Media Advisory: Highlights of the ASJA Conference on May 5 and 6

For Immediate Release

April 28, 2017

Media Advisory: Highlights of the ASJA Conference on May 5 and 6

Contact us now to secure an appointment with one of our speakers, authors or journalists. Media passes also available.

For more information contact Sophia Bennett, (541) 505-6130,

The 46th Annual American Society of Journalists and Authors (ASJA) Conference, Pivot. Publish. Prosper., will take place at the Roosevelt Hotel, 45 East 45th Street in New York, on May 5 and 6. Keynote speakers, workshop presenters and ASJA representatives are available for interviews on a wide variety of topics. Journalists interested in covering the event are encouraged to apply for media credentials.

Keynote Speakers

Lane Shefter Bishop. CEO of Vast Entertainment, producer/director of multiple award-winning films and television series, and author of Sell Your Story in a Single Sentence: Advice from the Front Lines of Hollywood (W.W. Norton & Company). Interview topics:

**Her book and film career

**Why she chooses to focus specifically on book-to-screen adaptations, and why 45 percent of Best Picture nominees now come from books

**The evolving roles of producer and director

**What Hollywood can teach business leaders

Vanessa Hua. Vanessa is a columnist for the San Francisco Chronicle, and author of the short story collection Deceit and Other Possibilities (Ballantine) and the forthcoming books A River of Stars and The Sea Palaces. Interview topics:

**Her short story collection (called “A searing debut” by O, The Oprah Magazine) or books

**Diversity in publishing

**Why stories about immigrants and people of color are more important than ever

**The writing life and her writing process

Andrea King Collier. Andrea is a multimedia journalist and author who specializes in essays, health and wellness, health policy and political commentary. She is also the creative director of the Symposium for Professional Food Writers. Interview topics:

**What she gained and lost when she transitioned from being primarily a health writer to an outspoken political commentator

**The role of multimedia in modern journalism

**Diversity in publishing

**Latest trends in food writing

Jenny Blake. Jenny is the author of PIVOT: The Only Move That Matters is Your Next One (Portfolio/Penguin Random House). Prior to becoming a professional writer and business consultant, she spent two years at a technology start-up and five years at Google on the training and career development teams. Interview topics:

**Her book, Pivot Podcast, and blog Life After College

**How to execute a successful career transition by doubling down on what’s already working (and leaving behind what isn’t)

**Self-care and moving beyond burnout

Authors/other notable speakers

**Phil Sexton, former publisher of Writer’s Digest and publishing consultant

**Nicole Feliciano, CEO of Momtrends and author of Mom Boss: Balancing Entrepreneurship, Kids & Success (Mango Media)

**Mary-Kate Mackey, author of Write Better Right Now: The Reluctant Writer’s Guide to Confident Communication and Self-Assured Style (Career Press)

**Milton Toby, attorney and specialist in author contracts

**John Peragine, ghostwriter and author of Cucamonga Wine Valley: The Lost Empire of American Winemaking (History Press, release date: summer 2017)

See the full list of 80+ presenters and 40+ workshops for more details.

ASJA Representatives

Sherry Paprocki. Sherry is the ASJA president and owns R.S. Rock Media, a custom content creation firm. She is a co-author of The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Branding Yourself and author of Content Marketing: 50 Ways to Tell Your Story and a dozen other books.

Estelle Erasmus. Estelle is the ASJA conference chair and a writing coach and freelance journalist. Her work has been featured in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Salon, Newsweek and other national publications.

Interview topics:

** The concerns of freelance writers today and how ASJA can help

** The economic opportunities for freelance writers

** The importance of a membership organization like ASJA for writers

Highlights of the ASJA Conference

**ASJA Outstanding Writing Awards gala emceed by Joanne Lipman, the editor-in-chief of USA TODAY, on Friday, May 5 at 5:30 p.m.

**Industry reception at the Time New York Hotel on Saturday, May 6 at 6 p.m.

**Mentoring appointments with Pulitzer Prize-winning journalists such as Mei Fong and Rochelle Sharpe, as well as other veteran journalists, authors and communications professionals

**Editor panels, Client Connections (“speed dating” between publication editors and event attendees), and Pitch Slam (attendees have three minutes to verbally pitch their best story ideas)  

About the Event

ASJA’s 46th Annual Conference, Pivot. Publish. Prosper, will help professional freelance journalists and authors grow their careers, writing and pitching skills, and professional networks. Over 500 people are expected to attend.

On Friday, May 5 the event is open to members only. Activities begin at 7:30 a.m. and conclude at 7:30 p.m. after the ASJA Outstanding Writing Awards gala.

On Saturday, May 6 the event is open to the general public. Activities kick off at 8 a.m. and conclude at 5:45 p.m. (followed by the industry reception). A complete schedule of events is available here.

All events (except the industry reception and lunches) will take place at the Roosevelt Hotel in New York City. Register for the conference and get more information about ASJA at  

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  • A blank piece of paper is God's way of telling us how hard it is to be God.
    – Sidney Sheldon
  • A critic is a man who knows the way but can't drive the car.
    – Kenneth Tynan
  • A good many young writers make the mistake of enclosing a stamped, self–addressed envelope, big enough for the manuscript to come back in. This is too much of a temptation to the editor.
    – Ring Lardner
  • A young musician plays scales in his room and only bores his family. A beginning writer, on the other hand, sometimes has the misfortune of getting into print.
    – Marguerite Yourcenar
  • All the words I use in my stories can be found in the dictionary – it's just a matter of arranging them into the right sentences.
    – Somerset Maugham
  • Asking a working writer what he thinks about critics is like asking a lamppost how it feels about dogs.
    – Christopher Hampton
  • Being a writer is like having homework every night for the rest of your life.
    – Lawrence Kasdan
  • Copy from one, it's plagiarism; copy from two, it's research.
    –Wilson Mizner
  • Everywhere I go I'm asked if I think the university stifles writers. My opinion is that they don't stifle enough of them.
    – Flannery O'Connor
  • I just wrote a book, but don't go out and buy it yet, because I don't think it's finished yet.
    – Lawrence Welk
  • I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.
    – Douglas Adams
  • I'm writing a book. I've got the page numbers done.
    – Stephen Wright
  • It took me fifteen years to discover I had no talent for writing, but I couldn't give it up because by that time I was too famous.
    – Robert Benchley
  • It's a damn poor mind that can only think of one way to spell a word.
    – Andrew Jackson
  • Most writers can write books faster than publishers can write checks.
    – Richard Curtis
  • No fathers or mothers think their own children ugly; and this self–deceit is yet stronger with respect to the offspring of the mind.
    – Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra
  • There are three rules for writing the novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are.
    –Somerset Maugham
  • Writing a novel is like paddling from Boston to London in a bathtub. Sometimes the damn tub sinks. It's a wonder that most of them don't.
    – Stephen King
  • Writing a novel is like spelunking. You kind of create the right path for yourself. But, boy, are there so many points at which you think, absolutely, I'm going down the wrong hole here.
    – Chang–rae Lee
  • Your manuscript is both good and original, but the part that is good is not original, and the part that is original is not good.
    –Samuel Johnson