(APRIL 2020 UPDATE: The 2020 Florida Writing Workshop is postponed until 2021 for safety reasons. If you are signed up for the 2020 event as a paid attendee, or you would like to know more about WDW’s new 2020 online conferences — which include many recorded sessions, one-on-one pitching to agents by phone or Skype, and more — please see all info here, and be in contact with us anytime you want — firstname.lastname@example.org.)
Presenters for the 2020 workshop to be finalized
and listed here as soon as possible.
Anne Clermont is the author of the novel LEARNING TO FALL. At the 2020 Tampa workshop, she is teaching on point of view for fiction writers. She is also offering critiques as an add-on element for attendees.
Anne is both an unlikely author and an obvious one. Running a 75-horse equestrian center with her husband, while raising two young daughters, didn’t leave much time for reading novels, let alone writing them. But there was something about living in the mountains of the San Francisco Bay Area and the magic of horses that has inspired her – not just then, but ever since her first trail ride at the age of sixteen – to write down her unique perspective on the world. Born in Kraków and raised outside of Toronto, Anne holds a Baccalaureate in Science degree with specialized honors in Animal Biology from the University of Guelph in Canada, and an MBA from Saint Mary’s College of California.
Once she realized her passion, Anne pursued her first writing via The Writing Salon in San Francisco with wonderful teacher Karen Bjorneby, and continued under the mentorship of best-selling author, Ellen Sussman of French Lessons. She has workshopped with Robert Goolrick of The Reliable Wife; Jacquelyn Mitchard of The Deep End of the Ocean; and Maria Semple of Where’d You Go Bernadette.
Anne now devotes her time to writing and designing websites for international clients via her company, Bookish Media. She lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband, two children, and an array of animals.
Lorin Oberweger is a highly sought-after independent book editor and ghostwriter with almost twenty-five years experience in publishing. Her company, Free Expressions, offers intensive, deep craft workshops nationwide. She’s also known for her one-on-one story mastermind session for writers of all genres of fiction and creative nonfiction.
At the 2020 Tampa workshop, Lorin will be critiquing manuscripts for attendees in the genres of literary fiction, mainstream/general fiction, historical fiction. short stories, adult fantasy, adult science fiction, and memoir. She will also be teaching sessions.
Lorin’s students and clients have millions of books in print and have been published by HarperCollins, Penguin Random House, Scholastic, Simon and Schuster, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Disney, and many other medium and small presses. They have also gained representation with some of the industry’s leading literary agents.
An award-winning author, Lorin’s work has appeared in numerous publications, and her ghostwritten books, commissioned by major publishers, have received glowing notices from the New York Times, Kirkus Reviews, NPR, and others.
With bestselling author Veronica Rossi, Lorin is the author of the new adult books, BOOMERANG, REBOUND, and BOUNCE, published by Harper/William Morrow under the pen name Noelle August. The novels were praised by Publishers Weekly and Library Journal, among others, and BOOMERANG was chosen as a “new and notable” selection for Target Stores across the US.
(Note: Lorin has also just taken on an additional role as literary agent for Adams Literary. For more on her dual roles, see her post here. At this conference, Lorin is taking the role of editor and teacher. She will be critiquing and teaching, not taking pitches.
Saritza Hernandez is the VP and a Sr. Literary Agent at the Corvisiero Literary Agency.
At the 2020 workshop, she will be taking pitches and also teaching a class.
While Saritza’s personal tastes lean toward romance (all kinds), she is currently acquiring commercial fiction in all categories from middle grade to adult as well as graphic novels from diverse voices. In nonfiction, she’s actively looking for narrative nonfiction, health/body/spirit, and cooking books.
Known as the first literary agent to represent marginalized authors in the digital publishing landscape, Saritza’s clients have been awarded the RITA, Lambda Literary Award and selected among the NYPL’s Book of the Year. While she is a leading literary agent in digital publishing deals, her recent sales to traditional publishers include Macmillan and HarperCollins. A geek with a passion for all things Star Wars, Star Trek and Harry Potter, her love of great storytelling is what has driven her work in the publishing industry for the past 17 years. An avid coffee-drinker with a Kindle book obsession, she enjoys a steaming cup of strong Cuban coffee every morning while escaping into worlds and stories from all walks of life. A strong advocate of the LGBTQIA+ community, she enjoys fresh voices in Young Adult and Adult genre fiction.
In addition to taking pitches for herself, Saritza is also representing the entire agency and their genres. She is open to hearing pitches for all her co-agents in the genres of fantasy, science fiction, romance, thrillers, adventure, paranormal, young adult, middle grade, picture books, historical romance, new adult (both romance and non-romance), and graphic novels. In nonfiction, she can take pitches for parenting, education, self-improvement, science, and business.
Eve Porinchak is an author, as well as a former literary agent.
At the 2020 Tampa workshop, Eve is offering critiques for attendees, and teaching on multiple subjects.
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.
Jennifer Johnson-Blalock founded Hyphen Editing in 2017. She was previously a literary agent at Liza Dawson Associates, where she sold works of women’s fiction, young adult fiction, and narrative nonfiction to major publishers. Jennifer has also worked as an agent assistant at Trident Media Group.
At the 2020 Tampa workshop, Jennifer is teaching, and also critiquing manuscripts as an add-on element for attendees.
Jennifer graduated with honors from The University of Texas at Austin with a B.A. in English and earned a J.D. from Harvard Law School. Before working in publishing, she practiced entertainment law and taught high school English and debate.
Jennifer started HYPHEN because she believes that in a rapidly changing publishing industry, the smartest thing authors can do is to put forth the best possible version of their work. With her experience in New York publishing and knowledge of effective teaching practices, Jennifer can help writers do just that.
Lucienne Diver is a literary agent with The Knight Agency.
At the 2020 Tampa event, she is teaching a class on the publishing process, and also meeting with attendees for one-on-one pitches.
She is seeking: any commercial fiction field from young adult up, with an emphasis on strong characterization and stories which emotionally invest the reader. This includes sci-fi, fantasy, romance, romantica, suspense, mystery, thriller, crime, and any kind of young adult. Diverse voices welcome.
Lucienne joined TKA in 2008, after spending fifteen years at New York City’s prestigious Spectrum Literary Agency. With her sharp eye and gift for spotting original new voices, Lucienne is one of the most well-respected agents in the industry. A lifelong book addict, she graduated summa cum laude from the State University of New York at Potsdam with dual majors in English/writing and anthropology. She thus came well-equipped for her work as an agent.
Over the course of her dynamic career she has sold over seven hundred titles to every major publisher, and has built a client list of more than forty authors spanning the commercial fiction genres, primarily in the areas of fantasy, science fiction, romance, romantica, suspense and young adult. Her authors have been honored with the RITA, National Readers’ Choice, Hugo, and Romantic Times Reader’s Choice Awards, and have appeared on the New York Times and USA Today bestseller lists. A publishing veteran, Lucienne has superb industry knowledge, numerous editor relationships, and a keen understanding of the foreign rights market. She is a member of the Association of Authors Representatives, RWA, MWA and SFWA.
Beth Marshea is a literary agent and the founder of Ladderbird Agency.
At the 2020 Tampa workshop, she will be taking pitches from attendees, and also teaching a speech.
Ladderbird is a boutique literary agency. Beth has a long love of literature, which started as part of a family of bookworms. After obtaining an undergraduate degree in literature, Beth earned a Master’s degree in Business Administration. She became determined to find a way to merge her business passion and her love of literature, which she did as an agent. Beth is passionate about writing that pushes genres and boundaries and challenges the reader to accept a new point of view.
To learn more about the genres and categories that Beth seeks as an agent, visit her page here.