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Saturday, May 6 • 3:45pm - 5:00pm
8K: Non-Fiction Idea Clinic
Limited Capacity seats available

In this session, the moderator (an established writer) will offer a brief preamble of the art of the non-fiction idea. Then, you will get two minutes to share your own idea for a non-fiction book for the audience, the moderator, and a panel of experts. The experts are agents, editors and publicists with years of experience working with non-fiction writers to turn their book proposals into reality and to promote them in the marketplace. After you read your idea (preferably from a text you have prepared and brought with you!), the agents and editors will ask you follow-up questions and troubleshoot your idea. You will discuss issues of platform, expertise, the viability of the idea itself, and other elements of the non-fiction market. Please note that presenters will be chosen at random from names submitted in a hat at the start of the session. Unfortunately, given the volume of submissions, we can not guarantee that your name will be called. This is a fun event that aims to be respectful of your idea and illuminate the process a writer goes through when she is developing an idea with an agent and/or editor. The point is not to get through as many writers as possible, but to thoughtfully evaluate your ideas and offer concrete suggestions from which all could benefit.

Though most people will be reading ideas for full-length books, you may also read an idea for a feature story or article to assess its viability with the panel of experts.

avatar for Caroline Eisenmann

Caroline Eisenmann

Literary Agent, ICM Partners
Caroline Eisenmann was raised in the Boston area and received an undergraduate degree from Wesleyan University. Prior to joining ICM Partners in 2013, she worked at the digital publisher Open Road Integrated Media. She represents upmarket and literary fiction, as well as nonficti... Read More →
avatar for Ethan Gilsdorf

Ethan Gilsdorf

A GrubStreet instructor since 2005, Ethan Gilsdorf is a journalist, memoirist, essayist, critic, poet, teacher, performer, and nerd. He is the author of Fantasy Freaks and Gaming Geeks, and his fiction, poetry, and essays have appeared in Poetry, The Southern Review and other literary magazines and anthologies, and cited in Best American Essays 2016. Gilsdorf covers the arts, books, film, pop culture, and media for the New York Times, Boston Globe, Boston Globe Magazine, Boston Magazine, Wired, Salon, and New York Times Book Review. Gilsdorf is co-founder of GrubStreet's Young Adult Writers Program (YAWP) and serves on... Read More →
avatar for Rachel Salzman

Rachel Salzman

Vice President, Director of Publicity, W. W. Norton
Rachel Salzman began her career as a book publicist in 1996, when she joined the publicity department at Little, Brown & Company. Prior to that, she worked as both a news assistant and a copy editor at The Wall Street Journal Europe and as a copy editor at Business Wire news service. At Little, Brown, she assisted on campaigns for the books Naked, by David Sedaris, Purple America by Rick Moody, Last Night In Paradise by Katie Roiphe, and The Hotest State by Ethan Hawke. A brief stint at William Morrow provided an opportunity to work on the campaign for the Dennis Lehane novel Gone Baby Gone, and a couple of years at the business and general non-fiction publisher John Wiley... Read More →
avatar for Mitchell Waters

Mitchell Waters

Literary Agent, Curtis Brown, Ltd.
Mitchell Waters started working at Curtis Brown in 1995. Before joining the agency, Mitchell was a teaching fellow at Fordham University, specializing in English literature. He represents a wide and diverse array of literary and commercial fiction and nonfiction, including mystery, history, biography, memoir, young adult, cookbooks, self-help and popular... Read More →
avatar for Steven Woodward

Steven Woodward

Editor, Graywolf Press
Steven Woodward is an associate editor at Graywolf Press, where he’s worked with Margaret Lazarus Dean, Justin Hocking, Angela Palm, Benjamin Percy, and Susan Steinberg, among others. He teaches in the low-residency MFA program at Sierra Nevada College, and holds an MFA in fictio... Read More →

Saturday May 6, 2017 3:45pm - 5:00pm
Stuart Room

Attendees (32)