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Spring 2017 Meeting Schedule

Peter White Public Library

Peter White Public Library

2017 UPPAA Conference

Saturday, May 20, 2016

Conference Schedule

  • 10:00 – 10:30 – Registration
  • 10:30 – 10:45 – Welcome and Opening remarks
  • 10:45 – 11:45 – Keynote: The Art of Asking – Sue Harrison (Community Room)
  • 11:45 – 12:45   Two tracks to choose from:
    (A) Traditional Publishing – Rondi Olson (Community Room)
    (B) Screenwriting (Lions Room)
  • 12:45 – 1:30 Lunch
  • 1:30 – 1:45 – Business Meeting
  • 1:45 – 2:15     UP Reader Book Release
  • 2:30 – 3:30  Two tracks to choose from:
    (A)  Children’s Book Industry 101: Standards, Conventions, and How the Industry Works – Carrie Pearson (Community Room)
    (B) Writing Science Fiction and Fantasy – Brandy Thomas (Lions Room)
  • 3:15 – 4:15   Two tracks to choose from:
    (A) Social Media for Writers – Vicki Fee (Community Room)
    (B) Comics and Graphic Novels – Emma Jezek and Brad Gischia (Lions Room)
  • 4:15 – 5:00 – Networking and Clean Up

Session Descriptions

“The Art of Asking” by Sue Harrison

In her keynote address, “The Art of Asking,” Sue Harrison will address the secrets and the pitfalls of presenting your work to literary agents and commercial publishers. Her talk will include stories about her own experiences with agents and publishers in the United States, Europe, and Asia, as well as what is expected from authors as they present their work through the all-important query letter.

“Traditional Publishing” by Rondi Olson

The focus of this session will be to educate writers on publication options with a focus on traditional publication. Many authors are unsure of what to do with their completed manuscripts. Traditional publication has always been an appealing option, but with a great number of authors successfully publishing indie, some wonder what value is left in being traditionally published. In this session we will review the pros and cons of traditional versus indie publication, discuss what agents and editors are looking for, and outline what to expect with the traditional publication process. Those attending will be better able to decide which publication route is best for them, and if they decide to pursue traditional publication, have a clearer understanding of what the industry is looking for and how to tailor their work to catch the attention of an agent or editor.

“Screenwriting” by Kyle Hulkonen

Kyle Hulkonen is the writer and producer of the film Waiting For Wiig, the Audience Choice award winner for Best Narrative Short at the 2016 Soo Film Festival. Born and raised in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, Kyle received a Writing degree from Northern Michigan University and worked several years in television as a commercial writer and producer for WLUC-TV6. He currently resides in Negaunee, MI and works for State Farm Insurance as a property adjuster. Kyle will present his screenwriting journey, from first idea to crowdfunding, and shooting a film in the UP.

“Children’s Book Industry 101: Standards, Conventions, and How the Industry Works” by Carrie Pearson

This is a lighthearted, but realistic nuts and bolts session for writers and writer/illustrators to learn about publishing traditionally (versus self-publishing) in the children’s book industry. Topics include:

  • standards
    • formatting, word counts for categories, conventions, what’s pushy, what’s polite
  • how the industry works
    • role of agent and editor, publishing houses and what they offer, large house vs. small vs. regional
  • where the money is allocated in the book making process
    • cost of making a book
    • how we get paid

Session includes Q&A and a handout.

Carrie Pearson is a children’s book author and Regional Advisor for the Society of Children’s Book Authors and Illustrators (SCBWI)

“Writing Science Fiction and Fantasy” by Brandy Thomas

Brandy Thomas is an independent editor who has a wide range of experience with science fiction and fantasy. This session will address writing issues that are common, and sometimes particular to the science fiction and fantasy genres. Incorporating examples of classic and modern speculative fiction, she will examine worldbuilding, characterization, and a host of other issues, as seen from an editor’s perspective.

“Social Media for Writers” by Vickie Fee

  1. Choosing your platform: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, GoodReads, Blogging. A general overview of the strengths of each.
  2. Detailed look at Facebook — Twelve Tips to Make Facebook Work for You as an Author. Includes discussion of: Benefits of page vs. profile and do you need both? How often should you post? What should you post? Planning ahead, Driving traffic to your website.

“Comics and Graphic Novels” by Emma Jezek and Brad Gischia

Local comic artists Emma Jezek, creator of “Breathe,” and Brad Gischia, creator of “The Curiosity Shop,” will share a panel about all aspects of producing comics and graphic novels. The discussion will encompass everything from how to work out storytelling visually, to character design, to how to self-publish your works or find a publisher that suits you.

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The UPPAA Winter 2017 Member Newsletter is here

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UPPAA Fall 2016 Newsletter


The UPPAA quarterly newsletter, The Written Word, is sent to all members by mail.

Get the UPPAA Fall 2016 Newsletter here!

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Judith Briles, The Book Shepherd

Judith Briles, The Book Shepherd

Upper Peninsula Publishers & Authors Association
For Immediate Release…
Contact: Tyler Tichelaar
(906) 226-1543

U.P. Publishers & Authors Association Holds 19th Annual Conference: Publishing & Book Marketing Industry to Be Explored

MARQUETTE, MI (May 15, 2016) – In its constant commitment to informing regional authors and publishers of the latest changes in the publishing world and offering effective marketing and writing strategies, the Upper Peninsula Publishers & Authors Association (UPPAA) will hold its 19th Annual Conference on Saturday, June 18th in Marquette at the Peter White Public Library from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

As always, this year’s conference will cover a variety of topics relevant to writing, publishing, and marketing, and it will be of interest to beginning writers as well as seasoned, published authors.

This year’s keynote speaker is Dr. Judith Briles. Known as “The Book Shepherd,” Briles is a publishing expert who guides others in turning their book concept into a successful reality. Judith is the past president of several publishing associates and has chaired many conferences, including the annual AuthorU Extravaganza. She is the author of eight books, including her latest The CrowdFunding Guide for Authors & Writers. In addition, she has won numerous awards, including the Indie Excellence Award, International Book Award, and Ippy Award.

Briles’ keynote speech will be titled “Creating Confidence as a Writer and Author.” In addition, she will be presenting two afternoon sessions: “Avoid the 7 Deadly Sins Authors Commit in Book Publishing Today” and “If Publishing Is in Your Midst…What Option Is for You and Your Book.”

Other sessions to be held are “Book Selling Across the UP,” which will feature a panel composed of Larry Buege of Harvey and author of the Chogan Native American series; Lloyd Wescoat of Copper Harbor, owner of Grandpa’s Barn, and co-owner of Mudminnow Press; and Minnesota writer Aimeé Bisonette, author of North Woods Girl. Bisonette, who is also a lawyer, will additionally present “Legal Rights and Responsibilities of Authors.” Helen Haskell Remien of Ishpeming and author of Ebb & Flow will present “In Praise of the Handcrafted Life: Writing as Process.” Finally, Deborah Frontiera, of Lake Linden and Houston, TX, and author of Living on Sisu, will present “IRS Record Keeping 101 for Authors.”

In addition, there will be a business meeting, a catered lunch, a social activity, and a book collection taken up for Alger County Kiwanis’ annual auction.

The general public may attend the meeting for a $10 registration fee. UPPAA members attend free of charge. Space is limited, so advanced registration is recommended. Membership details, benefits, and registration are available online at http://www.uppaa.org. A catered deli lunch is available for $8 per person with advance reservations required. For registration by mail, mail membership secretary Jenifer Brady, 431 Business 141 North, Coleman, WI 54112 or contact her at uppaa.membership@gmail.com or (920) 897-4416. Registrations online or by mail must be received no later than June 10.

The day prior to the conference, Friday, June 17, a U.P. Book Market will also be held on the lawn of the Peter White Public Library from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. More than fifteen U.P. authors will be selling their books, and the public is invited to meet local authors and purchase autographed copies of their books. Activities for children will also be held.

Established in 1998 to support authors and publishers who live in or write about Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, UPPAA is a Michigan nonprofit association with over 75 members. Over 100 member books are posted on the organization’s website at http://www.uppaa.org. UPPAA welcomes membership and participation from anyone interested in writing and publishing books.


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Peter White Public Library

Peter White Public Library

2016 UPPAA Conference – Saturday, June 18th, 2016 – Peter White Public Library, Marquette, MI

Click here to register!

2016 Annual UPPAA Conference Schedule

  • 10:00-10:30 Registration
  • 10:30-10:45 Opening Remarks by President Tyler Tichelaar
  • 10:45-11:45 Keynote: Judith Briles – Creating Confidence as a Writer and Author
  • 11:45-12:45 Sessions
    Community Room: Aimée Bisonette – Legal Rights and Responsibilities of Authors
    Shiras Room: Helen Haskell Remien – In Praise of the Handcrafted Life: Writing as Process
  • 12:45-1:05 Activity with Gretchen Preston
  • 1:05-1:45 Lunch
  • 1:45-2:00 Business Meeting
  • 2:00-3:00 Sessions
    Community Room: Judith Briles – Avoid the 7 Deadly Sins Authors Commit in Book Publishing Today
    Shiras Room: Debbie Frontiera – IRS Record Keeping 101 for Authors
  • 3:00-4:00 Sessions
    Community Room: If Publishing Is in Your Midst…Which Option is for You and Your Book?
    Shiras Room: Book Selling Across the UP – Larry Buege, Lloyd Wescoat, and Aimée Bisonette
  • 4:00-4:30 Networking and Clean Up

Session Descriptions – in order of presentation

Creating Confidence as an Author & Writer

Judith Briles

Based on the best-selling book, The Confidence Factor—Cosmic Gooses Lay Golden Eggs, writers and authors will learn that confidence is acquired, not inherited; and it usually comes from the pitfalls—the cosmic gooses—of the writing life. Woven around the 6 Steps to Building Confidence, this stimulating and humorous speech is guaranteed to motivate and inspire audiences. With confidence, anything is possible. This keynote/general session has consistently received outstanding evaluations.

Bio: Judith is an innovative and creative writing coach, book coach, and how to get published expert who can expertly assist you with your book and publishing project. She has mentored up and coming authors and publishers for years and dedicated untold hours to educating others to the pitfalls, and joys, of the publishing world. In 2009, she created AuthorU(niversity), a membership organization that is designed for serious authors who want to be seriously successful. Judith chaired the first Writers Conference for the National Speakers Association and started its Writing and Publishing PEG with over 700 members. The Author U group on LinkedIn alone has 10,000 members.

She is past president of several publishing associations and has chaired several publishing conferences including the AuthorU Extravaganza held annually. She writes The Book Shepherd segment for the BookMarketing.com newsletter and numerous columns, along with leading her popular Publishing Salons. Her latest book (#33) is The CrowdFunding Guide for Authors & Writers. It joins Snappy Sassy Salty … Wise Words for Authors and Writers. Author YOU: Creating and Building Your Author and Book Platforms was published in March of 2013 and has won multiple national awards including the Indie Excellence Award, International Book Award, Beverly Hills Book Award, IPPY Award in the Publishing/Writing category and was the Publishing writing Book of the Year in the IndieFab awards sponsored by Foreword Reviews. Her books are also #1 bestsellers on Amazon.

In Praise of the Handcrafted Life: Writing as Process

Helen Haskell Remien

Books don’t arrive fully formed, polished and bound—they spring up from our creative depths, perhaps at first as a seed of an idea or a not-quite-focused storyline or a piece of a poem or essay. And they take root, day by day, week by week, year by year as we devote time to our craft. Each one of us moves forward on our projects in our unique way, and each project we complete has a different story of its creation. I find this process fascinating and inspiring — it is where the juice is, not in the polished product but in the handcrafted practice that brought this product to fruition. This presentation is a celebration and examination of process, the process of well-known writers, my writing buddies, and my own process for the various projects that I have completed.

Bio information

Helen Haskell Remien lives in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula where she and her husband Cam raised their two sons. She received her MA in creative writing from Northern Michigan University and has published a chapbook of poems, Diving Down, a full-length manuscript of poetry, Wild Ground, a memoir, Ebb & Flow, a book on grandparenthood, Viren, and a hand-bound book of essays, Mystery Trip. A book of essays and poems, I’m Not Too Much For Me!!!, will be published this year. Presently, she teaches yoga and creativity workshops, and owns and operates Joy Center, a creative sanctuary for the community.

Legal Rights and Responsibilities of Authors

Aimée Bissonette

In this interactive session, attorney Aimée Bissonette will answer questions about the legal and practical issues confronting writers—particularly writers exploring self-publishing and small press publishing (e.g. collaboration agreements, key deal terms in small press and self-publishing contracts, vendor contract issues, copyright registration). Discussion is encouraged, so bring your questions!

BIO: Aimée has worked as a lawyer, teacher, and writer since 1987. She helps her clients make smart decisions about licensing their creative works. Her published picture books include “North Woods Girl” (Minnesota Historical Society Press, 2015) and “Miss Colfax’s Light” (Sleeping Bear Press, 2016). She is also the author of “Cyber Law: Maximizing Safety and Minimizing Risk in Classrooms” (Corwin Press 2009) and a contributing author to the 2015 Guide to Self-Publishing (Writer’s Digest Books, 2015).

Avoid the 7 Deadly Sins
Authors Commit in Book Publishing Today

Judith Briles

Authors (and Writers who publish books) routinely embrace the 7 Deadly Sins of Book Publishing. Learn what they are and how to avoid them. If a close encounter occurs, what steps can be taken to get out of publishing quicksand and survive.

IRS Record Keeping 101

Deborah Frontiera

How many cookies can you “snitch” from the cookie jar before somebody notices? It’s tricky knowing how much you can deduct for your writing business without sending “red flags” to the IRS. Deborah K. Frontiera’s daughter, a CPA and her “tax expert”, has taught her a lot over the years about what records to keep, what you can deduct and how much, when you need to fill out 1099s, etc. She’ll share these tips on how to keep all your ducks in a row with interested UPPAA members.

BIO: Deborah K. Frontiera has been a member of UPPAA for many years. While she does not live in the U.P. full time (she still lives in Houston, TX 9 months of the year) that’s where her heart is. Two of her books are entirely U.P. and her book of nature poems is “mostly” U.P. The rest all have at least a “hint” somewhere. She files sales tax in both Michigan and Texas. She’s been UPPAA’s newsletter editor for several years.

If Publishing Is in Your Midst…Which Option Is for You and Your Book?

Judith Briles

Amazon changed the publishing field—a great thing for so many newbie authors who didn’t think a New York publisher or an agent would ever give them a moment’s notice…and it’s also not so good a thing.

Does it make sense to seek a traditional publishing contract?

What are the differences between traditional, self, independent, paid-to-publishing, hybrid and vanity publishing?

This in-depth Master Workshop will identify a variety of options for today’s author.

Publishing continues to morph…

  • Do you know what your options are?
  • Have you created your Author’s Platform?
  • What about a Book Platform?
  • Do you know how to avoid the publishing predators?
  • Do you know who they are?
  • Do you know the dollars and sense of publishing?
  • Do you know that a book, the right book, can accelerate your career and skyrocket revenues?
  • Do you know which publishing option is the right fit for you and your book?

Book Marketing Across the U.P.

Author Panel: Larry Buege, Lloyd Wescoat, Aimée Bissonette

Getting a book to press is hard work, but placing it in the hands of readers can be a staggering experience. Lloyd Wescoat will provide some rules of the road when approaching bookstore owners and will offer suggestions to leverage connections in your local community.

Larry Buege will discuss the advantages of a U.P. bookstore and craft shop database. (See http://Larrybuege.com/bookstores.html). The database will contain contact information as well as comments from authors who have used these bookstores. The database will have embedded code to thwart search engines and protect listed e-mail addresses and individuals from excessive spam. The web site is non-searchable. Access will be by word-of-mouth and shared with all who need to know.

Aimée will be speaking as an author who worked with a number of “partners,” each with their own areas of expertise, to increase her book’s visibility and sales. These partners include the publicity and sales reps at her publisher, a creative and hard working independent bookseller, and Winding Oak—a literary services entity that builds websites, designs and produces book related marketing materials, and uses unique approaches (like “buzz breakfasts”) to get books into the hands of strong advocates.

Click here to register!

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Become a member today!

UPPAA Membership Brochures have been redesigned for 2016 and will be distributed by the Superiorland Library Coop this Spring to all 43 public libraries plus 3 tribal libraries.

You can get your own brochure for yourself or a friend right now though by downloading the UPPAA Membership Brochure now!

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The Psychic Highway

One of the most difficult book marketing challenges is to convince Costco to give your book precious space on its shelves.

Usually, the store’s book buyers won’t look twice at you unless you’ve already sold several thousand books on your own. They don’t want to take a chance with an author who hasn’t sold many books or isn’t a celebrity.

When indie author Michael T. Keene wanted his new book, “The Psychic Highway — How the Erie Canal Change America,” inside Costco stores in upstate New York, he contacted American West Books in Rochester. They’re wholesalers that focus on nationwide mass merchandisers and regional chains.

Bingo. The book will be available in two local Costco stores within a few weeks. That kind of success story, especially for an indie author whose book has just been published, is rare.

“Because my book is about the Erie Canal which runs through Rochester and Syracuse, America West thought this was the best place to start,” said Michael, who is featured in a newspaper article today in The Daily News Online.

But what if your book isn’t about local history?

To do: Publishing expert Amy Collins’ has  advanced tips on how to work with the buyers, merchandisers and the marketing departments at Costco, Walmart, Target and other big retailers. She shares them on the video replay of a webinar I hosted with her. Use the coupon code COSTCO at check-out (Click “Apply” and “Recalculate”) to grab it for half price, but only until midnight Monday night, March 14.

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