(Updated Sept. 10, 2012) The Sangria Summit Agenda is shaping up to be an exciting one for the attendees. We’re finalizing our speakers and panelists and coordinating their travel plans. Keep returning to this page for more updates.
At the Sangria Summit, you’ll hear from best-selling writers sharing their insights on craft-related topics. You’ll interact with editors and agents at panel discussions and sessions designed to answer all your questions about the process of getting published.
But you’ll also hear vibrant discussions about subjects that are off limits at most writing conferences. We’ll have a frank debate on the pros and cons of self-publishing. Give you the skinny on what you really need to know to help market your book. Explore how the rising popularity of ebooks and the digital revolution’s effect on reader habits will influence the market for your writing. And make sure you’re up to snuff on the topics publishing industry execs debate behind closed doors.
6-9 p.m., Informal Reception
If you arrive early, join us for an informal reception at the Denver Press Club, just a few block from the Conference hotel. (A $5 cover charge includes 2 drinks and appetizers.)
Morning session with Bob Mayer 8 a.m. to noon (with periodic breaks)
Introduction to Write It Forward: From Writer To Successful Author: For both fiction and non-fiction authors, a overview workshop that focuses on educating writers how to be authors. Write It Forward is a holistic approach encompassing goals, intent, environment, personality, change, courage, communication and leadership that gives the writer a road map to become a successful author. Many writers become focused on either the writing or the business end; Write It Forward integrates the two, especially in the rapidly changing world of digital publishing.
The Original Idea—The Core of Writing and Selling Your Book and Idea Workshop: Can you say what your book is about in 25 words of less? This is essential to both writing a tight book and then selling it. We’ll discuss ways to find and state your original idea so that you stay on course while writing the book and with which you can excite those you tell it to when trying to sell it. After the formal presentation, volunteers will get the opportunity to write their idea down and have it discussed. We’ll find out what you really meant to write and the level of interest it generates. All will profit, not just the person whose idea is discussed, as this workshop will show you how to focus your creative energies.
Outlining, Plot, Conflict and Writing Scenes: The Events of Your Story: Before you begin writing your book, you should spend some time outlining and developing your story. We’ll discuss types of outlines along with techniques for efficiently developing the strongest possible story based on your original idea. The creative process before the actual start of the book will be covered. From the exciting opening that grabs the reader through the escalating conflict to the climactic scene and ending with the resolution—the entire structure of the novel with be covered with emphasis on hooks, the remote control effect, building suspense, and having satisfying endings. Conflict and writing scenes will also be covered.
Character and Point of View: This goes beyond just first person, third person and omniscient voices. The point of view you write in is your voice as a writer and often the issue lies deeper than simply a mechanical device. For example, voice dictates what you can say about your characters and what you can’t. It also sets you apart from others and makes you distinct. The most critical component of a novel is character. How do you go from flat two-dimensional characters to vibrant three-dimensional ones?
Noon-1:45 p.m. Lunch and Keynote Speaker
Keynote speaker is Mark Coker, CEO of Smashwords, a self-publishing company. His topic is Best Practices of Successful E-Book Authors.
Mark founded Smashwords in 2008 to change the way books are published, marketed and sold.
He is also the author of “The Smashwords Style Guide” (how to format an ebook), “The Smashwords Book Marketing Guide” (how to market any book) and “The Secrets to Ebook Publishing Success” (best practices of the most commercially successful ebook authors).
In the four years since its launch, Smashwords has grown to become the leading ebook distributor serving indie authors, small presses and literary agents. Over 45,000 authors from around the world publish and distribute more than 130,000 books at Smashwords.
Mark is a contributing columnist for the Huffington Post, where he writes about ebooks and the future of publishing.
2-3:30 p.m. Panel Discussion. The Battle to Get in Print
Panelists: Nate Brookshire, John Holmes, Kelly Kennedy, Marius Tecoanta
3:45-5 p.m. Panel Discussion. Asymmetrical War; The World of E-Publishing
Panelists: Mark Coker, Bob Mayer, Jennifer Talty
6 p.m., Dinner
Join us for dinner and pitchers of sangria at the Denver Press Club and spend time with authors and editors. (Additional $25 cost).
8-9 a.m. Welcome and Morning Speaker
Morning speaker isKelly Kennedy, combat veteran, war reporter, and author of the award-winning “They Fought for Each Other: The Triumph and Tragedy of the Hardest Hit Unit in Iraq.” Kelly will bring to life her experiences as a soldier and reporter, and the cost it takes to write some of the most gripping combat scenes for a book.
Morning Session with Caitlin Rother 9 a.m. to noon (with periodic breaks)
How to Make Your Scenes Come Alive
Do you have a story to tell but don’t know where to start? Caitlin Rother will break down the craft of telling fictional or non-fictional stories using fiction techniques into its basic elements: characters, point of view, voice, setting, description, dialogue and plot. By showing rather than telling a story, your scenes will come alive with action and emotion, but good research is also needed to add the factual details and verisimilitude that make the most compelling tales. Students will learn how to write scenes containing vivid imagery, poignant prose and snappy dialogue, then practice the craft by doing a trigger exercise or two designed to break down barriers that can block creativity.
Rother will also discuss a bit about research and interviewing techniques, and how to outline the overall narrative structure of a short or book-length work. Students can then use these techniques as they continue to write on their own, or form their own writing groups – online or in person – once the session ends.
Noon-1:45 p.m. Lunch and Keynote SpeakerMaryann Karinch, author and owner of the Rudy Literary Agency will speak about “Getting Published and Succeeding with your Book.”
From the query letter to a promotion plan for the published work, most authors have a lot to learn—even experienced ones! This presentation delivers tips, tricks, and insights from the perspective of a literary agent who is also the author of 18 commercially published works of non-fiction. Some of the topics are:
- Why Would I Say “No!” after Reading Your Query Letter?
- Why Would I Say “Yes” After Reading Your Query Letter?
- Anatomy of a Book Proposal
- What an Agent Does for You
- What a Publishing Contract Contains
- What to Expect after the Manuscript Is Done
- Promotion is Part of Publishing—Unless You Don’t Care If Anyone Reads Your Book
2-4:30 p.m. with Bob Mayer. E-pub, Self-publishing, Marketing and Selling the book and the Future of Publishing for the Writer: Publishing is changing exponentially, not linearly and today’s writer must be aware of these changes in order to succeed. This workshop is designed to help authors navigate through the latest information on various forms of publishing options. Traditional, e-publishing, Print on Demand, self-pub, vanity, and more. Published author considering publishing your backlist? Unpublished author considering self-publishing? This will look closely at self-publishing distribution channels from what kind of file you will need to upload your eBook to various options you have in creating the files. Also, there are many out there offering boilerplate ‘marketing’ plan for your book. But what is the reality? How did we go from selling 347 eBooks in January 2011 to selling over 100,000 in July of the same year? What techniques and tricks of the trade did we learn through experience? This workshop will help you develop marketing strategies for yourself as an author and for you books. We will look at various social media outlets, Google and Facebook ads, and other ways you can help widen your reach as an author.
4:45-5:30 p.m., Panel Discussion. Agents of Change
Panelists: Rudy Literary Agency, MaryAnn Karinch
6:30 p.m., Dinner
Join us for dinner and pitchers of sangria and the Denver Press Club, and spend time with authors and editors. (Additional $25 cost).