ORACON 2013 – Save The Date

Save The Date

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Ozarks Romance Authors Annual Conference

Springfield, MO

Workshops – Pitch Sessions – Speakers - Headshots - Networking - Fun

We’re putting together a fantastic lineup of speakers. Stay tuned for more details!

Our conference is mentioned in today’s e-newsletter from Springfield Regional Arts Council

Springfield Regional Arts Council, a Springfield, Missouri non-profit group
Did you see us in today’s ezine from Springfield Regional Arts Council?

They usually send their e-newsletter each Monday, but since their office was closed Monday for the 4th of July holiday, the newsletter was sent today (Tuesday) instead.

SRAC mentioned Ozarks Romance Authors’ Annual Conference coming up July 23, along with a link to our page on our their site. Click HERE to see our conference page on Springfield Regional Arts Council’s web site.

Why did SRAC do this? Because we are a member of this fine organization that promotes the arts in southwest Missouri.

What did Springfield Regional Arts Council say about us?

Ozarks Romance Authors will host their annual conference all day July 23 at The Clarion.

This is conference for all fiction writers (not just in romance, this authors’ group is multi-genre).

Registration is required.

Guest speakers will include award-winning authors, a literary agent from New York City, and an editor from Avalon Books.

July 22 from 4:00 – 6:00 p.m., Barnes & Noble is hosting the conference kick-off with appearances from conference speaker and authors, and a booksigning event.

For more info – http://ozarks-romance-authors.com/2011-annual-conference/
Next Event (daily):
Friday, July 22, 2011 – 4:00pm – 6:00pm

If you would like to receive Springfield Regional Arts Council’s weekly ezine, click HERE and enter your email address.

Thinking of coming to our writers’ conference on July 23, 2010? There is still time to register. Pay in advance using the link at the bottom of THIS page. You can even pay at the door that morning.

We’ll have best-selling authors who are scheduled to travel to Springfield and make this one of the best writers’ conferences in the state of Missouri. They have prepared fabulous presentations, workshops, and panels with information relevant to all writers of fiction (not just those writing for the romance genre).

We’ll also have Louise Fury, literary agent with The L. Perkins Agency, and Lia Brown, editor with Avalon Books.

Hope to see you at The Clarion Hotel Conference Center on Saturday, July 23, 2010!

Springfield Regional Arts Council ezine

July 5, 2011, issue of Springfield Regional Arts Council's ezine

The speakers for our annual conference July 23, 2011, are getting excited!

Eliza Lloyd is one of the authors coming to speak at our annual writers’ conference, and she just gave a little sneak peek on her blog HERE.

In fact, this is the second time she has mentioned our writers’ conference, which is scheduled for Saturday, July 23, 2011, in Springfield, Missouri. We mentioned the other occurrence HERE, along with links to Eliza’s books.

If you like a sexy, steamy read, click on her titles below.

“Wicked Desires”

“Wicked Temptation”

“Another Lover”

Follow Eliza Lloyd on Twitter! Her Twitter name is @elloydwriting .

Writers’ conferences and conventions of this quality in the midwest are not easy to find. This year’s conference is full of presentations and workshops by award-winning authors, plus our attendees can schedule pitch sessions with a literary agent and publishing house editor from New York City. Opportunities like this do not happen often in the Ozarks! If you would like more details about who will be speaking (and who will be taking pitch sessions) at our conference, click HERE.

Ozarks Romance Authors, a non-profit group for Missouri writers of all genres, was founded in 1987. The regional writers’ group holds its meetings the first Saturday of each month at The Library Station, 2535 N. Kansas Expressway, in Springfield, Missouri.

Visitors are welcome. Your first three visits are free. For details about upcoming meetings, please click HERE.

Our annual conference will be held July 23, 2011, at The Clarion Hotel and Conference Center. To learn more about the amazing lineup of speakers and workshops, click HERE to visit our conference page.

If you have questions about the group, please email us at OzarksRomanceAuthors@gmail.com or call (417) 597-4716.

http://elizalloyd.blogspot.com/2011/06/ozark-writers-conferencejust-around.html

Live-Tweet Transcript from June 4, 2011, presentation – “The Editor/Agent Pitch Session: How to Make it a Success!”

Kelly Henkins, who writes as Angela Drake

Kelly Henkins, who writes as Angela Drake

Ozarks Romance Authors, a multi-genre, non-profit group for writers (founded in 1987), met Saturday, June 4, 2011, at The Library Station on North Kansas Expressway in Springfield, Missouri.

The June presentation was by member Kelly Henkins, who writes as Angela Drake.

Her topic was perfect as we prepare for one-on-one pitch sessions at our July 23 annual conference, with Avalon Books Editor Lia Brown and Literary Agent Louise Fury of The L. Perkins Agency — “The Editor/ Agent Pitch Session: How to Make it a Success!”

We live-tweeted during the meeting until Twitter gave us a message that we had exceeded the number of posts allowed. Follow us on Twitter at @OzarksRomance!

Here is the entire transcript of the live-tweet:

June 4, 2011 — 1:10 p.m. CT

Kelly Henkins writes as Angela Drake. Her site is http://angeladrake.blogspot.com/
She is speaking to Ozarks Romance Authors today http://ow.ly/53hr3
Topic: How to have a successful pitch session with editor or agent http://ow.ly/53hr3

Register for our 7/23/11 conference for 2 pitch opportunities #sgf #mo #amwriting http://ow.ly/4lZmp

Avalon Editor Lia Brown and Lit Agent Louise Fury will take pitches at our 7/23 conf http://ow.ly/4lZmp

Everything is a “what if” that moves the story forward.

Same with your writing career.

Must continue to ask “what if” to move your writing career forward.

Pitching is one of those “what if’s.”

When will you have another chance to pitch your book to an editor or agent?

What if you don’t pitch at our conference 7/23/11?

When will you have another chance to pitch? Need to take advantage of this opportunity.

Kelly’s info on pitching was a result of a last-minute pitch opp with an editor 10 years ago.

She gave her 1st, 2nd, and 3rd choices for pitching at the conference.

Got her conf packet and found out she was able to pitch to 2 that day.

Advice on having a great pitch?

Don’t be nervous.

Kelly/Angela walked out of her first pitch session EVER with a request for full manuscript.

Agents/Editors told Kelly they are amazed by # of writers who have no idea what to do/say in pitch session.

Pitch session is like a job interview. Prepare for this!

You lose out if you don’t target right editor/agent when pitching.

Sure, you’ll be nervous. But be as prepared as possible.

Editors/agents are people, just like you. They’ve been on job interviews, been nervous, too.

Prepare well. Do your best. You are asking them to trust you to tell great story, meet deadlines.

They may ask you to make changes you don’t totally agree with.

Separate yourself from the story and realize they know more than you.

You think your story is perfect? Pitch it. Editor/agent will ask questions, offer suggestions.

If editor/agent offers advice, don’t be offended. Give it some thought. Will it work?

Editor/Agent knows what the book needs, often without reading it.

How do you prepare for those all-important 5 or 10 minutes in pitch?

Learn about the company. Dress appropriately. Just like a job interview.

You want this editor. Don’t be mousy, mumble, etc. Be confident!

No such thing as a textbook pitch session/interview.

No editor/agent is the same. All are looking for certain things.

10 steps to making your pitch session go well…

1. Have the book finished.

What if the editor/agent asks for the full manuscript and you haven’t finished?

Will you have time to finish it, polish, go over it several times, make it perfect?

All the time spent scurrying to finish book, editor/agent is waiting, accepting other offers, still looking.

She’ll pick up the authors who are finishing the work and getting it to her.

Don’t miss out on your opportunity because you don’t have it ready to go.

Usually ask for first 3 chapters and synopsis.

Even if you get first 3 chapters and synopsis into the mail, don’t let life grind to halt to finish book.

Must be in proper format and FLAWLESS.

You can’t give a confident pitch if you don’t even know what’s going to happen in your story.

1 of first ? asked in pitch session is “Is this book finished?”

You need to know your story inside and out. If you pitch 1 story but change it, your pitch might be invalid.

If editor/agent wants to see story you pitched, but you changed it so much that it isn’t the same…

… might not be interested since it’s so different.

Basically, the blurb on back of book is your pitch.

Just like a reader deciding if she wants to spend $ to buy your book,

… editor/agent looks at pitch to see if she wants to take chance on you as writer.

Register for our 7/23/11 conference for 2 pitch opportunities #sgf #mo #amwriting http://ow.ly/4lZmp
Avalon Editor Lia Brown and Lit Agent Louise Fury will take pitches at our 7/23 conf http://ow.ly/4lZmp

10 steps to making your pitch session go well…

2. Know your qualifications.

Do you need to be an expert? Expert on subjects mentioned in your book?

No, you don’t have to be an expert. But know the topic well enough.

Maybe you worked at a summer job related to the heroine’s career.

Maybe you’ve studied it well, researched well, have access to experts.

If non-fiction, being an expert is sometimes required.

Other qualifications? Holding position in writers’ group, contest winner, degree in whatever…

…speaking at confererence or workshops, mentor other writers, critique group.

Anything that lends credibility and lets editor/agent know you are serious about writing career.

If writing non-fiction, need to show knowledge. Example?

Writing about hiking in national forest, and you do this as a hobby.

The more you pad your writer’s resume with credentials, the better.

Take a college course on the topic you’re writing about. Interview people.

Need to know about guns? Take a handgun course.

10 steps to making your pitch session go well…

3. Know the house.

Would you walk into a job interview knowing nothing about the company or job? No!

Learn about the publishing house. Who is the acquisitions editor?

It’s not the senior editor. It’s the underdogs.

Do they publish what you write?

Do you write steampunk but you’re pitching to house that wants contemporary?

What about word count? What are they looking for?

Know your genre, the publishing house, and what they are looking for.

How many titles do they release in a month? Year?

Do they accept unsolicited manuscripts?

If they don’t accept unsolicited manuscripts, here is your loophole:

You don’t have an agent? You’re not getting in that way.

Conferences are your loop hole!

If Writers’ Market says a house does NOT accept unsolicited ms, why are they at a conference?

They are looking for ms.

They won’t waste their time going to conf if they’re not looking for new material, new writers.

Register for our 7/23/11 conference for 2 pitch opportunities #sgf #mo #amwriting http://ow.ly/4lZmp

Avalon Editor Lia Brown and Lit Agent Louise Fury will take pitches at our 7/23 conf http://ow.ly/4lZmp

Take advantage of conferences where editors/agents are accepting pitch sessions!!!

Conf can be expensive – tuition, travel, hotel, etc.

Choose conferences where you can get more bang for your buck.

Writer’s Digest lists upcoming conferences.

Writers’ associations list conferences in their genres.

Research conferences and find out where agents/editors will accept pitches.

Invest your money well in conferences with editors/agents accepting pitches.

Ozarks Romance Authors has 2 TOP NAME people coming to 7/23/11 conf, accepting pitches.

If you don’t even know house’s word count, how do you know your ms is right for them?

Guidelines are usually online. Do your research before pitch session.

Know the publishing house, know the editor/agent. Know what she’s looking for.

If they’re looking for contemporary romance, do you pitch sci-fi fantasy? NO!

Many editors/agents now have blogs and discuss what they’re looking for. Do your research.

See what they are looking for. Look at their web sites.

eHarlequin.com often has free reads online. This is what’s selling, so it’s what they’re looking for.

Don’t let someone tell you no one is reading what you’re writing.

Don’t let someone tell you genre is dead.

Write what’s in your heart, what you want to write.

Genres come in and out of style. It might come back if it’s “out” now.

A year ago, you didn’t see the word “steampunk” everywhere, but now it’s hot.

A year ago, people were writing steampunk so they rode along and it’s popular now.

10 steps to having a great pitch session…

4. Know the editor or agent

Editors/agents often have certain time period they’re interested in.

Read their blogs.

Editors/agents often say on Twitter or Facebook if they’re looking for certain things.

Follow them on FB and Twitter!

Are there authors who write in a way that’s similar to yours?

You’re not copying, of course. But similar genre, style, etc.

Are you more of a sweet romance? Women’s fiction? Mainstream?

Is your writing style edgy? Are you the next Tom Clancy? What’s your flavor?

Editor/agent hasn’t read your stuff yet, but if you say…

“I write in a style similar to ____”

or “My story is a cross between ___ and ____”

… this helps editor/agent know more about your writing.

Can you find out something personal about the editor/agent?

Example: If editor/agent is a new mom and your story focuses on kids,

bring that up in the pitch session.

It’s not all about your book. It’s about the whole package.

Authors often mention their agent or editor. It takes detective work sometimes to discover.

Find out agent/editor of authors you like, authors who you are similar to.

Do research. Has editor/agent recently lost authors? Might be looking for new ones.

Some publishing houses won’t work with certain agents.

Send email if you’re curious. Ask agent if they work with specific houses the most.

You’ve done your homework, know everything about agent/editor you’re pitching to.

Book is finished, flawless, and you’ve written blurb.

Now what? Take your blurb/pitch, stand in front of mirror, watch yourself deliver pitch.

Look at your reflexion. Make eye contact with yourself.

Look confident. First few times, you’ll be wobbly. This is silly!

Get it out NOW, in front of mirror, and you’ll feel confident at pitch session.

If you have a critique group (like Ozarks Romance Authors), pitch to each other.

You’ll be more comfortable pitching to someone you know.

They’ll see things you need to change. Stop fidgeting, etc.

They’ll notice things that you do not notice.

Once you have the book finished, everything else is easy.

Business cards — Vital if you are pitching!

White card with black print is best. No cutesy stuff!

Editor/agent often takes home hundreds of biz cards at a conference.

Graphics are OK, but not too busy or cutesy.

Use the back of biz card if you are pitching.

Set aside biz cards for pitch session and include on the back:

Title, target market, theme, word count

Don’t put this on all of your biz cards for general networking. Only for pitch sessions.

This info will help you stand out and remind editor/agent about you.

Little things like this help you stand out immediately after appointment

Helps when you submit, too. Same info will be carried across.

Oops! Sorry! I lost track of which number we were on.

8. Dress appropriately

Business attire is best. Make a good impression.

If you want to dress casually for rest of conference, fine. Just change before pitch.

Women: Dress, skirt, pants, whatever. As long as you look polished.

A short heel is best, but do not wear flip-flops!

Men: Nice dress pants, business casual, possibly blazer.

Don’t go into pitch dressed in a gimmicky way to promote your book!

Don’t go into pitch dressed like Laura Ingalls Wilder!

This is not professional and it distracts from your goal.

Avoid cologne, perfume, jewelry that will distract.

The last thing you want is to attack editor/agent who has allergies.

Don’t want her to spend your entire pitch sneezing at your cologne.

Dangly jewelry can be a distraction.

Kelly says she sees so many people go into pitches popping gum.

Sure, you just had lunch and you’re worried about breath.

Use a mint instead of popping gum!

Neat, clean, and tidy is the key.

You’re not out to impress with fashion sense. You’re a confident business person.

9. Be on time!

Get there about 10-15 minutes early.

Yes, you will end up sitting there waiting. That’s fine.

This can work to your advantage. If someone gets too nervous and drops out, you might go early.

You might end up with 2 time slots if person in front of you drops out.

10. Be confident!

You’re there. You’re prepared. You’re confident. You’re ready.

How do you feel? Are you getting nervous? Think you can’t handle it?

Stop and ask yourself “What if?”

What if you don’t go through with pitch session?

Don’t let this end with you giving up without a fighting chance.

5 years from now, do you want to say “If only I hadn’t chickened out”?

You’ll look at friends’ books on the shelves and wish you had followed through.

Be confident! You’ve come this far! Writing the book was the hard part.

Being early is also good in case you can hear other pitches.

Listen and get an idea of questions asked, editor/agent personality, etc.

When you arrive for pitch, extend your hand and introduce yourself.

Basic etiquette is rare these days.

Introducing yourself shows you are confident and you’re a serious business person.

Agent/editor often have questions/comments to help break the ice.

These questions help separate you-the-person from you-the-writer.

Then you give her the pitch you have rehearsed so well.

Let your passion for the story take over. That passion is what you want editor/agent to hear.

If you talk about book in monotone voice, it says you have no interest in story.

Don’t have to bounce in chair and be all excited. Just let natural flavor of story come through.

Editor/agent will recognize you’re at the end. Now you ask if she has questions.

Don’t let her questions scare you. They serve a purpose.

She’s trying to see if her house has a place for your story.

She might be thinking “We’ve been thinking about doing a line of ___” and you fit.

Answer her questions with utmost confidence. You know the answers. Don’t get flustered.

If you can’t tell her about your characters, who can?

She may even ask more questions to dig deeper. Be prepared.

When meeting is over, extend hand, thank editor/agent BY NAME for their time.

Remember biz card you wrote info on? Give editor/agent this biz card!

If she asks for first 3 chapters and synopsis, be ready to send it as soon as you get home.

Did she ask for hard copy or email? Send what editor/agent asks for.

Do not take your entire manuscript to the conference and expect editor/agent to take it!!!

While you are fresh in editor/agent’s mind, send whatever she asks for.

When you leave pitch, take a minute to step aside and make notes about meeting.

Jot down whatever editor/agent said that will help your pitch stand out.

Did she suggest certain things? Make a note on back of another biz card along with editor/agent name.

Attach that biz card to ms if you snail mail it.

Or if you email it, mention this info in body of email.

Example: “We spoke at the ORA conference in Springfield. You suggested…”

Some editors/agents give you 3 keywords to include in cover letter w/partial.

This helps cut down on unsolicited ms. If you don’t use 3 keywords, they pitch.

If editor/agent says not interested, ask what they ARE looking for.

Ask what they would like to receive.

Anything you come out of pitch session with makes you a winner.

Even if they don’t ask for ms or partial, you have grown!

What if your manuscript isn’t finished? Should you pitch?

Absolutely! Very rare to get this type of opportunity.

Ask professionals ins and outs that you want to clarify.

Ask about the business in general.

Sure, you could email questions but might not ever hear from editor/agent.

This pitch session can be a huge foot in the door!

Google “Predators and Editor” — great resource!

Thanks for joining us today via live-tweet!

ORA’s next meeting is Sat, July 2, 2011. http://ow.ly/5byNH

Follow us @OzarksRomance & http://www.facebook.com/ozarksromanceauthors for July details.

Reminder: Register for our annual conference by July 1 for discount. http://ow.ly/4lZmp

Attendees can pitch to Lit Agent Louise Fury & Avalon Editor Lia Brown! http://ow.ly/4lZmp

Have you registered to attend our annual conference in Springfield, Missouri, on July 23, 2011?

Once you register, you’ll be able to schedule your one-on-one pitch session. Opportunities like this DO NOT come along often in the midwest. A pitch session can be one of the best ways to get your foot in the door and establish a relationship with your future editor or agent. Take advantage of this amazing opportunity now by registering for our conference by clicking here.

Join us June 4, 2011, for “Editor/Agent Pitch Session: How to Make it a Success!”

Join us Saturday, June 4, 2011, as our guest speaker presents “The Editor/ Agent Pitch Session: How to Make it a Success!”

This information is especially hot right now because those attending our July 23, 2011, annual conference have the chance to pitch to Lia Brown (editor with Avalon Books) and Louise Fury (literary agent with the L. Perkins Agency).

You have a scheduled appointment with the editor or agent of your dreams. Now you’re petrified you’ll never make it through the interview. What do you need to do to prepare?

Guest speaker Kelly Henkins (who writes as Angela Drake) will walk us through ten tried and true tips to overcome anxiety, breeze through that all-important five minutes, and walk away a success.

Kelly Henkins began actively pursuing a writing career twenty years ago. Since then, she has won many awards for short pieces, partials and poetry and published in art magazines.

Kelly is member of Ozarks Creative Writers, Mid-South Writers’ Group, Sleuths Ink, and Ozarks Romance Authors.

For eight years, she hosted a weekly workshop on AOL. She continues to moderate a Yahoo Group extension of that workshop, The Writers’ Zone, and is owner of the World Romance Writers and World Romance Readers loops.

When not writing, she speaks at conferences and enjoys time with her granddaughter, gardening, journaling, and a myriad of artistic pursuits. Her husband and best friend of twenty-seven years, Bob, supports her many avenues of creativity.

Visit her online at: http://angeladrake.blogspot.com

Ozarks Romance Authors, a non-profit group for writers of all genres, was founded in 1987. The regional writers’ group holds its meetings the first Saturday of each month at The Library Station, 2535 N. Kansas Expressway, in Springfield, Missouri.

Join us for critique group at 10:00 a.m., lunch at noon, and our meeting/guest speaker at 1:00 p.m.

Visitors are welcome. Your first three visits are free.

Our annual conference will be held July 23, 2011, at The Clarion Hotel and Conference Center. To learn more about the amazing lineup of speakers and workshops, click here to visit our conference page.

If you have questions about the group, please email us at OzarksRomanceAuthors@gmail.com.

NOTE: When the first Saturday of the month falls on a holiday weekend, we often reschedule. If you’re thinking of visiting and it’s a holiday weekend, please email us to find out if we have rescheduled.

March 5, 2011 – Ruth Hunter-Gault and Jill Slack

Jill Slack and Ruth Hunter of Ozarks Romance Authors will speak on social media and blogging for writers.
Join Ozarks Romance Authors’ members Ruth Hunter-Gault and Jill Slack as they present ways to promote your writing through social networks and media at the March 5, 2011, meeting of this group for writers.

Ozarks Romance Authors, a non-profit group for writers of all genres founded in 1987, holds its meetings the first Saturday of each month at The Library Station, 2535 N. Kansas Expressway, in Springfield, Missouri. Join us for critique group at 10:00 a.m., lunch at noon, and our meeting/guest speaker at 1:00 p.m.

Visitors are welcome. Your first three visits are free.

For more information, be sure to click the icons (on the right side of the page) to follow us on Facebook and Twitter. If you have questions about the group, please email us at OzarksRomanceAuthors@gmail.com or call (417) 597-4716.

2011 Annual Conference

Make plans to attend the Ozarks Romance Authors Annual Conference

Saturday, July 23, 2011
8:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
The Clarion Hotel Conference Center, 3333 S. Glenstone Ave., Springfield, Missouri

*** Conference site is just a few minutes’ drive from the original Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World store and Grizzly Tools, so make it a family weekend trip. Your hubby and kids will have plenty to do while you are at the conference. ***

TICKET INFORMATION:

Pre-registration through July 1, 2011 = $60.00
Pre-registration after July 1, 2011 (or at the door) = $65.00

Members of Ozarks Romance Authors (ORA) receive discounted tickets:
ORA member pre-registration through July 1, 2011 = $50.00
ORA member registration after July 1, 2011 (or at the door) = $55.00

Once again, a portion of the proceeds will be donated to Ozarks Literacy Council to help their mission of promoting literacy in our region.

PITCH SESSIONS WITH EDITOR / AGENT

Attendees who would like to schedule a 10-minute pitch session with either Literary Agent Louise Fury or Avalon Editor Lia Brown must register for the conference (below) and then contact the conference chairwoman, Cecily Cornelius-White, in advance via email to schedule your pitch session. professorcecily@yahoo.com

AGENDA:

– Registration and Breakfast

– Opening remarks and intros

– Shannon Vannatter – Cut the Fluff: The Art of Revision and Self-editing

– Shannon Butcher and Eliza Lloyd – Suspense Plotting and Making it Hot

– Leigh Michaels – Things that Stump the Best of Us (Pacing, Backstory, and Transitions)

-– Lunch (catered lunch provided on-site)

– Discussion with Publishing Panel – Making a Good First Impression.

– Break for small group discussions

– Break-out Session #1

- Shannon Vannatter – Crafting Effective (and Gender Appropriate) Dialogue
- Publishing Panel – Future Directions in Publishing - Small Group Discussion with Agent and Editor Panel

– Break-out Session #2

- Shannon Butcher & Eliza Lloyd – Crafting Heroes to Die For
- Leigh Michaels – Playing Fair: When Characters Keep Secrets

– Break

– Full Panel Q &A

Awards — Presented for Weta Nichols Writing Contest

Closing remarks and Adjourn

ABOUT THE SPEAKERS:


Shannon Vannatter

Central Arkansas author, Shannon Taylor Vannatter is a stay-at-home mom/pastor’s wife/writer. She recently signed a three-book contract for her contemporary inspirational romance series set in Romance and Rose Bud, Arkansas.

Heartsong titles ship to a 10,000 member book club before releasing in stores. Vannatter*s titles: White Roses, White Doves, and White Pearls will be available through the book club and preorder in May 2010, October 2010, and January 2011 respectively and in stores six months later for each title.

It took Vannatter nine years to get published in the traditional market. Like Janette Oke, she views her work as a ministry and her books as paper missionaries. Vannatter hopes to entertain Christian women and plant seeds in the non-believer’s heart as her characters struggle with real-life issues. Their journeys, from ordinary lives to extraordinary romance through Christ-centered relationships, demonstrate that love doesn’t conquer all, Jesus does.

Her short stories appeared in Mature Living and The Writers’ Journal, in 2009. Her first novel was Print On Demand published in 2001. She’s received several awards including 2nd place in RWA’s 2007 Touched By Love and 2008 Where the Magic Begins Contests, and a Honorable Mention in The 2007 Writer’s Journal Romance Contest. Her works have been displayed at Springfest’s Annual Artist & Author Exhibit.

Vannatter has taught fiction workshops for several writers’ groups including: Arkansas Inspirational Writers, Cleburne County Writers’ Guild, Fiction Writers of Central Arkansas, and White County Creative Writers. She’s contracted to teach workshops in 2010 at the Life Press Christian Writers’ Conference in Memphis, TN and the Ozark Creative Writers’ Conference in Eureka Springs, AR.

Vannatter is available for writers’ groups, workshops, conferences, schools, colleges, churches, book clubs, media appearances, print interviews, speaking engagements, and book signings.


Shannon Butcher


Since launching her career in 2007, award-winning author Shannon K. Butcher has penned more than eighteen titles, including the paranormal romance series, the Sentinel Wars; the action-romance series, the Edge; and a handful of romantic suspense novels and works of short fiction. Being a former engineer and current nerd, she frequently uses charts, graphs and tables to aid her in the mechanics of story design and to keep track of all those pesky characters and magical powers. An avid beader and glass artist, she spends her free time playing with colored glass and beads. You can find her online at http://shannonkbutcher.com/.

Leigh Michaels
Leigh Michaels is the author of nearly 100 books, including 80 contemporary novels, three historical romance novels, and more than a dozen non-fiction books. More than 35 million copies of her romance novels have been published. Six of her books have been finalists for Best Traditional Romance novel in the RITA contest sponsored by Romance Writers of America. She has received two Reviewer’s Choice awards from Romantic Times.

Her work has been translated and published in 120 countries in more than 25 languages, including Japanese, Korean, Hungarian, Polish, Portuguese, Czech, Bulgarian, Russian, Turkish, Hebrew, Greek, Swedish, Dutch, Finnish, Norwegian, Danish, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Africaans, Arabic, Indonesian, and Chinese.

She is the 2003 recipient of the Johnson Brigham Award presented by the Iowa Library Association to an Iowa author for outstanding contributions to literature.

She is the author of On Writing Romance, published by Writers Digest Books.

She is the author of non-fiction books such as WRITING THE ROMANCE NOVEL, a step-by-step workbook, and CREATING ROMANTIC CHARACTERS. She is also the author of DEAR LEIGH MICHAELS: A Novelist Answers the Most-Asked Questions about Getting Published, and a cookbook, A TASTE OF LOVE. She has produced audio programs and written magazine articles on subjects of interest to writers in general.

She teaches romance writing on the Internet at Gotham Writers’ Workshop. Men and women from around the world have participated in her workshops, and a number of them have gone on to publish their own romance novels with commercial publishers. She is currently an adjunct professor in the School of Communications at the University of Iowa.

She wrote her first romance novel when she was a teenager and burned it, then wrote and burned five more complete manuscripts before submitting to a publisher. Her first submission was accepted and published by Harlequin Books, the first publisher to look at it.

Eliza Lloyd
Eliza Lloyd currently has three novels published with Ellora’s Cave in their 19th Century/Legend line of historicals. Eliza thinks romance writing is nearly as good as the real thing. Given her choice of professions, she would have preferred to be a 19th century archeologist, but she is perfectly happy living in the 21st century and comfortably writing about such romantic but inconceivably inconvenient times instead. She also writes contemporaries, romantic suspense and the occasional sci-fi when plotting and characterization don’t matter and invisibility does.

Eliza wrote her first romance novel after years of yearning. She finally woke up one day and asked, “Why the heck am I not writing?”

She enjoys traveling, movies, everyone else’s novels and a good meal out with friends on Saturday night. Her greatest flaw is that she believes there is such a thing as true love. Don’t tell her otherwise, please.

Louise Fury
I am a Literary Agent, Marketing advocate and general lover of books. I work at the L. Perkins Agency and always on the lookout for fun pop culture books. I organize massive book groups for MG and YA Readers where kids can Meet, Greet and Eat with talented authors. I am also passionate about connecting with South African Authors. The rest of the time I network while navigating the slush pile.

 

 

Lia Brown

editor at Avalon Books, started her career in publishing at Starlog magazine as a high school intern, fell in love with editing and the creative process, and hasn’t wanted to do anything else since. During the last twenty years she has worked on a wide variety of fiction and nonfiction topics and genres at several publishing houses including, Marvel Comics, HarperCollins, St. Martin’s Press, Oxford University Press, and Random House Children’s Books.

At Avalon she acquires family-friendly contemporary and historical romances.




ORA Conference 2011



Pre Registration or Late Registration Member or Non-Member



 

Pitch your book in person to a literary agent or big publishing house’s editor at Missouri writers’ group’s annual conference

Literary Agent Louise Fury and Avalon Books Editor Lia Brown will take one-on-one pitches from writers attending the 2011 Ozarks Romance Authors conference July 23, 2011, in Springfield, Missouri.

SPRINGFIELD, MO – A conference for fiction writers is scheduled for 8:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. July 23, 2011. The annual event will feature agent and editor pitch sessions, workshops, panel discussions, break-out sessions, and networking, and will be held at the Clarion Hotel Conference Center, 3333 S. Glenstone Ave., Springfield, Missouri.

Tickets are $60 prior to July 1, or $65 after July 1 or at the door, payable online via secure server by visiting http://ozarks-romance-authors.com/2011-annual-conference or via check.

The conference, open to all who write fiction, is sponsored by Ozarks Romance Authors, a multi-genre non-profit group founded in 1987.

Attendees can pre-schedule one-on-one meetings to pitch their completed manuscripts with Louise Fury, literary agent with the L. Perkins Agency, or Lia Brown, editor with Avalon Books.

Featured guests and speakers will be novelists Leigh Michaels, Shannon Vannatter, Eliza Lloyd, and Shannon Butcher.

Topics include revision and self-editing, plotting, pacing, backstory, transitions, dialogue, character development, and the publishing industry.

Winners of the annual Weta Nichols Fiction Contest, named in honor of the group’s late founder, will be announced to conclude the day.

A discount on sleeping rooms at The Clarion is available.

Ozarks Romance Authors is a non-profit organization for writers in the southwest Missouri region. Monthly speakers help writers of all genres hone their skills and explore writing opportunities.

Meetings are held the first Saturday of each month at The Library Station in Springfield. Visitors are welcome, and more information is available by calling (417) 597-4716 or by visiting www.Ozarks-Romance-Authors.com.

Become a fan on Facebook at http://www.Facebook.com/OzarksRomanceAuthors and follow the group on Twitter http://www.Twitter.com/OzarksRomance.

ABOUT THE SPEAKERS:

LOUISE FURY
http://lperkinsagency.com
http://louisefury.blogspot.com

Literary Agent Louise Fury

Literary Agent Louise Fury


Louise Fury, literary agent with the L. Perkins Agency, will be taking pitch sessions from authors at the conference.

Louise believes in the power of marketing and is constantly on the lookout for authors who know how to promote themselves.

She is seeking well written, teen sci-fi and young adult horror. She is also on the hunt for fun, imaginative and engaging middle grade fiction–think humor, adventure and mystery. The characters must be authentic and original.
Louise is a huge adult horrror fan, but also loves romance (especially Regency and Victorian) and is looking for paranormal and steampunk romance novels with series potential. (No memoirs or erotica.)

LIA BROWN
http://avalonauthors.blogspot.com/2010/04/introducing-new-editor-lia-brown.html

Avalon Editor Lia Brown

Avalon Editor Lia Brown


Lia Brown, editor at Avalon Books in New York City, will be taking author/editor appointments at the conference. She is currently looking for single title, category, contemporary, and historical.

Brown started her career in publishing at Starlog magazine as a high school intern, fell in love with editing and the creative process, and hasn’t wanted to do anything else since. During the last twenty years she has worked on a wide variety of fiction and nonfiction topics and genres at several publishing houses including, Marvel Comics, HarperCollins, St. Martin’s Press, Oxford University Press, and Random House Children’s Books.

LEIGH MICHAELS
http://www.leighmichaels.com

Leigh Michaels

Leigh Michaels


Leigh Michaels is the author of nearly 100 books, including 80 contemporary novels, three historical romance novels, and more than a dozen non-fiction books. More than 35 million copies of her romance novels have been published. Six of her books have been finalists for Best Traditional Romance novel in the RITA contest sponsored by Romance Writers of America. She has received two Reviewer’s Choice awards from Romantic Times.

Her work has been translated and published in 120 countries in more than 25 languages, including Japanese, Korean, Hungarian, Polish, Portuguese, Czech, Bulgarian, Russian, Turkish, Hebrew, Greek, Swedish, Dutch, Finnish, Norwegian, Danish, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Africaans, Arabic, Indonesian, and Chinese.

She is the 2003 recipient of the Johnson Brigham Award presented by the Iowa Library Association to an Iowa author for outstanding contributions to literature.

She teaches romance writing on the Internet at Gotham Writers’ Workshop. Men and women from around the world have participated in her workshops, and a number of them have gone on to publish their own romance novels with commercial publishers. She is currently an adjunct professor in the School of Communications at the University of Iowa.

She wrote her first romance novel when she was a teenager and burned it, then wrote and burned five more complete manuscripts before submitting to a publisher. Her first submission was accepted and published by Harlequin Books, the first publisher to look at it.

SHANNON VANNATTER
http://www.ShannonVannatter.com

Shannon Vannatter

Shannon Vannatter


Central Arkansas author Shannon Taylor Vannatter is a stay-at-home mom/pastor’s wife who writes inspirational romance fiction. She recently signed a three-book contract for her contemporary inspirational romance series set in Romance and Rose Bud, Arkansas.

It took Vannatter nine years to get published in the traditional market. Like Janette Oke, she views her work as a ministry and her books as paper missionaries. Vannatter hopes to entertain Christian women and plant seeds in the non-believer’s heart as her characters struggle with real-life issues. Their journeys, from ordinary lives to extraordinary romance through Christ-centered relationships, demonstrate that love doesn’t conquer all; Jesus does.

Her short stories appeared in Mature Living and The Writers’ Journal in 2009. Her first novel was published in 2001. She’s received several awards including second place in the Romance Writers of America 2007 Touched By Love and 2008 Where the Magic Begins Contests, and an Honorable Mention in The 2007 Writer’s Journal Romance Contest.

SHANNON BUTCHER
http://www.shannonkbutcher.com

Shannon K. Butcher

Shannon K. Butcher


Shannon Butcher is the wife of fantasy and sci-fi author Jim Butcher. She learned to write in an effort to help him improve his own work and as soon as she discovered that writing was more a learned skill than a natural talent, she knew she had to give it a try. She couldn’t resist the challenge of taking the pieces of a story apart and putting them back together again.

She thought she would write the same kind of thing Jim did, but then she picked up her first romance novel in 1998 and was hooked. Somehow, stories about how two people come to love each other made everything else seem shallow in comparison, she said.

ELIZA LLOYD
http://www.elizalloyd.blogspot.com

Eliza Lloyd

Eliza Lloyd


Eliza Lloyd currently has three novels published with Ellora’s Cave in their 19th Century/Legend line of historicals.

Eliza thinks romance writing is nearly as good as the real thing. Given her choice of professions, she would have preferred to be a 19th century archeologist, but she is perfectly happy living in the 21st century and comfortably writing about such romantic but inconceivably inconvenient times instead.

She also writes contemporaries, romantic suspense and the occasional sci-fi.

# # #