This year’s Berrrett-Koehler Authors Cooperative Retreat was another compelling event, on both individual and communal levels. It was held October 10-13 at the Riverwood Inn and Conference Center, in Otsego, Mn., not far from Minneapolis. A short walk downhill from the retreat buildings leads to the banks of the Mississippi River, making this an appropriate setting for free-flowing ideas and inspiration. This was my fifth BK retreat, and as I have written previously, all have been terrific, powerful experiences.
The theme of this year’s retreat was “Going Deeper: A World of Possibilities.” I have also identified the following keywords that particularly resonated with me during those four days:
The surprise sale of The Washington Post to Amazon.com founder Jeff Bezos has been the buzz of the media world this week. The news prompted me to recall Peter Drucker’s brief involvement with the newspaper in the late 1930s, soon after he came to the United States from Europe.
The Austrian-born Drucker was in his late twenties when he did a brief stint as a freelance foreign correspondent for the Post, during a return visit to Europe in the spring of 1938. This is recounted in Drucker’s charming memoir originally published in 1978, Adventures of a Bystander.…Read More
The tone of the June 8 Books Alive! 2013 conference, sponsored by the Washington Independent Review of Books, was optimistic, upbeat and positive. The consensus seemed to be that books have a bright future, regardless of current or as yet unimagined formats.
By the end of the all-day event, which I also wrote about earlier this week, it was reinforced that authors, whether with a traditional publisher or self-published, have many avenues for self-promotion and to increase opportunities to earn money. (Although a recurring theme, besides that of continuing to hone your craft as a writer, was “don’t give up your day job.”)
During a morning panel session, the novelist/freelance journalist Jennifer Miller related her promotion efforts for her novel The Year of the Gadfly, originally published last year and now out in paperback.…Read More
The first annual Books Alive! 2013 conference was a terrific all-day event for authors (published and aspiring) and book lovers. It was sponsored by the Washington Independent Review of Books and held June 8 in suburban Maryland at the Bethesda North Marriott Hotel & Conference Center. It featured panelists and speakers on writing, publishing (including self-publishing), marketing, publicity, promotion, platforms, income and related topics. Attendees also had the option of pitching book ideas in brief individual meetings with a variety of literary agents.
The luncheon speaker, Maria Arana, detailed her fascinating career working in publishing, editing, reporting and writing books, including her memoir American Chica and the new biography Bolívar.…Read More