How to Get Your Writing Published is an intensive three-day workshop that will demystify the publishing process for poets and writers of literary prose (fiction, nonfiction, creative nonfiction), especially those from historically marginalized communities.
The course is designed for writers who have already devoted some time to developing their craft and are now ready to make a concrete plan for publication.
Agents, editors, and accomplished writers will provide insight into the publishing process. Poets & Writers staff will give hands-on instruction on how to use our online tools and resources to identify markets, find an agent, and build community with fellow writers.
Community-building and networking opportunities are integral to the workshop, and participating writers will leave with clear, actionable plans outlining their publishing goals and the steps they will take to achieve them.
Tuesdays, hosted via Zoom.
- March 8, 4:00 - 7:15 p.m. ET | 3:00 - 6:15 p.m. CT
- March 15, 4:00 - 7:00 p.m. ET | 3:00 - 6:00 p.m. CT
- March 22, 4:00 - 6:15 p.m. ET | 3:00 - 5:15 p.m. CT
$225 (early bird price of $175 is available between February 11 and February 21)
To ensure more equitable access, a limited number of fee waivers are available, with priority to writers who identify as Black, Indigenous, or people of color.
Writers who reside in the Detroit, Houston, and New Orleans metro areas are eligible for a discounted rate of $150, as part of our United States of Writing initiative.
All participants will receive a one-year Poets & Writers Magazine subscription (or an extension of an existing subscription) and a complimentary copy of The Poets & Writers Complete Guide to Being a Writer, while supplies last—a $50 value.
**Times listed below are Eastern Standard**
Tuesday, March 8
Presenters: P&W’s Ricardo Hernandez, Programs and Partnerships Manager, and Thierry Kehou, Director of Programs and Partnerships
4:15–5:15: Publishing 101. Learn the fundamentals of identifying the right markets for your work and best practices for submitting to literary magazines, small presses, writing contests, and more.
Presenter: Kevin Larimer, Editor in Chief, Poets & Writers, and coauthor of The Poets & Writers Complete Guide to Being a Writer (Avid Reader Press, 2020).
5:25–6:10: Working with an Agent (for Prose Writers). Literary agents will describe what they do and don’t do for their clients; share what makes for an effective query letter; offer tips on how to research, locate, and approach agents best suited for the writer and their project(s); and touch upon standard author/agent contracts.
Presenters: Amy Elizabeth Bishop, Agent, Dystel, Goderich & Bourret; Regina Brooks, Founder/President, Serendipity Literary Agency; Serene Hakim, Agent, Ayesha Pande Literary
5:25–6:10: Submitting to Literary Magazines and Journals (for Poets). Poetry editors of literary magazines will share what they are looking for in new work, and their publication’s submission process and other opportunities. They will also discuss what happens once a work is accepted, including explaining publication/author agreements and the editorial process.
Presenters: Constanza Contreras, Poetry Editor, Michigan Quarterly Review; brittny ray crowell, Poetry Editor, Gulf Coast; Carolyn Hembree, Poetry Editor, Bayou Magazine
6:15–7:15: What’s Your Plan (Part I). Participants will develop personalized plans detailing steps they will take to achieve their publishing goals.
Presenters: P&W'sRicardo Hernandez, Programs and Partnerships Manager, and Thierry Kehou, Director of Programs and Partnerships
Tuesday, March 15
4:15–5:00: Resources for Writers. From creating a writers group to applying for grants, researching markets to keeping your writing practice fresh, this session will cover the many tools and services offered by Poets & Writers to support your creative life.
Presenter: P&W's Jessica Kashiwabara, Digital Director
5:05–5:50: Working with a Book Editor. Learn about the editorial process from acceptance to publication, the editor-writer-agent relationship, book proposals, advances, comps, and more.
Presenters: Anitra Budd, Editor in Chief, Coffee House Press; Nicole Counts, Senior Editor, One World; Chantz Erolin, Editor, Graywolf Press; Vivian Lee, Senior Editor, Little, Brown and Company; Megha Majumdar, Senior Editor, Catapult; Erika Stevens, Editorial Director, Coffee House Press.
6:00–7:00: What’s Your Plan (Part II). Participants will convene again to refine their individual plans and share ideas to help one another be accountable for following through.
Presenters: P&W's Ricardo Hernandez, Programs and Partnerships Manager, and Thierry Kehou, Director of Programs and Partnerships
Tuesday, March 22
4:15–5:00: All About Readings and Workshops. Find out how to apply for support from Poets & Writers’ Readings & Workshops program; how to approach bookstores, community organizations, and other venues to plan and deliver great literary programs; and how to use our online tools to promote your event.
Presenters: P&W’s Jamie Asaye FitzGerald, Director of Readings & Workshops (West), and Bonnie Rose Marcus, Director of Readings & Workshops (East)
5:10–6:00: The Writer's Journey. Acclaimed authors share stories about their literary careers—how they got started and their experience in the publishing world—and offer advice for aspiring and early-career writers.
Presenters: Bridgett M. Davis, author, The World According to Fannie Davis: My Mother’s Life in the Detroit Numbers (Little, Brown and Company); Reyes Ramirez, author, The Book of Wanderers (University of Arizona Press/Camino del Sol Series)
6:00–6:15: How to Keep It Going
Presenters: P&W's Ricardo Hernandez, Programs and Partnerships Manager, and Thierry Kehou, Director of Programs and Partnerships
Amy Elizabeth Bishop joined Dystel, Goderich & Bourret (DG&B) in 2015 after interning for the agency in 2014. At DG&B she’s cultivating a wide-ranging list in literary and upmarket fiction, expert-driven narrative nonfiction, and select YA, with a special interest in BIPOC voices. Her list includes titles such as The Last Story of Mina Lee by Nancy Jooyoun Kim (a Reese’s Book Club selection and New York Times bestseller) and The Forest of Stolen Girls by June Hur (a Junior Library Guild selection and Edgar Award nominee). Before diving into the world of publishing, she graduated from SUNY Geneseo with a degree in creative writing. Though she grew up upstate, she currently resides in Woodside, Queens. You can find her on Twitter @amylizbishop.
Regina Brooks is the CEO of Serendipity Literary Agency, one of the largest African American owned agencies in the United States, and the author of Writing Great Books for Young Adults: Everything You Need to Know, from Crafting the Idea to Landing a Publishing Deal, and You Should Really Write a Book: How to Write, Sell, and Market Your Memoir. For over two decades Brooks has been a stalwart champion of poetry, seeing the form as a means to educate on complex topics, to celebrate culture, and to tell stories that bring joy. She represents renowned poet Marilyn Nelson, three-time National Book Award finalist, Frost Medal Winner, and Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets. Brooks is a partner in Moore Black Press and agent to jessica Care moore, whose latest book We Want Our Bodies Back won the African American Literary Award for Poetry and was selected by Vogue, Publishers Weekly, Ms., Refinery, and Essence as one of the best books of spring 2020. Brooks’s authors have been awarded honors such as the Newbery, Caldecott, Michael Printz, and PEN Writers, as well as Edgar Awards, NAACP Image Awards for Literature, Kirkus Prizes, and a host of others. She was a Publishers Weekly 2015 Star Watch Honoree, and Writer’s Digest magazine named her agency one of the top twenty-five literary agencies in the United States. Brooks is the vice president of the Association of American Literary Agents, a member of the board of trustees of the Association of Writers & Writing Programs, and a member of the National Book Foundation’s Book Council. Find her at serendipitylit.com, #booksbythenumbers, and @serendipitylit.
Anitra Budd is an editor, writer, educator, and public speaker. As former managing and acquiring editor at Coffee House Press from 2009 to 2014, Budd championed the work of award-winning and critically acclaimed authors, streamlined the press’s operations, and steered significant, complex works to publication. Throughout her time with Coffee House and in her freelance business, Budd has worked with more than three hundred authors and shepherded dozens of books from contract to publication. Budd’s recent work in academia includes teaching courses in the MFA program at Sierra Nevada University as well as undergraduate courses at Macalester College and the University of Minnesota. She has also written several educational books for children. Budd holds BA and MA degrees from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities.
Constanza Contreras is a PhD candidate in English at the University of Michigan. Her dissertation project looks at racial configurations in the Americas from a hemispheric lens to complicate notions of Latinidad that have historically erased Indigeneity and Blackness. She focuses on visual and literary narratives and their lingering effects on the racial dynamics of contemporary nation-states, and the intersections of race, gender, and global indigeneities. Originally from Chile, Constanza is now living in Dublin, Ireland, after four years of being lost in the American Midwest. A poet and illustrator, her work was recently featured in the anthology The Breakbeat Poets Vol. 4: LatiNEXT.
Nicole Counts is a senior editor at One World, an imprint of Random House, where she works with Fatimah Asghar, Morgan Parker, Kali Fajardo-Anstine, Donovan X. Ramsey, Brittany Packnett, Nate Marshall, Danielle Geller, and Gabriella Burnham, among others. She started her career in marketing and publicity at PublicAffairs and Bold Type Books. She is a member of People of Color in Publishing and a volunteer with Well-Read Black Girl. She was a finalist for the 2020 Publishers Weekly Star Watch.
brittny ray crowell is a native of Texarkana, Texas. She is the recipient of a Donald Barthelme Prize in Poetry and the Lucy Terry Prince Prize, judged by Major Jackson. Her poems have been published in Ploughshares, Frontier, the Common, the West Review, Copper Nickel, the Journal, the anthology Black Lives Have Always Mattered and elsewhere. She recently participated as one of the librettists for the Kennedy Center’s Cartography Project. She is a teaching assistant and PhD student in creative writing and literature at the University of Houston and a poetry editor for Gulf Coast.
Bridgett M. Davis is the author of the memoir The World According to Fannie Davis: My Mother’s Life in the Detroit Numbers, a New York Times Editors’ Choice, a 2020 Michigan Notable Book, and named a Best Book of 2019 by Kirkus Reviews, BuzzFeed, NBC News, and Parade magazine. She is writing the screenplay for the film adaptation of the book, which will be produced by Plan B Entertainment and released by Searchlight Pictures. She is author of two novels, Into the Go-Slow, named a Best Book of 2014 by the San Francisco Chronicle, and Shifting Through Neutral, shortlisted for the Zora Neale Hurston/Richard Wright Legacy Award. Davis is also writer/director of the award-winning feature film Naked Acts, now part of the permanent collection at Indiana University’s distinguished Black Film Center/Archive. Davis is a professor in the Department of Journalism and the Writing Professions at Baruch College and the CUNY Graduate Center, where she teaches creative, narrative, and film writing.
Her essays have appeared most recently in the New York Times, the Millions, Real Simple, the Los Angeles Times, and O, the Oprah Magazine. A graduate of Spelman College and Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism, she lives in Brooklyn with her family. Visit her website at www.bridgettdavis.com.
Chantz Erolin is an editor at Graywolf Press, where he was the inaugural Citizen Literary Fellow. His writing can be found in the Believer, Good Job!, and elsewhere. He lives in South Minneapolis, where he was raised.
Serene Hakim is an agent at Ayesha Pande Literary. She represents authors in a variety of genres, from MG fantasy to adult literary fiction to contemporary YA. Hakim is particularly interested in both YA and adult fiction that has international themes, highlights a variety of cultures, and focuses on underrepresented and/or marginalized voices. Specifically, she’s looking for writing that explores different meanings of identity, home, family and parenthood/motherhood. Her educational background is in French and women’s studies, and she holds an MA in French-English translation from New York University.
Carolyn Hembree was born in Bristol, Tennessee. Her debut poetry collection, Skinny, came out from Kore Press in 2012. In 2016, Trio House Press published her second collection, Rigging a Chevy Into a Time Machine and Other Ways to Escape a Plague, selected by Neil Shepard for the 2015 Trio Award and by Stephanie Strickland for the 2015 Rochelle Ratner Memorial Award. Her poetry has appeared in Beloit Poetry Journal, Colorado Review, Poetry Daily, the Southern Review, and other publications. She received a 2016-2017 ATLAS grant from the Louisiana Board of Regents and has also received grants and fellowships from PEN, the Louisiana Division of the Arts, and the Southern Arts Federation. A professor in the MFA program at the University of New Orleans, she was awarded the 2017 International Alumni Association Excellence in Teaching Award. Hembree serves as poetry editor of Bayou Magazine.
Vivian Lee is a writer and senior editor at Little, Brown. Her booklist includes Matthew Salesse’s The Hundred-Year Flood and Disappear Doppelgänger Disappear (PEN/Faulkner Finalist), Viet Dinh’s After Disasters (PEN/Faulkner Finalist), Naima Coster’s Halsey Street (Kirkus Prize Finalist), and Natalia Sylvester’s Everyone Knows You Go Home (International Latino Book Award winner in fiction). Lee's writing can be found in the Los Angeles Times, Eater, ELLE.com, Catapult, and more. She graduated from the University of California, Irvine, with a BA in literary journalism and from the New School University in New York with an MFA in creative writing (nonfiction). She is a 2018 Publishers Weekly Rising Star Honoree. Originally from Los Angeles, she now resides in Queens.
Megha Majumdar is the editor in chief at Catapult, where she works on literary fiction, narrative nonfiction, and memoir. Her authors include Randa Jarrar, Matthew Salesses, Jessica J. Lee, and Ruby Hamad. She is also the author of a novel, A Burning.
Reyes Ramirez (he/him) is a Houstonian, writer, educator, curator, and organizer of Mexican and Salvadoran descent. He is the author of the short story collection The Book of Wanderers (2022) with the University of Arizona Press’s Camino del Sol series and the poetry collection Answers Without Questions (2023) with Hub City Press. Reyes won the 2019 YES Contemporary Art Writer’s Grant, 2017 Blue Mesa Review Nonfiction Contest, 2014 riverSedge Poetry Prize and has poems, stories, essays, and reviews in: Indiana Review, Speculative Fiction for Dreamers: A Latinx Anthology, Infrarrealista Review, Cosmonauts Avenue, december magazine, Arteinformado, the Texas Review, Houston Noir, Gulf Coast, the Acentos Review, Cimarron Review, and elsewhere. He is a 2020 CantoMundo Fellow, 2021 Interchange Artist Grant Fellow, 2022 Crosstown Arts Writer in Residence, and has been awarded grants from the Houston Arts Alliance, Poets & Writers, and the Warhol Foundation’s Idea Fund. Read his work at reyesvramirez.com.
Erika Stevens is the editorial director at Coffee House Press, where she has served in various editorial capacities for a decade. Stevens currently acquires poetry, nonfiction, and fiction for Coffee House. She was previously in acquisitions at the University of Georgia Press and the University Press of Florida; she started her career in publishing at Duke University Press and the University of North Carolina Press. She has taught in the graduate program in book publishing at Portland State University and in the Sierra Nevada University MFA program. She dabbles in German to English translation and has freelanced widely for authors, presses, and nonprofit organizations.
Founded in 2002, Bayou Magazine is a biannual, international literary magazine published by the University of New Orleans. Bayou publishes poetry, fiction, nonfiction, and the winner of the annual Tennessee Williams One-Act Play Contest. Bayou’s mission is to publish exceptional, exciting work by both established and emerging writers.
Founded by Phillip Lopate and Donald Barthelme in 1986, Gulf Coast is a journal of literature, art, and critical art writing, publishing contributors who represent a flow of international cultures, voices, and aesthetics. Through programs and publications, and in collaboration with the University of Houston, Gulf Coast brings consequential art and writing to an engaged audience.
Michigan Quarterly Review, founded in 1962, is an interdisciplinary and international literary journal, combining distinctive voices in poetry, fiction, and nonfiction, as well as works in translation. The flagship literary journal of the University of Michigan, the magazine embraces creative urgency and cultural relevance, aiming to challenge conventions and address long-overdue conversations. As Michigan Quarterly Review continues to promote an expansive and inclusive vision, the journal seeks work from established and emerging writers with diverse aesthetics and experiences.
The Detroit Writers’ Guild’s vision is to launch new writers into commercial markets and support emerging and established writers as they build their professional platforms. The guild's mission is to provide spaces and events that bring poets, authors, screenwriters, and songwriters together to celebrate their work in all of its stages; showcase these works through live performances and by promoting multimedia publications of books, individual pieces, videos, audios, and anything else writers and artists dream up; improve and reinvigorate literacy awareness in the metro Detroit area; and serve the community through the promotion of history and activities that enrich the lives of the under-served, homeless, and military veterans. As of this year, the Detroit Writers Guild has completed nearly forty years of service to the metro Detroit area.
Kindred Stories, founded in 2021 by Terri Hamm, was born of a love for reading and a passion for community. The store gives kids and adults alike a space to explore the wide world of literary content and creative works fashioned by Black and Brown hands. Kindred Stories is a bookstore committed to amplifying Black voices and bringing diverse stories from throughout the African diaspora to Houston. Located in the Third Ward neighborhood, the shop provides a well-curated offering to edify the swelling appetites for authentic stories as told by those who have lived them.
A four-day celebration of arts in New Orleans, Words & Music Literary Festival strives to create a space where every voice is valued and validated. The festival cultivates a program that represents who we are as a city. It is the festival's hope that every single person who attends Words & Music sees themselves represented in the discussions taking place. Proceeds from Words & Music support year-round adult literacy outreach and free public programming through One Book One New Orleans.
Inprint is Houston’s premier literary arts nonprofit organization. Serving more than 15,000 people annually, Inprint's programs include literary performances by the world’s leading authors, writing workshops for diverse populations, and support for the next generation of creative writers. To learn more, visit inprinthouston.org.
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