran intimacy — and deftly dissects just how ugly things can get after infidelity.” Her third novel, Accidents of Marriage, releases September 2014. Meyers is a founding member of ‘Beyond The Margins’ writing site, co-author of What To Do Before Your Book Launch with MJ Rose, and teaches writing at Grub Street. Meyers, the mother of two grown daughters, was born in Brooklyn, New York. She lives in Boston with her husband.

5M: Building a Novel With Great Bones

yes50

Option 1: Essentials of the Memoir


1:15pm-2:15pm on Saturday, May 3rd

When a memoir works, it seems magical—the voice at once intimate and universal, the story unfolding as though the author’s life, however difficult, had the good manners to occur in story form. What creates that impression? Inspired by his Grub Street Master Memoir class, Howie Axelrod will examine two key elements of memoir: Voice and Structure. He will discuss the specific challenges of making yourself both a narrator and a character, and of creating dramatic order out of your life’s events. We’ll also do some short exercises designed to help you put these ideas into practice.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Howard Axelrod (Special Guest)
Howard Axelrod Howard Axelrod has written for The New York Times Magazine, Harvard Magazine, DoubleTake, and his short fiction appeared in 25 and Under: Fiction (Norton/DoubleTake Books). He has been the recipient of a Michael C. Rockefeller fellowship from Harvard, and has been awarded residencies from the Blue Mountain Center, Ucross, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, the Kimmel Harding Nelson Center, the Hambidge Center, the Vermont Studio Center, and the Anderson Center. Axelrod has held teaching positions at Harvard, University of Arizona, and Wentworth Institute of Technology.

Option 1: Essentials of the Memoir

yes50

Option 2: Mapping Your Story: A Hands-On Exploration of Cartographic Storytelling


1:15pm-2:15pm on Saturday, May 3rd

Maps recreate an area in miniature, allowing us to picture, navigate, and control the geography of our world. The paradox of mapmaking, however, is similar to that of storytelling—-as soon as you decide what to leave in and leave out, you necessarily change the story you have to tell. Using examples from A.A. Milne’s Hundred Acre Wood to J.R.R. Tolkien’s Middle-Earth, we'll examine how maps help elucidate and complicate our understanding of the books they accompany. Then, after learning the essential elements of mapmaking, participants will try their hand at drawing their own maps to enhance a story of their own choosing.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Michael Blanding (Special Guest)
Michael Blanding Michael Blanding (www.michaelblanding.com) is a senior fellow at the Schuster Institute for Investigative Reporting at Brandeis University, and an award-winning journalist and author specializing in narrative non-fiction. His first book, The Coke Machine: The Dirty Truth Behind the World’s Favorite Soft Drink (www.thecokemachine.com) was published by Avery/Penguin in 2010. His upcoming book, The Map Thief, a true-crime narrative about international map thief E. Forbes Smiley III, is due out from Gotham/Penguin in spring 2014. Previously, he was a senior writer and editor for Boston magazine, and he continues to write magazine articles for the likes of The Boston Globe Sunday Magazine, The Nation, Consumers Digest, Forbes, and other publications.

Option 2: Mapping Your Story: A Hands-On Exploration of Cartographic Storytelling

yes50

Option 3: Finding The Young Adult Voice


1:15pm-2:15pm on Saturday, May 3rd

In this discussion, I would first briefly explain the inspiration behind my two young adult novels, and how they were shaped into being. Then I would open up a discussion on the ways writers can go about finding their young adult "voice", what it means to create multi-dimesional characters, a strong setting, and a plot with the right hook. If there's time, I can also talk and answer questions about the actual publishing process.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class and Guided Writing
Leader(s):

Stewart Lewis (Special Guest)
Stewart Lewis At the University of Colorado, Stewart directed plays and starred in the main stage production of Pippin. At the time, his band Acoustic Junction was becoming a college jam band phenomenon, opening for Blues Traveler and The Band among others. After graduating college, Stewart left the band to pursue acting in New York. After a short stint on CBS’s Guiding Light, Stewart decided to move back to Colorado and pursue a solo singer-songwriting career. His powerful stage presence and performance earned him the opportunity to open for such major artists as Shawn Colvin, Ani Difranco, Paula Cole, Sheryl Crow, and many others. His three independent releases have sold over 15,000 copies, and his band’s first CD Love It for What It Is sold 30,000 plus.

Being a fan of short stories since college, Stewart began writing his own and decided to expand the arc of his career, moving to Los Angeles to get his Masters at USC in their prestigious writing program, where he studied with the likes of Hubert Selby Jr. and John Rechy.

After that he went on to publish two highly acclaimed Young Adult Novels, You Have Seven Messages and The Secret Ingredient. They have been translated into five languages.

Currently, Stewart Lewis is living in Washington DC where in addition to finishing his third YA novel When the Stars Align, he continues to perform and license his songs, which have been featured on the television shows and films worldwide.

For more info, please visit www.stewartlewis.com

Option 3: Finding The Young Adult Voice

yes50

Option 4: How to Turn Personal Tragedy into Entertaining Fiction


1:15pm-2:15pm on Saturday, May 3rd

Writing about one’s painful past can feel overwhelming. You’re forced to revisit all the ways disease, death, or abuse hurt you and those around you. So how do you turn this morass into entertaining fiction? In this session, we explore how to mine underlying emotions for dramatic effect – plumbing depths without getting plowed under. We talk about techniques of comedic twists, exaggeration, and drama to free a writer to create a story that is truer than truth, and funnier to boot. We focus on questions of craft and process – how to ride your energy to a higher plane. After all, writing should heal you, not hurt you.

Type: Lecture
Leader(s):

David Kalish (Special Guest)
David Kalish David Kalish is a novelist, playwright, and former Associated Press journalist. Inspired by his own battle with cancer and divorce, his novel, The Opposite of Everything (WiDo, 2014), taught him the value of comedic writing as a tool to turn personal history into entertainment. The novel grew out of his studies at the Bennington Graduate Writing Seminars, where he earned his MFA. His short fiction has been published in numerous literary journals, his non-fiction in The Writer’s Chronicle, and a short film of his, "Regular Guy," won honors in film festivals here and abroad. Before Bennington, he worked for twelve years for The Associated Press, and his articles have appeared in major newspapers. He is currently working on a second novel, Stoner Hero, and a Latin-themed comedic musical entitled, The Gringo Who Stole Christmas.

Option 4: How to Turn Personal Tragedy into Entertaining Fiction

Lâle Davidson (Special Guest)
Lâle Davidson Dr. Lâle Davidson, professor of English, has been writing, reading and storytelling for over 20 years. She teaches fiction writing, public speaking and composition at SUNY Adirondack where she founded the visiting author series, The Writers Project. Her stories have appeared in The North American Review, The Little Magazine, Phoebe and Artists Unite. She graduated from Oberlin College and earned her Doctor of Arts in writing at the University at Albany. She collaborated on the novel Feeding Christine by Barbara Chepaitis (Bantam, 2001) and wrote the libretto for Billy and Zelda, an opera commissioned and performed by OperaDelaware. She was also a contributor to Refiguring the Ph.D. in English Studies: Writing, Doctoral Education and The Fusion-based Curriculum by Steve North (2001).

Option 4: How to Turn Personal Tragedy into Entertaining Fiction

yes50

Option 5: Going Graphic


1:15pm-2:15pm on Saturday, May 3rd

Have an idea for a graphic novel or comic, but not sure where to go from there? In Going Graphic, we will discuss the steps involved in taking a graphic novel or comic series idea and turning it into a reality. I'll go over the format for a standard comic / graphic novel script as well as share tips on how to find and collaborate with an artist, publishing options for graphic novels, and how to market the work, including the dos and don’ts at comic conventions. Near the end of the session, there will be a Q&A. Script examples, lists of comic publishers and conventions will be provided for every attendee.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Jennie Wood (Special Guest)
Jennie Wood Jennie Wood is the creator and writer of Flutter, a comic series. Flutter, Volume One: Hell Can Wait, the first graphic novel in the series, is available on 215 Ink. The Advocate calls Flutter one of the best LGBT graphic novels of 2013. She is also a contributor to the award-winning, New York Times best-selling comic anthology, Fubar: Empire of the Rising Dead as well as the Fubar: American History Z and Vic Boone: Bourbon and Buckshot anthologies. She writes non-fiction features for the educational website, infoplease.com. Jennie is one of Go Magazine’s Women We Love for 2013. For more, go to www.jenniewood.com.

Option 5: Going Graphic

yes50

Option 6: Science, Through Fiction


1:15pm-2:15pm on Saturday, May 3rd

Science writing is gaining in popularity, with people increasingly eager to hear about exciting new ideas from the frontiers of knowledge. Such writing has conventionally been restricted to the realm of non-fiction, which, while it may succeed in exciting a reader's mind, often fails to stir emotion. But, humans are primarily feeling creatures and most of our endeavors - science included - are fueled by passion. In fact, it has even been proven that we learn and absorb information better when our emotions are engaged. The best kind of science writing moves both heart and mind. When we write about science on a purely intellectual level, we only have half the impact, because we've left out half the story! In this interactive seminar, we will write, talk, and explore ways of leveraging the emotional experience of fiction to communicate and explain important ideas, without compromising fact. This is not science fiction, but science through fiction.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Tasneem Zehra Husain (Special Guest)
Tasneem Zehra Husain Tasneem Zehra Husain (tasneemzehrahusain.com) is a writer, educator and Pakistan’s first female string theorist. Tasneem is actively involved in science outreach, and frequently talks to students and lay audiences about theoretical physics. She has written numerous articles for newspapers and magazines, is a regular columnist for the award-winning blog 3quarksdaily.com and has contributed to anthologies of science writing for adults and children. Tasneem’s first popular science novel Only The Longest Threads [Paul Dry Books, 2014] reimagines critical moments in history when new scientific theories redefined our understanding not only of the universe, but also our place in it.

Option 6: Science, Through Fiction

yes50

Option 7: Get Unstuck: 6 Ways to Get Writing Again


1:15pm-2:15pm on Saturday, May 3rd

Getting stuck is normal and it happens to the best of us.

But being productive comes from a deep knowledge of ourselves. When and where we like to write, as well as, how we can capture inspiration especially when it strikes at the most inconvenient times.

In this session, we'll discuss some simple, practical and creative ways to push past some of the obstacles and get you writing again.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Jennifer Mattson (Special Guest)
Jennifer Mattson Jennifer Mattson is a journalist, writer and Grub Street instructor. A former producer for CNN and NPR, she currently writes and reports about international news, books, yoga, spirituality and travel. Her work has appeared in TheAtlantic.com, USA Today, The Boston Globe, The Women's Review of Books, AsianCorrespondent.com and CNN.com. She is a Contributing Writer at Kripalu.org and the former Managing Editor of AsiaSociety.org. Follow her on Facebook or on Twitter at @jennifermattson. She is writing her first book.

Option 7: Get Unstuck: 6 Ways to Get Writing Again

yes50

Option 8: Writing the Money-Making Essay


1:15pm-2:15pm on Saturday, May 3rd

Creative non-fiction is that rare genre that both allows writers to express themselves and offers the chance for mere mortals to earn real money from their writing -- up to $1 per word or more, depending on the market. This session will cover how to find markets that pay for creative nonfiction, how to come up with great essay ideas, and how to stay true to your inner writer while the businessperson in you cashes the checks.

Type: Discussion Class and Guided Writing
Leader(s):

Calvin Hennick (Special Guest)
Calvin Hennick Calvin Hennick’s, fiction, essays, and journalism have appeared in Bellevue Literary Review, Six Minute Magazine, The Boston Globe, Runner’s World, Eating Well, and dozens of other publications. He has taught writing at Grub Street, UMass Boston and in New York City’s public schools.

Option 8: Writing the Money-Making Essay

yes50

Option 9: Crowdfunding For Authors: How To Publish Successfully


1:15pm-2:15pm on Saturday, May 3rd

Crowdfunding has grown into a multi-billion dollar industry that allows business savvy creatives to raise funds and market their upcoming projects. Knowledge and staying up to date with the latest publishing trends are the keys to success in the publishing industry. Through this session we aim to decode crowdfunding and explain how it can and should be used by authors to foster their success in the book market.

Type: Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Hellen Barbara (Special Guest)
Hellen Barbara An educator and philanthropist, Hellen’s endeavors are broad and accomplished. She has an MS in Education and a BBA in International Management. She is the founder and former president of For the Kids Foundation, a nonprofit focused on education improvement in New York. Additionally, Hellen has helmed a variety of roles including Events Director at Surfside 3/MarineMax, Buyer at Macy’s Corporate , and Travel Advisor at Virtuoso. She sits on the board of the Gavin’s Got Heart Foundation and a member of the Exceptional Women in Publishing organization. She is fluent in Spanish and Italian and the mother of four daughters.

Option 9: Crowdfunding For Authors: How To Publish Successfully

Bethany Carlson (Special Guest)
Bethany Carlson Bethany Carlson, CFA is a business consultant to artists.

She has done research for NASA, investment consulting for the largest companies and governments in the world, business consulting for start-ups and industry leaders, and led tours in the Peruvian desert. Her global experience now helps artists to become entrepreneurs. She has directed crowdfunding campaigns for albums, films, and books.

Her publishing projects have ranged from a children's picture book about a lemonade stand to a gritty New Jersey mafia memoir. She has enjoyed working with authors on Cli-Fi, biography, paranormal, YA and MG fiction, graphic novels, and how-to’s. She began in the independent publishing world in 2005 – in the dark ages before eBooks and print-on-demand.

Bethany received her BS in Applied and Computational Mathematical Sciences with Emphasis in Economics, with Honors, and a Minor in Spanish, from the University of Washington, in 2000. She subsequently passed the UK IMC in 2001 and obtained her CFA Charter in 2003.

Bethany splits her time between Charlottesville and Seattle, and her clients are worldwide. Well, at least where there is an internet connection and cell phone reception. She’s currently anxiously awaiting the English release of the next Haruki Murakami novel.

Option 9: Crowdfunding For Authors: How To Publish Successfully

Jenny Hudson (Special Guest)
Jenny Hudson Jenny Hudson brings her book production expertise to Merrimack Media, a publishing, and promotion company in Cambridge. After becoming hooked on the industry after self-publishing three of her own novels by 2008, she's helped authors, by providing editing, book design, publishing, web and promotion services through Merrimack Media. Recently the company formed a partnership with Pubslush, and now authors can now also fund their books and then publish them all in one place. Jenny heads two active meetups for writers in the Boston area: The Write, Publish, and Promote Network, and the Digital Publishing Network and is on the board of IPNE, Independent Book Publishers of New England.

Option 9: Crowdfunding For Authors: How To Publish Successfully

yes50

Option 10: Changing Diapers, Changing Roles


1:15pm-2:15pm on Saturday, May 3rd

What’s Richard Ford’s advice to aspiring writers? “Don’t have children.” Yes, parenthood presents a profound challenge to the writing life. But it can also complement it in unexpected ways. The flexibility that parenting requires can translate into flexibility as writers, providing opportunities for new material, new connections, and new professional territory. In this panel, four fiction writers talk about the ways that having children has reshaped their work and enriched their livelihoods–-pushing them into new roles as bloggers, memoirists, editors, and community leaders–-and offer concrete advice for writers eager to transform parenthood into possibility.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Anna Solomon (Author)
Anna Solomon Anna Solomon is the author of the novel The Little Bride (Riverhead), a Boston Globe bestseller, and co-editor, with Eleanor Henderson, of Labor Day: True Birth Stories By Today's Best Women Writers (FSG). Her short stories, published in One Story, Ploughshares, The Georgia Review, The Missouri Review, Harvard Review, and elsewhere, have twice been awarded the Pushcart Prize, and her story, “The Lobster Mafia Story,” was the Boston Book Festival’s 2013 One City One Story selection. Her essays have appeared in publications including The New York Times Magazine, MORE, and Kveller. The recipient of fellowships from Bread Loaf, MacDowell, Yaddo, and the Rhode Island State Council for the Arts, as well as an MFA from the Iowa Writers Workshop, Solomon has taught writing at Grub Street, Sackett Street, Manhattanville College, Frequency, and, currently, at Brown University. She lives in Providence, Rhode Island, where she is at work on her second novel.

Option 10: Changing Diapers, Changing Roles

Brian Gresko (Special Guest)
Brian Gresko Brian Gresko is the editor of the anthology When I First Held You, featuring 22 critically acclaimed authors on fatherhood, due out from Berkley Books on May 6th. At the heart of his work lies a fascination with culture, gender roles, and parenting. His essays and journalism have appeared on the Huffington Post, Salon, TheAtlantic.com, the Daily Beast, Paris Review Daily, The Rumpus, and the Los Angeles Review of Books, among numerous others. In print, he has contributed to Poets & Writers, Glimmer Train Stories, and Slice literary magazine. He keeps a daily column about dads for Babble, curates the Pen Parentis Literary Salon, and is also at work on a novel.

Option 10: Changing Diapers, Changing Roles

Alexi Zentner (Special Guest)
Alexi Zentner Alexi Zentner is the author of the novels The Lobster Kings (forthcoming 2014) and Touch. He is published in the United States by W. W. Norton & Company, and in Canada by Knopf Canada. Touch has been published or is forthcoming in a dozen countries and ten languages, and The Lobster Kings is forthcoming in at least four countries and on audiobook. Touch was shortlisted for The 2011 Governor General’s Literary Award, The Center for Fiction’s 2011 Flahery-Dunnan First Novel Prize, the 2012 VCU Cabell First Novelist Award, and the 2011 Amazon.ca First Novel Award, and longlisted for the 2011 Scotiabank Giller Prize, and the 2013 International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award.

Alexi’s fiction has appeared in The Atlantic Monthly, Narrative Magazine, Tin House, Glimmer Train, The Southern Review, The Walrus, and on the CBC. He is the winner of both the O. Henry Prize (jury favorite) and the Narrative Prize. Alexi is an Assistant Professor at Binghamton University and a faculty member in the Sierra Nevada College low residency MFA program. Alexi has also taught creative writing at Cornell University, where he received his MFA, in the Brooklyn College MFA program, and at the Rutgers-Camden Writers' Conference, and has been a teaching fellow at the Bread Loaf and Wesleyan University writing conferences.

Alexi Zentner was born and raised in Kitchener, Ontario, and currently lives in Ithaca, New York, with his wife and two daughters. He holds both Canadian and American citizenship.

Option 10: Changing Diapers, Changing Roles

Eleanor Henderson (Author)
Eleanor Henderson Eleanor Henderson is the author of the novel Ten Thousand Saints, which was named one of the Top 10 Books of 2011 by The New York Times and a finalist for the Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction from The Los Angeles Times, and co-editor of Labor Day: Birth Stories for the Twenty-First Century, forthcoming from Farrar Strauss & Giroux in April. Her stories and essays have appeared in Poets & Writers, The Wall Street Journal, Virginia Quarterly Review, AGNI, Salon, NPR, The New York Times, and Best American Short Stories 2009. An assistant professor in the Department of Writing at Ithaca College, she lives in Ithaca, New York, with her husband and two sons.

Option 10: Changing Diapers, Changing Roles

yes50

Option 11: Lessons from the Novel Incubator: Narrative Distance


1:15pm-2:15pm on Saturday, May 3rd

This hour will discuss the all-important and often misunderstood device of Narrative Distance and the ways in which it grants the novelist flexibility within the usual point of view restraints and helps convince the reader of the passage of time. Examples and a short exercise will help your grapple with this difficult writing issue and discover its possibilities.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Michelle Hoover (Author)
Michelle Hoover Michelle Hoover teaches writing at Boston University and Grub Street. She has published short stories and novel excerpts in numerous journals, including Prairie Schooner, The Massachusetts Review, Confrontation, StoryQuarterly, and TriQuarterly. She has been the Philip Roth Writer-in-Residence at Bucknell University, a MacDowell Fellow, and the 2005 winner of the PEN/New England Discovery Award for Fiction. Her work has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and published in Best New American Voices. Her debut novel, The Quickening, was shortlisted for the Center for Fiction's Flaherty-Dunnan First Novel Prize, was a Finalist for the Indies Choice Debut of 2010 and Forward Magazine's Best Literary Book of 2010, and is a 2010 Massachusetts Book Award "Must Read" pick. She is a 2014 National Endowment of the Arts Fellow, awarded for her upcoming second novel, Bottomland.

2E: Essentials of the Novel

Option 11: Lessons from the Novel Incubator: Narrative Distance

yes50

Option 12: Writing on the Hyphen: Capturing the Authentic and Avoiding the Stereotype in “Ethnic” Literature


1:15pm-2:15pm on Saturday, May 3rd

How do we write fiction that captures specific cultural experiences without giving in to stereotypes and branding? How do we explore the authenticity of a culture without falling into the trap of being an “ethnic” writer? In this session, two authors whose novels successfully straddle different cultures will explore the many ways to balance writing on the hyphen. You will walk away with ideas on how to address ethnicity in your own work, and how to position yourself as a writer of authenticity, not just ethnicity.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Marjan Kamali (Special Guest)
Marjan Kamali Marjan Kamali was born in Turkey to Iranian parents. She spent her childhood in Kenya, Germany, Turkey, Iran, and the U.S. and has spent her adult life in Switzerland, Australia and America. After graduating from U.C. Berkeley, Marjan received her MBA from Columbia University and an MFA in creative writing from New York University. Her short fiction has been a top finalist in Glimmer Train’s Fiction Open and the Asian American Short Story contest. Her work has also been broadcast on BBC Radio 4, published in two anthology collections and in The Wall Street Journal. Together Tea is her debut novel and was a Boston Globe reading selection, an NPR WBUR Good Read Pick, and a Target Emerging Author Selection. It has been translated into several languages including German, Italian, Norwegian, Czech, and Slovakian. Marjan lives with her husband and two children in the Boston area and teaches writing at Boston University.

Option 12: Writing on the Hyphen: Capturing the Authentic and Avoiding the Stereotype in “Ethnic” Literature

Henriette Lazaridis Power (Author)
Henriette Lazaridis Power Henriette Lazaridis Power's debut novel The Clover House was published by Ballantine in 2013 and was a Boston Globe best-seller and a Target Emerging Authors selection. Power has degrees in English Literature from Middlebury College; Oxford University, where she was a Rhodes Scholar; and the University of Pennsylvania. She taught English literature at Harvard for ten years. Her work has appeared in Narrative Magazine, New England Review, the New York Times online, The Millions, Huffington Post, and elsewhere, and she was the recipient of a 2006 Massachusetts Cultural Council Artists Grant. In 2010, she launched The Drum, a literary magazine publishing exclusively in audio form. A competitive rower, Power trains regularly on the Charles River in Boston.

7F: Private Writer, Public Figure: How to Thrive at the Podium, the Mic, or the Conference Table

yes50

Option 1: Essentials of Character


2:30pm-3:30pm on Saturday, May 3rd

Finely rendered characters in a story can stay with readers for a long time. But how do writers create striking and vivid characters? This session will cover the basics of what makes a good character and also explore ways to add texture and depth to our protagonists (and antagonists), whether they’re human or fantastical creatures. Come to the session with one or two of your characters in mind, and be prepared for some exercises and experimentation as we work together to bring them to life.

Type: Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Eson Kim (Special Guest)
Eson Kim Eson Kim holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Emerson College, and her stories have appeared in magazines such as Calyx Journal, Denver Quarterly, and The Massachusetts Review. She received a Writing Fellowship from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, and earned the David B. Saunders Award for creative nonfiction. She was also nominated for the Pushcart Prize and named to the Notable list of Best American Essays. In addition, her work reached the finalist stage for the Arts & Letters Prize, The American Literary Review Award, and the Glimmer Train Family Matters competition. She has served as a reader for Ploughshares Literary Magazine for nearly 15 years, recently focusing on its Solos program for novella-length works. She also founded a community book club program, Untethered Reads, where books are circulated in random public locations as an informal way to promote reading beyond the confines of genre and category.

Option 1: Essentials of Character

yes50

Option 2: Writing About Health


2:30pm-3:30pm on Saturday, May 3rd

With approximately 133 million Americans—nearly one out of every two adults—living with at least one chronic illness, books about health topics have the potential to be bestsellers. Writing a book that helps readers live better with a medical issue or helps to build a patient community can be personally and maybe even financially rewarding.

So how do you do it?

There is a difference between writing what you know and journalism. Our books include a mix of both: our own health narratives combined with other people’s stories and advice to create books that speak universally to readers.

As authors, we’ll discuss how we identified our book topics, built our platforms and publicity plans, crafted book proposals, and how we landed agents who ultimately sold our books to traditional publishers. Using our experiences writing about health and teaching writing, we’ll offer strategies for those looking to begin telling their own medical stories, including: how to combine memoir and personal narrative with research; how to navigate issues of translation and accessibility in medical writing; and insights about the importance of social media, whether to self publish, and what happens after publication.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Cheryl Alkon (Special Guest)
Cheryl Alkon Cheryl Alkon is the author of Balancing Pregnancy With Pre-Existing Diabetes: Healthy Mom, Healthy Baby (Demos Health). Her book was called “Hands down, the best book out there on diabetes and pregnancy,” (Gary Scheiner, author, Think Like A Pancreas) and “a book that no woman who is pregnant with diabetes should be without.” (Michelle Kowalski, blogger, dLife.com) She is a longtime writer, researcher, and editor; her articles have appeared in various print and online media including USA Today, USA Weekend, DiabetesMonitor.com, Prevention.com, More, Weight Watchers and Body & Soul magazines. A former staffer at both Boston magazine and the New England Journal of Medicine, Alkon is also the creator of Managing the Sweetness Within, a blog covering the intersection of pregnancy, infertility, and type 1 diabetes. Cheryl has a BA from Brandeis University and a MSJ from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. She and her family live in Natick. Find her at CherylAlkon.com.

Option 2: Writing About Health

Laurie Edwards (Special Guest)
Laurie Edwards Laurie Edwards is the author of two books on chronic illness, including the recent In the Kingdom of the Sick: A Social History of Chronic Illness in America. Her first book, Life Disrupted: Getting Real About Chronic Illness in Your Twenties and Thirties, was named one of 2008’s Best Consumer Health Books by Library Journal. Her writing has appeared in the New York Times, Boston Globe, Glamour, Psychology Today, WBUR’s Cognoscenti, and many other online and print outlets. Edwards is an advocate for young adults with chronic illness and is a frequent speaker at conferences, webinars, and other venues. She teaches writing for the health sciences at Northeastern University and currently lives outside of Boston. Please see www.laurieedwardswriter.com.

Option 2: Writing About Health

yes50

Option 3: You've Had Something Published, Now What?


2:30pm-3:30pm on Saturday, May 3rd

So you've had a piece or two published in newspapers, magazines or literary journals. You know the basics of a cover letter and you're ready to take your submitting skills to the next level. That might mean the frequency with which you publish, or publishing in a way that gets you closer to a specific goal, such as a book. It may mean moving up to the next tier of publications (we'll question if these tiers still exist and the very different things various publications can do for your career.) Or your next level could simply mean publishing pieces that are more fun, interesting, or longer—pieces that are less constrained by the lobotomizing effects of anticipating ‘what editors are looking for’ and more "you.' We'll look at ways to be more strategic and successful so you're not just lobbing queries into the abyss, and how to view publishing your pieces not quantitatively but qualitatively. We’ll move between small tips and overarching philosophies. We'll share submission horror stories, victories, nagging fears and longshot dreams. And we'll learn the important difference between simply publishing and publishing what you want. (Note: most examples will deal with nonfiction but many tips will apply to submitting short fiction as well.)

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Steve Macone (Special Guest)
Steve Macone Steve Macone is a headline contributor at The Onion. His essays, humor writing and reporting have also appeared in The American Scholar, New York Times, Atlantic Online, New Yorker, Boston Globe, Boston Globe Magazine, Boston Phoenix, Salon.com, Morning News, Christian Science Monitor, The Drum, Weekly Dig, and AOL News. He's been featured on NPR, Longreads, and received multiple notable essay mentions in the Best American Essays series.

Option 3: You've Had Something Published, Now What?

yes50

Option 4: Making Strong Prose: The Economy of Language


2:30pm-3:30pm on Saturday, May 3rd

The strength of your prose is dependent upon the economy of your language. Finding the most direct and spare way to say what you want – including choosing the strongest verbs – is the best way to make muscular, memorable sentences. In this session, author Alden Jones will discuss what makes prose move, using examples from writers such as Amy Hempel and Lydia Davis. The bulk of the session will be devoted to economizing the prose that you bring with you to the session. Participants should come with one page of fiction or creative nonfiction and be prepared to have it read aloud and discussed with an eye for economy. *Note that, depending on class size, we may not get to everyone’s page.* We will then have a short amount for participants to edit their page independently using the tools we have discussed.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Alden Jones (Special Guest)
Alden Jones Alden Jones is the author of The Blind Masseuse: A Traveler’s Memoir from Costa Rica to Cambodia (University of Wisconsin Press, 2013) and the forthcoming story collection Unaccompanied Minors (New American Press, 2014), winner of the New American Fiction Prize. Her essays and short stories have appeared in AGNI, Time Out New York, Post Road, the Barcelona Review, the Iowa Review, Prairie Schooner, The Smart Set, Gulf Coast, the Best American Travel Writing, and NPR’s Cognoscenti. She teaches at Emerson College and at Grub Street.

8E: Essentials of Dialogue

Option 4: Making Strong Prose: The Economy of Language

yes50

Option 5: Mastering Your Muse: Strategies and Software for Shaping Inspiration


2:30pm-3:30pm on Saturday, May 3rd

The search for story can be a long and lonely journey. Adman, artist and writer Bryan Wiggins will show you how his right/left brain creative and analytical skills led him to the teacher and technology that allowed him to tame his novel in progress.

This presentation will take you through his use of the writing programs “Scrivener,” and “Aeon Timeline” to apply story structures principles learned from writing guru Larry Brooks (Story Engineering, Story Physics). An examination of the chaptered divisions of Bryan’s manuscript will reveal his “Telescopic View of Story Structure” through use of tools like the split-screen views, graphical chronologies and hierarchical “binder” view of evolving content that allows him to toggle between the macro and micro perspectives essential for shaping large-scale work.

If you’ve ever struggled to find your place within the world or your novel or just need a simple strategy for adding form and focus to your work, this presentation is for you.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Bryan Wiggins (Special Guest)
Bryan Wiggins Bryan Wiggins is an advertising agency creative director and freelance writer and illustrator. His illustrated personal essays have appeared in Canoe & Kayak and Sea Kayaker. He also hosts “The Pine Cone Writers’ Den” a group of Southern Maine writers who meet monthly to workshop their essays, short stories and novels. His website is: wigginscreative.com.

Option 5: Mastering Your Muse: Strategies and Software for Shaping Inspiration

yes50

Option 6: How to Talk to Editors (And Other Scary People)


2:30pm-3:30pm on Saturday, May 3rd

Emerging writers are understandably thrilled when the unthinkable happens: a dream editor says, "Yes!" But what if the editor says something more puzzling, such as "Yes, but only if you change everything." How do you respond? What if the editor says, "Yes!" and then doesn't return your emails for six months? What do you do? In this discussion class, we'll learn about the editing process at both literary journals and consumer magazines. We'll talk about editorial expectations and the common snafus that happen everywhere. We'll talk about actual experiences that writers have had with different types of publications and how to handle them with grace and professionalism. We'll talk about how to respond to detailed rejections, how to question major editorial changes. After all, learning to advocate for a story or essay without being married to every word is great practice for dealing with agents later on, and then with critics. We'll also talk about line edits, what they are, what they ought to be, and when you must take them and which ones you can safely ignore. The goal of the session is to prepare you to respond to busy and overworked editors with confidence so that you can build lasting relationships with the people who want to publish your work.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Michelle Seaton (Special Guest)
Michelle Seaton Michelle Seaton’s short fiction has appeared in One Story, Harvard Review and Sycamore Review, among others. Her journalism and essays have appeared in Robb Report, Bostonia, Yankee Magazine, The Pinch and Lake Effect. Her essay, “How to Work a Locker Room” appeared in the 2009 edition of Best American Nonrequired Reading. She is the coauthor of the books The Way of Boys (William Morrow, 2009) and the Cardiac Recovery Handbook (Hatherleigh Press, 2004). She has been an instructor with Grub Street since 2000 and is the lead instructor of and created the curriculum for Grub Street's Memoir Project, a program that offers free memoir classes to senior citizens in Boston neighborhoods. The project has visited fourteen Boston neighborhoods and produced four anthologies. Twenty-two participants on Nantucket have also completed a Memoir Project class, and that anthology is called Little Grey Island.

Option 6: How to Talk to Editors (And Other Scary People)

yes50

Option 7: Real Characters: Writing the Historical Figure in Fiction and Non-Fiction


2:30pm-3:30pm on Saturday, May 3rd

In this session, open to writers of both fiction and creative nonfiction, we'll explore how to use historical figures in innovative and creative ways, share tips on conducting research and how you can use letters, photographs and true events to enliven your writing. We'll also dig into the most puzzling and intriguing moments in writing about actual people, including the discovery of unexpected material and what to do with the fabulous facts that didn't make it into your book. Come ready to explore these topics. You'll leave with resources--and ideas--galore.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Rosie Sultan (Special Guest)
Rosie Sultan Award-winning writer Rosie Sultan’s novel Helen In Love is published by Viking/Penguin. She is the recipient of the PEN Discovery Award for fiction and was a fellow at The Virginia Center for the Creative Arts. The Washington Post, The Huffington Post, The New York Times Book Review, The Boston Globe, Good Housekeeping Magazine, Library Journal, and Other Voices have published or reviewed her work. She has taught writing at Grub Street, Boston University, and Suffolk University. She is a manuscript consultant for Grub Street.

Rosie’s novel is an American Library Association Book Club Pick. The Washington Post says of Helen In Love, “Sultan has given the adult Helen Keller a new voice and reminds us of both her brilliance and her humanity.”

Option 7: Real Characters: Writing the Historical Figure in Fiction and Non-Fiction

Maria Mutch (Special Guest)
Maria Mutch Maria Mutch's fiction, essays and poetry have appeared in Guernica, Ocean State Review, Bayou Magazine, Literary Mama, The Malahat Review, Fiddlehead and Grain. Her debut memoir, Know the Night: A Memoir of Survival in the Small Hours is forthcoming from Simon & Schuster and Knopf Canada in March, 2014. She lives in Rhode Island.

Option 7: Real Characters: Writing the Historical Figure in Fiction and Non-Fiction

yes50

Option 8: On Not Knowing Where to Begin


2:30pm-3:30pm on Saturday, May 3rd

We sometimes take for granted that stories have beginnings, middles, and endings, and that we should figure out which is which ASAP, since the opening is the foundation of the whole house. But what if that isn't the case; suppose the struggle to find the first bit of thread of the story is itself part of the story? In this session, we'll look at some stories about origins, ranging from a traditional Haida tale to the contemporary work of Kyle Minor, Claire Vaye Watkins, Italo Calvino, and Taiye Selasi, and look at a clip from the film "City of God." We'll see how complicated beginnings are, and revel in the fun of throwing "once upon a time" to the winds.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Tim Horvath (Special Guest)
Tim Horvath Tim Horvath is the author of Understories, published by Bellevue Literary Press, which won the New Hampshire Literary Award for Outstanding Fiction for 2012-13. His work also appears in journals such as Conjunctions, Fiction, and the Normal School. He teaches in the BFA and MFA programs at the New Hampshire Institute of Art, and can be contacted at www.timhorvath.com.

Option 8: On Not Knowing Where to Begin

yes50

Option 9: After the MFA: Constructing and Leading a Writing Life


2:30pm-3:30pm on Saturday, May 3rd

What happens after you earn an MFA? What might you "do" with the degree? How do you transition from the structure and community of a writing program to a full-fledged life as a writer? Panel members will share their diverse stories and impart "lessons learned" along the way. Past, present, and prospective MFA students are all invited to attend!

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Erika Dreifus (Special Guest)
Erika Dreifus Erika Dreifus is the author of Quiet Americans: Stories (Last Light Studio), an American Library Association Sophie Brody Medal Honor Title for outstanding achievement in Jewish literature. Erika also writes essays, poetry, and book reviews. Since 2004, she has published the popular free e-newsletter, The Practicing Writer. Learn more about Erika at http://erikadreifus.com and follow her at @erikadreifus

Option 9: After the MFA: Constructing and Leading a Writing Life

Matt Bell (Author)
Matt Bell Matt Bell's debut novel In the House upon the Dirt between the Lake and the Woods was longlisted for the Flaherty-Dunnan First Novel Prize. He is also the author of two previous books, How They Were Found and Cataclysm Baby. He teaches creative writing at Northern Michigan University.

6F: Revising the Novel: Strategies for Every Draft

Laura van den Berg (Author)
Laura van den Berg Laura van den Berg is the author of the story collections What the World Will Look Like When All the Water Leaves (Dzanc Books, 2009), which was a Barnes & Noble “Discover Great New Writers” selection and shortlisted for the Frank O’Connor International Award, and The Isle of Youth (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2013). A New York Times Editors’ Choice, The Isle of Youth was named a “Best Book of 2013” by NPR, Amazon, The Boston Globe, The New Republic, and O, The Oprah Magazine and was a Nylon Magazine Book Club selection. Her first novel, Find Me, is forthcoming from FSG in 2015. In recent years, Laura has taught in the creative writing programs at George Washington University, Goucher College, Johns Hopkins University, and Emerson College, and her stories have been received a Pushcart Prize and an O. Henry Award (2014). A Florida native, she currently lives in the Boston area.

5G: The Blazing Thing: Imagination in Fiction

Patricia Park (Special Guest)
Patricia Park Patricia Park was born and raised in New York City and teaches at CUNY Queens College.

She received her BA in English from Swarthmore College and her MFA in fiction from Boston University. Her essays have appeared in the New York Times, Guardian, Slice Magazine, Fourth Genre, and others. A former publicist with the Random House Publishing Group, Avalon Publishing Group, and Columbia University Press, she has worked with numerous New York Times bestselling authors including Amy Tan, Anne Perry, and the late Harvey Pekar. She is the recipient of writing fellowships with Fulbright, The Center for Fiction, The American Association of University Women, and The Korean Literature Translation Institute. She is a Novel Incubator alum, and her debut novel Re Jane is forthcoming from Penguin/Viking.

Option 9: How to Win Grants and Fellowships

yes50

Option 10: Lessons from the Memoir Incubator


2:30pm-3:30pm on Saturday, May 3rd

The memoirist is asked to play many roles: simultaneously that of the author, the narrator, and the character. And while those of the author (you who sits at the keyboard) and the character (younger you, in the scenes you are recollecting) may be easily understood, that of the narrator is both the slipperiest and perhaps the most important. As Vivian Gornick writes, “we pull from ourselves the narrator who can shape better than we can the inchoate flow of event into which we are continually being plunged.” The narrator is the one who both makes sense of and problematizes life, the one who pulls the reader through the book. Philip Lopate reminds us that the narrator must do no less than deliver to the reader what they’ve come to the book for: the sense that an active, searching mind lies behind the memoirist’s inquiry. So much for the narrator to do! But just who is this crucial construct? In this seminar, developed from the lessons Grub Street's year-long Memoir Incubator course, we’ll combine craft lessons with analyzing published work to show you what a strong narrator can do for your work and how to build one.

Type: Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Alexandria Marzano-Lesnevich (Author)
Alexandria Marzano-Lesnevich Alexandria Marzano-Lesnevich was recently named a 2014 National Endowment for the Arts Fellow in Creative Writing. She is writing a book of combined family memoir and literary journalism about a Louisiana murder and death penalty case entitled Any One of Us. An essay adapted from the book was published in Oxford American and recognized as "notable" by Best American Essays 2014; it also appears in the anthology True Crime. In support of Any One of Us, Alexandria has received a Rona Jaffe Award and fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, Yaddo, the Millay Colony for the Arts, Blue Mountain Center, Vermont Studio Center, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and the Ragdale Foundation, as well as a work-study scholarship to the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference. Her writing appears or is forthcoming in The New York Times, Iowa Review, Salon, Oxford American, Los Angeles Review, TriQuarterly Online, Bookslut, Fourth Genre, Bellingham Review (as the winner of the Annie Dillard Award for Creative Nonfiction), and many other publications. Alexandria earned her JD at Harvard Law School, her BA at Columbia University, and an MFA in Nonfiction Writing from Emerson College. She lives in Boston and teaches at Grub Street and Harvard's Kennedy School of Government. Visit her online at www.alexandria-marzano-lesnevich.com.

1E: Essentials of Narration in Memoir

Option 10: Lessons from the Memoir Incubator

yes50

Option 11: How Authors Can Get the Most From Amazon


2:30pm-3:30pm on Saturday, May 3rd

If you thought Amazon.com was just for buying books and other items, or that their new publishing ventures were open only to established writers with a large following, you will be happily surprised to hear of the many ways new and emerging writers can leverage all that Amazon has to offer. Join us for an overview of the innovative resources and programs available on Amazon.com to help authors publish their works and reach their audience, including Kindle Direct Publishing, print on-demand, Amazon Publishing and Author Central.

Type: Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Jon P. Fine (Special Guest)
Jon P. Fine Jon P. Fine is director of Author & Publisher Relations for Amazon.com, focusing on Amazon’s publishing programs and author services, and coordinating outreach to the author and publishing communities, including Amazon’s author giving program for non-profit literary organizations. He joined the company as associate general counsel for media and copyright in January 2006, and subsequently led business development for Brilliance Audio following its acquisition by Amazon in 2007. Prior to Amazon, he served as VP and Associate General Counsel for Random House, Inc., where he directed legal affairs for the Alfred A. Knopf division as well as for Random House of Canada. He previously served as Senior Media Counsel at NBC, handling content and associated issues for NBC News, Saturday Night Live, and other divisions; as counsel at King World Productions for Inside Edition and other programming; and as a litigation associate at Debevoise & Plimpton, where he focused on copyright, libel, internet and other media-related matters. He is a graduate of Cornell University and of the University of Virginia School of Law. Following law school, he served as Judicial Clerk for United States District Judge Sam C. Pointer, Jr.

Option 11: How Writers Can Get the Most From Amazon

yesmuse2014session6a22

6A: Experimental Writing for Non-Experimental Writers


3:45pm-5:00pm on Saturday, May 3rd

What does it mean for literature to be experimental? The great writer Margaret Atwood defines it as: “Fiction that sets up certain rules for itself . . . while subverting the conventions according to which readers have understood what constitutes a proper work of literature." In making its own rules, a lot of the old rules had to be tossed out, of course, and so this seminar provides a few examples of the most innovative, rule-busting, eclectic works of the postmodern, absurdist, metafictional and transgressive canon. We’ll look at a wild and gutsy array of passages, old and new, from around the world, that dare to be different. On top of critical discussion, we'll also generate some experimental fiction of our own through a series of exercises.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 22
Presenter(s):

Porochista Khakpour (Author)
Porochista Khakpour Porochista Khakpour was born in Tehran, Iran, and raised in the Greater Los Angeles area. She has been awarded fellowships from the Johns Hopkins University Writing Seminars, Northwestern University, the Sewanee Writers’ Conference, Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, the Ucross Foundation, Djerassi, and Yaddo. She is most recently the recipient of a 2012 National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Literature Fellowship in Creative Writing (Prose). Her debut novel, Sons and Other Flammable Objects, was a New York Times Editor’s Choice, one of the Chicago Tribune’s Fall’s Best, and the 2007 California Book Award winner in First Fiction. Her nonfiction has appeared in or is forthcoming in Harper’s, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Daily Beast, Village Voice, Chicago Reader, Spin, Paris Review Daily, Granta.com, Slate, Salon, and many other magazines and newspapers around the world. Khakpour has taught creative writing and literature at Johns Hopkins University, Hofstra University, Bucknell University, Santa Fe University of Art and Design, Fairfield University’s MFA program, and the University of Leipzig (where she was a Picador Guest Professor). She currently teaches at Columbia University’s MFA program, Fordham University, and Wesleyan University. She lives in New York City.

6A: Experimental Writing for Non-Experimental Writers

yesmuse2014session6b30

6B: Elements of Style


3:45pm-5:00pm on Saturday, May 3rd

What is a prose style? How is it achieved? And what effect does it have on a story? This will be a session on exploring the idea of style in fiction and how it is used in the art of the narrative. We’ll look at excerpts from writers such as Nadeem Aslam, Aminatta Forna, David Gilbert, and Ann Patchett. A writing exercise and a Q&A will follow.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 30
Presenter(s):

Paul Yoon (Author)
Paul Yoon Paul Yoon was born in New York City. He is the author of Once the Shore and Snow Hunters, and he is the recipient of a 5 under 35 Award from the National Book Foundation. He lives in Massachusetts and holds the Roger F. Murray Chair in Creative Writing at Phillips Academy.

6B: Elements of Style

yesmuse2014session6c21

6C: Biography: How-To


3:45pm-5:00pm on Saturday, May 3rd

Choose a subject? Organize my research? Shape a narrative? Read the table of contents of almost any issue of the New York Times Book Review and you'll find that a majority of the nonfiction books under consideration are biographies. Biography is history (or lit crit) for the general reader--and the general writer. No credentials are required, just a passion for your subject and "’satiable curtiosity", as Kipling's Elephant's Child would say. Come learn how it's done, or if you're in the middle of a biographical project, share ideas and learn tricks of the trade from an award-winning veteran.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 21
Presenter(s):

Megan Marshall (Author)
Megan Marshall Megan Marshall is the author of two biographies, Margaret Fuller: A New American Life and The Peabody Sisters: Three Women Who Ignited American Romanticism. Dwight Garner of the New York Times wrote that Margaret Fuller (2013) is “as seductive as it is impressive,” and “pushes [Marshall] into the front rank of American biographers.” The Peabody Sisters (2005) was praised by William Grimes in the New York Times as “the intellectual equivalent of a triple axel.” The culmination of twenty years of research and writing, during which Marshall sought out manuscript letters and diaries in archives across the country, The Peabody Sisters was awarded the Francis Parkman Prize for the best-written book of American history published in 2005, the Mark Lynton History Prize, the Massachusetts Book Award in Nonfiction, and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in biography in 2006.

Marshall’s essays and reviews have appeared in The New Yorker, The Atlantic, The New York Times Book Review, Slate, The London Review of Books, The Washington Post and elsewhere. Her work has been supported by grants from the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University. She is an elected member of the Massachusetts Historical Society and serves on the Executive Board of the Society of American Historians. An Associate Professor in the Department of Writing, Literature and Publishing at Emerson College, Marshall teaches narrative nonfiction, life writing, and the art of archival research in the MFA program.

6C: Biography: How-To

yesmuse2014session6d25

6D: The Brutal Languages of Love


3:45pm-5:00pm on Saturday, May 3rd

This fiction workshop will focus on the (im)possibility of writing love stories in their infinite variations. While it could be said all stories are love stories, we will try to complicate that understanding and also look at how to write love and sex into fiction in ways that are compelling, original, and emotionally evocative.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 25
Presenter(s):

Roxane Gay (Author)
Roxane Gay Roxane Gay’s writing has appeared in Best American Short Stories 2012, Best Sex Writing 2012, Oxford American, American Short Fiction, West Branch, Virginia Quarterly Review, NOON, The New York Times Book Review, Bookforum, The Los Angeles Times, The Nation, The Rumpus, Salon, The Wall Street Journal’s Speakeasy culture blog, and many others. She is the co-editor of PANK and essays editor for The Rumpus. She teaches writing at Eastern Illinois University. Her novel, An Untamed State, will be published by Grove Atlantic and her essay collection, Bad Feminist, will be published by Harper Perennial, both in 2014.

6D: The Brutal Languages of Love

yesmuse2014session6e24

6E: Essentials of Point of View


3:45pm-5:00pm on Saturday, May 3rd

In fiction, the story is in the eye of the beholder. The tale of Little Red Riding Hood might be completely different if told by Grandmother--or the wolf! In this session, we'll explore the fundamentals of point of view. We'll discuss the benefits and limitations of different viewpoints and see how a story might change based on who's telling it. You'll leave with a better understanding of what point of view can do for your story--and of how to choose the most effective viewpoint for the story you want to tell.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 24
Presenter(s):

Chip Cheek (Author)
Chip Cheek Chip Cheek's stories have appeared or are forthcoming in The Southern Review, Harvard Review, Washington Square, Night Train, Quick Fiction, and Minnetonka Review, among other publications. His stories also appear in the current edition of the textbook What If: Writing Exercises for Fiction Writers, by Anne Bernays and Pamela Painter (Longman, 2009), and Brevity and Echo: An Anthology of Short Short Stories (Rose Metal Press, 2006). He is the recipient of a St. Botolph Club Foundation Emerging Artist Award for 2011, as well as scholarships to the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference and the Tin House Summer Writers' Workshop. He is currently at work on a novel.

6E: Essentials of Point of View

yesmuse2014session6f16

6F: Revising the Novel: Strategies for Every Draft


3:45pm-5:00pm on Saturday, May 3rd

Revising my first published novel required me to discover a set of revision tactics that was almost entirely new to me, often dramatically different from those I'd used as a short story writer. In this session, I'll offer practical strategies meant for every stage of the process, from drafting to submission. Building off my own experiences and the experiences of other published novelists, I'll offer advice about the generative kinds of revision that might help fuel an in-progress first draft (or reboot a stalled one), about tactics for outlining and planning a stronger second draft from the finished first, and about how to take a near-final draft and polish it into a submission-ready manuscript.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 16
Presenter(s):

Matt Bell (Author)
Matt Bell Matt Bell's debut novel In the House upon the Dirt between the Lake and the Woods was longlisted for the Flaherty-Dunnan First Novel Prize. He is also the author of two previous books, How They Were Found and Cataclysm Baby. He teaches creative writing at Northern Michigan University.

6F: Revising the Novel: Strategies for Every Draft

yesmuse2014session6g43

6G: Using Genre as a Backbone


3:45pm-5:00pm on Saturday, May 3rd

Whether applying the structure of a Sherlock Holmes inquiry in The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, subverting the expectations of the father-son travelogue in The Road, or tweaking the form of a noir detective in Motherless Brooklyn, authors often use the short cuts genres provide to open a discussion of deeper personal and societal issues. Familiar tropes can help ground both the reader and the unconventional character. We will look at examples that employ this tactic, examine the interweaving of narratives, and learn how to apply it to our own writing.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 43
Presenter(s):

James Scott (Author)
James Scott James Scott was born in Boston and raised in upstate New York, which serves as the backdrop for his debut novel, The Kept, which will be published in January, 2014 by Harper. In a starred review, Kirkus declares, “Scott is both compassionate moralist and master storyteller in this outstanding debut.” His short fiction can be found in Ploughshares, One Story, American Short Fiction, Post Road, and various other journals and anthologies, while his non-fiction has been featured in many publications including Boston Magazine, The Rumpus, and Under the Radar. His work has earned awards and fellowships from Yaddo, VCCA, the Tin House Summer Writer’s Workshop, the New York State Summer Writers Institute, the St. Botoloph Club, and the Sewanee Writers’ Conference. While attending Emerson College for his MFA, he was the managing editor and fiction editor of Redivider. He later served as an issue editor for One Story. James lives in western Massachusetts with his wife and dog.

6G: Using Genre as a Backbone

yesmuse2014session6h65

6H: Guided Open Mic


3:45pm-5:00pm on Saturday, May 3rd

Your chance to show off your skills by reading five minutes of your work (usually about 600 words of prose) to your fellow participants and any guest authors, editors, or agents who drop by. At this event, Jamie Cat Callan - an experienced writer and performer -- will be on hand to talk about what makes a good reading: from how to pick the right excerpt to how to perform that excerpt like a professional.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 65
Presenter(s):

Jamie Cat Callan (Author)
Jamie Cat Callan Jamie Cat Callan is the author of Ooh La La! French Women's Secrets to Feeling Beautiful Every Day, Bonjour, Happiness! and French Women Don't Sleep Alone. Her books have been translated into eighteen different languages and featured in Vanity Fair, Allure, The New York Times and many other places. Jamie is a popular speaker, an unabashed romantic and a champion of women. Recently, she's launched the Ooh La La! Tours to Paris, where women can join her in the City of Lights and discover for themselves the secrets to living a life full of joie de vivre. Jamie is also the creator of The Writers Toolbox, a writing game kit from Chronicle Books. Please visit her on Facebook for more information.

6H: Guided Open Mic

yesmuse2014session6j15

6J: Behind the Scenes at the New York Times Modern Love Column


3:45pm-5:00pm on Saturday, May 3rd

Founding editor Daniel Jones will talk about every aspect of the Modern Love column in the New York Times, from its creation and launch to its challenges and pleasures, as well as describing what he looks for in submissions and the day-to-day of how the column gets put together on a weekly basis. Topics will include considerations for writers and editors in making the private public, the stylistic needs of publishing personal essays in a newspaper, and making decisions about difficult subject matter. He will also explain the development of new features like the new Modern Love video animation project and how his immersion in the stories of some 50,000 writers over the past decade informed his current book, "Love Illuminated." This session will be a great help to anyone seeking to publish an essay in Modern Love or in any similar magazine or journal.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 15
Presenter(s):

Daniel Jones (Author)
Daniel Jones Daniel Jones, author of Love Illuminated: Exploring Life's Most Mystifying Subject (With the Help of 50,000 Strangers), has edited the Modern Love column in the Sunday Styles section of the New York Times since its inception in October 2004. His books include two essay anthologies, Modern Love and The Bastard on the Couch, and a novel, After Lucy, which was a finalist for the Barnes and Noble Discover Award. His writing has appeared in the New York Times, Elle, Parade, Real Simple, Redbook, and elsewhere. He lives in Northampton, Massachusetts with his wife, writer Cathi Hanauer, and their two children.

6J: Behind the Scenes at the New York Times Modern Love Column

yesmuse2014session6k59

6K: Industry Guide to Publishing: Non-Fiction


3:45pm-5:00pm on Saturday, May 3rd

Now more than ever you need to understand the inner workings of the marketplace before sending your hard-earned work of non-fiction to anyone (an agent, an editor, a publicist, a self-publisher). Do you know the difference between narrative non-fiction and memoir? Is your book an “idea book” and, if so, do you have enough of a platform? How do you establish a platform, anyway? What are readers looking for in your non-fiction book proposal, and how much of the book needs to be written before you’re ready to approach a publisher? How much should you be tweeting? These and other timely questions will be answered by a panel of editors and agents.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 59
Presenter(s):

Sorche Fairbank (Literary Agent)
Sorche Fairbank Since establishing Fairbank Literary Representation in 2002, Sorche Elizabeth Fairbank has had the pleasure of working with a dynamic and varied list, representing best-selling authors, Edgar recipients, award-winning journalists, and of course one of her favorite kinds of client – the debut author. Tastes in novels tend toward literary fiction, international voices, and women’s voices. On the nonfiction side, books that tackle current events and topical and societal issues with a narrative treatment. She has a strong interest in women’s voices and class and race issues, quality lifestyle books (food, wine, design), memoir that goes beyond the me-moir, and humor, gift books, and pop culture. Subjects and genres not of interest by Sorche and Fairbank Literary include: sci-fi and fantasy, children’s and YA, self-help, romance, or sports fiction. Actively seeking fiction (literary, international, and damn good), humor and pop culture, food/cooking, and compelling memoir.

Authors and books represented by Fairbank Literary include: O. Henry Prize winner Charlotte Forbes; Pulitzer nominee & Los Angeles Times Cairo Bureau Chief Jeffrey Fleishman; Edgar winner Rex Burns, Matthew Frederick and his best-selling 101 Things I Learned series; Eudora Welty prize winner Miroslav Penkov (East of the West), Jonathan McCullough’s A Tale Of Two Subs: An Untold Story Of World War II, Two Sister Ships, And Extraordinary Heroism; Essayist Jessica Handler; New Yorker cartoonist Drew Dernavich; Sharron Kahn Luttrell, author of Weekends With Daisy. Humor and gift book clients include Chuck Sambuchino (How To Survive a Garden Gnome Attack; Red Dog, Blue Dog), Terry Border (Bent Objects Empire), and Carl Warner (Carl Warner’s Food Landscapes).

1J: Query Lab

7H: Rejection, Rejection: Why It's Happening to You and How to Avoid It

Jill Schwartzman (Editor)
Jill Schwartzman Jill Schwartzman is an Executive Editor at Dutton, part of the Penguin Random House Group, where she acquires platform, publicity, and voice-driven nonfiction, with a focus on pop culture, memoir, humor, music, biography, and narrative nonfiction.

Her Fall 2013 list features Nick Offerman's Paddle Your Own Canoe, a memoir peppered with salty treatises about the state of manhood from the star of NBC's hit show Parks and Recreation, and Tracey Garvis Graves's second novel, Covet, the follow-up to her 2012 New York Times and USA Today bestseller On the Island, which has sold more than 500,000 copies in trade paperback and e-book editions.

Other forthcoming titles include Long Mile Home, the definitive book on the Boston Marathon bombings, written by Boston Globe reporters Scott Helman and Jenna Russell, published to coincide with the first anniversary of the bombing, and Romance Is My Day Job, a memoir about a Harlequin editor's unlikely real-life romance. Previously published titles at Dutton include Duran Duran bassist John Taylor's New York Times, USA Today, Globe and Mail, and Publishers Weekly bestseller In the Pleasure Groove and former Fox News insider Joe Muto's memoir, An Atheist in the FOXhole.

Before joining Dutton she was a Senior Editor at Hyperion and a Senior Editor at Random House Trade Paperbacks. Her list has featured the New York Times bestsellers Stuff White People Like by Christian Lander, White Girl Problems by Babe Walker, Rafa by Rafael Nadal, and Happy Accidents by Jane Lynch.

3J: Buy This Book!

6K: Industry Guide to Publishing: Non-Fiction

Kent Wolf (Literary Agent)
Kent Wolf Kent D. Wolf, an agent at Lippincott Massie McQuilkin, began his publishing career in 1997 at Dalkey Archive Press. After eight years in subsidiary rights at Harcourt Trade Publishers, he launched a career as a literary agent with his first book sold as an agent spending over ten weeks on the New York Times Bestseller List. Kent represents a number of bestselling and award-winning authors and is on the lookout for literary fiction, upmarket women's fiction, memoir, pop culture, all types of narrative nonfiction, and select YA. He is a member of the Association of Authors' Representatives and PEN.

Lisa Bankoff (Literary Agent)
Lisa Bankoff Lisa Bankoff is a New York-based book agent with ICM Partners whose love of literary fiction and compelling narrative nonfiction has helped foster numerous careers. Ranging from now-established writers Joshua Henkin, Nancy Horan, Laura Kasischke, Nicole Kelby, Mameve Medwed, and Ann Patchett to historian Douglas Brinkley, The New York Times columnist Frank Bruni, John Colapinto of The New Yorker, political activist Chris Hedges, and NBCC award-winning bioethicist Harriet Washington, her list also reflects a continuing delight in working with new and emerging voices such as Alethea Black, Lori Carson, Lisa Howorth, Christa Parravani, Christine Sneed and Jessica Maria Tuccelli. Lisa joined ICM Partners after working the other side of the desk in trade publishing (promotion, editorial, publicity) and a brief detour to The Neighborhood Playhouse where she would be found reading instead of method breathing.

yesmuse2014session6l45

6L: 50 Shades of Publishing: An Agent's Perspective


3:45pm-5:00pm on Saturday, May 3rd

Literary Change Agent and author advocate April Eberhardt is taking an innovative approach: she's encouraging authors to consider all methods of publishing their work, ranging from traditional to self, with many hybrid options in between. What are the pros and cons of traditional vs. independent publishing? How do you decide which route is best for you? Come learn about how the industry is changing, and how to devise a strategy that suits your goals, dreams, timetable and budget.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 45
Presenter(s):

April Eberhardt (Literary Agent)
April Eberhardt April Eberhardt, a self-described “literary change agent” and author advocate, founded her own agency to assist and advise authors as they navigate the increasingly complex world of publishing. Her agency specializes in building long-term strategies with authors, which often include a blend of traditional and independent (formerly known as "self-") publishing. April works with authors who recognize the need for professional support, and the importance of publishing in the highest-quality way regardless of route. She holds an MBA in Finance and Marketing from Boston University and a CPLF from the University of Paris.The agency's website is www.aprileberhardt.com.

In addition to working with authors of full-length novels, April also works with short story writers, with a particular focus on linked collections. After five years as head reader for Zoetrope: All-Story, she currently serves as a reader for The Best American Short Stories Series published annually by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

2J: Choosing Partner Publishing: An Agent-Author Discussion

6L: 50 Shades of Publishing: An Agent's Perspective

yesmuse2014session6m41

6M: Contemporary Crime Fiction: Bridging the Literary/Commercial Divide


3:45pm-5:00pm on Saturday, May 3rd

From crime novelists whose prose has all the texture of literary fiction (Gillian Flynn, Tana French, Dennis Lehane) to decorated literary authors who've turned their hands to crime (Kate Atkinson, John Banville, Robert Olen Butler), writers are blurring the lines between literary fiction and a genre long considered formulaic. But what does crafting a successful literary thriller or mystery require? This session will explain conventions of the genre and discuss recent novels by authors who push the boundaries of the form to explore contemporary sociopolitical concerns.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 41
Presenter(s):

Joy Castro (Author)
Joy Castro Joy Castro is the author of the literary thrillers Hell or High Water and Nearer Home (St. Martin's, 2012 & 2013), the memoir The Truth Book (2005; U of Nebraska, 2012), and the collection of personal essays Island of Bones (U of Nebraska, 2012), which won an International Latino Book Award and was a Finalist for the PEN Center USA Literary Award. Winner of the 2013 Nebraska Book Award for fiction, she co-edited a special all-women's issue of Brevity and is the editor of Family Trouble: Memoirists on the Hazards and Rewards of Revealing Family (U of Nebraska, 2013). Her stories and essays have appeared in North American Review, Fourth Genre, Seneca Review, Afro-Hispanic Review, and The New York Times Magazine. She has offered workshops at the Macondo Writing Workshop, the University of Iowa, and the University of Seville. She teaches creative writing, literature, and Latino studies at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

yesmuse2014session7a23

7A: The Measure of Change: The Short Story


9:00am-10:15am on Sunday, May 4th

Poe said that the “prose tale” has the advantage over all other narrative forms because it has “the immense force derivable from totality.” In not many pages, the writer plunges the reader into a world and makes it pivot. But how much transformation can a short story show? And how is coherence achieved with so little room to maneuver? How do short story writers approach plot, and what do we mean by resolution, anyway? We’ll look at the range of possible time schemes, from short fiction that examines a few minutes to Alice Munro’s stories that pull in decades. And we’ll look at tools short story writers use to achieve momentum, compression, excitement, and the certainty that nothing will ever be the same.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 23
Presenter(s):

Lynne Barrett (Author)
Lynne Barrett Lynne Barrett is the author of the story collections Magpies (Gold Medal, Florida Book Awards), The Secret Names of Women, and The Land of Go, and co-editor of Birth: A Literary Companion. She has received the Edgar Award for best mystery story and an NEA Fellowship. Her work appears in Fifteen Views of Miami, Real South, Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, The Southern Women’s Review, Delta Blues, One Year to a Writing Life, and Blue Christmas. Her essay in The Review Review, “What Editors Want,” was featured in the L.A. Times and reprinted Glimmer Train’s digest. She teaches in the MFA program at Florida International University, and edits The Florida Book Review. Learn more about Lynne at www.lynnebarrett.com.

4H: Crossing Paths: The Map of Opportunity in Story

7A: The Measure of Change: The Short Story

yesmuse2014session7b36

7B: Corn Maze: Exploring the Line (More Like an Ever-Expanding Grassy Meadow) between Fiction and Non-Fiction


9:00am-10:15am on Sunday, May 4th

In this session, Pam Houston will begin by sharing her essay "Corn Maze," (winner of a 2013 Pushcart Prize), which questions the wisdom of those who hold memoir and personal essay to the same sort of "real world" scrutiny as journalism, without ever pausing to consider the inevitable failures of memory, the inevitable failures of courage, the twenty five people who saw the same car accident, languages persistent and beguiling failure to mean in any sort of absolute way. A lively debate will follow.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 36
Presenter(s):

Pam Houston (Author)
Pam Houston Pam Houston’s most recent book is Contents May Have Shifted, published in 2012, by W.W. Norton. She is also the author of two collections of linked short stories, Cowboys Are My Weakness and Waltzing the Cat, the novel, Sight Hound, and a collection of essays, A Little More About Me, all published by W.W. Norton. Her stories have been selected for volumes of Best American Short Stories, The O. Henry Awards, The 2013 Pushcart Prize, and Best American Short Stories of the Century. She is the winner of the Western States Book Award, the WILLA award for contemporary fiction, The Evil Companions Literary Award and multiple teaching awards. She is Professor of English at UC Davis, directs the literary nonprofit Writing By Writers and teaches in The Pacific University low residency MFA program and at writer’s conferences around the country and the world. She lives on a ranch at 9,000 feet in Colorado near the headwaters of the Rio Grande.

7B: Corn Maze: Exploring the Line (More Like an Ever-Expanding Grassy Meadow) between Fiction and Non-Fiction

yesmuse2014session7c49

7C: Magic Carpet: Creating a Sense of Place in Fiction


9:00am-10:15am on Sunday, May 4th

In this interactive, hands-on workshop, participants will learn how to weave together the three strands of plot/emotion, place, and character into a single, gripping scene. They will be equipped to engage the five senses in creating a sense of place to transport readers directly into the scene. Participants will write in class and get feedback on the spot from the instructor in a guided, positive discussion.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 49
Presenter(s):

Mitali Perkins (Author)
Mitali Perkins Mitali Perkins has written nine award-winning books for young readers, including Bamboo People (Charlesbridge), an ALA top ten book for young adults, and Rickshaw Girl (Charlesbridge), recently selected by the NYPL as one of the top hundred children's books of the past hundred years. This year, she's proud to present Open Mic: Riffs on Life Between Cultures in Ten Voices, an anthology she edited for Candlewick Press. She teaches a course on children's books at Saint Mary's College of California, and has presented at national and regional school, library, and writing conferences. Mitali lives and writes in California's San Francisco Bay Area.

7C: Magic Carpet: Creating a Sense of Place in Fiction

yesmuse2014session7d49

7D: How To Be Your Own Best Editor


9:00am-10:15am on Sunday, May 4th

Congratulations! You have finished your novel or memoir. Now it's time to get to work. Before you submit your book, you need to revise, revise, revise, and this workshop will help you learn to be your own best editor. The presenter will discuss the importance of revision, share her own revising tools and give you good solid advice on how to revise your book. You will leave this lecture ready, as Yeats famously said, to cast a cold eye on your own work.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 49
Presenter(s):

Ann Hood (Author)
Ann Hood Ann Hood is the author of the bestselling novels The Knitting Circle, The Red Thread, and Somewhere Off the Coast of Maine; the short story collection, An Ornithologist's Guide to Life; and the memoir Comfort: A Journey Through Grief, which was a New York Times Editor's Choice and was named one of the top ten non-fiction books of 2008 by Entertainment Weekly. She recently edited the anthology, Knitting Yarns: Writers Writing About Knitting. She has won Best American Spiritual, Food, and Travel Writing Awards and two Pushcart Prizes. Her most recent novel, The Obituary Writer, was an Oprah Pick, the November Book Club book for The Ladies Home Journal, and named as one of the top ten books of 2013 by Amazon.com. She lives in Providence, RI.

4G: Ten Steps to a Kickass Essay

7D: How To Be Your Own Best Editor

yesmuse2014session7e18

7E: Essentials of Process


9:00am-10:15am on Sunday, May 4th

The most important question any writer faces is how to get to the keyboard, and how to remain there despite the challenges of a doubt, fear, financial and emotional obligations, and other forms of resistance -- both internal and external. In this freewheeling session, we'll focus on how to make sure your writing process makes sense for you, and how to build a sustainable life as a writer. Any and all questions, concerns, quibbles, and Buddhist koans welcome.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 18
Presenter(s):

Steve Almond (Author)
Steve Almond Steve Almond is the author of ten books of fiction and non-fiction, three of which he published himself. His memoir Candyfreak was a New York Times Bestseller. His short stories have appeared in the Best American and Pushcart anthologies. His most recent collection, God Bless America, won the Paterson Prize for Fiction and was short-listed for The Story Prize. His journalism has appeared in the New York Times Magazine, GQ, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, and elsewhere.

7E: Essentials of Process

8K: Everything You Wanted to Know About DIY Publishing (But Were Afraid to Ask)

yesmuse2014session7f33

7F: Private Writer, Public Figure: How to Thrive at the Podium, the Mic, or the Conference Table


9:00am-10:15am on Sunday, May 4th

You work in solitude for years and finally your novel gets published. Now people expect you to come out, blinking, into the light, and be a public figure. And you hate the idea. Or you like the idea but you can't imagine how you'll cope with the nerve-wracking task of winning the audience over. Performing in public--whether that's reading from your book, or answering interview questions, or appearing at a book club--is a skill, and like most skills, it can be learned. In this session, we'll go over the nuts and bolts of reading-aloud technique, and the broader strategies and approaches to take so that you can not only get through the public life of the writer but thrive in it. Participants will have a chance to practice short bits of their work and to workshop their performance.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 33
Presenter(s):

Henriette Lazaridis Power (Author)
Henriette Lazaridis Power Henriette Lazaridis Power's debut novel The Clover House was published by Ballantine in 2013 and was a Boston Globe best-seller and a Target Emerging Authors selection. Power has degrees in English Literature from Middlebury College; Oxford University, where she was a Rhodes Scholar; and the University of Pennsylvania. She taught English literature at Harvard for ten years. Her work has appeared in Narrative Magazine, New England Review, the New York Times online, The Millions, Huffington Post, and elsewhere, and she was the recipient of a 2006 Massachusetts Cultural Council Artists Grant. In 2010, she launched The Drum, a literary magazine publishing exclusively in audio form. A competitive rower, Power trains regularly on the Charles River in Boston.

7F: Private Writer, Public Figure: How to Thrive at the Podium, the Mic, or the Conference Table

yesmuse2014session7g32

7G: Art from the Heart: Getting Out of the Way of Your Writing


9:00am-10:15am on Sunday, May 4th

Shifting the paradigm of art as tortured labor to art as being in the creative flow. Writer's block belongs to the former paradigm - quiet listening belongs to the latter.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 32
Presenter(s):

Claire McDougall (Author)
Claire McDougall Claire R. McDougall was born and raised in Scotland. The daughter of a minister, she moved from parish to parish until her family settled in rural Argyll when she was twelve. After high school she moved to Germany to work as an au pair for a year, then studied at Edinburgh University pursuing a masters degree in philosophy (with a detour to Dartmouth College.) From Edinburgh she went on scholarship for four years to Christ Church, Oxford, where she attempted to shake the foundations by writing a thesis on Nietzsche and Christianity. No luck there, and, anyway, the writing life was calling. For a couple of years Claire wrote a column for a New Hampshire newspaper. A move to Aspen, Colorado, coincided with her first forays into the genre of poetry, and from there she explored the short story form, finally settling on writing novels. Claire's debut novel comes out March 2014.

7G: Art from the Heart: Getting Out of the Way of Your Writing

yesmuse2014session7h25

7H: Rejection, Rejection: Why It's Happening to You and How to Avoid It


9:00am-10:15am on Sunday, May 4th

It’s common knowledge that rejection rates in this industry are up around 98 percent, and you have likely felt this bitter sting on more than one occasion, but do you really know why? Sit in on an eye-opening session with agent Sorche Fairbank and dig into the murky world of rejection. Learn what some standard rejection phrasing means (i.e. agent-speak), why so many rejections are simply a form letter; find out of you are guilty of one or more of the top twenty reasons for rejection, participate in a frank discussion about second chances with agents and publishers, learn when to listen to advice and when to chalk things up to subjective difference, and how best to turn your “no”s into “yes”s or at least “maybe”s.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 25
Presenter(s):

Sorche Fairbank (Literary Agent)
Sorche Fairbank Since establishing Fairbank Literary Representation in 2002, Sorche Elizabeth Fairbank has had the pleasure of working with a dynamic and varied list, representing best-selling authors, Edgar recipients, award-winning journalists, and of course one of her favorite kinds of client – the debut author. Tastes in novels tend toward literary fiction, international voices, and women’s voices. On the nonfiction side, books that tackle current events and topical and societal issues with a narrative treatment. She has a strong interest in women’s voices and class and race issues, quality lifestyle books (food, wine, design), memoir that goes beyond the me-moir, and humor, gift books, and pop culture. Subjects and genres not of interest by Sorche and Fairbank Literary include: sci-fi and fantasy, children’s and YA, self-help, romance, or sports fiction. Actively seeking fiction (literary, international, and damn good), humor and pop culture, food/cooking, and compelling memoir.

Authors and books represented by Fairbank Literary include: O. Henry Prize winner Charlotte Forbes; Pulitzer nominee & Los Angeles Times Cairo Bureau Chief Jeffrey Fleishman; Edgar winner Rex Burns, Matthew Frederick and his best-selling 101 Things I Learned series; Eudora Welty prize winner Miroslav Penkov (East of the West), Jonathan McCullough’s A Tale Of Two Subs: An Untold Story Of World War II, Two Sister Ships, And Extraordinary Heroism; Essayist Jessica Handler; New Yorker cartoonist Drew Dernavich; Sharron Kahn Luttrell, author of Weekends With Daisy. Humor and gift book clients include Chuck Sambuchino (How To Survive a Garden Gnome Attack; Red Dog, Blue Dog), Terry Border (Bent Objects Empire), and Carl Warner (Carl Warner’s Food Landscapes).

1J: Query Lab

7H: Rejection, Rejection: Why It's Happening to You and How to Avoid It

yesmuse2014session7j94

7J: What is Ethnic Writing?


9:00am-10:15am on Sunday, May 4th

Writers like Jhumpa Lahiri, Junot Díaz, and Gish Jen have been wildly popular due to their brilliant abilities to document their cultural experiences while ensuring that there is a firm narrative thread through their work that transcends culture alone. How, as writers, do we infuse our stories with the authenticity of culture without overdoing the ethnic elements of our work? How do we bring to the fore our thoughts on our backgrounds and experiences – from race-related ones to sexuality-related ones and beyond – while keeping our stories true, assured, and thought-provoking? Then, on the flip side, what about ethnic stories rings true to editors who specialize in publishing them?

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 94
Presenter(s):

Jennifer De Leon (Author)
Jennifer De Leon Jennifer De Leon is the winner of the 2011 Fourth Genre Michael Steinberg Essay Prize. Her stories and essays have appeared in Ploughshares, Brevity, Ms., Briar Cliff Review, Poets & Writers, Guernica, The Best Women’s Travel Writing 2010, and elsewhere. She has published author interviews in Granta and Agni, and she has been awarded scholarships and residencies from the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, Hedgebrook, Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, Vermont Studio Center, and the Sandra Cisneros Macondo Writers’ Workshop. The editor of the anthology, Wise Latina: Writers on Higher Education (University of Nebraska Press, 2013), she is also working on a memoir and a novel.

7J: What is Ethnic Writing?

Option 7: Baby Weight: Moms Who Write Share Tips

Adam Stumacher (Special Guest)
Adam Stumacher Adam Stumacher's fiction has appeared or is forthcoming in Granta, The Kenyon Review, The Sun, Night Train, Massachusetts Review, Five Chapters, TriQuarterly, and elsewhere, was anthologized in Best New American Voices, and won the Raymond Carver Short Story Award. He holds degrees from Cornell University and Saint Mary's College and was a fiction fellow at the University of Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing. He has been awarded a tuition scholarship from Bread Loaf and residencies from the Vermont Studio Center, the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, Spiro Arts, and others. He has taught creative writing at MIT, the University of Wisconsin, Saint Mary's College, and Grub Street, and he has many years experience as a teacher in inner city high schools, for which he was awarded the Sontag Prize in Urban Education. He is the author of a short story collection, The Neon Desert, and is currently working on a novel, entitled A Liar's Opus.

5E: Essentials of Structure

Jessica Papin (Literary Agent)
Jessica Papin Jessica Papin is an agent at Dystel and Goderich in New York. Prior to that, she was the Director of International Rights at the American University in Cairo Press, in Egypt, and an editor at Warner Books (now Grand Central Publishing) in New York. With a background on both sides of the desk, Papin loves working collaboratively with clients to shape and refine their work. She is interested in literary and smart commercial fiction, narrative non-fiction, history, medicine, science, economics and women’s issues. In every case, she looks for passion, erudition, and storytelling skill.

Jessica is always on the lookout for story-driven fiction that hits the sweet spot between literary and commercial--beautiful writing married to a strong plot line. She is actively seeking substantive non-fiction—history, science, economics, women’s issues, international affairs—that illuminates big ideas in engaging, accessible and surprising ways. She is also interested in memoir that uses personal story to capture some larger historical or political narrative. She rarely represents genre fiction, and does not represent Christian books, children’s books, screenplays or poetry.

Writers interested in querying me should do so via e-mail at jpapin@dystel.com and include the first chapter of their work as a document attachment.

7J: What is Ethnic Writing?

Celeste Ng (Author)
Celeste Ng Celeste Ng is the author of the novel Everything I Never Told You, forthcoming from Penguin Press (June 2014). Her stories and essays have appeared in One Story, TriQuarterly, Five Chapters, Bellevue Literary Review, The Millions, and elsewhere, and she has been awarded the Pushcart Prize, the Hopwood Award, and a scholarship to the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference. She earned her MFA from the University of Michigan (now the Helen Zell Writers’ Program at the University of Michigan) and has taught writing at the University of Michigan and Grub Street in Boston. Celeste is a blogger for the Huffington Post and was previously blog editor for the writing website Fiction Writers Review. She lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

2D: Writing the Omniscient Narrator

yesmuse2014session7k33

7K: How to Catch The Reviewer's Eye


9:00am-10:15am on Sunday, May 4th

Whether it’s in print or online, a good book review from a trusted source is essential in finding readers. In this conversation with Porter Anderson and Bethanne Patrick (aka The Book Maven and the creator of #FridayReads) will speak from behind the curtain to discuss how reviewers decide what books should get attention, what qualities of books tend to garner positive reviews, what pitfalls to watch out for, and more.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 33
Presenter(s):

Bethanne Kelly Patrick (Special Guest)
Bethanne Kelly Patrick Bethanne Kelly Patrick is a writer and author who tweets @TheBookMaven and who founded the popular #fridayreads hashtag on Twitter. Patrick has blogged as "The Book Maven" for AOL and Publishers Weekly, among others, and helped launch Shelf Awareness for Readers and Book Riot before "going rogue" (read: freelance) to write her first novel. Her first two books for National Geographic are An Uncommon History of Common Things (with John Thompson) and An Uncommon History of Common Courtesy; she is currently working on a new project for National Geographic. Patrick, a graduate of Smith College and The University of Virginia, lives in Arlington, VA.

7K: How to Catch The Reviewer's Eye

Porter Anderson (Special Guest)
Porter Anderson Porter Anderson (@Porter_Anderson), BA, MA, MFA, is a journalist, speaker, and consultant specializing in book publishing and its digital disruption.

He is programming the first-ever BookExpo America (BEA) setting for entrepreneurial authors, the uPublishU AUTHOR HUB, for the trade-show floor of #BEA14, May 29-31, 2014.

He is speaking at the Klopotek Publishers Forum 2014 in Berlin this spring, and his Porter Anderson Media consultancy is a Media Partner with the London Book Fair #LBF14. He also has spoken this year at the all-new London Author Fair and at Bath Spa University in the UK, as well as at the debut of PubSmart, a new conference for writers in his hometown, Charleston.

Anderson's weekly "Porter Anderson Meets" newsmaker interview is read in London's The Bookseller and conducted live on Twitter with the hashtag #PorterMeets.

His "Writing on the Ether" column is read at JaneFriedman.com.

His Issues on the Ether, a column and live discussion hashtagged #EtherIssue, is read on the international Publishing Perspectives site produced by the Frankfurt Book Fair.

Anderson’s media outlets have included CNN-USA, CNN International, CNN.com, and The Village Voice, The Dallas Times Herald, and many others.

His diplomatic posting to Rome with the United Nations made him the World Food Programme’s first Creative Advisor and Multimedia Manager. He also served as Executive Producer with INDEX: Design to Improve Life, the Danish government's program to award international humanitarian design.

More is at PorterAnderson.com.

3H: What Every Literary Writer Needs To Know About the Digital Disruption: A Town Hall Debate

7K: How to Catch The Reviewer's Eye

yesmuse2014session7l76

7L: Promotion and Publicity for the Non-Fiction Writer


9:00am-10:15am on Sunday, May 4th

Now more than ever, authors are expected to be their own publicists, and build their own audiences, both before and during the publication of their books. If they can’t, they often need to find someone who can help them with this process. This session is designed for the writer who is under contract for a book, or has published a few stories or even a full-length work or two – and, of course, the writer who plans to do so ASAP. Topics discussed include concrete strategies that authors can employ to get the word out about them and their work, the role of the publicist at small and large houses, book clubs and blogs, and how not to feel embarrassed or self-conscious or about the necessary self-promotion you’ll have to do to survive in the changing landscape of publishing.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 76
Presenter(s):

Crystal Patriarche (Special Guest)
Crystal Patriarche Crystal Patriarche, founder of SparkPoint Studio and its leading BookSparks division, has an extensive 14 year background building a simultaneous career in both public relations and publishing. She has built and executed PR campaigns for established brands such as Microsoft, Ford, SheKnows.com, other Fortune 500 companies and start ups as well as hundreds of authors and major publishers. She is known for her creativity, fresh perspective, passion and results—all of which make referrals the top driver of her business. Crystal’s life-long love of reading and literature, combined with her PR expertise in high-tech and start up industries and her digital expertise fueled the growth of her industry-leading BookSparks division.

7L:Promotion and Publicity for the Non-Fiction Writer

Ethan Gilsdorf (Author)
Ethan Gilsdorf Ethan Gilsdorf is a journalist, memoirist, critic, poet, teacher and author of the award-winning travel memoir investigation Fantasy Freaks and Gaming Geeks: An Epic Quest for Reality Among Role Players, Online Gamers, and Other Dwellers of Imaginary Realms. Based in Somerville, Massachusetts, Gilsdorf writes regularly for the New York Times, Boston Globe, Salon.com, BoingBoing.net, PsychologyToday.com, Washington Post and wired.com. He has published hundreds of articles, essays, op-eds and reviews on the arts, pop culture, gaming, geek culture and travel in dozens of other magazines, newspapers, websites and guidebooks worldwide. He has also contributed to the writing and craft books Braving the Fire: A Guide to Writing About Grief and Loss; Create Your Writer Platform: The Key to Building an Audience, Selling More Books, and Finding Success as an Author; the textbook Reading Culture: Contexts for Critical Reading and Writing (8th edition). An award-winning poet, he has also published dozens of poems in literary magazines and anthologies. As an expert on geek culture, Gilsdorf frequently appears on TV, radio and Internet media, including PBS Off Book, The Discovery Channel, the French TV network Arte, and several nationally-syndicated National Public Radio programs and in documentary films. He lectures at universities, schools, libraries, film festivals, and book festivals worldwide, and performs in bars and reading series. Gilsdorf is co-founder of Grub Street's Young Adult Writers Program (YAWP) and teaches creative writing and journalism workshops for adults at Grub Street, where he also serves on the Board of Directors. Follow Ethan’s adventures at http://www.ethangilsdorf.com and Twitter @ethanfreak.

3E:Essentials of the Personal Essay

Leah Miller (Editor)
Leah Miller Leah Miller, editor, joined the Crown Group in 2012, where she acquires for Crown Archetype and Harmony Books. She is interested in smart, entertaining writing particularly in the fields of memoir, social issues, health, food, travel, and family. A graduate of the Johns Hopkins University Writing Seminars program, Leah previously worked as an editor at Simon & Schuster, and also at Sterling Lord Literistic in both domestic agenting and foreign rights. Among the bestselling and award winning authors with whom she has worked are Mira Bartók, Julia Scheeres, Dr. Yoni Freedhoff, and Michelle Phan. She lives in New York with her husband, author Kristopher Jansma, and their son.

7L: Promotion and Publicity for the Non-Fiction Writer

yesmuse2014session8a32

8A: Novel Structure: The Building Blocks of Story


10:30am-11:45am on Sunday, May 4th

This session will explore how a strong story structure often evolves out of the more elusive elements of the creative process: passion, inspiration, voice. Structure can be outlined, but is not necessarily imposed or built from the outside in. A compelling structure can be composed from fragments of scenes as well as from core aspects of characters – their desires, flaws, and secrets, the choices they make or fail to make. Through discussion and a Q & A, we will explore different forms of structure and how to identify the key moments of a story to create tension and a strong sense of narrative drive. Writers will learn how to develop and sequence early pieces of raw material to build a mainstory arc. Finally we will explore a range of techniques for mapping the arc of each primary character against the mainstory to form the basis for a longer work of fiction.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 32
Presenter(s):

Dawn Tripp (Author)
Dawn Tripp Winner of the Massachusetts Book Award for fiction, Dawn Tripp is the author of the novels Moon Tide, The Season of Open Water, and Game of Secrets, a Boston Globe bestseller. Her essays on writing have appeared in The Virginia Quarterly Review, The Rumpus, Psychology Today, and on NPR. Her fourth novel, Georgia, will be published by Random House in 2015.

8A: Novel Structure: The Building Blocks of Story

yesmuse2014session8b28

8B: Learning to Love Again: Putting the Spark Back in Your Writing Life


10:30am-11:45am on Sunday, May 4th

Have you stopped loving your fiction? Get back to that part of yourself that first enjoyed making up stories and spinning a yarn. This class is all about putting what you’ve learned at the Muse to good use. Through several exercises we’ll look at various ways to outline a plot, to establish a scene, and to create believable worthwhile characters. Writing should be an adventure and in this class we’ll discuss and then execute a plan to get you going again.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 28
Presenter(s):

Urban Waite (Author)
Urban Waite Urban Waite is the author of The Terror of Living, named one of Esquire's Ten Best Books of the year. His latest book is The Carrion Birds, an Indie Next Pick and the recipient of starred reviews from Publishers Weekly and Booklist. Currently, The Carrion Birds is a finalist for the New Mexico/Arizona Book Award. Both novels have been translated into nine languages and both are in pre-production for films. His third novel, Sometimes the Wolf, will be published by William Morrow/Harper Fall 2014.

8B: Learning to Love Again: Putting the Spark Back in Your Writing Life

yesmuse2014session8c34

8C: Literary Characterization


10:30am-11:45am on Sunday, May 4th

This session will examine literary devices to craft captivating characters and how plot and setting relate to character development, while considering the following questions: Why are characters vital to a narrative craft? Why is it important for a writer to reveal a character’s preoccupations and emotions? What do details reveal about a character? What makes a character memorable and believable? Participants will also engage in hands-on exercises that can be applied to the novel, short story, drama, or creative non-fiction.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 34
Presenter(s):

Elsie Augustave (Author)
Elsie Augustave Elsie Augustave was born in Haiti and is a graduate of Middlebury College and Howard University. She studied in Senegal and France as a Fulbright Scholar, and choreographed Elima Ngando, a major production for the prestigious National Dance Theater of Zaire, now the Democratic Republic of Congo. Augustave teaches at the renowned Stuyvesant High School in New York City and is a consultant for the College Board. She is the author of the critically acclaimed novel The Roving Tree .

8C: Literary Characterization

yesmuse2014session8d14

8D: The Last Word: Considering the Symphonic Process of Ending a Narrative Work


10:30am-11:45am on Sunday, May 4th

Everyone can quote the great openings: "It was the best of times. It was the worst of times." And yet, few of us consider the great ending, and how essential a strong, beautiful, satisfying ending is to any narrative work, short story, novel, or narrative non-fiction. In her session, Hollis Gillespie will share several of the great endings, discuss how ending a work is not the same as "tying up the loose ends," and work with writers on strategies to carry the consideration of the ending throughout the creative process. Writers will then craft their own last sentences from a series of narrative elements provided.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 14
Presenter(s):

Hollis Gillespie (Author)
Hollis Gillespie Hollis Gillespie is a humor columnist and writer based in Atlanta, GA. Writers Digest has named her a “Breakout Author of the Year.” Other accolades include the “Best Columnist” and “Best Local Author” honors In 2006. In 2012, the Magazine Association of the Southeast granted a MAGS award to Gillespie for "Editorial Excellence."

Currently, Hollis writes for Atlanta magazine and is a commentator on NPR's All Things Considered. She is the author of a collection of best-selling memoirs. Upon publication of her first book, Hollis Gillespie appeared as a guest on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, who called her "a very funny lady." The rights to her first book, Bleachy-Haired Honky Bitch, were optioned by both Sony Pictures and Paramount. She has collaborated on film projects with Laura Dern, (star of HBO's Enlightened), Mitch Hurwitz (creator of Arrested Development), Amy Sherman Palladino (creator of Gilmore Girls), Bill Haber (producer of Rizzoli and Isles) and Sheri Elwood (creator of Call Me Fitz). In addition, she runs the Shocking Real Life Learning Center, which offers classes on social media, book writing, publishing, animation, film and television script writing. She is represented by the Creative Artists Agency in Los Angeles.

Hollis Gillespie is also a former flight attendant at Delta, where she was a qualified foreign-language interpreter in English, German and Spanish. Her YA fiction novel, Unaccompanied Minor, was published in January 2014 to stellar reviews. It's sequel, We Will Be Crashing Shortly, is due out Summer 2014.

yesmuse2014session8e3

8E: Essentials of Dialogue


10:30am-11:45am on Sunday, May 4th

Dialogue in fiction and nonfiction is not necessarily a literal interpretation of the way we speak to each other in real life. If it were, our characters would cut each other off, repeat themselves, and rarely finish a sentence. This seminar looks at the way prose writers shape dialogue so that it reflects reality, but in a way that achieves a level of readability. We will discuss how to use dialogue to move plot and define character, and take a look at an example of real-life dialogue and how we might edit it for a piece of fiction or nonfiction.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 3
Presenter(s):

Alden Jones (Special Guest)
Alden Jones Alden Jones is the author of The Blind Masseuse: A Traveler’s Memoir from Costa Rica to Cambodia (University of Wisconsin Press, 2013) and the forthcoming story collection Unaccompanied Minors (New American Press, 2014), winner of the New American Fiction Prize. Her essays and short stories have appeared in AGNI, Time Out New York, Post Road, the Barcelona Review, the Iowa Review, Prairie Schooner, The Smart Set, Gulf Coast, the Best American Travel Writing, and NPR’s Cognoscenti. She teaches at Emerson College and at Grub Street.

8E: Essentials of Dialogue

Option 4: Making Strong Prose: The Economy of Language

yesmuse2014session8f18

8F: Writing Through It with Augusten Burroughs


10:30am-11:45am on Sunday, May 4th

Whether you need to write through a difficult personal experience or writers' block, Augusten Burroughs will change the way you approach it with his own effective, innovative techniques.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 18
Presenter(s):

Augusten Burroughs (Author)
Augusten Burroughs Augusten Burroughs was born Christopher Richter Robison in Pittsburgh, PA on October 23, 1965 and raised in Western Massachusetts. His father chaired the Philosophy department at the University of Massachusetts and his mother was a writer who earned her MFA in the late 1970's. Augusten's parents struggled with alcoholism and mental illness and they separated when he was twelve. Augusten stopped attending school and his parents' longtime psychiatrist became his legal guardian.

At seventeen, he moved to the Boston area and graduated from Control Data Institute with a diploma in Computer Programming and Systems Analysis and Design but never worked in the technology industry. Instead he moved to San Francisco and at nineteen became the youngest copywriter in the city. His work attracted national acclaim and in 1989 he was invited by Ogilvy & Mather, New York, the opportunity to work on their flagship American Express account. Augusten went on to work for many of the top agencies where he created global ad campaigns for worldwide brands.

Almost eighteen years after accepting his first advertising job, Augusten left the industry to pursue a career as an author. Two years later, his 2002 memoir, Running with Scissors, became a publishing phenomenon, spending over three consecutive years on the New York Times bestseller list. It was made into a movie starring Annette Bening and Alec Baldwin.

All of Augusten's subsequent books - Dry, Magical Thinking, Possible Side Effects, A Wolf at the Table, You Better Not Cry & This is How - were instant New York Times bestsellers. His writing has appeared in magazines and newspapers worldwide including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Guardian UK, The Sydney Morning Herald and many more. He has been twice voted to Entertainment Weekly's famed "Funniest People in America" list, featured as a cover story in Vanity Fair, profiled extensively in magazines like People and Time, provided commentary for National Public Radio, penned a monthly column for Details and hosted his own radio show for Sirius. He is also the author of one novel, Sellevision, his first book.

In 2013 Augusten married his literary agent and best friend, Christopher Schelling, received a Lambda Literary Award and was honored with a Doctorate of Letters from the Savannah College of Art and Design. Augusten is also a self-taught gemologist with a special interest in jade. He collects and sells vintage and estate jewelry, photographs people and recently directed his first music video. Augusten and his husband live in Manhattan.

yesmuse2014session8g60

8G: The Point of Point-of-View


10:30am-11:45am on Sunday, May 4th

In this session, we'll look not just at the mechanics of 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Person POVs (though we will look at those), but we'll explore strategies and techniques for inhabiting each of them. When should a writer use a first-person central perspective as opposed to a roving third-person? Why are so many second-person narratives so short? What do all of the POVs have in common and how do they invite readers and writers to empathize with the characters? We'll cover all of this and more.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 60
Presenter(s):

Bret Anthony Johnston (Author)
Bret Anthony Johnston Bret Anthony Johnston is the author of the novel Remember Me Like This (May 2014) and the award-winning Corpus Christi: Stories, which was named a Best Book of the Year by The Independent (London) and The Irish Times. He is also the editor of Naming the World and Other Exercises for the Creative Writer. His work appears in The Atlantic Monthly, Esquire, The Paris Review, Glimmer Train Stories, Virginia Quarterly Review, The Best American Short Stories, and elsewhere. His awards include the Pushcart Prize, the Glasgow Prize for Emerging Writers, the Stephen Turner Award, the Cohen Prize, a James Michener Fellowship, and the Kay Cattarulla Prize for short fiction. His nonfiction has appeared in the New York Times, the New York Times Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, Tin House, The Best American Sports Writing, and on NPR’s All Things Considered. A graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, he is the recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts Literature Fellowship and a 5 Under 35 honor from the National Book Foundation. He wrote the documentary film Waiting for Lightning, which was released in theaters around the world by Samuel Goldwyn Films. He teaches in the Bennington Writing Seminars and at Harvard University, where is the Director of Creative Writing.

8G: The Point of Point-of-View

yesmuse2014session8j41

8J: Writing for One Story


10:30am-11:45am on Sunday, May 4th

Co-founder and Editor-in-Chief Hannah Tinti talks about the submission and evaluation process at the award-winning magazine One Story, revealing what she looks for in a story, how to get your writing pulled from the ‘slushpile,’ tips on navigating the current publishing world and the best ways to find the right home for your work.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 41
Presenter(s):

Hannah Tinti (Author)
Hannah Tinti Hannah Tinti is a writer, editor and teacher.

Her short story collection, Animal Crackers, has sold in sixteen countries and was a runner-up for the PEN/Hemingway award. Her best-selling novel, The Good Thief, is a New York Times Notable Book of the Year, recipient of the American Library Association’s Alex Award, winner of the The Center for Fiction’s First Novel Prize, and winner of the Quality Paperback Book Club’s New Voices Award. She is now finishing a new novel.

Hannah has worked at bookstores, magazines, publishing houses, and literary agencies. In 2002 she co-founded the award-winning magazine One Story and for the past 12 years has been its Editor in Chief. In 2009 she received the PEN/Nora Magid award for excellence in editing. In 2011, she joined the Public Radio program, Selected Shorts, as their Literary Commentator, interviewing authors and actors about the importance of literature and reading.

Hannah is also a celebrated teacher of creative writing. She co-founded Wishing Stone Workshops and the Sirenland Writers Conference in Italy. She currently teaches at Columbia University’s MFA program and at the Museum of Natural History in New York City.

She grew up in Salem, Massachusetts and lives in Brooklyn, New York.

5D: The Art & Skill of Revision

8J: Writing for One Story

yesmuse2014session8k20

8K: Everything You Wanted to Know About DIY Publishing (But Were Afraid to Ask)


10:30am-11:45am on Sunday, May 4th

Technology has made the printing of books cheaper and more accessible than ever, and the new landscape of publishing has made the possibility of DIY publishing more and more attractive. In this session, the instructor (who has published seven books with traditional publishers and four books himself) will discuss the ins and outs of the DIY model. Among the issues we'll cover are editing, promotion, printing, distribution, and design. By the end of the session, you should have a much better sense of what DIY really involves, and whether it's the right approach for you.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 20
Presenter(s):

Steve Almond (Author)
Steve Almond Steve Almond is the author of ten books of fiction and non-fiction, three of which he published himself. His memoir Candyfreak was a New York Times Bestseller. His short stories have appeared in the Best American and Pushcart anthologies. His most recent collection, God Bless America, won the Paterson Prize for Fiction and was short-listed for The Story Prize. His journalism has appeared in the New York Times Magazine, GQ, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, and elsewhere.

7E: Essentials of Process

8K: Everything You Wanted to Know About DIY Publishing (But Were Afraid to Ask)

yesmuse2014session8l63

8L: Your Digital Footprint: How Big Should It Be?


10:30am-11:45am on Sunday, May 4th

There’s a dizzying array of online options for today’s author: web site, blog, video trailer, mobile presence, social media platforms, online marketing opportunities, and more. You can spend considerably more time managing your digital presence than writing your next book. So where should you allocate your energy and money? What’s proven to be useful and what’s optional? And what do you need at the minimum to get into the game? This session will provide a framework for answering these and related questions so you can make good decisions that meet your needs. The session is designed to help debut and established authors, as well as writers who want to think ahead and plan for a future book launch.

Type: Lecture and Discussion Class
Seats Remaining: 63
Presenter(s):

Steve Bennett (Author)
Steve Bennett Steve Bennett has been involved in writing pursuits since the early eighties. His first book, Playing Hardball with Soft Skills (Bantam, 1986) was an utter flop, but whetted his appetite for writing full-time. Steve went on to pen (as both a solo author and collaborator) more than 50 books in the fields of business, computing, and parenting. His 365 TV-Free Activities You Can Do with Your Child (Adams Media, 1991) and several companion books sold more than one million copies, and earned him appearances on “Oprah,” “Good Morning America” and numerous other national TV shows, as well as interviews on hundreds of national, regional, and local radio programs. Steve also has experience as a technology journalist who contributed feature articles and reviews to numerous publications. After a stint as a media trainer who specialized in communicating technology-related information, Steve founded AuthorBytes (2001), one of the first design and development firms specializing in websites for authors and publishers. To date AuthorBytes has completed nearly 600 projects, which include websites, video trailers, and mobile products. His clients include New York Times bestselling authors, midlist authors, and traditionally-published/indie debut authors.

8L: Your Digital Footprint: How Big Should It Be?

yes

Marketplace Keynote: Jane Friedman


7:00pm on Saturday, May 3rd

Writing for Love (and Money)

Samuel Johnson famously said, "Nobody but a blockhead ever wrote except for money." If Johnson lived today, then he'd be living in a world of blockheads, with more and more writers agreeing to work for free to gain "exposure" in a crowded market. But aren't we told by industry optimists that there are more opportunities than ever for authors—that there's never been a better time to write and publish? I have research and stories to share about the history of authorship and the writer's relationship with money, going back to the days of Gutenberg (and beyond). We'll explore how writing and money have intersected over time, and how authors can survive—even thrive—as the business of publishing continues to transform.

Jane Friedman has spent more than 15 years in the media industry as an editor, publisher, and professor. Currently she serves as the web editor of the Virginia Quarterly Review (VQR), based at the University of Virginia, where she also teaches digital publishing and online writing. Her newest digital media initiative is Scratch magazine, a quarterly publication for writers, all about the intersection of writing and money.

Before joining VQR, Jane was the publisher of Writer’s Digest, a $10-million multimedia brand where she was responsible for the business strategy and financial performance of a team of twenty, which covered editorial, design, advertising, and online media operations. She also worked personally with many authors and oversaw the publication of hundreds of books.

Her expertise on the transformation of the publishing industry has been featured throughout many events and media, including NPR’s Morning Edition, Frankfurt Book Fair, Publishers Weekly, SXSW, Nieman Journalism Lab, and AWP. Since 2001, she has spoken at hundreds of writing and industry conferences, and has also served on panels and advisory boards for nonprofits such as the National Endowment for the Arts and the Creative Work Fund.

This event is made possible by the National Endowment for the Arts.

Type: Lecture with Q&A
Leader(s):

TBA (To Be Announced)
TBA We'll announce this person's name soon!

yes1358816700

Muse Keynote: Walter Mosley


12:00pm-2:15pm on Sunday, May 4th

Walter Mosley is one of the most versatile and admired writers in America today. He is the author of more than 43 critically acclaimed books, including the major bestselling mystery series featuring Easy Rawlins. His work has been translated into 23 languages and includes literary fiction, science fiction, political monographs, and a young adult novel. His short fiction has been widely published, and his nonfiction has appeared in The New York Times Magazine and The Nation, among other publications. He is the winner of numerous awards, including an O. Henry Award, a Grammy, and PEN America’s Lifetime Achievement Award. He lives in New York City. Learn more here.



Type: Lecture with Q&A
Leader(s):

TBA (To Be Announced)
TBA We'll announce this person's name soon!

yes

Option 1: The Art of Column Writing: Insider Secrets from Award-Winning Columnists


4:15pm-5:15pm on Sunday, May 5th

If you blog, you are a columnist. Whether sharing memories, offering opinions, or sharing how-to advice, learn how to create a memorable column. Point of view, voice, structure, and universal resonance will be covered. To write compelling prose with a five-sensory zest in 750 words or less is an art. The skills required can improve all types of writing. Fuel a faithful readership by discovering the tips and techniques used by award-winning newspaper columnists.

Type: Lecture with Q&A
Leader(s):

No documents found.

yes

Option 2: Building a Better Platform with Better Speech-Writing


4:15pm-5:15pm on Sunday, May 5th

For non-fiction writers, platform is key. Agents look for it. Publishers require it. But what is it? In a nutshell it’s proving yourself an expert in your field, and giving speeches is part of the process. This presentation will help you develop successful speeches, covering everything from creating learning objectives to researching subjects, from how to estimate the length of your speech by its word count to personalizing dry statistics. We’ll view different examples of effective uses of rhetorical techniques like anaphora and epistrophe. Bring your topic (or just an idea.) My goal is for each writer to leave with ideas for an effective opening, a compelling closing and a solid strategy for tackling the body of your speech. Soon you’ll go from giving successful speeches on your topic to giving successful readings of your non-fiction book!

Type: Lecture with Q&A.
Leader(s):

No documents found.

yes

Option 3: Submitting Your Work: A Strategic Plan for the Next Step


4:15pm-5:15pm on Sunday, May 5th

So you've had a couple pieces published in newspapers, magazines or literary journals. You know how to write a cover letter (though we’ll go over some ways to sharpen them) and you're ready to take your submitting skills to the next level. That might mean the frequency with which you publish, or publishing in a way that gets you toward a specific goal, such as a book. Or maybe it means moving up to the next tier of publications (we'll question, of course, if these tiers really exist and the very different things various publications can do for your career.) Or your next level could simply mean publishing pieces that are more fun, weirder, or just longer—pieces that are less constrained by ‘what editors are looking for’ and more you. These days a writer can and must assess the pros and cons of different publications and consider how they line up with his or her goals for writing. We'll look at ways to be more strategic and successful so you're not just lobbing queries into the abyss. And we’ll move from small tips to overarching philosophies about freelancing, learning the important difference between simply publishing and publishing what you want.

Type: Lecture with Q&A
Leader(s):

Steve Macone (Special Guest)
Steve Macone Steve Macone is a headline contributor at The Onion. His essays, humor writing and reporting have also appeared in The American Scholar, New York Times, Atlantic Online, New Yorker, Boston Globe, Boston Globe Magazine, Boston Phoenix, Salon.com, Morning News, Christian Science Monitor, The Drum, Weekly Dig, and AOL News. He's been featured on NPR, Longreads, and received multiple notable essay mentions in the Best American Essays series.

Option 3: You've Had Something Published, Now What?

yes

Option 4: Strength in Numbers: The Power of Online Communities


4:15pm-5:15pm on Sunday, May 5th

The writer’s life has become a lot less lonely since the advent of online communities several years back, and as these have grown, many writers have found in them their path to improvement, publication and simply staying sane. Come hear how members of three important online communities -- the blogs Writer Unboxed (with almost 40,000 monthly visits) and Beyond the Margins (Founded by Grubbies) and the Facebook group Book Pregnant have helped authors grow as writers and polish their craft, find the advice they’ve needed along the way, meet their agents and learn the nuts and bolts of marketing -- all the while having fun, making friends and giving back in a writerly way.

Type: Panel Discussion
Leader(s):

No documents found.

yes

Option 5: Say It Again: The Essentials of Revision


4:15pm-5:15pm on Sunday, May 5th

Most writers view the inspiration that sparks a first draft as fun, and revision as a chore. Discover how to enjoy listening to what you have said, then find ways to improve it. Become your own best editor by developing a sense of what to save and what to cut. We’ll also discuss strategies for using comments from workshops and manuscript readers, even when some of those comments might contradict each other. Energize the creative challenge of finding the best in your work and building on it in successive drafts instead of losing heart that the first draft didn’t nail it.

Type: Lecture & Discussion
Leader(s):

No documents found.

yes

Option 6: Writer Retribution Bingo


4:15pm-5:15pm on Sunday, May 5th

Join us for the most raucous, rollicking, retributive, power-reclaiming game of Bingo ever devised. Writer Retribution Bingo works like any Bingo game you've ever attended, except that the calls consist of the bedeviling (and, often, callous and cruel) things people say to writers, including: "What do you write about?" "Where have you been published?" "When will that thing [meaning, your cherished work] be done?" "You should put a sparkly vampire in your book!" "Why don't you write MY story?" Etc. Each call will be fully group-mocked while we play, and the session will also include a discussion of coping with rejection, callousness, marginalization, and the other ills to which society subjects writers. Best of all, in Writer Retribution Bingo *everyone* gets a prize. Writer Retribution Bingo is one of the most popular parts of Hillary Rettig's popular “How to Write a Lot” class, and is perfect for those who want to leave the Muse all empowered and riled up and ready to write. This class is for both fiction and non-fiction writers. Limited to 25 students, so arrive early!

Type: Discussion Class
Leader(s):

No documents found.

yes

Option 7: Guided Open Mic


4:15pm-5:15pm on Sunday, May 5th

Your chance to show off your skills by reading five minutes of your work (usually about 600 words of prose) to your fellow participants and any guest authors, editors, or agents who drop by. At this event, a skilled reader will be on hand to talk about what makes a good reading – from how to pick the right excerpt to how to perform that excerpt like a professional.

Type: Discussion Class
Leader(s):

Henriette Lazaridis Power (Author)
Henriette Lazaridis Power Henriette Lazaridis Power's debut novel The Clover House was published by Ballantine in 2013 and was a Boston Globe best-seller and a Target Emerging Authors selection. Power has degrees in English Literature from Middlebury College; Oxford University, where she was a Rhodes Scholar; and the University of Pennsylvania. She taught English literature at Harvard for ten years. Her work has appeared in Narrative Magazine, New England Review, the New York Times online, The Millions, Huffington Post, and elsewhere, and she was the recipient of a 2006 Massachusetts Cultural Council Artists Grant. In 2010, she launched The Drum, a literary magazine publishing exclusively in audio form. A competitive rower, Power trains regularly on the Charles River in Boston.

7F: Private Writer, Public Figure: How to Thrive at the Podium, the Mic, or the Conference Table

yes

Option 8: Successful Small Press Publishing: Author Perspective


4:15pm-5:15pm on Sunday, May 5th

The challenges of breaking into and succeeding with major publishing houses are well documented, as are the perks of self-publishing. But what's it like to publish your book with a small, independent publisher? Join us for an instructive, positive session that will provide a window to this world. Do you need an agent? Should you enter contests to get your book published? How can your manuscript -- and cover letter -- emerge from the slush pile? Which literary journals do these presses pay attention to? Our panel -- consisting of novelists, short story writers, and a non-fiction author -- will address these questions. In addition, we'll break down the possible shortcomings of working with a small press, and we'll reveal the unexpected benefits and rewards. We'll give you some practical tips about how to succeed in a publishing world where writers at both large presses and tiny presses are now expected to directly market their books like never before.

Type: Panel Discussion
Leader(s):

Ron MacLean (Author)
Ron MacLean Ron MacLean is author of the novels Headlong and Blue Winnetka Skies and the story collection Why the Long Face? His fiction has appeared widely in magazines including GQ, Narrative, Fiction International, Night Train, Other Voices, Drunken Boat, Best Online Fiction 2010, and elsewhere. His stories have been anthologized. Ron has received fellowships from Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, The Millay Colony, and Dorland Mountain Arts Colony, and he is a frequent writer-in-residence at The Chautauqua Institution's Summer Writers Workshop. He is a recipient of the Frederick Exley Award for Short Fiction and has been nominated for multiple Pushcart Prizes. He holds a Doctor of Arts from the University at Albany, SUNY, and teaches at Grub Street. See his work at www.ronmaclean.net.

1C: Embrace the Unlovely: Making Characters Less Likable and More Compelling

yes1358811960

Grub Goes to First Friday


6:45pm-8:30pm on Friday, May 3rd

Experience Boston's vibrant art scene at the SoWa Art District's First Friday. Wander the galleries and open studios of over 60 artists and illustrators, with a meet-and-greet at the Samsøn Project, currently showing Shifting Horizons, a solo exhibition by Lisa Segal. Co-hosted by life-long Grubbie Katie Li and the Samsøn Project, this event is designed to connect, inspire, and explore the relationship between the literary and visual arts. Meet at the Plaza Hotel lobby at 6:45 to walk to the galleries.

Type: Grubbie gathering
Leader(s):

TBA (To Be Announced)
TBA We'll announce this person's name soon!

yes1358811960

Grub Zumba


5:15pm-6:15pm on Friday, May 3rd

Zumba is a dance party-like fitness class inspired by Latin music. The easy-to-follow choreography is a fun, one-hour workout for the entire body and requires no floor moves or equipment. Any sneaker or similar enclosed shoe is usually worn, and exercising attire for the class can be loose-fitting, casual clothing, or athletic wear. (If you want to be a total Zumbie, you can simply search "Zumba clothing" online for outfits in the brightest colors and funky styles, as well as actual Zumba shoes. But the latter is not necessary.) Led by Grubbie Laura Osborne.

Come to the hotel gym on the basement level at 5:15pm and let loose after a busy day. It'll be a blast!

Type: Grubbie gathering
Leader(s):

TBA (To Be Announced)
TBA We'll announce this person's name soon!

yes1358811960

Kung Fu and Qi Gong


6:00pm-6:45pm on Saturday, May 4th

Join Yao Li, co-owner of the Boston Kung Fu Tai Chi Institute, for a 45-minute kung fu and qi gong workout. These exercises, originally from China, can increase flexibility and strength while also reducing stress. With over thirty years of experience, Yao has trained hundreds of students of all ages and experience levels, including Gisele Bundchen, Robert Parish, and David Mamet. No experience necessary, although comfortable clothing and footwear is recommended. Meet in the Statler Room at 5:55pm.

Type: Grubbie gathering
Leader(s):

TBA (To Be Announced)
TBA We'll announce this person's name soon!

yes1358811960

Grub Zumba


5:15pm-6:15pm on Friday, May 3rd

Zumba is a dance party-like fitness class inspired by Latin music. The easy-to-follow choreography is a fun, one-hour workout for the entire body and requires no floor moves or equipment. Any sneaker or similar enclosed shoe is usually worn, and exercising attire for the class can be loose-fitting, casual clothing, or athletic wear. (If you want to be a total Zumbie, you can simply search "Zumba clothing" online for outfits in the brightest colors and funky styles, as well as actual Zumba shoes. But the latter is not necessary.) Led by Grubbie Laura Osborne.

Come to the hotel gym on the basement level at 5:15pm and let loose after a busy day. It'll be a blast!

Type: Grubbie gathering
Leader(s):

TBA (To Be Announced)
TBA We'll announce this person's name soon!

yes1358811960

Grub Zumba


5:15pm-6:15pm on Saturday, May 4th

Zumba is a dance party-like fitness class inspired by Latin music. The easy-to-follow choreography is a fun, one-hour workout for the entire body and requires no floor moves or equipment. Any sneaker or similar enclosed shoe is usually worn, and exercising attire for the class can be loose-fitting, casual clothing, or athletic wear. (If you want to be a total Zumbie, you can simply search "Zumba clothing" online for outfits in the brightest colors and funky styles, as well as actual Zumba shoes. But the latter is not necessary.) Led by Grubbie Laura Osborne.

Come to the hotel gym on the basement level at 5:15pm and let loose after a busy day. It'll be a blast!

Type: Grubbie gathering
Leader(s):

TBA (To Be Announced)
TBA We'll announce this person's name soon!

yes

A Storied Affair: A Muse 2014 Kick-Off Party


6:00-10:00pm on Thursday, May 1st at Storyville Nightclub, 90 Exeter Street

Put on your dancing shoes, swill delicious cocktails, and galavant with Boston’s many writers and musicians. We’ll gab and drink casually, and then later in the evening the event will morph into a crazy dance party, DJ’d by local artists. Free and open to the public. All are welcome. Hosted by Grub Street and Future Boston.

A Lit Week and ArtWeek event.

Type: Lecture with Q&A
Leader(s):

TBA (To Be Announced)
TBA We'll announce this person's name soon!