Calendar of Events

Montclair Literary Festival 2018 events listed by day and time. Please note that all ticket sales are final. If you are interested in attending more than three ticketed events (not workshops), consider purchasing a Festival Pass.


Succeed2gether, presenter of the Montclair Literary Festival, will hold its 2nd annual high-energy evening of spoken-word poetry and short story contest awards on Thursday, March 15 from 6.30-9pm.

Guest performances from M.C. Vincent Toro and judges Roger Sedarat,Tanya Manning-Yarde and Grisel Acosta.

Events on Friday 16 March will take place at Montclair State University Communications Center

3.30-4.30pm Equipment for Living: On Poetry and Pop Music How can art help us make sense—or nonsense—of the world? Poet and MSU faculty member Michael Robbins has a refreshing, insightful take on how poetry and popular music can serve as essential tools for living. He talks with local musician Warren Zanes about his new book of “brilliant, illuminating criticism.”

6.30-8.30pm  An Evening with Meg Wolitzer

6.30-7.30pm Meet the Author. Join Meg Wolitzer, New York Times bestselling author, and her editor Sarah McGrath, for wine and conversation before their book talk tonight. Drinks and hors d’oeuvres will be served in the lobby of MSU’s new Communications Center, with spectacular views of Manhattan. INDIVIDUAL TICKETS SOLD OUT Only available via Festival VIP Pass

7.30-8.30pm Meg Wolitzer in Conversation. Meg Wolitzer is known for exploring themes of marriage, sex, gender politics and family. Tonight she delves into these topics with her editor Sarah McGrath as they discuss her latest book, The Female Persuasion, described as “an electric, multi-layered novel about ambition, power, friendship, and mentorship, and the romantic ideals we all follow deep into adulthood.”

Tickets $50 Drinks reception, book talk and a copy of ‘The Female Persuasion’. INDIVIDUAL TICKETS SOLD OUT Only available via Festival VIP Pass

Tickets $30 Book Talk only, including a copy of ‘The Female Persuasion’.
Venue: Montclair State University Communications Center

All events are free, unless otherwise noted. 

11.00am–12.00pm Why We Write
A chance to hear four successful authors consider essential questions of the writing life, including how to juggle writing with another career, finding time to write, and where, why and for whom they write. Jillian Medoff (This Could Hurt etc.), Jonathan Santlofer (The Widower’s Notebook, Kate Mckinnon novels etc.), Miranda Beverly-Whittemore (June, Bittersweet etc.) and Marcy Dermansky (The Red Car, Twins etc.) talk with bestselling local author Nancy Star
(Sisters One, Two, Three etc.). 
Venue: The Sanctuary at First Congregational Church

11.00am–12:00pm Irish Women: Revolution, Romance, and “the Troubles”
On St. Patrick’s Day, novelist Belinda McKeon, scholar Lucy McDiarmid, and poet Colette Bryce talk with Elizabeth Brewer Redwine about how they and other Irish writers confront revolution, romantic love and “the Troubles,” both political and sexual.
Venue: The Guild Room at First Congregational Church  

11.00 am–12.00pm “Letters to Secretary DeVos: What We’d Like To Discuss With You About Education.”
MSU Professors Dr. Laura Nicosia and Dr. Rebecca Goldstein, are the editors of a collection of letters, poems, and illustrations addressed to Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, intended to stimulate conversation about the current educational landscape. History Professor Dr. Leslie Wilson of MSU and Masiel Rodriguez-Vars, executive director of the Montclair Fund for Educational Excellence, join them for a lively and informed discussion of issues including equity and discrimination in schools, assessment and accountability, school funding (at all levels), the precarious role of Title IX, the needs of students who receive special education services, and the future of public education in an era of privatization of public goods.
Venue: Montclair Public Library Auditorium

11.00am–12.00pm Writing without Boundaries: Self–Expression Through the Written Word
Writers from Matheny Medical & Educational Center’s Arts Access Program explore themes that include love, disability, family, faith, and more in readings from their work and a discussion of the creative process and the messages they want to share. At Arts Access, adults with developmental disabilities are empowered to create art without boundaries.
Venue: YA Room at Montclair Public Library

12.15–1.15pm How to Write One True Sentence
Montclair luminaries D.T. Max, Garth Risk Hallberg and Matthew Thomas discuss the craft of writing and finding your voice with Christina Baker Kline.  
Venue: The Sanctuary at First Congregational Church

12.15–1.15pm The Science of Innovation
What distinguishes the people who change the world? How can we nurture breakthrough innovation in our own lives? Innovation expert Melissa Schilling shares the science behind success as she discusses her new book Quirky: The Remarkable Story of the Traits, Foibles, and Genius of Breakthrough Innovators Who Changed the World, with science author and Montclair local Dan Hurley.
Venue: The Guild Room at First Congregational Church  

12.15–1.15pm Engage, rage or both?
Cartoonists from the New Yorker and several other publications share and illuminate work inspired by our current president. With R. Sikoryak, Emily Flake and Lauren Weinstein,  moderated by local graphic artist Kevin Pyle.
Venue: Montclair Public Library Auditorium

12.15–1.15pm Going Rogue: Alternative Ways to Get Into Print
National Book Award finalist Min Jin Lee launched her writing career without an MFA, as did upcoming writers Kem Joy Ukwu, Ananda Lima, Teka Lark and Brea Tremblay. Come and find out about their writing and publishing journeys, how they persist through the highs and lows of writing and submitting work, the pros and cons of an MFA, and alternative approaches to the writing life.
Venue: YA room, 1st Floor of Montclair Public Library

1.30–2.30pm Strangers in a Strange Land: The Immigrant Experience in Fiction
Pachinko, Min Jin Lee’s page-turning sage of four generations of Korean immigrants to Japan featured on many top ten lists in 2017. Don’t miss hearing her share thoughts on writing about immigrant and transnational experience with fellow authors Dagmara Dominczyk (A Lullaby of Polish Girls), Nicole Dennis Benn (Here Comes the Sun) and Wena Poon (Chang’an, Cafe Jauze etc). Moderated by National Book Critics Circle President, Kate Tuttle.
Venue: The Sanctuary at First Congregational Church  

1.30–2.30pm The Dark Side of the Short Story  
Bestselling crime writer Megan Abbott (The Fever, You Will Know Me) and noted short story writer Samantha Hunt (The Dark Dark) discuss the fantastical, suspenseful side to the short story. Short story writer Alice Elliott Dark moderates.
Venue: The Guild Room at First Congregational Church  

1.30–2.30pm Building the Great Society: Inside Lyndon Johnson’s White House. In his new book social historian  Joshua Zeitz takes us behind the scenes of the legendary Great Society programs to reveal the personalities behind every burst of 1960s liberal reform – from civil rights and immigration reform, to Medicare and Head Start. Introduced by Professor Leslie Wilson.  
Venue: Montclair Public Library Auditorium

1.30–2.30pm Bruce Coville has published over 100 books for kids featuring magic and monsters, unicorns and aliens.  Find out where his ideas come from as tells the story behind the story of The Monster’s Ring, the first book in The Magic Shop Series. Ages 8 and up.
Venue: YA room at MPL

1.30-2.30pm Rich Douek at East Side Mags
If you love comics and fantasy, or are interested in writing, step down the road for an hour this afternoon to Montclair’s comic book store East Side Mags. Montclair writer and graphic novelist Rich Douek will be signing copies of Gutter Magic, his urban fantasy series, talking about writing comics and breaking into the industry, and answering your questions.  Ages 8 and up.
Venue: East Side Mags, 7 S Fullerton Ave.

2.45–3.45pm Alternate Side: Anna Quindlen in Conversation  
We’re delighted to welcome renowned author Anna Quindlen to Montclair on the first stop of a countrywide tour, to discuss her new novel Alternate Side with local author Deborah Davis. Find out how tensions in a tight-knit neighborhood—and a seemingly happy marriage—are exposed by an unexpected act.
Tickets $40 including a copy of ‘Alternate Side’ 
Venue: The Sanctuary at First Congregational Church

2.45–3.45pm  Beyond Classics: how contemporary writers are moving beyond the Young Adult Sci-Fi/Fantasy Canon and reinventing the genre.
With the movie version of a Wrinkle in Time and the 200th anniversary of Frankenstein, four successful YA fantasy writers reflect on the enduring appeal of fantasy and how they reach beyond the classics to reinvent the genre for contemporary audiences. Laura and Jim Nicosia speak with Alex London (The Skybound Saga, Proxy etc.), Sarah Beth Durst (The Queens of Renthia, The Reluctant Queen etc.), Yvonne Ventresca (Black Flowers, White Lies, Pandemic etc.), and Josiah Bancroft (Senlin Ascends, The Arm of the Sphinx). 
Venue: The Guild Room at First Congregational Church

2.45–3.45pm  Women, Sex, Power and the #MeToo Movement
How will the sexual harassment scandal impact the way women navigate ambition and gender roles the workplace? Jaclyn Friedman (Unscrewed: Women, Sex, Power, and how to Stop Letting the System Screw us All) Professor of Sociology Yasemin Besen-Cassino, (Cost of Being a Girl: Working Teens and the Origins of the Gender Wage Gap) and New York Times Magazine journalist Susan Dominus consider this and other questions arising from the #MeToo movement with MSU Professor Patricia Matthew.
Venue: Montclair Public Library Auditorium  

2.45–3.45pm Halfway There Reading Series
Montclair’s popular reading series presents work by five emerging local writers: Nancy Burke, Dani Fleischer, Carole Stone, John J. Trause, and Kristen Witucki. A chance to hear and be inspired by the voices of the future.
Venue: YA Room at Montclair Public Library

4.00–5.00pm How to Get Published, Survive, and Thrive as a Writer, with Christina Baker-Kline, Nicholas Delbanco and Reagan Arthur. 
Join Montclair local Christina Baker Kline, bestselling author of A Piece of the World and Orphan Train, Little Brown publisher Reagan Arthur, Nicholas Delbanco, former chair of the National Book Awards Fiction Panel, as they discuss how to achieve literary success. What do you need to do to sell your first book and to pull off a long-term career as a writer? How do writers adapt and thrive, and adjust their careers to keep up with a rapidly changing publishing climate? What are publishers looking for? With expertise from three perspectives, this event offers essential information for developing writers, and fascinating insights for everyone into the world of publishing.
Tickets $30 – all proceeds support Succeed2gether’s after school tutoring and education enrichment programs.
Venue: The Guild Room at First Congregational Church 

4.00–5.00pm Rock’n’Roll Lives 
Associate Director of the Leon Levy Center for Biography, Thad Ziolkowski, leads a conversation about writing the lives of rock icons. With Joe Hagan (Sticky Fingers: The Life and Times of Jann Wenner and Rolling Stone Magazine), David Yaffe (Reckless Daughter: A Portrait of Joni Mitchell), Warren Zanes (Tom Petty, The Biography), and Deborah Davis, who is co-writing Tina Turner’s memoir My Love Story.
Thanks to the Leon Levy Center for Biography for their generous support of this event.  
Venue: The Sanctuary at First Congregational Church

4.00–5.00pm “They Can’t Kill Us All”: Ferguson, Baltimore, and a New Era in America’s Racial Justice Movement.
Washington Post writer and Pulitzer Prize winner Wesley Lowery discusses his account of the Black Lives Matter movement with MSU Professor of Justice Studies Jason Williams.
Venue: Montclair Public Library Auditorium

4.00–5.00pm Poetry as Resistance
Ghana Imani Hylton moderates a conversation about art as activism, looking in particular at poetry as a medium for social justice. With readings and discussion from local poets Pamela Hughes (Meadowland Take My Hand), Tanya Manning-Yarde (Every Watering Word), and Teka Lark (Queen of Inglewood).
Venue: Montclair Public Library YA Room

5.15–6.15pm Trump’s War with the Media.
Join author and political commentator Jonathan Alter as he reviews the Trump Presidency’s efforts to define political reality with David Cay Johnston (It’s Even Worse than you Think: What the Trump Administration is Doing to America; The Making of Donald Trump), New York Times Op-Ed Columnist Andrew Rosenthal, NY Daily News Editorial Writer Robert George, and Eric Boehlert (Bloggers on the Bus: How the Internet changed Politics and the Press; Lapdogs: How the Press Rolled over for Bush).
The Sanctuary at First Congregational Church

5.15–6.15pm Eternal Life
Dara Horn’s latest novel celebrates the bonds between generations, the power of faith, the purpose of death, and the reasons for being alive. The bestselling NJ author and recipient of the National Jewish Book Award for Fiction talks with NJ Monthly Editor Ken Schlager about her prizewinning work and the inspirations behind her remarkable storytelling.
Venue: The Guild Room at First Congregational Church

5.15–6.15pm The Book Doctors PITCHAPALOOZA
Pitchapalooza is American Idol for books (only kinder and gentler). Twenty writers will be selected at random to pitch their book to an all-star publishing panel. Each writer gets one minute—and only one minute! Dozens of writers have gone from talented amateurs to professionally published authors as a result of participating in Pitchapalooza. Whether potential authors pitch themselves, or simply listen to trained professionals critique each presentation, Pitchapalooza is educational and entertaining for one and all.  At the end of Pitchapalooza, the judges will pick a winner. The winner receives an introduction to an agent or publisher appropriate for his/her book. As always, bestselling author David Henry Sterry and agent-to-the-stars Arielle Eckstut will host the party. This year featuring Susan Weinberg, the publisher of Perseus; Victoria Skurnick, agent at Levine Greenberg Rostan; and Erika Turner, editor at Versify (a new imprint at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt).
Venue: Montclair Public Library Auditorium

6.30–7.30pm Sex, Schools and Suburbia: Tom Perrotta and Patrick Wilson talk with Dagmara Dominczyk.
Sex, Schools and Suburbia are three of the many subjects that enliven the work of author and screenwriter Tom Perrotta.Tonight the New Jerseyan known for Mrs Fletcher, Little Children, The Election, The Leftovers etc. talks with actor Patrick Wilson, star of the film version of Little Children, about the process of translating fiction to film and TV and how different media reflect his preferred themes. Novelist and actress Dagmara Dominczyk moderates the conversation from both perspectives.
Tickets $35 including a copy of Tom Perrotta’s latest novel, Mrs Fletcher
Venue: The Sanctuary at First Congregational Church 

Tickets $50 including Tom Perrotta’s talk, a copy of Mrs Fletcher and Festival Party
Venue: The Sanctuary at First Congregational Church, 6.30-7.30pm
Venue: The Guild Room at First Congregational Church, 7.30-9.00pm

7.30–9.00pm Festival Party: Meet the Authors. 
Join festival writers and supporters for jazz, drinks and a light meal to celebrate the second Montclair Literary Festival. Round off the day in style while supporting Succeed2gether’s important work to close the education achievement gap.
Tickets $35.
Venue: The Guild Room at First Congregational Church

Tickets $50 including Tom Perrotta’s talk, a copy of Mrs Fletcher and Festival Party
Venue: The Sanctuary at First Congregational Church, 6.30-7.30pm
Venue: The Guild Room at First Congregational Church, 7.30-9.00pm

All programming for kids is FREE!

Children’s events in The Storytime Room, Montclair Public Library 3rd Floor

  • All children aged 12 and under require an adult caregiver to be present in the library.

10.30-11.20am Join illustrator, animator and singer-songwriter Elinor Blake, also known as April March, for a hands-on drawing workshop based on her picture-book version of the White Stripes song We’re Going to be Friends. Be prepared to draw, sing – and have fun! Ages 4 to 8.

11.30am–12.20pm Monsters Beware! She’s fought giants, clobbered dragons, and now Claudette faces her biggest challenge yet… herself! Well, that and a gang of vile monsters. Come and help Montclair author Jorge Aguirre bring his latest graphic novel to life. Ages 5 to 12.

12.30–1.20pm Mike Moran, children’s book illustrator of Poopendous and the Project Droid series will draw pictures, show illustrations and chat about making art for books. Ages 5 to 9.

1.30–2.20pm Author/illustrator Selina Alko shares her picture books, including her latest book, Why Am I Me? a celebration of humanity and diversity that is also a love letter to her NYC neighborhood and neighbors. Ages 4 to 8.

2.30–3.20pm Come learn how David Lubar, author of the popular Weenies short-story collections, became a writer by mistake and a video-game designer by accident. He’ll also share a variety of ways that aspiring writers can get endless ideas for their own stories. Ages 8 to adult.

Children’s events in The Green Room, Montclair Public Library 3rd Floor

10.30–11.20am April Armstrong shares stories with a social justice theme, including Freedom Bird and a modern urban retelling of Jack and Beanstalk. Ages 2 to 12.

11.30am-12.20pm Shy Williams is a Detective and a Doctoral Student as well as an author. Today she introduces Proud Black Girl, a children’s book that empowers young girls through self-love, self-respect and self-enrichment – with a take-away message for girls and women of all ages. Ages 2 to 12.

12.30-1.20pm Writing is Magic. Being a writer is a bit like being a wizard. You’re trying to cast a spell that transports a reader out of their lives and into a shared dream. Come listen to Sarah Beth Durst talk about her newest fantasy books for kids and teens, and hear tips on how you can become a wizard/writer. Ages 8 and up.

1.30-2.20pm Sayantani DasGupta introduces The Serpent’s Secret, book one of an exciting new fantasy series Kiranmala and the Kingdom Beyond. Fans of Rick Riordan will love this story of an NJ 6th grader’s battles with the serpent king and other demons of Indian mythology. Ages 8 and up.

2.45-3.45pm Finding Someplace. On Reesie’s birthday, Hurricane Katrina hits her city. Stranded at home alone, Reesie takes refuge with her elderly neighbor, Miss Martine. The waters rise. They escape in a boat. And soon Reesie is reunited with her family. But her journey back home has only begun. Denise Lewis Patrick reads and discusses her story of a family putting itself back together, and a young girl learning to find herself in the aftermath of disaster. Ages 8 to 12.

4.00-5.30pm Writing as a Family. A multi-generational workshop where writers of all ages can pick up a pen and record family memories and create portraits of loved ones. Bring your grandchild, your Mom, your best friend or anyone else who loves to write, and explore how to record the vital moments of life in a meaningful and memorable way. The Writers Circle Directors Judith Lindbergh and Michelle Cameron lead the workshop with the help of selected author-instructors from their creative writing staff. Ages 7 to 70 and up!

Children’s events in The YA Room, Montclair Public Library 1st Floor.

1.30-2.30pm Bruce Coville has published over 100 books for kids featuring magic and monsters, unicorns and aliens. Find out where his ideas come from as tells the story behind the story of The Monster’s Ring, the first book in The Magic Shop Series. Ages 8 and up.

Children’s events at The Creativity Caravan. 

1.00-3.00pm Tiny Books, Big Ideas. In the spring and summer of 2016, Amy Tingle and Maya Stein transformed their 1965 Covered Wagon caravan into a mobile museum of 350 miniature books made by more than 160 artists and writers of all ages from around the world. Join them today at The Creativity Caravan Studio to view the remaining collection and make your own miniature book filled with personal words and stories from your own life. Children 7 and under require an adult caregiver to be present. Free, but donations will be accepted to benefit Succeed2gether. All ages, bring the whole family!
Venue: The Creativity Caravan, 28 South Fullerton Avenue

Art and Literature Workshops for Kids at Montclair Art Museum.

In cooperation with Montclair Art Museum, we are thrilled to present a series of free workshops that explore the synergy between literature and art. All materials provided, so roll up your sleeves and get creative!

  • Please register in advance on eventbrite here as space is limited
  • Workshops will start promptly and latecomers will not be admitted.
  • Children aged 8 and above may be dropped off.
  • Children aged 7 and under require an adult caregiver to be present.

Studio A: 1.00-2.00pm Collage Workshop with Kristine Lombardi 
Make your own collage and learn how to use collage in story-telling, with author/illustrator Kristine Lombardi, based on her new book about cat inventor  Mr Biddles and his helpful lobster friend Hobson. Ages 5 to 8 with an adult caregiver. Maximum 15 participants.

Studio B: 1.00-2.00pm Printing Workshop with Claudia Sabino 
Create your own hungry caterpiller, grouchy ladybug or very busy spider – Eric Carle’s beloved picture books are the jumping-off point for young artists to make their own prints, with artist Claudia Sabino. Ages 3 to 6 with an adult caregiver. Maximum 15 participants.

Studio A: 3.00-4.30pm Introduction to Comics and Graphic Novels 
Montclair graphic novelist Kevin Pyle returns with this popular workshop, where he will introduce participants to the basic visual storytelling tools of comics and graphic novels. Students will learn to use word balloons and complex facial emotions in comics, as well as how to draw basic anatomy and design their own characters.  Ages 8 to 12, teens also welcome. Maximum 20 participants.

Studio B: 3.00-4.00pm Poetry in Motion 
Debbie Harner and Suzanne Nakamura from the Montclair Coop lead a workshop that connects poetry and art. The E.E. Cummings poem who are you,little i provides inspiration for students to create an original poem, which they will illustrate using techniques in how to draw the human body in action and composition.  Ages 8 to 14. Maximum 20 participants.

5.00–6.00pm Patti Smith: Talk & Performance.
We are delighted to close out the 2018 Montclair Literary Festival with renowned artist and author Patti Smith. Tonight Patti talks with guitarist, composer, and writer Lenny Kaye and reads from her latest book, Devotion (Why I Write), which explores the mysteries and impacts of creativity and details her own creative process. Patti and Lenny will also play music from their long-term collaboration.
Tickets $35 including a copy of Devotion (Why I Write)
Venue: The Sanctuary at First Congregational Church  

Venues for all workshops below: 11 Pine Street, Montclair 07042. (Office of Succeed2gether, 1st floor of office building with green awning, NOT residential building.)

10.00–11.00am Flash Fiction Workshop with David Galef
Flash fiction stories, narratives under 1000 words are everywhere these day, from zines to cell phones. But what works in such a small space? David Galef, the creative writing program director of Montclair State University and author of a dozen books, including Brevity: A Flash Fiction Handbook, leads you through the possibilities in a flash presentation and workshop to get you started. Tickets $25

10.00-11:30am  Writing from Memory with Lisa Romeo
To write memoir, family history, personal essay, or other forms of creative nonfiction, writers need to mine memories, to excavate the past, and recreate the events, conversations, places, and emotions that memory evokes. But memory is often uncooperative. What happens when we can’t access the whole story? When details are cloudy? When the puzzle pieces don’t seem to fit? In this interactive, generative workshop, Lisa Romeo will teach you some new tools, techniques, and craft approaches, that help writers shape incomplete, inaccessible, or elusive memories. Practice new ways to dislodge mental blocks, sweep out the sand, and strike something solid, and move from muddled memory, to putting something interesting on paper. Tickets $35

10.00am–1.00pm How to Locate, Lure and Land an Agent.
Inspired by the amazing events and writers  you heard at the Montclair Literary Festival on March 17 and want to get your own work published? How do you get your book successfully published in today’s ridiculously competitive marketplace? Come to this Master Class with the authors of The Essential Guide to Getting Your Book Published, Arielle Eckstut and David Henry Sterry, to find out. Every participant will get the chance to pitch their book idea and have it critiqued kindly and gently. Whether you are looking to get a deal with one of the Big 5, a great independent publisher, or self-publish, your pitch is the key that unlocks the door to an agent, a publisher, and in the end, a reader. Space is limited. Tickets $100, including a copy of the book, How to Get Published

11am-12.30pm Young Adult writing workshop with noted YA author ER Frank
Have you always wanted to write a Young Adult book but didn’t know where to begin? Or do you have a novel tucked away in a drawer somewhere that’s just waiting to be published? Acclaimed YA novelist, ER Frank will answer your questions, share her own successes and failures, and discuss what she knows about writing and publishing. Tickets $35

ER Frank is the author of five celebrated Young Adult novels, one of which, America, was made into a Lifetime television movie by Rosie O’Donnell. In addition to being a writer, Frank is a psychotherapist with a specialty in trauma. Her books have all received rave reviews from The New York Times Book ReviewBooklist, School Library Journal, Publishers Weekly, Kirkus Reviews and Horn Book. 

12.30-2.00pm  College Essays 101: A Presentation for students and parents with Pat Berry.
For high school students applying to college, no task looms larger or causes more stress than completing applications. In this session, Pat Berry, a writer and the founder of College Application Camp & Coaching, will present her guidelines on writing memorable college application essays. Though not a workshop per sé, Pat’s talk will provide tips for finding creative inspiration, working through writer’s block, and getting started. Pat brings to essay coaching a track record of helping reluctant writers identify engaging topics and produce personal narratives that reflect each student’s unique voice, passions, and personal outlook on the world. She’ll address the long-term value of writing in first-person and help students discern the activities, experiences, insights, and feelings that will make stories resonate with admissions readers. This session is designed to be meaningful to both future college applicants and parents, and it includes a question and answer period.  Tickets $25/Parent+child special price $30

12.30–2.00pm Food Writing Workshop with Marissa Rothkopf Bates
This 90-minute interactive class will help you hone your food writing skills, whether you’ve always dreamed of writing a cookbook, you’re working on a food blog, want to become a freelance food writer or write restaurant reviews, or are working on fiction or nonfiction. We’ll discuss what makes copy stand out, and look at how voice, storytelling and reporting makes a good food story. We’ll explore techniques for writing engaging, thoughtful copy through reading, speed-writing prompts and, yes, eating. Pizza will be served. Tickets $40

Marissa Rothkopf Bates writes about food for The New York Times, Food52, Newsweek and New Jersey Monthly, among others. She is currently working on a book about the history of technology and innovation in the American kitchen.

1.00-2.30pm Get to the Point! How to Sharpen Your Pitch with Joel Schwartzberg
How do you respond when someone says, “Tell me about your book, screenplay, or feature story idea?” And, at that moment, are you truly selling your idea or merely describing it? At a time when everyone needs to be a good marketer as well, knowing the driving point behind your work and expressing it effectively is critical. But instead, too many of us dilute, bury, or completely omit our key points – without even realizing it. In this fun and interactive workshop Joel Schwartzberg, author of the recently-released Get to the Point! Sharpen Your Ideas and Make Your Words Matter, demonstrates how to identify the point of your concept, sharpen it, and convey it with impact. A former national champion public speaker and longtime presentation trainer, Joel Schwartzberg is also Senior Director of Strategic and Executive Communications for the ASPCA in New York City. Bring your pitches! Tickets $35