The 2018 Los Angeles Review of Books / USC Publishing Workshop 

Sunday, June 24 through Friday, July 27, 2018
University of Southern California | Los Angeles, CA

The publishing industry is undergoing a momentous revolution – and The Los Angeles Review of Books / USC Publishing Workshop can prepare you to be part of this exciting future. During an immersive, five-week summer program, participants will be instructed in the varied aspects of digital and print publishing through real-world, hands-on experience by our faculty and lecturers representing companies including Red Hen Press, Time Inc., Simon & Schuster, Harriet Tubman Press, the University of California Press, as well as book, publicity, and marketing agencies.


  • To be considered for a scholarship, the application deadline is April 15, 2018.
  • The final deadline for applications has been extended to May 15, 2018.

Questions? Contact Janice Littlejohn, Workshop Director, via email at


The Workshop Experience

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2018 Confirmed Speakers


Mike Ananny

Mike Ananny is an Assistant Professor at USC Annenberg, where he researches the public significance of systems for networked journalism. Specifically, he studies how institutional, social, technological and normative forces both shape and reflect the design of the online press and a public right to hear. He is also a Faculty Associate with Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet & Society, holds a Ph.D. from Stanford University’s Department of Communication (advised by Theodore Glasser), a Masters from the MIT Media Laboratory (Gesture & Narrative Language and Tangible Media groups), and a Bachelors from the University of Toronto (double major in Computer Science and Human Biology).

He was a founding member of the research staff at Media Lab Europe, a founding member of Expresto Software Corp, and a Postdoctoral Researcher at Microsoft Research’s Social Media Collective. He has held fellowships and scholarships with Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet & Society, Stanford’s Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society, the Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation, the LEGO Corporation, Interval Research, and has worked or consulted with LEGO, Mattel and Nortel Networks, helping to generate research concepts and prototypes for new product lines and services.

Ananny has led several public-private learning and design partnerships with the BBC, University of Tampere, Amsterdam Computer Clubhouse, Loyalist College Canada, The Ark Children’s Cultural Centre. He was principal investigator on European Union grant proposals and has licensed his custom software to Trinity College Dublin for classroom use. He has a background in new media and technology design, creating both technological toys for children’s language acquisition as well as large-scale, interactive projections in Dublin, Northern Ireland and Amsterdam for people to communicate publicly through SMS text messaging.

He has published in a variety of venues, including Science, Technology, and Human Values; Social Media+Society; Critical Studies in Media Communication; International Journal of Communication; Journal of Computer Mediated Communication; First Monday; American Behavioral Scientist; Television & New Media; Digital Journalism; and the proceedings of the ACM’s conferences on Computer-Human Interaction and Computer Supported Collaborative Learning. He is writing a book on press freedom and a public right to hear in the age of networked journalism (under contract with MIT Press).

Neelanjana Banerjee

Neelanjana Banerjee’s fiction, poetry, and essays have appeared or are forthcoming in Prairie Schooner, The Liner, PANK Magazine, The Rumpus, World Literature Today, The Literary Review, Asian Pacific American Journal, Nimrod, A Room of One’s Own, Desilit, and the anthologies: Desilicious (Arsenal Press, 2003), The HarperCollins Book of English Poetry (HarperCollins India, 2012), and Breaking the Bow: Speculative Stories Inspired by the Ramayana (Zubaan Books, 2012). Sheis a co-editor of Indivisible: An Anthology of Contemporary South Asian American Poetry (University of Arkansas Press, 2010).

Paul Bass

Paul Bass is the executive director of The Online Journalism Project. Bass has been a leading reporter and editor in Connecticut for over 35 years. Bass has won dozens of national and regional awards for investigative, news, business, feature, and opinion writing and reporting. He worked as an editor and investigative reporter for the New Haven Advocate from 1989-2004. He is the co-author, with co-author Douglas W. Rae, of Murder in the Model City: The Black Panthers, Yale, & The Redemption of a Killer (2006, Basic Books) about the 1969 murder of a Black Panther in New Haven and the resulting trials and FBI revelations surrounding the case. Thousands of Bass’s articles about Connecticut are in a dedicated archive housed at the Manuscripts & Archives section of Yale University’s Sterling Memorial Library. Paul edits the New Haven Independent.

Guy Bennett

Guy Bennett is the author of several collections of poetry, various works of non-poetry, and numerous translations. Recent publications include Ce livre (co-translated into French with Frédéric Forte), View Source, and the edition / translation of Giovanna Sandri’s only fragments found: selected poems, 1969–1998. His writing has been featured in magazines and anthologies in the U.S. and abroad, and presented in poetry and arts festivals internationally. Publisher of Mindmade Books and editorial director of Otis Books, he lives in Los Angeles and teaches at Otis College of Art and Design.

Johanna Blakley

Johanna Blakley, PhD, is the managing director at the Norman Lear Center. Based at the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, Blakley performs research on a wide variety of topics, including global entertainment, cultural diplomacy, entertainment education, celebrity culture, fashion, digital media and intellectual property law. She has two talks Social Media & the End of Gender and Lessons from Fashion’s Free Culture. She speaks frequently in the U.S. and abroad about her research and her work has been cited by <eReuters, the New York Times, The Economist, the Washington Post, The Atlantic, the Los Angeles Times, Politico, Huffington Post, RAND, Forbes, Business Week, PR Week and GOOD. She has appeared on Good Morning America, MSNBC, Al Jazeera and Current TV, and on several radio programs, including On the Media, Planet Money, Marketplace and the TED Radio Hour.

Blakley is co-Principal Investigator, with Marty Kaplan, on the Media Impact Project (MIP), a hub for collecting, developing and sharing approaches for measuring the impact of media, primarily funded by the Gates Foundation. MIP seeks to better understand the role that media plays in changing knowledge, attitudes and behavior among individuals and communities, large and small, around the world. MIP currently works with the US State Department on three cultural exchange programs: American Film Showcase, Global Media Makers and the Middle East Media Initiative.

Much of her work addresses the intersection between entertainment and politics, including two nationwide polls on the relationship between political ideology and entertainment preferences, and she co-authored a report on the Primetime War on Drugs & Terror. With funding fromthe Pop Culture Collaborative, Blakley is currently analyzing the impact of narrative ingredients of scripted TV shows on viewers.

Blakley is a regular contributor to the Lear Center Blog, and she has guided more than forty manuscripts through the publication process at the Lear Center, including Warners’ War: Propaganda, Politics & Pop Culture in Wartime Hollywood. She has also overseen two major research initiatives about the impact of intellectual property rights on innovation and creativity – Ready to Share: Fashion & the Ownership of Creativity and Artists, Technology & the Ownership of Creative Content. At USC, she co-directed a university-wide research initiative on Creativity & Collaboration in the Academy; she developed course materials on cultural diplomacy for the new Masters in Public Diplomacy program at Annenberg, and she taught masters courses on transmedia storytelling.

She received a PhD in English from the University of California, Santa Barbara, where she taught courses on popular culture and twentieth-century literature. Blakley has held a variety of positions within the high-tech industry, including Web producer and digital archivist at Vivendi-Universal Games. She is on the advisory board of Women@Paley at the Paley Center for Media and FEM inc., a technology venture. She has served as an advisor to the Aspen Institute, Active Voice, the Los Angeles Institute for the Humanities and TEDxUSC, the first TEDx event in the world. She’s on the editorial board of the International Journal of Gender, Science and Technology and she’s a founding member of the board of directors for Les Figues Press, a venue for literary experimentation.

Sarah Bowlin

Sarah Bowlin joined Aevitas in early 2017 after a decade as an editor of literary fiction and nonfiction. She has worked on the international breakout novel How Should a Person Be? by Sheila Heti; the New York Times Notable Book, The Beautiful Bureaucrat by Helen Phillips; the National Book Award-nominated The End by Salvatore Scibona; and works by the award-winning novelist, Juan Gabriel Vásquez.

Bowlin has a BA in American Literature from New York University. Originally from the South, she got her start in publishing at Riverhead Books and was most recently a senior editor at Henry Holt & Company.

As an Aevitas agent based in Los Angeles, she is focused on bold, diverse voices in fiction and nonfiction. She’s especially interested in stories of strong or difficult women and unexpected narratives of place, of identity, and of the shifting ways we see ourselves and each other. She’s also interested in food history, wine, and dance.

Shonda Buchanan

Poet, memoirist, and fiction writer Shonda Buchanan is an Assistant Professor in the Department of English at Hampton University teaching creative writing, composition, essay writing, editing, and research. Author of Who’s Afraid of Black Indians?, which was nominated for the Literary of Virginia Literary Contest and the Black Caucus of the American Library Association Literary Awards, and editor of Voices from Leimert Park, Shonda is an award-winning poet whose expertise includes Narrative Nonfiction, Contemporary American, African American, American Indian and Women’s Literature, and Comparative Literature, as well as canonical texts. She freelanced for the Los Angeles Times, the LA Weekly, AWP’s The Writer’s Chronicle, and Indian Country Today. She commentated for Marketplace Radio, and was featured on National Public Radio’s Tell Me More. A culture and literary arts ambassador, her presentations, workshops and lectures demonstrate her passion for exploring gender, ethnicity, family, heritage, landscape, environment and ancestry.

Julia Callahan

Julia Callahan is acquisitions editor and director of sales and marketing for Rare Bird Books, a literary publicity and events firm. Ms. Callahan is also the fiction editor of The Rattling Wall literary journal. She helped run the events department at Book Soup for four years.

Camari Carter-Hawkins

Camari Carter-Hawkins is a graduate of The Community Literature Initiative, and author of the book, Death By Comb, which is her debut collection of poems. Camari is as passionate about organization as she is the art. She blends her love for both in all that she does. She if the founder of The Artist Support which helps artists thrive professionally by getting organized and strategized.

Camari manages all Administrative responsibilities regarding CLI, including all correspondence.

Eric Deggans

Eric Deggans is NPR’s first full-time TV critic. He came to NPR from the Tampa Bay Times newspaper in Florida, where he served as TV/Media Critic and in other roles for nearly 20 years. He also serves as a contributor and media analyst at MSNBC/NBC News. A journalist for more than 20 years, he is also the author of Race-Baiter: How the Media Wields Dangerous Words to Divide a Nation, a look at how prejudice, racism and sexism fuels some elements of modern media, published in October 2012 by Palgrave Macmillan.

He has guest hosted CNN’s media analysis show Reliable Sources many times, joining a select group of journalists and media critics filling in for departed host Howard Kurtz. In 2013, he was awarded the Florida Press Club’s first-ever Diversity award, honoring his coverage of issues involving race and media. That year, he also received the Legacy award from the National Association of Black Journalists’ A&E Task Force, an honor bestowed to “seasoned A&E journalists who are at the top of their careers.” Eric also serves on the board of educators, journalists and media experts who select the George Foster Peabody Awards for excellence in electronic media.

He also has joined a prestigious group of contributors to the first ethics book created in a partnership between Craigslist founder Craig Newmark and the Poynter Institute for Media Studies. Developed as Poynter’s first ethics book for the digital age, The New Ethics of Journalismwas published in August 2013 by Sage/CQ Press.

Eric has won reporting and writing awards from the Society for Features Journalism, American Association of Sunday and Feature Editors, the Society of Professional Journalists, the National Association of Black Journalists, The Florida Press Club and the Florida Society of News Editors. In 2010, he made national headlines interviewing former USDA official Shirley Sherrod at the NABJ’s summer convention in San Diego, leading a panel discussion that was covered by all the major cable news and network TV morning shows.

Named in 2009 as one of Ebony magazine’s “Power 150” — a list of influential black Americans which also included Oprah Winfrey and PBS host Gwen Ifill — he was selected to lecture at Columbia University’s prestigious Graduate School of Journalism in 2008 and 2005. He has alsolectured or taught as an adjunct professor at Loyola University, California State University, Indiana University, University of Tampa, Eckerd College and many other colleges.

His writing has also appeared in the New York Times online, Salon magazine,, the Washington Post, Village Voice, VIBE magazine, Chicago Tribune, Detroit Free Press, Chicago Sun-Times, Chicago Tribune, Seattle Times, Emmy magazine, Newsmax magazine, Rolling Stone Online and a host of other newspapers across the country.

From 2004 to 2005, he sat on the then-St. Petersburg Times editorial board and wrote bylined opinion columns. From 1997 to 2004, he worked as TV critic for the Times, crafting reviews, news stories and long-range trend pieces on the state of the media industry both locally and nationally. He originally joined the paper as its pop music critic in November 1995; he has also worked at the Asbury Park Press in New Jersey and both the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and Pittsburgh Press newspapers in Pennsylvania.

Now serving as chair of the Media Monitoring Committee for the National Association of Black Journalists, he has also served on the board of directors for the national Television Critics Association and on the board of the Mid-Florida Society of Professional Journalists.

Kim Dower

Kim Dower is known throughout the publishing and publicity world as Kim-from-L.A., the name of the company she founded in 1985. In addition to her work as a literary publicist, Kim Dower specializes in media training and coaching authors, speakers, and experts of all kinds how to best present themselves to the media.

Kim has advised hundreds of high-profile authors—including celebrities and business leaders—teaching them the presentation skills necessary to come across in both a professional and provocative way. An expert at showing her clients how to formulate the content of their message as well as teaching them how to deliver it clearly, concisely and passionately.

Boris Dralyuk

Boris Dralyuk is the Executive Editor of the Los Angeles Review of Books. He is a literary translator and holds a PhD in Slavic Languages and Literatures from UCLA, where he taught Russian literature for a number of years. He has also taught at the University of St Andrews, Scotland. His work has appeared in the Times Literary Supplement, The New Yorker, London Review of Books, The Guardian, Granta, World Literature Today, The Yale Review, New England Review, Harvard Review, Jewish Quarterly, Poetry International, and other journals. He is the author of Western Crime Fiction Goes East: The Russian Pinkerton Craze 1907-1934 (Brill, 2012) and translator of several volumes from Russian and Polish, including, most recently, Isaac Babel’s Red Cavalry (Pushkin Press, 2015) and Odessa Stories (Pushkin Press, 2016). He is also the editor of 1917: Stories and Poems from the Russian Revolution (Pushkin Press, 2016), and co-editor, with Robert Chandler and Irina Mashinski, of The Penguin Book of Russian Poetry (Penguin Classics, 2015).

Debra Eckerling

The founder of Write On Online and Guided Goals, Debra Eckerling is a professional writer and communications specialistwith more than 15 years of experience. She has written for national, local, trade, and online publications, and has worked in publishing, education, financial services, social media, and technology.

A Project Catalyst, Debra works with individuals and small businesses to strategize, set goals and manage their projects. She also assists in them in developing content identity through books, blogging, social media, or all of the above.

Debra is the author of Write On Blogging: 51 Tips to Create, Write & Promote Your Blog and Purple Pencil Adventures: Writing Prompts for Kids of All Ages, an editor for Social Media Examiner, and host of the Guided Goals Podcast. Sheis a regular contributor to Modern Social Magazine and Westside Today, and has been featured on Jane Friedman’s Blog, Carrie Dils’ Office Hours FM podcast, and The Startup Equation.

Through Write On, Debra has helped writers of all ages, abilities, and specialties take their projects to the next level. Debra speaks on the subjects of writing, networking, goal-setting, and social media. She is co-producer of the #140conf, and hosts a monthly hangout for writers, artists, and entrepreneurs in Los Angeles, California.

Glory Edim

Glory Edim is the founder of Well-Read Black Girl, a Brooklyn-based book club and digital platform that celebrates the uniqueness of Black literature and sisterhood. In fall 2017 she organized the first-ever Well-Read Black Girl Festival. She has worked as a creative strategist for over ten years at startups and cultural institutions, including The Webby Awards and the New York Foundation for the Arts. Most recently, she was the Publishing Outreach Specialist at Kickstarter. She serves on the board of New York City’s Housing Works Bookstore.

Lynly Forrest

Lynly Forrest lays the groundwork, identifies synergies, and looks for win-wins. With skills forged through a degree in Theatre and a career in technology, Lynly was born to produce. Thinking outside the box, she doubles down and multi-tasks while never revealing what is under the kimono. She is a native Texan, a real go-getter, and lives in Venice Beach with her little family and Hex mascot, Tiny Kitty.

Joel Friedlander

Joel Friedlander is a book designer, blogger and the author of A Self-Publisher’s Companion: Expert Advice for Authors Who Want to Publish.

Joel is the proprietor of Marin Bookworks in San Rafael, California, a publishing services company where he’s helped launch many self-publishers since 1994.

He has owned businesses in graphic arts, design and book publishing. He was Production Director of Aperture Books, where he produced award-winning photography books. He founded Renaissance Press in northern California, a private publisher of hand-typeset and hand printed books. As the owner of Globe Press Books in Yorktown Heights, New York, he published books of memoirs and east-west spirituality.

A self-published author himself, he now helps authors who decide to publish navigate the often confusing world of self-publishing. He is known for his carefully produced books, beautiful typography, and an ethical and personal approach to his work and his clients.

His blog has become a popular gathering spot for authors, publishers and designers. You can find out more and read over 500 articles on book design, publishing, ebooks, book marketing and the life of the indie author by visiting his blog at

Lynell George

Lynell George is a journalist and essayist. After/Image: Los Angeles Outside the Frame is her first book of essays and photography, exploring the city where she grew up. She is also the author of No Crystal Stair: African Americans in the City of Angels, a collection of features and essays drawn from her reportage. As a staff writer for both the Los Angeles Times and L.A. Weekly, she focused on social issues, human behavior, and identity politics, as well as visual arts, music, and literature. She taught journalism at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, in 2013 was named a USC Annenberg/Getty Arts Journalism Fellow, and in 2017 received the Huntington Library’s Alan Jutzi Fellowship for her studies of California writer Octavia E. Butler. Her writings have appeared in several essay collections. A contributing arts-and-culture columnist for KCET|Artbound, her commentary has also been featured in numerous news and feature outlets including Boom: A Journal of California, Smithsonian, Zócalo Public Square, Los Angeles Review of Books, Vibe, Chicago Tribune, Washington Post, Essence, Black Clock, and Ms. Her liner notes for Otis Redding Live at the Whisky a Go Go earned a 2017 GRAMMY nomination.

Betsy Gleick

Betsy Gleick is editorial director of Algonquin Books. She is the former creative editorial director of Audible and deputy editor of People magazine and a longtime Time, Inc. writer and editor.

Melody Godfred

While working as a litigation attorney at a prestigious law firm in Los Angeles, I did quite a bit of research, reading, and writing. I’d often find myself alone in my office late at night, surrounded by stacks and stacks of printed paper. It was in this lonely kingdom of black and white that Write In Color was born.

What does it mean, to write in color? It is to write and create with inspiration, with creativity, with determination. It represents embracing good style, perfect grammar, and an engaging tone. It isn’t just about writing either — it applies to design as well. It is a collaboration, between you, us, and your audience, whether it be a client, a consumer or a potential employer.

I hope you’ll find the inspiration to start creating. And if you needa little help, we’re here to write in color with you.

Joy Harris

Joy Harris established her own literary agency in 1990. She works primarily with literary fiction, strongly-written commercial fiction, narrative nonfiction across a broad range of topics, memoir and biography, and is drawn to a clear, original voice, an engaging point of view, and strong characters. Joy takes great pleasure in finding new literary voices, and over the course of her career has represented many bestselling and acclaimed authors from the time of their first published work.

Kait Heacock

Kait Heacock: “I like to think of myself as a literary organizer; I build community around books. I am publicist at Dottir Press, the Pacific Northwest editor for Joyland, and sit on the Advisory Board for the Mineral School artist’s residency. My debut short story collection, Siblings and Other Disappointments, is available now. My fiction has appeared in Esquire Russia, Joyland, KGB Bar Lit Mag, Portland Review, Tin House, tNY.Press, and Vol. 1 Brooklyn. My nonfiction has appeared in Bustle, Crab Creek Review, DAME, Largehearted Boy, Literary Hub, The Millions, and The Washington Post. My work has received support from the Montez Press summer residency at Mathew Gallery and been nominated for a Pushcart Prize.”

Christie Hefner

Christie Hefner has led major global brands from the brink to the cutting edge through creative vision and transformative leadership, and provides key insights on the power and process of self-disruption in today’s business world.

Before Lean In caught the attention of the public, Christie Hefner stood out as a trailblazer. The longest-serving female CEO of any publicly traded company, a founder of the Committee of 200 and WomenCorporateDirectors, and the first woman in the Chicago Young Presidents’ Organization, Hefner has long been an advocate of women advancing women. Hefner’s leadership through innovation, evident in her savvy stewardship of Playboy, one of the world’s most popular brands, and her ability to anticipate trends, has landed her a spot on Forbes magazine’s “100 Most Powerful Women” for three years running. As executive chairman of Canyon Ranch, Hefner again led efforts to develop a content and brand extension strategy, this time for a storied wellness resort company.

Now, as chairman of HATCHBEAUTY, a turnkey product innovation company, Hefner works with the founders to build their portfolio of brands leveraging consumer insights and retailer strategy.

Nicholas Jackson

Nicholas Jackson is the editor-in-chief of Pacific Standard, where he directs editorial strategy for the National Magazine Award-winning print magazine and daily website. He previously served as the digital editorial director at Outside. Before that, he was an associate editor at The Atlantic, where he launched the magazine’s health coverage online and was part of a two-person team that developed’s technology channel and video strategy. He is also an officer of the International Association for Literary Journalism Studies, a multi-disciplinary learned society whose essential purpose is the encouragement and improvement of scholarly research and education in literary journalism. Named one of Folio: magazine’s 15 under 30, spotlighting young professionals driving media’s next-generation innovation, in 2012, Jackson has also worked for Slate, Encyclopaedia Britannica, Texas Monthly, and other publications, both online and in print. He is a graduate of Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism and The Illinois Mathematics and Science Academy.

Dennis Johnson

Dennis Johnson is the founder of MobyLives, and the co-founder and co-publisher of Melville House. Follow him at @mobylives.

Kima Jones

Kima Jones has received fellowships from PEN Center USA Emerging Voices, Kimbilio Fiction, Yaddo, the MacDowell Colony, and was included on the inaugural Bitch 50 list in 2017 as a “shape-shifter who pushed pop culture to be more representative, inspiring, and meaningful for communities who are typically ignored by mainstream media.” The Los Angeles Times called Kima “2018’s literary breakthrough” and “an important new voice on the national stage.” She has been published at GQ, Guernica, Poets and Writers, NPR and McSWeeney’s and in the anthologies Unruly Bodies, a pop-up magazine by Roxane Gay for Medium and the New York Times Best Seller, The Fire this Time, edited by Jesmyn Ward. Her short story “Nine” received notable mention in Best American Science Fiction 2015, and her hybrid poem “Homegoing AD” appears in Best American Nonrequired Reading 2017. She serves as an advisory board member for the Rumpus, the Anisfield-Wolf Fellowship and the World Play Literary Festival. Kima founded Jack Jones Literary Arts in March 2015 and works as lead strategist on all publicity campaigns and is especially proud of her work on the 2017 Pulitzer Prize in Poetry winner, Olio, by Tyehimba Jess; the 2017 PEN America Robert W. Bingham Emerging Fiction Prize winner, Insurrections, by Rion Amilcar Scott; and the 2017 Midland Authors Award winner in Adult Fiction, Know the Mother, by Desiree Cooper. Kima divides her time between Los Angeles and New York. She writes poetry and prose.

Julayne Lee

Julayne Lee is a poet based in Los Angeles, by way of South Korea and Minnesota. NOT MY WHITE SAVIOR is her first book.

Albert Litewka

Albert Litewka is Chairman of the Board of the Los Angeles Review of Books, author of WARSAW: A Novel of Resistance, a successful media entrepreneur, and former President of Macmillan General Publishing and Senior Vice President of Macmillan Publishing Company, Inc. He is Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Winning Entertainment, Chairman of the Board of SoliDDD Corp., a 3D technology company, and a Managing Member of AngelVision Investors. Albert serves on business and institutional Boards and is past Board Chair of Oakwood School. The son of Holocaust survivors, he has had dinner with Albert Speer.

Kseniya Melnik

Kseniya Melnik’s debut book is the linked story collection Snow in May, which was short-listed for the International Dylan Thomas Prize and long-listed for the Frank O’Connor International Short Story Award. It was published in the US and UK in 2014 and will come out in Japan in translation in 2017. Born in Magadan, Russia, Kseniya moved to Alaska in 1998, at the age of 15. She received her MFA from New York University. Her work has appeared in The Brooklyn Rail, Epoch, Esquire (Russia), Granta (Finland), O, Oprah Magazine, Tin House, Virginia Quarterly Review, Prospect (UK), and was selected for Granta’s New Voices series. She was a fellow at the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference in 2014 and at Hawthornden Castle in Scotland in 2016, and served as the 2015-2016 Jenny McKean Moore Writer-in-Washington at The George Washington University in Washington, D.C.. She currently lives in Los Angeles.

Bonnie Nadell

Bonnie Nadell is the president of the Hill Nadell Literary Agency in Los Angeles. Her nonfiction books include works on current affairs and food as well as memoirs and other narrative nonfiction. In fiction, she represents thrillers along with upmarket women’s and literary fiction.Nadell has taught or spoken at a number of universities and writer’s conferences, including the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas, the LA Times Festival of Books, the Mayborn Conference on Literary Nonfiction, Tin House at Reed College, Antioch University, UCLA, USC’s Masters of Professional Writing Program, and the UC Riverside MFA program in Creative Writing.

Richard Nash

Richard Nash is a strategist and serial entrepreneur in digital media. He led partnerships and content at the culture discovery start-up Small Demons and the story app/aggregator Byliner. Previously he ran the iconic indie Soft Skull Press for which work he was awarded the Association of American Publishers’ Award for Creativity in Independent Publishing in 2005—the last book he edited there, Lydia Millet’s Love in Infant Monkeys, was selected as a 2010 Pulitzer Prize finalist. He left in 2009 to found Cursor, now an open-source community publishing project and to run Red Lemonade as a pilot for the Cursor project, since which time Vanessa Veselka’s Zazen won the 2012 PEN Award for Best First Novel and Lynne’s Tillman’s What Would Lynne Tillman Do? was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. In 2010 the Utne Reader named him one of Fifty Visionaries Changing Your World and Mashable named him the #1 Twitter User Changing the Face of Publishing. In 2013 the UK’s Bookseller magazine picked him as one of the Five Most Inspiring People in Digital Publishing. He advises numerous start-ups in digital media and consults with corporations on using narrative to grow their business.

Karen North

Karen North, Ph.D. is a recognized expert in social media and in psychology. She is the Director of USC Annenberg’s Digital Social Media (DSM) program, and a Clinical Professor in the School of Communication. DSM (formerly, Annenberg Program on Online Communities) is the world’s first master’s degree program and research center focused on the leadership and management of social media and online communities. Trained as a clinical and social psychologist and with considerable work experience in telecommunications policy and practice, Dr. North’s interests come together in the digital world where entrepreneurs and large companies seem most focused on using social and digital media to bring people together and form groups online. Dr. North teaches these skills and works with small and large companies in this sector. Prior to building USC’s online communities (social media) program, Dr. North was the Assistant Dean of the UCLA School of Public Policy. She previously worked in the Clinton Administration in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, and before that she worked for Rep. Edward Markey, Chairman of the US House of Representatives Subcommittee on Telecommunications and Finance.

Medaya Ocher

Medaya Ocher is the Managing Editor of the Los Angeles Review of Books.

Michael Overing

With decades of first amendment and social media best-practices, Michael Overing brings specialized legal expertise to Social Media Sports Management (SMz2) and their sports clients. He is an attorney and faculty member at USC’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism where he teaches courses in intellectual property, media law, entertainment and first amendment rights. SM2 protects and maximizes valuable sports brands through digital, social media and real-time communications strategies, coaching, education, empowerment and teams.

Michael joined SM2 in 2017 providing specialized depth in digital media best-practices for professional and collegiate sports programs, athletes and executives. He develops overall policies to meet the unique goals of SM2’s clients while respecting their constituent’s rights. From digital brand terrorism to cyberbullying, he works to minimize risk and protect SM2 and their partners. He has been a featured columnist for the Online Journalism Review and is a go-to interview choice for major media outlets on issues affecting rights and practices in online social media.

Michael is a member of the California bar and the American Bar Association. He received his J.D. from Loyola Law School (Los Angeles) in 1989, his M.A. degree from the University of Southern California in 1986, and his B.A. degree from the University of Nebraska in 1984. Michael makes Pasadena his home with his wife Theresa, and their sons, Robert, John and Andrew.

Lindsay Preston Zappas

Lindsay Preston Zappas is an artist and writer based in Los Angeles. She received her MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Art and attended Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in 2013. She is the Founder, Publisher, and Editor-in-Chief of Contemporary Art Review Los Angeles (Carla), an LA-based critical art magazine. Zappas has written for various exhibition catalogues and publications such as Flash Art, Art21, ArtReview, Artsy, SFAQ, and LACanvas. Recent exhibitions include a solo shows at City Limits (Oakland, CA) and Ochi Projects (Los Angeles, CA), and a two-person show at VACANCY (Los Angeles, CA). Zappas has taught at Cal State Northridge, Fullerton College, and Oregon College of Art and Craft. Lindsay joined Art Muse in 2017.

Kim Robinson

Kim Robinson, Editorial Director, received a B.A. in English from UC Santa Barbara. Before joining UC Press in 2009, she spent eight years at Oxford University Press in New York, both as music editor and editorial director of the scholarly reference group. Before stepping into the role of Editorial Director, she was Social Sciences Publisher and regional editor at UC Press. Previous to her career in publishing, Kim spent a decade working for nonprofit organizations and foundations focused on the environmentand equal access to information and technology. A few of Kim’s UC Press acquisitions include California Crackup: How Reform Broke the Golden State and How We Can Fix It, A People’s Guide to Los Angeles, and the launch of Boom: A Journal of California.

Jodie Rollans-Beck

Jodie Rollans-Beck is Owner and President of ALLy Human Resource Solutions. ALLy is a Portland, Oregon based company that provides human resource services to businesses. ALLy’s focus is to assist clients in improving profit margins and lowering operating costs via targeted and creative human resource solutions and/or assistance. Prior to starting ALLy in 2004, Jodie worked in Human Resources for Fluor Corporation for more than nine years. Fluor is a $10 billion/year company that provides engineering, construction and maintenance services, worldwide.

During her career at Fluor she worked in many aspects of Human Resources including Benefits, College Recruiting and most recently as a Human Resource Manager. In addition, she had the opportunity to work with many special committees in order to assess services/processes and make recommendations to improve the company and address changing market and client demands. Some committees included Continuous Performance Improvement, College Relations, Leadership Development, and Performance Assessment Improvement. She served two years on the Board of Directors for University of California, Irvine’s Alumni Association, implementing and managing the “Hot Jobs” forum connecting employers with new graduates. These opportunities and experiences have trained and put into practice her ability to critically review and creatively address challenges.

Before coming to Portland, ALLy worked with clients in Tacoma, Washington, conducting work that included recruiting, selection and hiring of candidates to creating employee handbooks. As a new resident of Portland, Jodie is working with the local Career Center at the High School, conducting resume writing workshops, mock interviews and serves as a mentor to students.

Jodie graduated from University of California, Irvine with a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Sciences, with an emphasis in Economics. She also has a Merchandising Certification and Associate of Arts Degree from Los Angeles Trade Technical College. She is married and has three children.

Helen Sedwick

Helen Sedwick is a California attorney representing small businesses and entrepreneurs. Her historical novel, Coyote Winds, has earned five-star reviews from ForeWord Reviews and Compulsion Reads and is an IndieBRAG Medallion Honoree

Melissa Seley

Melissa Seley is a writer based in Los Angeles and New York with a literary obsession and a love of branding. Her journalistic work has appeared in many magazines including Paper, the Los Angeles Review of Books, Tokion and BOMB. For six years as an Associate Creative Director at Bloomingdale’s, she directed multimedia-minded projects spanning from splashy taxi toppers to sartorial magalogs. During that time, she also held Contributing Editor posts at Guernica and Assouline. In 2013, she moved to Los Angeles to reimagine Lucky Brand as Editorial Director alongside Creative Director Matt Berman, launching a content-driven new era for the denim label with a yearlong campaign shot by photographer Cass Bird and centered on mini-documentaries of tastemakers including Langley Fox, Eleanor Friedberger and Hailey Benton Gates. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree from UC Santa Barbara and an MFA from Sarah Lawrence College. Currently she is at-work on an autobiographical novel for which she was named a Lower Manhattan Cultural Council Writer in Residence.

Hiram Sims

Hiram Sims is a poet, and a Professor of Creative Writing, teaching at the Los Angeles Film School. He is also the founder of the Community Literature Initiative, a publishing program for Los Angeles writers who want to publish books here at USC. He has published three collections of poetry, one amazing textbook.

Bob Stein

Bob Stein is founder and Co-Director of the Institute for the Future of the Book and founder of The Voyager Company. For 13 years he led the development of over 300 titles in ‘The Criterion Collection’, a series of definitive films on videodisc, and more than 75 CD ROM titles including the CD Companion to Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, ‘Who Built America’, and the Voyager edition of ‘Macbeth’. Previous to Voyager, Stein worked with Alan Kay in the Research Group at Atari on a variety of electronic publishing projects. 11 years ago, Stein started ‘Night Kitchen’ to develop authoring tools for the next generation of electronic publishing. That work is now being continued at the Institute for the Future of the Book.

Michelle Tea

Michelle Tea is the author of five memoirs: The Passionate Mistakes and Intricate Corruption of One Girl in America, Valencia (now a film), The Chelsea Whistle, Rent Girl (illustrated) and How to Grow Up (Penguin/Plume), currently in development with Amazon Studios. Her novels include Mermaid in Chelsea Creek and Girl at the Bottom of the Sea, part of a Young Adult fantasy trilogy published by McSweeneys, and Rose of No Man’s Land. Black Wave is a dystopic memoir-fiction hybrid. Forthcoming works include Castle on the River Vistula, the final installment of the YA series, and Modern Tarot, a tarot how-to and spell book published by Harper Elixir.

Tea is the curator of the Amethyst Editions imprint at Feminist Press. She founded the literary non-profit RADAR Productions and the international Sister Spit performance tours, and is the former editor of Sister Spit Books, an imprint of City Lights. She created Mutha Magazine, an online publication about real-life parenting. Her writing has appeared in Harper’s, Cosmopolitan, The Believer, Marie Clare, n+1, xoJane, California Sunday Magazine, Buzzfeed and many other print and web publications.

Lucien Tucker

Lucian Tucker is a Web Operations Manager at the Center for Digital Humanities, where he manages the team that handles many of the department and center websites in the Humanities Division. In his spare time he enjoys studying Sociology, Psychology, Philosophy, and up and coming technologies. He’s originally from the east coast but was always a west coaster at heart.

Gustavo Turner

Gustavo Turner is a photographer and writer in Los Angeles.

Sarita Varma

Sarita Varma is director of publicity at Farrar Straus and Giroux, which is a leading publisher of literary fiction, non-fiction and poetry. Farrar, Straus and Giroux include a number of imprints: North Point Press, Hill and Wang, Faber and Faber, Inc. and Sarah Crichton Books. Sarita joined FSG in 1995 and has handled the promotional campaigns for a number of authors from Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award winners such as Jamaica Kincaid, Scott Turow, Alice McDermott and Marilynne Robinson to media personalities such as Thomas L. Friedman, David Hare, Billy Corgan, Courtney Love and Dambisa Moyo, who was named in TIME magazine’s list of the 100 Most Influential People of 2009.

She most recently handled the multimedia campaigns for Colin Beavan’s NO IMPACT MAN, which was released concurrent with a documentary that debuted at the Sundance Film Festival and a highly trafficked blog of the same name, as well as a novel by the musician Nick Cave which was released to coincide with a number of his music projects. Forthcoming projects include the memoirs of President Jimmy Carter, Nelson Mandela and film director Danny Boyle, as well as a novel by Andrea Levy winner of the Whitbread and Orange Prizes.

Sarita is an active board member of the Publisher’s Publicity Association and served as a judge for the Loft Literary Center’s Minnesota Career Initiative Program in 2004. She is often invited to speak at the University of Michigan and New York University Publishing Programs and has been involved with programming at the Association of American Publishers. A graduate of Barnard College, she began her career in the trade publicity department at Oxford University Press where she handled PR campaigns for a number of noted academics. She resides in New York City.

Karolina Waclawiak

Karolina Waclawiak is the author ofthe critically acclaimed novels How to Get Into the Twin Palms and THE INVADERS. AWOL, a feature she co-wrote with Deb Shoval, premiered at the 2016 Tribeca Film Festival and has received praise from The Hollywood Reporter, IndieWire, Marie Claire, and more.

Formerly an editor at the Believer, she is now the Executive Editor, Culture at BuzzFeed News.

Karolina received her BFA in Screenwriting from USC and her MFA in Fiction from Columbia University. Her writing has appeared in the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, VQR, the Believer, Hazlitt, and other publications. Her name is pronounced Karo-leena Vahts-lah-viak and she is repped by Kirby Kim at Janklow & Nesbit.

Elias Wondimu

Tsehai Publishers was founded in 1998 by Elias Wondimu, an Ethiopian exiled journalist. In September 1994, he left his country to participate the Twelfth International Ethiopian Studies conference at Michigan State University in East Lansing, but his three weeks travel became indefinite. Later that year, he joined the Ethiopian Review magazine in Los Angeles, serving as managing editor for the next six years. In these years, he worked with many scholars, political activists and public intellectuals on issues of local and global interest. Passionate about Ethiopian and African issues, Wondimu saw a void in the American book market. He determined to publish books that would heal not kill, and restore the state of the publishing industry. In 1997 he founded Tsehai, meaning “the sun,” named after and dedicated to his mother who had passed away the same year. Building the publishing house, he saw Tsehai not as an end but as a means so that knowledge would be accessible to new generations of readers.

SoCal Indie Press Day

Dorie Bailey from Prospect Park Books

Editorial manager Dorie Bailey is a Pasadena native, a voracious reader, a twin, and an alumna of Scripps College, who lovingly completed her senior thesis on boy bands, Magic Mike, and the socialized female gaze. Dorie achieved fame at her elementary school for reading the entirety of the last Harry Potter book in only six hours. Like a true millennial, Dorie also enjoys freelance developmental editing as a #sidehustle, and some might say it’s ambitious, but she tries to see at least 3 movies a week in theatres.”>

Prospect Park Books is a California native, publishing beautiful print and digital books with wit, creativity, and intelligence. We focus on fiction, gift/humor, cooking/food, and regional titles, and we work with authors, designers, and artists who are outside of the New York mainstream

Perry Crowe

Perry Crowe has edited books of fiction and nonfiction, edited magazines and newspapers, run a book editing and copywriting service, and written hard news, fantastical fiction, jacket copy and product descriptions, cultural criticism, cartoons, plays, and comic books–and it’s all here. So roll up your sleeves, put on a bib, warm up a pot, and gird your loins.

Perry was born in Mounds View, Minnesota, a northern suburb of St. Paul. He earned a degree in English, with an emphasis on writing, from the University of Iowa, where he participated in the Undergraduate Writers Workshop in Fiction. Then he headed to Los Angeles to pursue work as a screenwriter, spent a dozen years in the entertainment industry, wrote a book, and ducked out of the picture show. Following years in the alternative press, Perry landed an editorship at the Los Angeles Times, then moved to New York City where he ran a book review service and book editing service for Kirkus Media. While in New York, he wrote an off-off-Broadway play for a mailman and did some live comedy (sketch and stand-up). He then relocated to Carlsbad, California, for the job of managing editor at Hay House. Now he lives by the beach and follows his dreams.

Founded in 1987 by Louise Hay as a way to self-publish her first two books, Heal Your Body and You Can Heal Your Life, both of which became international bestsellers (You Can Heal Your Life has sold more than 35 million copies worldwide) and established Louise as a leader in the transformational movement.

Hay House isone of the fastest-growing self-help and transformational publishers in the world, selling our products to more than 35 countries around the world. Hay House is a medium-sized publishing house bringing in big-name authors: Wayne Dyer, Suze Orman, Doreen Virtue, Jerry & Esther Hicks, Jorge Cruise, Marianne Williamson, Caroline Myss, Cheryl Richardson, Christiane Northrup, and many others.

Carrie Paterson from DoppleHouse Press

DoppleHouse Press is an independent publishing house with a focus on architecture, design, and art, as well as histories of immigration and exile. Our mission is to bring together a plurality of voices through biography, memoir, critical texts and selectfiction in order to examine the complex dynamics between sociopolitical forces and aesthetic forms; to present specific issues like human rights, free expression, and personal liberties; and to explore existential truths.

We began our work in 2011 looking at the developing styles and attitudes within 20th-century Central European modernism, which is intertwined with the perspective of exiles, for many of whom statelessness and belonging to broader cultural and aesthetic movements preceded their physical dislocation. Our books hinge around art and bravery, conviction and perseverance, defiance in the face of terrible odds and authoritarian regimes, as well as the circumstances and critical thought that have driven people to seek to build or create better lives for themselves and subsequently for others.

Mathew Timmons from Insert Blanc Press

Mathew Timmons’ books include Joyful Noise for three or more voices (Jaded Ibis 2012), The New Poetics (Les Figues 2010), Sound Noise (Little Red Leaves, 2010), CREDIT (Blanc Press 2009), Lip Service (Slack Buddha 2008), and The Archanoids (a CD & booklet of solo and collaborative sound poetries 2010). Forthcoming projects include Where is it Written? (Imipolex Press), and After Darío (Phoneme Books). His visual and performance work has been shown at Weekend Gallery, Human Resources Gallery, Shoshana Wayne, Public Fiction, François Ghebaly Gallery, (323) Projects, LACE, Museum of Contemporary Art Denver, California College of the Arts, Outpost for Contemporary Art, ArtSpeak Vancouver, LACMA, UCLA Hammer Museum and as part of ArtLA. An active editor and curator, Mathew works as the General Director of General Projects, editor & publisher of Insert Blanc Press, managing editor of Joyland Los Angeles, Co-Host of LA-Lit 2005-2009, and has curated events, readings and ephemeral art shows for Hi-Lite, Beyond Baroque, Betalevel, Outpost for Contemporary Art, workspace, The Silver Lake Jubilee and REDCAT. His writing may be found in various journals including Mammut, Area Sneaks, Try, Or, Emohippus, Luvina, Aufgabe and The Encyclopedia Project; and his critical writing may be found in Artillery, ArtSlant, Artweek, The Magazine, The Poetry Project Newsletter, Molossus, L.A. Record, Art21 and X-TRA.”>

Insert Blanc Press produces innovative art & literature in Los Angeles, CA.

Founded in October 2005, Insert Blanc Press produces over twelve individual projects a year across various media. Publishing large format hardbound artist monographs, photography and print editions, hardbound and perfectbound books of contemporary literature, handmade chapbooks, magazines, ebooks, audiobooks, digital albums, and video projects. Insert Blanc Press also recently started The People, a podcast featuring the voices and ideas of The People that make up the cultural landscape of Los Angeles, the west coast, and beyond. Insert Blanc endeavorsto create dynamic conversations among the artistic disciplines and to support emerging artists and writers in the interest of contemporary arts and letters.

Conney Williams from World Stage Press

Conney Williams, Poet, Community Activist, Author, Leaves of Spilled Spirit from an Untamed Poet and Blues Red Soul Falsetto; Artistic Director, World Stage and Coordinator, Anansi Writers Workshop.

Imani Tolliver from World Stage Press

Imani Tolliver is a poet, artist, and educator. She is a Cave Canem Fellow and served as Poet Laureate for the Watts Towers Arts Center. Tolliver is a recipient of the Avest Award for Literary Arts, the Howard University John J. Wright Literary Award, and the Lannan Literary Fellowship at the Folger Shakespeare Library. She has also been recognized by the City of Los Angeles for her work as a promoter, host, and publicist in support of the literary arts in Southern California.

The Anansi Writers Workshop was founded in 1990 by Kamau Daáood, Akilah Oliver, Nafis Nabawi and Anthony Lyons at The World Stage Performance Gallery. In 1993, Michael Datcher initiated the development of a three-part format for the workshop. Our tradition of a community workshop began in the late 1960s at the Watts Writers’ Workshop, where World Stage co-founder Kamau Daáood started his writing career. Although countless workshop participants have gone on to publish books with other presses, a few of the dedicated workshop participants saw theneed for The World Stage to have its own publishing company. So in December of 2014, nearly twenty four years after the workshop began, Conney Williams and Hiram Sims formed World Stage Press, which is a home for the creation and proliferation of African American Literature.

Field Trip

Kate Gale from Red Hen Press

Dr. Kate Gale is managing editor of Red Hen Press, editor of the Los Angeles Review, and president of the American Composers Forum, LA. She was the 2005-2006 president of PEN USA. She is author of five books of poetry: her most recent, Mating Season, from Tupelo Press; a novel, Lake of Fire; and Rio de Sangre, a libretto for an opera with composer Don Davis. Her current projects include a co-written libretto, Paradises Lost with Ursula K. LeGuin and composer Stephen Taylor, and a libretto adapted from Kindred by Octavia Butler with composer Billy Childs. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband and children.

Mark E. Cull from Red Hen Press

Mark E. Cull is a publisher and author who lives in Los Angeles with his wife and Red Hen Press Co-Founder, Kate Gale. Born and raised in Los Angeles, fortune led him to spend nearly two decades in the aerospace and defense industries before a lurking passion for literature finally compelled him to that world, and more specifically the world of publishing. Ready to change the publishing landscape, Mark joined Kate Gale in establishing one of the most respected and eclectic presses in the independent literature publishing sector, Red Hen Press. Mark attended college at Cal State Northridge, majoring in Literature. Since that transition, he has authored a short story collection, One Way Donkey Ride (Asylum Arts, 2002), founded The Los Angeles Review, serves on the advisory board of WriteGirl, and has co-edited three collections of short fiction: Anyone is Possible, Blue Cathedral, and The Crucifix is Down. In addition to the upcoming release of The King of the Sea Monkeys, he is currently at work on a novel and seeking a home for two others.

Red Hen Press, one of the few literary presses in the Los Angeles area, was founded in 1994 by Kate Gale and Mark E. Cull with the intention of keeping creative literature alive. Our focus as a literary press is to publish poetry, literary fiction, and nonfiction. Red Hen Press is committed to publishing work of literary excellence, supporting diversity, and promoting literacy in our local schools. We seek a community of readers and writers who are actively engaged in the essential human practice known as literature.

Red Hen Press offers several literary awards each year, including the Benjamin Saltman Award. The winner of the Benjamin Saltman Award receives a cash prize in addition to publication of the winning poetry collection. Past judges include: Claudia Rankine, Robin Becker, Wanda Coleman, B.H. Fairchild, Nick Flynn, Eloise Klein Healy, David St. John, Dorianne Laux, Thomas Lux, Philip Levine, Alicia Ostriker, James Ragan, Peggy Shumaker, and Quincy Troupe. Other awards offered include the Red Hen Press Short Story Award and the Ruskin Art Club Poetry Award, both for publication in the Los Angeles Review.

Red Hen Press is also committed to promoting literacy in the community. Beyond developing an appreciation of literature, we believe it is essential to our society to promote a readership that remains open and critically engaged in reading a variety of well-written, thought-provoking work. Our Writing in the Schools program brings writers into schools to run writing workshops and to read and discuss their work—promoting both literacy and creative expression among young people. We organize readings in schools, universities, libraries, and literary organizations. We donate books to a variety of organizations, including schools and facilities that educate at-risk youth.