Presenters and Instructors

Presenters for the 2022 workshop to be finalized
and listed here as soon as possible. Thank you.


Screen Shot 2018-12-13 at 9.59.08 AM.pngErik Deckers is the owner and President of Pro Blog Service, a content marketing agency.

At the 2022 online FWW, Erik is teaching a class.

Erik co-authored Branding Yourself: How to Use Social Media to Invent or Reinvent Yourself (Pearson), No Bullshit Social Media: The All-Business, No-Hype Guide to Social Media Marketing (Pearson), and The Owned Media Doctrine (Archway Publishing, 2013). He also helped write Twitter Marketing For Dummies. Find all his books here.

Erik has been blogging since 1997, and has been a published writer for more than 27 years. He has been a newspaper humor columnist for over 20 years, and is published in 10 newspapers around Indiana. He is also an award-winning playwright, both for stage and radio theatre.

Erik frequently speaks about blogging and social media, especially as it relates to personal branding, small business marketing, crisis communication, and citizen journalism. Erik is a graduate of Ball State University with a B.S. in Philosophy and an M.A. in College Student Personnel Administration. He is married with three children, and lives in Orlando, FL.

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Kaitlyn Sanchez is a mom, wife, literary agent at Context Literary Agency, middle school math teacher, and picture book author.

“I’m also the co-creator and co-host of the Spring Fling Kidlit Contest, creator and co-host of the Kidlit Fall Writing Frenzy Contest, and one of the hosts along with my critique group 6 Ladies and a MANuscript, of Kidlit Zombie Week.

“In my free time, I love to play soccer, binge-watch shows on Hulu, and, of course, read. My favorite stories are historical fiction; short stories are my jam. I’ve recently gotten into dramas, fantasies, mysteries, and romances. And of course, I LOVE picture books! Especially when my husband, daughter, and I all cozy up and read together.

At the online 2022 FWW, Kaitlyn is teaching a class. She is not meeting with writers for pitches.

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James Mustelier is a literary agent with The Bent Agency.

At the 2022 online FWW, James is teaching a class, and meeting with attendees for one-on-one virtual pitches.

“I am an agent at the Bent Agency as well as the in-house Editorial Consultant. I was born in Miami, Florida, and lived in Spain, France and Italy before moving to New York. I studied Creative Writing at Florida State University and received my MFA in Creative Writing from the City College of New York, where I served as the Graduate Editor of the literary journal. I’ve worked as an editorial associate at Fiction magazine and as a freelance editor.

“I’m looking for both literary and commercial adult fiction. In literary fiction, I’m specifically drawn to visceral honesty coupled with a dark sense of humor. In commercial fiction I’m looking for horror, mystery, and thrillers. My favorite books have distinct and memorable voices that grab the reader’s attention, and a narrative gravity that permeates every action in the story.”

Pitch him:

  • Literary fiction
  • Crime
  • Mystery/Suspense
  • Horror
  • Humor
  • YA fiction
  • Short Stories

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Eric Smith is a literary agent at P.S. Literary Agency, with a love for young adult books, literary fiction, sci-fi, fantasy, and nonfiction. He’s worked on award-winning and New York Times bestselling titles, and began his publishing career at Quirk Books.

At the 2022 online FWW, Eric is teaching a class. He is also meeting with attendees for one-on-one virtual pitches.

A frequent blogger, his ramblings about books and the publishing industry regularly appear on Book Riot, Paste Magazine, and Publishing Crawl. He also occasionally writes books when he finds the time, like his latest, Don’t Read the Comments (Inkyard Press).

Eric is eagerly acquiring fiction and nonfiction projects. He’s actively seeking out new, diverse voices in young adult (particularly sci-fi and fantasy), middle grade, and literary and commercial fiction (again, loves sci-fi and fantasy, but also thrillers and mysteries). In terms of nonfiction, he’s interested in cookbooks, pop culture, humor, middle grade, essay collections, and blog to book ideas.

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Mary Kole is a former literary agent and current book editor.  Since 2009, her website Kidlit.com has inspired aspiring writers with articles on the writing craft and getting published. The blog has been named one of the “101 Best Websites for Writers” by Writer’s Digest every year since its inception, and her success online led to a book of completely original content on the art of writing novels for the middle grade and young adult categories, Writing Irresistible Kidlit, out from Writer’s Digest Books.

At the 2022 online FWW workshop, Mary is teaching a class.

Learn about her editorial services here.

Mary was formerly a literary agent at Andrea Brown Literary Agency before becoming a Senior Literary Manager and founder of the children’s book department at Movable Type Management in New York City. In 2013, she left to finally pursue her first love, editorial work, full-time.

Mary grew up in the Bay Area and spent many years in her adopted home city of beautiful San Francisco, CA. After three years in Brooklyn, NY, at the heart of the publishing industry, she now lives in Minneapolis, MN, with her chef husband Todd, three children, and two needy and adorable pugs, Olive and Gertie.

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Carlisle Webber is a literary agent at Fuse Literary.

Carlisle refused to major in English in college because she didn’t think there was anything fun to read on the required lists. No Stephen King? No R.L. Stine? No thanks! After college, she took her love of commercial, YA, and middle grade fiction to the University of Pittsburgh School of Information Sciences, where she earned a Master of Library and Information Sciences. She worked as a public librarian for years before deciding to move to the business side of publishing. She attended the Columbia Publishing Course and holds a Professional Certificate in Editing from UC-Berkeley.

Carlisle is looking for: high-concept commercial fiction in middle grade, young adult, and adult. If your book is fresh and exciting, tackles difficult topics, reads like a Shonda Rhimes show, or makes readers stay up late turning pages, she’s the agent for you.

Diverse authors are encouraged to submit their fiction. Within the genres she represents, Carlisle is especially interested in stories by and about people of color; with both visible and invisible disabilities and illnesses; who are economically disadvantaged; who are gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, or queer; or who are members of religious minorities. Take a look at her manuscript wish list. But if you don’t write exactly what’s on her list, don’t worry! She’s happy to look at any work that falls into the categories she represents.

At the 2022 online FWW, Carlie is teaching a class, and meeting with attendees for one-on-one virtual pitches..

She represents:

  • Middle grade (any genre)
  • Young adult (any genre)
  • Thriller
  • Mystery
  • Suspense
  • Horror
  • Women’s fiction
  • Pop/mainstream fiction

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Rachel Beck is a literary agent with Liza Dawson Associates.

She joined in 2020 after working at a boutique literary agency for 4 years. She has been in the publishing industry since 2009 and worked at Harlequin editing romance novels for nearly 6 years before transitioning her skills to the agent world in order to be an advocate and champion for authors. She lives outside of Pittsburgh with her husband, two young sons, and endlessly entertaining cat.

Rachel believes that the right book can change or heal a life, and she wants to find those. But she’s also interested in lighter fiction that helps you escape or simply makes you laugh after a tough day. Or nonfiction that teaches you something about an obscure topic, thus opening up a new world.

At the 2022 online FWW, Rachel is teaching a class, and meeting with attendees for one-on-one virtual pitches. See here to learn all about what types of books she represents.

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Screen Shot 2019-05-22 at 2.06.14 PMEve Porinchak an author, as well as a former literary agent.

At the 2022 online FWW workshop, Eve is teaching a class. She is also offering add-on manuscript critiques for attendees.

Since earning degrees in Biology and Psychology from UCLA, Eve has lived all over the planet and spent much of her time in and out of jail – as a creative writing teacher for teen inmates. A former agent with Jill Corcoran Literary Agency, Eve also attended medical school, served as a social worker with foster youth and homeless populations, and taught everything from first grade to college courses.

Eve writes stories featuring youth she feels have been underrepresented in children’s literature, such as those born into gang life, the abandoned, and the incarcerated who – ironically – have the most fascinating tales to tell. Her first book, the critically acclaimed ONE CUT – a haunting nonfiction story with a juvenile justice bent – launched Simon and Schuster’s new young adult true crime line, Simon True.

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Screen Shot 2020-05-10 at 11.40.52 PM.pngTara Bailey is the founder and CEO of Bailey Publishing House.

Tara founded Bailey Publishing House, LLC in 2016. She serves as Chief Executive Officer and Senior Editor.

At the 2022 online Florida Writing Workshop, Tara is meeting virtually with writers for add-on manuscript critiques.

Tara is a ghostwriter and author of Dracula of the West Side and Number Seven (2018). She’s the author of the dark comedy play, “Deadbeat” (2017). The play premiered on May 21, 2018 at the Pittsburgh Playwrights Theater, downtown Pittsburgh. The production was produced by Wali Jamal Abdullah and directed by Kim El.

She was the featured speaker at the Celebration of Reading in June 2017 and Pittsburgh’s Write On: Black Book Expo in November 2017. Along with speaking at book festivals, BPH hosts an annual writers workshop. She’s been a featured guest on WAMO 100 radio programs and Soul Pitt Quarterly wrote an article about her company in Summer 2017 edition. In addition to her commitment to BPH, she is also Editor-in-Chief for a personal care home monthly magazine in Pennsylvania.

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Laura Biagi is a freelance editor with 13 years of experience in editing and agenting memoir, adult fiction, young adult fiction, and children’s books.

At the 2022 online FWW event, she is available for add-on manuscript critiques.

Previously, she was a literary agent with the Jean V. Naggar Literary Agency, where she turned her clients’ books into New York Times bestsellers. She has an MFA from the University of Houston and is currently Editor-in-Chief of Southeast Review.