The Muse 2014 | Testimonials

"When writers ask me how I sold my first book, I tell them about Grub’s [The] Muse and the Marketplace. The conference taught me how to refine my query letter and hone my plot. Even better, it introduced me to my agent, who sold my novel twenty four hours after sending it out. It was the most valuable money I have ever spent."
--Liz Michalski, author of Evenfall (Berkley, 2011)


"The Muse and the Marketplace is one of the best investments a prospective writer can make. Attending it has provided me with access to top agents, publishers, editors and writing teachers. I can say without hesitation that the information I learned at The Muse and the Marketplace took years off of the writing of my first novel. I anticipate completing my novel in 2012 and, if I get it published, I can -- and will -- thank GrubStreet and The Muse and the Marketplace."
--Elaine Buckley, fiction writer


"The Muse & the Marketplace conference was simply the best investment I have ever made. Not only did I learn how to navigate the mysterious publishing industry, but within several weeks I had been offered representation by two great agents I met through the “five-star” lunch. One agent was at my assigned table, and a published author seated there later introduced me to his agent. In September, just days after submitting my proposal to several houses, my amazing agent sold the project for six figures – not a bad return for my conference fee!"
--Dyan DeNapoli, Penguin Expert and author of The Great Penguin Rescue (Free Press, 2010)


"I attended my first [The] Muse & the Marketplace in 2004 with the goal of being brave enough to talk to at least one writer or one agent. Now, five years later, I talk to many writers (and my agent) each day, in large part because of the connections I’ve made through GrubStreet and The Muse. One of my proudest writing accomplishments is being part of Grub and The Muse. Come. Learn. Connect. You’ll be happy you did."
--Randy Susan Meyers, author of The Murderer’s Daughters (St. Martin's Press 2010)


"After a number of unsatisfying experiences at week-long writers’ conferences, I was ready to throw in the towel on conferences. But then I followed a friend’s suggestion to The Muse and the Marketplace and finally found what I’d been searching for, and more! I left The Muse feeling 100-times more inspired, knowledgeable, and well-connected than after all of those week-long experiences combined. I will definitely be back, many times over!"
--Rebecca Fraser-Thill, freelance writer and author of Visualizing the Lifespan (Wiley 2010)


"I brought a short story to the 2011 Manuscript Mart -- a story I'd had trouble revising, one that had been rejected by at least a dozen literary journals -- and one of the editors I met with said, "All right, we're going to fix this thing right here and now." And she made a few surgically precise edits and twenty minutes later accepted the story on the spot. This is the kind of magical thing that happens at The Muse and the Marketplace. It's where editors and agents give you the time of day."
--Chip Cheek, fiction writer and The Muse 2012 presenter


"The weekend of The Muse and the Marketplace is one I hold sacred each year now, no matter what else is competing for that slot. It's an oasis for me, two full days during which I can be a writer in a writer's world, during which I can let fall away my other roles as an administrator, a freelance consultant, a dance teacher, a mother, and be reminded every second that my writing is important and that I should continue to nurture it, and the writing process. And then, on top of all that, I get to interact with writers, agents and editors of fantastic caliber, and I get to reconnect with friends met through GrubStreet. What could be better for a writing conference?"
--Anjali Mitter Duva, freelance writer/consultant


"This will be the fourth [The] Muse and the Marketplace conference I’ve attended, and I wouldn’t miss it. This exemplary forum is always educational and inspirational. I love networking with the literary world’s newest and finest authors, agents, and editors. And it’s a wonderful chance for me to reconnect with my own agent and editor."
--Lynne Griffin, author of the novels Sea Escape and Life Without Summer and the non-fiction Negotiation Generation


"Each time I sign up for [The] Muse and the Marketplace, I wonder how GrubStreet could equal the quality and diversity of workshops they offered the prior year. As I sign up once again in 2010, I no longer wonder if the conference will be equally as good as the last ones; I am certain it will not only be as good but, remarkably, even better!"
--Robin Lee Regensburg, freelance reporter, marketing copywriter, and aspiring fiction writer


"I'm so glad I took a chance on The Muse and the Marketplace 2009. Sessions were full of solid tips. Networking was easy in the friendly atmosphere. I came away inspired, applied what I learned to my writing, and got better at sending things out. My work is getting recognized and I am building a following. What an invaluable boost to my writing journey!"
--Mary E. Gordon, fiction writer


"There are few weekends that allow us to explore our fictional worlds within the context of publishing reality. Perhaps the best part of The Muse is having met so many professionals who have made writing their living. This conference alone has enabled me to take certain risks professionally to move writing to the center of my life."
--Dawn Dorland Perry, former TV producer and aspiring fiction writer


"I went to The Muse and the Marketplace conference a number of years ago and met with an agent. I wasn't really focused at the time, and she encouraged me to go in a direction that I hadn't really thought of. The result was my new book, Holy Hullabaloos. Though the woman I met with didn?t end up being my agent, I think her advice was critical to this new stage of my career, and I?ve always felt gratitude toward her and GrubStreet for that help."
--Jay Wexler, author of Holy Hullabaloos: A Road Trip to the Battlegrounds of the Church/State Wars


"As someone who enjoys writing in my “spare time,” I found the workshops and keynote at “[The] Muse and the Marketplace 2009” inspirational! Manuscript Mart was especially helpful— the editor I met with gave me invaluable feedback on the second draft of my novel (and the deadline for submission made me finish that second draft!)"
--Dr. Marlayna Schmidt, writer and ordained minister


"[The] Muse and the Marketplace is the best conference for writers of all levels. I first attended five years ago and at the time didn’t dare say I was a writer out loud. The workshops provided inspiration and I still use advice that I learned from Carlos Rotello in his seminar on revision. Each year The Muse has helped me to feel more like a writer. Last year, I had a promising meeting with an agent and am now enrolled in an MFA program. If you treat yourself to one thing this year, you should honor your inner muse and attend this conference."
--Sarah Banse, student


"Attending [The] Muse and Marketplace, affectionately know to me as M&M, is better and purer for your writing than taking anabolic steroids! I am a published author who needs pumping as much any aspirant. At M&M you will experience writing without taking pen to paper; you will be in a community diverse but driven by the same passion. You will have a grandstand of cheerleaders and fans for your efforts. You will learn more than you can possibly absorb. You will feel reassured that there is no exact right way to write, just your way. I came away exhausted (the good kind of tired) and ready to keep on doing my best to breathe life into language."
--Lyn G. Brakeman, author of Spiritual Lemons


"I walked into The Muse and the Marketplace with a handful of essays and a book proposal. I walked out knowing I had found my agent. Five months later, I had a book contract. This event changed my life in every possible – and every positive – sense of the word."
--Leslie Talbot, author of Singular Existence