Push to Publish 2018

DATE: Saturday, October 13, 9am-5pm

LOCATION: Rosemont College, 1400 Montgomery Ave., Rosemont, PA 19010

(click here for campus map)

Whether you are an established writer or just getting started, this one-day workshop will provide valuable resources you can use to get your work in print and online. Highlights include:

* Speed date with the editors and agents: Meet editors and agents who will review and offer feedback on your work (bring up to 5 pages of fiction, poetry, or nonfiction to review and discuss).

* Learn how to increase your chances of getting published.

* Discuss the latest writing trends with professionals in the community

* Get great marketing and networking tips to break into the competitive world of publishing.

Click Here To Register




9:00-10:00 Registration and Breakfast (Kistler Memorial Library)

Attendees will sign up for their speed dates at registration.

10:00-11:00 Keynote Speaker (McShain/Dorothy McKenna Brown Science Center, Rotwitt Theater*)

Dan Chaon‘s most recent book is Ill Will,  a national bestseller, named one of the ten best books of 2017 by Publishers Weekly.  Other works include the short story collection Stay Awake (2012), a finalist for the Story Prize; the national bestseller Await Your Reply and Among the Missing, a finalist for the National Book Award. Chaon’s fiction has appeared in Best American Short Stories, The Pushcart Prize Anthologies, and The O. Henry Prize Stories. He has been a finalist for the National Magazine Award in Fiction, the Shirley Jackson Award, and he was the recipient of an Academy Award in Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Chaon lives in Ohio and teaches at Oberlin College.

11:15-12:30 Speed Dating with Editors & Agents (Kistler Memorial Library)

Editors and agents will meet with attendees in 10-minute sessions.

12:30-1:15 Lunch & Networking (Cardinal Hall)

Lunch will be served at the cafeteria in Cardinal Hall.

1:15-2:15 Breakout Session I: Panels & Workshops (McShain/Dorothy McKenna Brown Science Center)

Panel: Tips for Making the Most of Your Submissions: This panel of editors will share their advice on how you can submit your work to better your chances of getting published. Panelists: Lisa Romeo (Cleaver Magazine), Tim Fitts (Painted Bride Quarterly), Jordan Blum (The Bookends Review), Donna Talarico (Hippocampus Magazine). Moderator: Nathan Long

Panel: Publishing Options: Self-Publishing, Hybrid & Indie: Authors have many options to publishing their works these days other than with traditional publishers. Join this panel to discuss the advantages and pitfalls of publishing with small and independent presses, hybrid publishers, and self-publishing. Panelists: Stacey Kucharik, Donna Cavanagh, Jamie Elfrank, Diane O’Connell. Moderator: TBA

Workshop: How to Write & Edit a Novel: In this workshop, you’ll learn the craft of writing and editing a novel. You’ll learn the steps to plotting, outlining and drafting a novel, and then revising and editing your work. Presenter: TBA

Workshop: Screenwriting & Playwriting: This workshop will focus on script writing and teach you how to adapt your story for the screen and stage. Presenter: TBA

1:30-2:30 Speed Dating With Agents (Kistler Memorial Library)

Speed date sessions with agents continue. *Editors will not take part.

2:30-3:30 Breakout Session II: Panels & Workshops (McShain/Dorothy McKenna Brown Science Center)

Panel: Writing for Children & YA: This panel of published authors and industry professionals will discuss the unique Childrens and Young Adult markets and offer tips for submitting to agents and publishers looking for work. Panelists: Diane Rodriguez Wallach, Becky Birtha, Paul Langan. Moderator: Christine Weiser

Panel: Visual Stories: There are many mediums to tell a story. This panel will focus on the visual mediums such as comics, graphic novels, and interactive fiction and how they fit in the world of publishing. Panelists: Terry LaBan, Brian Tate and more. Moderator: TBA

Workshop: Publicity & Social Media for Authors: Whether you’re traditionally published at a major publishing house, publishing with an indie press, or self-publishing, you need a marketing plan. In this session you’ll learn what a marketing plan is, essential components, timeline, execution, and review sample successful marketing plans. You’ll learn how to start, grow and maintain your social media presence. You’ll come away with ideas and solid action steps to give your book the best possible chance for success!  Presenter: Andrea Killany-Thatcher, Marketing Manager and Book Publicist, Smith Publicity

Workshop: World-Building in Fantasy, Dystopian and Sci-Fi: World-building is important to all works of fiction but for fantasy, dystopian and sci-fi stories, it is the very essence of these genres. In this workshop, you’ll create and develop a world for a fantasy, dystopian or sci-fi work. You’ll focus on the essential components to world-building such as characters, setting and culture. Presenter: TBA

3:45-5:00 Breakout Session III: MEET THE AGENTS (McShain/Dorothy McKenna Brown Science Center)

Agents share their tips for finding the right agent and selling your work. This interactive panel will include plenty of time for Q&A so you can get an insider’s perspectives on the publishing market today.

5:00-6:00 Happy Hour & Networking

Meet new friends and share lessons learned!

*No food or beverages are allowed in Rotwitt Theater.



Fee: $95 (Students, Seniors $85) includes Breakfast, Lunch, and one Speed-date Pass. Additional Speed-date passes can be purchased for $5 each. (No more than 3 total recommended.) (50% off for Rosemont students, faculty, and alumni — must provide valid proof of affiliation at registration)

Parking: You may park in ANY lot on the Rosemont Campus. You do not need to worry about the signs about permits. See the campus map for lot locations.

Click Here To Register


Master Class with Dan Chaon: Dreaming Awake: On finding stories and letting stories find you and that it will be a discussion of the relationship between storytelling and the unconscious mind, to include writing prompts and in-class work. Click here for more information. 

Where: Rosemont College, 1400 Montgomery Ave., Rosemont, PA 19010; Kaul Forum (click here for campus map).
Parking: Park in the lot by Kaul (see campus map).

When: Friday, October 12, 11-4, 2018
Fee: $95 includes lunch (Students, Seniors $85; Rosemont student/faculty/alumni get 50% discount).

Click Here To Register


Click here for bios of agents and editors. We will be adding more as we draw closer to the event.


Agents – Speed Date

Jordy Albert

Jordy Albert (1)Jordy Albert is a Literary Agent and co-founder of The Booker Albert Literary Agency. She holds a B.A. in English from Pennsylvania State University, and a M.A. from Millersville University of Pennsylvania. She has worked with Marisa Corvisiero during her time at the L. Perkins Agency and the Corvisiero Literary Agency.

SEEKING: Jordy is looking for young adult contemporary, sci-fi, and fantasy (romance is a plus). She’s also looking for smart, sexy contemporary and historical romance (Jordy definitely has a soft spot for a fantastic Regency). She’s drawn to strong, intelligent characters (snarky, but still likable). Please note that while it isn’t necessarily a deal breaker, she tends to shy away from novels with trigger topics, such as suicide and any type of abuse.

Jaidree Braddix

Jaidree BraddixJaidree Braddix is an associate literary agent at Sterling Lord Literistic. She works with a team of five agents headed by Celeste Fine. Born and raised on Maui, Hawaii, Jaidree holds an M.S. in Publishing from Pace University and a B.A. in Journalism from the University of Northern Colorado. She now lives in Brooklyn.

SEEKING: Formerly a publicist at an independent press, Jaidree is interested in both serious non-fiction and buzz-worthy topics that can make a big media splash, particularly in the areas of food, health, personal development, current events, and big idea topics with the potential to influence the national conversation.

Sonali Chanchani

Sonali ChanchaniSonali Chanchani is an associate agent at Folio Literary Management. She began her career in publishing at Kaya, an independent press based in Los Angeles and dedicated to publishing authors from the Asian diaspora. She joined Folio in 2015, where she works closely alongside Claudia Cross and Frank Weimann and is actively building her own list.

SEEKING: Sonali represents character-driven upmarket and literary fiction. In particular, she’s drawn to smart women’s fiction; quirky, heartfelt family stories; nuanced psychological mysteries; and rich, atmospheric historical projects with a touch of magical realism. On the nonfiction side, she’s interested in narratives with a strong social justice bent or that illuminate some aspect of our society or culture. In Young Adult, she’s looking for contemporary realistic fiction as well as the occasional fantasy project (with a soft spot for myth, fairytale, and folklore retellings). Across the board, she’s especially interested in working with underrepresented voices.

Caroline Eisenmann

Caroline Eisenmann

Caroline Eisenmann is an associate agent at the Frances Goldin Literary Agency. Prior to joining the agency in 2017, she spent four years at ICM Partners. Caroline was raised in the Boston area and received an undergraduate degree from Wesleyan University.

SEEKING: She represents adult upmarket and literary fiction, as well as nonfiction including reported narratives, memoir, cultural criticism, essay collections, and history and biography with a surprising point of view. In fiction, she is particularly drawn to work that centers around intimacy and its discontents, stories about obsession, and narratives that grapple with our current cultural climate.

Alyssa Eisner Henkin

Alyssa HenkinAlyssa Eisner Henkin, Senior Vice President, Trident Media Group began her publishing career at Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers. She loved the craft of editing, but soon realized her inner-entrepreneur was hankering to agent. In December of 2006 Alyssa became Trident’s first agent to specialize in books for young people. Alyssa is proud to represent WONDER by R.J. Palacio, soon to be a major motion picture, The 2017 Printz Honor THE PASSION OF DOLSSA by Julie Berry, and two-time Caldecott Honor author, Jen Bryant, among many others.

SEEKING: Alyssa is actively seeking standalone middle grade fiction that warms one’s heart and portrays under-represented voices, illustrated nonfiction or hybrid fiction/nonfiction that can sustain a series of Magic Treehouse proportion, and atmospheric YA novels that feels ripe for Sofia Coppola adaptations. Please send queries to ahenkin@tridentmediagroup.com.

Stephanie Kehr

Stephanie Kehr

Stephanie is a Junior Agent for C.Y.L.E. Literary. She currently lives in Northern Virginia and serves on the publishing board of Illuminate YA Fiction, an imprint of LPC Books. She’s an adventure lover with a special place in her heart for travel and culture. Although she grew up reading books, writing and representing them became an accidental passion.

SEEKING: Stephanie is looking for skillfully crafted stories that stir the soul and sharpen the mind. In fiction, she’s seeking young adult, middle grade, historical, children’s picture books, romance, fantasy, inspirational, and authors with strong platform, unique ideas, and diverse characters. She also represents non-fiction, including religious genres.

Gina Panettieri

Gina PanettieriFounded in 2003, Talcott Notch Literary is a rapidly-growing mid-size literary and screen rights agency representing the freshest new voices in both fiction and nonfiction. Their founder, Gina Panettieri has expertise in every aspect of writing and publishing and has helped thousands of writers achieve their goals. She has successfully placed hundreds of books with such well-known publishers as Berkley, St. Martin’s Press, Adams Media, Palgrave-Macmillan, McGraw-Hill, John Wiley & Sons and many others.

SEEKING: Gina has such trouble limiting herself to just a few genres. She finds it all fascinating! History, business, self-help, science, gardening, cookbooks, crafts, parenting, memoir, true crime and travel. Teach her something new, something she couldn’t find somewhere else, something based on original research and that’s the hook she’s looking for. With fiction, she loves quirky, edgy characters. Send her women’s fiction, paranormal, urban fantasy, horror, science fiction, historical, mystery, thrillers and suspense.

Rita Rosenkranz

Rita RosenkranzA well-established agent, who began her career as an editor at major publishing houses, Rita Rosenkranz represents almost exclusively adult non-fiction titles. Rita works with major publishing houses, as well as regional publishers that handle niche markets. Representative titles include Forbidden Fruit: Love Stories from the Underground Railroad by Betty DeRamus (Atria Books; essence.com best-seller), Olive Trees and Honey: A Treasury of Vegetarian Recipes from Jewish Communities Around the World (Wiley; James Beard Award winner) by Gil Marks; 29 Gifts: How a Month of Giving Can Change Your Life by Cami Walker (Da Capo Press; New York Times bestseller, MS Awareness Award Winner, Books for a Better Life), and A Mind for Numbers: How to Excel at Math and Science (Even if You Flunked Algebra) by Barbara Oakley, Ph.D. (Tarcher). She is a member of the Association of Authors’ Representatives (AAR), The Authors Guild, and Women’s Media Group.

SEEKING: Her wide-ranging list includes health, history, parenting, music, how-to, popular science, business, biography, sports, popular reference, cooking, writing, humor, spirituality, illustrated books and general interest titles. She represents first-time as well as seasoned authors, and looks for projects that present familiar subjects freshly or lesser-known subjects presented commercially.

Editors – Speed Date

Courtney Bambrick

Courtney BambrickCOURTNEY K. BAMBRICK is poetry editor of the regional literary magazine Philadelphia Stories. Her poetry has appeared online or in print in Apiary, Certain Circuits, Dirty Napkin, Philadelphia Poets, Mad Poets Review, and Schuylkill Valley Journal. She performed as part of the 2016 Welcome to Boog City Festival. Her chapbook Rape Baby was a runner up in the 2013 Pavement Saw chapbook competition and most of it was published as “Caring for Your Rape” in the Body Map series at The Fanzine, curated by Sarah Rose Etter. Courtney has taught composition, creative writing, and literature at a number of colleges and universities in the Philadelphia area. In addition to poetry, Courtney has written and directed adaptations of plays and musicals for young people. She coordinates the Children’s Arts Program at Old Academy Players in Philadelphia. She lives outside the city with poet, painter, and musician, Peter Baroth.


Jordan Blum

A7D42CE0-EFF6-4CB3-8202-C04ADCAC47CAJordan Blum is the founder & editor-in-chief of The Bookends Review. He holds an MFA in fiction and teaches composition and creative writing at several colleges/universities. He’s published creative and/or scholarly pieces in several places, including Connotation Press, The Prague Review, FictionBrigade, Eunoia Review, and Burningword Literary Journal; likewise, his work can be found in the following anthologies: Exquisite Quartet Anthology 2012, Strangers of Different Ink, and Scar Publication’s Need to Know Basis (redacted edition), among others. He also serves as an Associate Editor at PopMatter and a contributor to Sonic Perspectives, Metal Injection, PROG, Rock and Roll Globe, Rebel Noise, Classic Rock Society, The Prog Report, Progression, and PopWrapped. He’s currently seeking a publisher for his latest collection of poetry and fiction, as well as working on a book about Jethro Tull.


Rahiem Brooks

Rahiem Brooks

Rahiem Jerome Brooks heads Prodigy Gold Books (PGB) as Publisher & Editor-in-Chief, an up-and-coming small press headquartered in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. PGB is devoted to the business and promotion of novels. He is a crime novelist and a member of the Mystery Writer’s of America. His debut thriller, LAUGH NOW won 2010 African-Americans on the Move Book Club’s (AAMBC) Book of the Year & he earned 2011 AAMBC Author of the Year. LAUGH NOW also won the Most Creative Plot at the DMV Expo’s Creative Excellence Awards. Rahiem was also nominated at the 2011 & 2012 African-American Literary Awards for Mystery of the Year for Con Test and Murder in Germantown.

Prodigy Gold Books is seeking: commercial YA and adult projects in the following genres: speculative fiction (horror, SFF, and all sub-genres), African-American fiction, mystery/suspense, thrillers, historical fiction, and general/literary fiction. We’re looking for strong plots that are ninety-percent complete and needs the Prodigy team to bring out that last ten-percent.


Jennifer Cappello

Jennifer CappelloJennifer has been editing for Sunbury Press since 2011 and managing the editing staff since 2015. She is an editor, writer, and mother of three—five, if you count the dogs—living with her husband and family in Linglestown, PA. She holds an AA in Secondary English Education from Harrisburg Area Community College, a BA in English from Penn State, and an MFA in Creative Writing with a certificate in publishing from Chatham University. Her partial novel, “Fixed,” won runner-up for best thesis in Chatham University’s 2013 fiction category. She established an independent press while at Chatham, publishing a poetry chapbook (Chalk & Fire, Melrose Publishing, 2012) for an up-and-coming poet. Jennifer has served as editor for two college literary journals, has had poems published in HACC’s Wildwood Journal, and serves annually as a Scholastic Writing Contest judge. She loves to read, write, knit, cook, and travel.

Submissions: We read submissions from every category and genre. Lately, we’re looking to develop our nonfiction (particularly war memoir), historical fiction, and literary fiction book lists, but any quality work would be considered.


Donna Cavanagh

Donna CavanaghDonna Cavanagh is founder of HumorOutcasts.com (HO) and the partner publishing company, HumorOutcasts Press which now includes the labels Shorehouse Books and Corner Office Books (HOPress-Shorehousebooks.com). Cavanagh launched HO as an outlet for writers to showcase their work in a world that offered few avenues for humor. HO now features the creative talents of more than 100 aspiring and accomplished writers, producers, comics and authors from all over the world. Known for its eclectic content, HumorOutcasts has something for everyone. As a writer herself, Cavanagh is a former journalist who made an unscheduled stop into humor more than 20 years ago. Her syndicated columns helped her gain a national audience when her work landed in the pages of First Magazine, USA Today and other national media. She has taught the how-to lessons of humor, blogging and publishing at The Philadelphia Writers’ Conference and the Erma Bombeck Writer’s Workshop as well as community and corporate workshops throughout the country.

*Donna is available for consultations and asks that all attendees meeting with her bring a paragraph that describes how they intend to market their work.


Christopher Eckman

Christopher Eckman

Christopher Eckman is a second year MFA student in Creative Non-fiction Writing at Rosemont College and managing editor of the Rathalla Review. He holds a Bachelors Degree of Science in Computer Science and Mathematics from the Metropolitan State University of Denver, and has been published in their arts and literary magazine, Metrosphere. He has lived in Colorado, Minnesota, and Pennsylvania. He currently works as a stay at home puppy dad in Villanova with his husband, Tim, and their two dogs, Dexter and Jordan, where he cooks, blogs, and plays guitar.


Tim Fitts

Tm FittsTim Fitts has served at the editorial staff of The Painted Bride Quarterly since 2013 and is a frequent guest on PBQ’s “Slushpile” podcast. Tim lives and works in Philadelphia. He is the author of two short story collections, Hypothermia, and Go Home and Cry for Yourselves.  He teaches Creative Writing at the Curtis Institute of Music and Penn State Brandywine.  His short stories have been published by journals such as The Gettysburg Review, Granta, CutBank, among many others.


Alison Hicks

Alison-HicksAlison Hicks is the founder of Greater Philadelphia Wordshop Studio, which offers community-based writing workshops. She is also the author of poetry collections You Who Took the Boat Out and Kiss, a chapbook Falling Dreams, a novella, Love: A Story of Images, and an anthology, Prompted. Her work has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize by Green Hills Literary Lantern, and has appeared in Eclipse, Fifth Wednesday, Gargoyle, Louisville Review, Passager, Permafrost, Poet Lore, and Whiskey Island, among other journals. Awards include the 2011 Philadelphia City Paper Poetry Prize and two Pennsylvania Council on the Arts fellowships. She will be happy to read literary or mainstream fiction, nonfiction and poetry.


Peter Krok

Peter KrokPeter Krok has been the Editor-in-Chief of the Schuylkill Valley Journal since 2001. The journal was founded in 1990. He also serves as the humanities/poetry director of the Manayunk Roxborough Art Center where he has coordinated a literary series since 1990. Because of his identification with row house and red brick Philadelphia, he is often referred to as “the red brick poet.” His poems have appeared in the Yearbook of American Poetry, America, Mid-America Poetry Review, Midwest Quarterly, Poet Lore, Potomac Review, Blue Unicorn and numerous other print and online journals. In 2005 his poem “10 PM At a Philadelphia Recreation Center” was included in Common Wealth: Contemporary Poets on Pennsylvania (published by Penn State University). His book, Looking For An Eye, was published by Foothills Press in 2008.


Amanda Miska

image1 (1)Amanda Miska is Publisher of Split Lip Press. She lives and writes in the Philly suburbs, and her work can be found at The RumpusHobartWigleafCatapult, The Huffington Post, the Prairie Schooner blog, decomP, Little Patuxent ReviewHippocampus Magazine, and elsewhere. Read more at: amandamiska.com.

For Split Lip Press, she is looking for work that is voice-driven, experimental, modern/post-modern. She prefers something that is raw and moving to something that is cleanly polished but makes her feel nothing. Split Lip Press publishes short fiction, novels, memoir/essay collections, and poetry collections. They have a chapbook contest every fall with a guest judge that is also open to all genres.


Danielle Modafferi

FC2456AD-FC75-4DF2-B713-F877B8EBBE43Danielle Modafferi earned her Master of Fine Arts degree in Writing Popular Fiction from Seton Hill University. Since then, she incorporated Firefly Hill Press in 2014 and has been passionate about discovering and sharing incredible fiction through publishing ever since! She is a: Friend of Literature, Practicer of Random Acts of Kindness, Connoisseur of Cheese; Petter of Puppies, Inventor of Words; Professional Napper, and Lover of all things Harry Potter. Follow her on IG and Twitter @danimod115.

Company Vision: Firefly Hill Press strives to find, publish, and market exceptional works of novel-length fiction, specifically in the YA and Romance genres. FHP works to promote cutting-edge fiction that will balance conventional tropes, true to popular genre fiction, with unconventional elements that are groundbreaking and captivating to its target demographic.


Lisa Romeo

Lisa RomeoLisa Romeo is the nonfiction editor for Cleaver Magazine, where she represents both fiction and nonfiction. She is the author of Starting with Goodbye: A Daughter’s Memoir of Love after Loss (University of Nevada Press, May 2018). Her work is listed in Best American Essays 2016, has been nominated for additional BAE and Pushcart Prizes, and published in the New York Times, O The Oprah Magazine, Longreads, Brevity, Hippocampus, Under the Sun, Front Porch, and several essay anthologies. Lisa is thesis advisor in the Bay Path University MFA program, and completed her MFA degree at Stonecoast (University of Southern Maine). She’s previously taught at Rutgers and Montclair State Universities, throughout northern New Jersey with The Writers Circle, and works privately with writers as editor and coach. She also serves as the creative nonfiction editor for Compose Journal. Lisa lives in northern NJ with her husband and sons.


Mitchell Sommers

Mitchell-SommersMitchell Sommers is the fiction editor for Philadelphia Stories. He is also a columnist for LNP, the Lancaster, Pennsylvania daily newspaper. He practices law in Lancaster County, concentrating in the area of consumer bankruptcy. He received his MFA from the University of New Orleans. He’s currently working on a novel set in colonial Pennsylvania.


Donna Talarico

Donna TalaricoDonna Talarico is an independent writer and content marketing consultant, and she also is the founder of Hippocampus Magazine and its books division and annual conference, HippoCamp. Donna has more than two decades of experience in marketing and communications, and about half that time has been in higher education. She speaks at higher education and publishing conferences, writes an adult learner recruiting column for Wiley, and has contributed to Guardian Higher Education Network, The Writer, mental_floss, Games World of Puzzles, and others. Her creative nonfiction appears in The Los Angeles Review and The Los Angeles Times. Donna teaches or has taught about branding and digital identity in several graduate creative writing programs, including Wilkes University and Rosemont College, as well as at Pennsylvania College of Art & Design.