What You Want to Know About Being a Participating Publishing Professional at The Write Women Book Fest 2021
We answer some of your burning questions about The Write Women Book Fest.
When is the festival?
Saturday, October 9th from Noon to 5 p.m.
How much does it cost for attendees?
It's FREE to attendees! Even when we are in-person it's free. There are no paywalls on workshops or online events.
Where is the festival?
This year it is a hybrid. The in-person portion will be held at Marietta House Museum in Glenn Dale, MD near D.C. The rest will be virtual.
How much does it cost for vendors?
It's just $20 to participate in 2021. We will always try to keep the price for participation accessible to new and establishing authors. Next year the price will go up assuming we will be back to regular on-site participation, which is more costly. However, we intend to keep virtual aspects of the festival to make it easy for people who can't make it to the D.C. area, or people who want to give or take workshops or sell books from home. Any author who cannot afford the $20 can request a reduced or waived fee.
How long has this festival been around?
This is the third year for The Write Women Book Fest. The first year was at Marietta House Museum in Prince George's County Maryland, not far from D.C. The second year was all virtual due to the pandemic. This year is a hybrid event!
How did the festival start?
It was an idea seeded at the Women Authors of Maryland private Facebook group, which is now The Write Women Network. Founder and author Heather Brooks felt there was a need for women-centered rather than genre-centered salons and book festivals. With the help of several friends and volunteers and the tireless efforts of the Outreach Coordinator, author Cardyn Brooks, we managed to have a smooth and better-than-expected launch in 2019. We want to keep growing this event each year with the idea of amplifying the work and creativity of women and marginalized voices and giving them opportunities to network and grow their platforms and visibility.
How does it work?
The 2021 festival will be a hybrid event, which means it will be partially in person at Marietta House Museum and partially virtual. You just go to the registration form, sign up, wait to be accepted and then pay $20 to participate. This year it doesn't matter if you are going to only participate virtually or come to the event space and participate, it's just $20 either way.
Who should participate with this event and why?
Any women authors and any women-owned or women-led organizations in the publishing industry should participate with this event. This includes writers, poets, illustrators, singer-songwriters, playwrights, publishers, cover designers, book marketers, podcasters, editors, beta readers, writing teachers, writing retreat businesses, and more!
Book reviewers and book lovers of all types should participate with this event since it will connect them with authors and may give them access to ARCs, beta-reading and add opportunities to grow your platform.
Once registration ends you'll be added to the online shop, have a feature blog post here, be mentioned on our socials, as well as authors will have a copy of their book added to the Prince George's Memorial Library System's circulating collection. If your book is in the Barnes & Nobel system it will be a part of a special display in October in the Bowie store.
If I register, where does the money go?
The money we collect goes to various expenses incurred by the event. We have received some small grants to cover signage, website fees, and to pay performers. We strive to pay performers and artists who do work with the event, such as musicians, Drag Queen and Firefighter storytimes.
If you have a business that would like to partner with us to help grow this event please email firstname.lastname@example.org. If your customer base is largely women, this is a great opportunity to support a wonderful event.
What should my sales expectations be?
This event, like many other book festivals and fairs, needs to be viewed as an opportunity for networking and learning. A reality that is often not made clear, and perhaps is sometimes even obscured, is that it's rare to sell a lot of books at these events. Many of us have set up a table and sold two, three, or five books even at very large book events. One of the most important things you can do as a new or growing author is find places to sell a few books and network, practice meeting readers, participate with workshops and panels, and grow your platform. Now, there are events that are genre-specific, or have big fan-base might yield a lot of sales, but those festivals are often prohibitively expense or impossible to get accepted into for the new and growing, and indie authors. This is why we are trying so hard to keep the costs to the participating authors low. Nothing stings more than paying $250 for a space at a book festival and not even making enough to cover the parking fee, let alone lunch and the space fee!
As we continue to grow this event, and presumably continue to have amazing featured and guest panelists, we will aim to keep this event accessible. It's a large part of our mission.
GO HERE TO REGISTER!
Hello all of you lovely publishing professionals and book lovers! We are happy to announce that we will be having a 2021 Write Women Book Fest. Since it was hard to predict how open things would be and what kind of safety concerns might crop up, we are opting this year for a hybrid in-person and virtual book festival on Saturday October 9th from noon to 5 pm.
The fine folks at Prince George's County Parks & Recreation are again partnering with us to partially host the event at Marietta House Museum in Glenn Dale, Maryland.
With all of the pandemic uncertainty of the past year, and the turmoil of the past four years , we decided to focus on the happy topic of love as a theme this year. We want it to encompass all kinds of love and hope that many kinds of women and femme-identifying publishing professionals will want to participate.
While we expect romance, fantasy, sexy stories and poetry will be a big part of the festival, we also want to make space for love in friendship, parental love, self love, spiritual and religious love. What kind of love do you write about? What kind of love do you like reading about?
This is our third year and we are still finding our stride, which started strong in 2019 but of course was a bit hindered in 2020 due to lockdown. We want to know what you're looking for! We want to know what your dream book festival is like. Our goal has been to help women in publishing to network and for women readers to find and support marginalized authors.
After the 2019 festival we got a lot of compliments about the live jazz music and we will be having live music again this year, for a limited audience, but you'll be able to see them streaming. We had wonderful live poetry and a panel discussion, crafts, workshops. In 2020 some of these things translated fine to Zoom and virtual. We will again be having Firefighter Jones and D'Manda Martini for the children's storytimes.
If you're a book or publishing industry podcaster, booktuber, blogger, vlogger, or indie bookstore that would like to be a part of our growing festival, please shoot us an email so we can talk about how we can partner. Please contact our outreach coordinator Cardyn Brooks at email@example.com.
We are also looking for small business and corporate partners. Please let us know if you would like be part of the festival by contacting the founder at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We expect the online registration to be available for women in publishing and artists in the first week of June. Check our social media or the website here for updates!
WORKSHOP ON SATURDAY 9/26
VIEW THIS RECORDING HERE: https://www.facebook.com/SJBCreates
Playing with Poetry with Sharon Burton & JL Smith
Join Sharon Burton and JL Smith for a highly interactive workshop where you will have the chance to review classic and contemporary works by Maryland poets and create and share a response. Using the creative and playful techniques provided, the novice as well as the seasoned poet will have a foundation for creating their own works. In the end, everyone will have an opportunity to share their works they created in response.
Please download the below files for the workshop.
Join us on Instagram for an interactive event. Authors, did you write a story outside of your experience? Readers, do you read books that are outside of your experience? We want to hear your thoughts.
Go follow @whatlynnsaid on Instagram, she is kicking off the event (and closing it out on 9/26). Then post an Instagram story, reels, livestream, or video post any time between 9/21-9/26 about your experience. Tag us @thewritewomenbookfest and use the hashtags #TWWBF2020 and #WOMXNLITOUT2020 so we can share and comment!
This event was inspired by L. Penelope's podcast episode 74, recommended by TWWBF Outreach Coordinator Cardyn Brooks (@cardynbpresents on Instagram).
One fun thing we try to do is give out nice swag bags and free raffle book baskets.
This year we have 100 swag bags and two book fest fan baskets and one vendor basket.
If you would like your chance to win one of these baskets or to sign up for swag bags please go to this form and fill it out:
NOTE that you will need to be available to pick up any swag or basket next Saturday 9/26 from 10am-Noon - volunteers will be at Marietta House Museum to give them out (please wear your mask, we will be wearing ours). The event is virtual but we felt the swag bags were an important part of making you feel appreciated!
We hope you will share the book festival with your friends and encourage them to shop from our shop page and attend events online. Thank you!
This passage from Zora Neale Hurston's essay, "How It Feels to Be Colored Me" inspired the More Than Tragic: Happy Endings, Adventure and Fantasy for All discussion topic.
"But I am not tragically colored. There is no great sorrow dammed up in my soul, nor lurking behind my eyes."
Where the words "gendered" or "sexually oriented" or "religiously faithful" or "aged" or "made" could take the place of the word "colored", especially when authors who are not members of marginalized populations create characters and write points of view for members of marginalized populations, under the un/conscious assumptions that being Black, Brown, Indigenous, Asian, Latinx, 40+ (womxn), LGBTQUIA+ or any other trait that attracts discrimination in society as an automatically tragic circumstance.
The tragedy is sourced from living in a world that refuses to recognize, honor, and respect the equal intrinsic value of every human being.
How do these assumptions about tragic traits of ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, age etc. impact mainstream fiction?
This panel will be moderated by author Cardyn Brooks. We are so honored to have authors Gay G. Gunn, Pamela Beverly, Alexi Venice, and Kamari Talley on our virtual panel this year. Please follow them on social media, and visit their websites. You can find most information in our shop HERE.
For more information about Zora Neale Hurston, visit the website here:
"Cold Spots" is the story of a college freshman who is learning to recognize her battle with mental health all while trying to overcome the psychological trauma of a stalker. This book features themes such as: sexuality, feminine issues, anxiety, depression, college pressures, and the subtleties of psychological trauma.
"why am i falling?" is a comic collection representing ten of my own personal fears. This is an experimental dive into fear as something that is both nonsensical and all too real. Each comic in this collection is constructed entirely out of free-to-use images in the public domain. After each chapter follows a poem or a piece of prose. "why am i falling?" is free to read as a PDF on my website (authormmeyers.com) and is available to purchase as a paperback on Amazon.
You can also pick up one of these Write Women Book Fest exclusive sticker on Redbubble! How awesome is that?
Heather Elizabeth King is the author of dark fiction. She writes urban fantasy, horror, and paranormal romance. Heather has been a story teller for most of her life. Some of her favorite memories are of telling stories to her girlfriends at slumber parties when she was a pre-teen.
She is a graduate of the Writer’s Digest class, Focus on the Novel and has been a panelist at several writing conferences. She's also given presentations at various paranormal conventions.
Most days Heather can be found at her laptop working on her next book.
Heather loves to hear from readers (and potential readers).
Audrey Hughey is the founder of The Write Services LLC and the community leader for Sprints and Spirits writer's group and the Author Transformation Alliance. She had her first byline in print in July of 2015 and submitted to several fantasy anthologies while finishing her B.A. in English (Writing) and M.A. in Ancient and Classical History. She has published a series of author planners (the non-dated Ultimate Authorship Planner and 2020 Author's Planner), and begun a series a full-length thriller novels.
A provocative author of contemporary romance, one spicy novel at a time. I’m a lover of books, the spicier the better. I fell in love with romance novels at the tender age of fourteen. You might say it was inevitable that I would write my own happy endings.
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