How much good “muse” to report is too much? Recipient of our SCWC Outstanding Nonfiction Award for her manuscript How to Raise a Husband, Tonilyn Hornung recently signed the contract with Conari Press to publish her book. (That’s Tonilyn pictured holding the precious baby, along with an infant.) Literary rep Sally van Haitsma negotiated the deal after discovering Tonilyn at our LA8 event in Newport Beach. As usual, Sally’s got a good eye for talented writers and will be joining us again in September.
Literary agent Dana Newman, who sold conferee Marsha Aizumi’s Two Spirits, One Heart: A Mother, Her Transgender Son, and Their Journey to Love And Acceptance to Magnus (now Riverdale) after reading her SCWC submission, reports yet another deal. Her client–also met at the SCWC–author/workshop leader Robert Yehling signed with Houghton Mifflin to write Just Add Water, a biography of surfing great Clay Marzo and his life with Asperger’s Syndrome. Bob’s most recent collection of poetry and essays, Backroad Melodies, has recently been released.
Among other SCWCers with books now out? Orit Arfa’s politically relevant The Settler, edited by Jennifer Silva Redmond; the mystical adventure Crossing Jack by Jeffrey J. Michaels; and the special ops thriller Cobra Clearance by Richard Craig Anderson (who just returned from his first panel appearance at Thrillerfest). Congrats to all!
And this exceptional bit of good “muse” just in… Mr. Dave Putnam, longtime SCWC conferee from way back, just sold his first book to Ocean View Publishing. It’ll be out May 2014, but has no official title yet. Thing is, while it’s his first book to get published, it’s his 32nd book written. A true writer and retired San Bernardino County deputy, Dave got his second wind and is riding it out as he writes hard now on book 36. Good for you, Dave!
Onward and Always
Rounding out our Special Guest Speakers is none other than international best-selling, award-winning children’s author, Sheri Fink. Sheri’s first children’s book, The Little Rose, an enchanting story about a rose growing in a weed bed who learns to accept and love herself despite her differences, was published in March 2011, remained a #1 best-seller on Amazon for over 60 weeks and was adapted for the stage. The Kindle edition became the #1 top-rated children’s eBook on Amazon and is also a best-seller. In 2012, The Little Rose won the gold medal for best children’s K-3rd fable in the Readers Favorite International Book Awards. The Little Gnome followed. And the latest in the series, The Little Firefly was just recently released.
We’re fine-tuning the schedule, which will include a fairly robust DYI (Do Yourself Independence) track alongside the vital read & critique and craft tracks. One particular thing we’ve been keeping close watch on is the use of crowdfunding by writers seeking to publish independently. Crowdfunding is tricky, offering results often wildly unpredictable, even saddening.Beyond the typical go-to platforms–Kickstarter and Indiegogo for most–there’s an intriguing new kid on the ether-block, specifically geared to writers of all ilk. The platform is called Pubslush and we’re having its passionate vice president, Amanda Barbara, come show you all the ins & outs of how it works. The platform really could be a boon for the entrepreneurial indie author.
Last bit of business for now is this… After going on a deserved hiatus, Jean Jenkins is returning with her brain-bursting two-part “Best Foot Forward: Polishing to Impress” (complete info here). The sessions are limited to 12 participants and require pre-conference participation. These workshops always fill up. If you’re serious about writing genre fiction and want in, get in quick. Jeanie will also be conducting her popular open attendance session, “Defining Genre: What Are You Really Writing?” on Friday.
Finally… The Newport Beach Hyatt, our OC home for the LA conference run from SD, saw fit to improve their Conference Center to ensure we writers have even more cause to enjoy the SCWC (pictured below). Waterslide, writers!
Remember that our LA11 event is more limited in attendance than our winter conference in San Diego. Discounted pre-registration is open. Folks are writing and sharing great writerly info and more on our Facebook wall (here). Do yourself a favor and join us.