The 2019 Toronto Writing Workshop: August 17, 2019

Screen Shot 2018-11-13 at 10.32.43 PM.pngAfter a successful launch in 2016, Writing Day Workshops is excited to announce The 2019 Toronto Writing Workshop — a full-day “How to Get Published” writers conference in Toronto, Ontario, Canada on Saturday, August 17, 2019.

This writing event is a wonderful opportunity to get intense instruction over the course of one day, pitch a literary agent or editor (optional), get your questions answered, and more. Note that there are limited seats at the event (175 total). All questions about the event regarding schedule, details and registration are answered below. Thank you for your interest in the 2019 Toronto Writing Workshop!

WHAT IS IT?

This is a special one-day “How to Get Published” writing workshop at the Marriott Toronto downtown. In other words, it’s one day full of classes and advice designed to give you the best instruction concerning how to get your writing & books published. We’ll discuss your publishing opportunities today, how to write queries & pitches, how to market yourself and your books, what makes an agent/editor stop reading your manuscript, and more. No matter what you’re writing — fiction or nonfiction — the day’s classes will help point you in the right direction. Writers of all genres are welcome.

This event is designed to squeeze as much into one day of learning as possible. You can ask any questions you like during the classes, and get your specific concerns addressed. We will have literary agents onsite to give feedback and take pitches from writers, as well.

This year’s faculty includes the following:

  • literary agent Carly Watters (P.S. Literary)
  • literary agent Ali McDonald (The Rights Factory)
  • literary agent Paige Sisley (CookeMcDermid)
  • literary agent Léonicka Valcius (Transatlantic Literary)
  • literary agent Lindsay Leggett (The Rights Factory)
  • literary agent Nicole Bezanson (Metamorphosis Literary)
  • literary agent Cassandra Rodgers (The Rights Factory)
  • and many more to come.

By the end of the day, you will have all the tools you need to move forward on your writing journey. This independent event is organized by coordinator Kimiko Nakamura of Writing Day Workshops, with help from local writing groups.

EVENT LOCATION & DETAILS

9:30 a.m. – 5 p.m., Saturday, August 17, 2019: Marriott Downtown at CF Toronto Eaton Centre, 525 Bay St, Toronto, ON M5G 2L2, Canada. (416)597-9200.

WORKSHOP SCHEDULE

Forthcoming.

All throughout the day: Agent & Editor Pitching.

PITCH AN AGENT!

Screen Shot 2018-11-13 at 10.31.13 PM.pngCarly Watters is a literary agent with P.S. Literary. Carly is currently acquiring both fiction and nonfiction. In terms of fiction, she is seeking women’s fiction, upmarket adult, commercial adult, domestic suspense, literary mystery & thrillers, historical, contemporary romance, and smart book club fiction. In terms of nonfiction, she is looking for pop science, business, psychology, cookbooks, unique memoirs, lifestyle (health, wellness, relationships, parenting), narrative, and platform-based nonfiction (must have demonstrable expertise and a quantifiable market). Learn more about Carly here.

Screen Shot 2018-11-13 at 10.40.30 PM.pngAli McDonald is a literary agent at The Rights Factory. Now the lead agent specializing in children’s literature at The Rights Factory, Ali represents a select list of authors with projects ranging from novelty, board books, picture books, early readers, chapter books, and graphic novels, to middle grade, young adult and new adult fiction & nonfiction. She enjoys working primarily with debut authors, but also has the distinguished pleasure of representing literary stars among her international clients. Learn more about Ali here.

Screen Shot 2018-11-13 at 10.44.01 PM.pngPaige Sisley is a literary agent at CookeMcDermid. She is currently seeking well-written commercial fiction that both entertains and has something to say, and she is always on the lookout for nonfiction in the memoir, lifestyle, and health & wellness areas. Learn more about Paige Sisley here.

Screen Shot 2018-11-13 at 10.57.17 PM.pngLéonicka Valcius is a literary agent with Transatlantic Agency. “I am eager to work with people of color, including (but not limited to) trans people, disabled people, religious minorities, and queer folks. In adult and young adult fiction, I like fun commercial fiction, romance that ranges from sweet to steamy, otherworldly fantasy, and sweeping historical fiction. I do not represent mysteries or thrillers. In adult nonfiction, I like narrative nonfiction that explains complex issues through the lens of a personal story. I am also seeking books that straddle the self-help/lifestyle line (#selfcare #liveyourbestlife) and the self-help/business line (#productivityhack #riseandgrind). For middle grade and younger, I love humour, adventure, and make believe. I also enjoy stories about children navigating their changing relationships with family and friends. I strongly prefer books with at least one human character.” Learn more about Léonicka here.

Screen Shot 2018-11-13 at 10.53.35 PM.pngLindsay Leggett is a literary agent with The Rights Factory. Lindsay is focused on young adult, middle grade, and children’s books with unique, engaging, and diverse world’s and unforgettable characters. Within these kidlit realms, she would like to see horror, thriller, magical realism, fantasy, science fiction, LGBTTQIA+, #ownvoices. Learn more about Lindsay here.

Screen Shot 2018-11-13 at 10.48.26 PM.pngNicole Bezanson is a literary agent at Metamorphosis Literary Agency. At the 2019 event, she will be taking pitches on behalf of all her co-agents at the agency. Nicole is happy to hear pitches for the following: romance in all age groups and genres, women’s fiction, contemporary stories in both adult and young adult, sports stories of any kind, any kind of young adult fiction, paranormal (romance or not), horror, general fiction, LGBTQ+, book club reads, adult science fiction and fantasy, and thrillers. Learn more about Nicole here.

Screen Shot 2018-11-13 at 10.42.13 PM.pngCassandra Rodgers is a literary agent with The Rights Factory. Cassandra has a diverse group of clients from across North America that ranges from debut authors to celebrities. Actively building her list, she is interested in adult literary and commercial women’s fiction. With a degree in history and political science from the University of Toronto, she does have a weakness for historical fiction. Nonfiction is another passion – particularly politics, history, science, and finance. Memoirs that can make her laugh, cry, or inspire her are always welcome. Learn more about Cassandra here.

These one-on-one meetings are an amazing chance to pitch your book face-to-face with an agent, and get personal, individual feedback on your pitch/concept. If the agent likes your pitch, they’ll request to see part/all of your book — sending you straight past the slush pile. It also gives you an intimate chance to meet with an agent and pick their brain with any questions on your mind.

(Please note that Agent/Editor Pitching is an add-on, separate aspect of the day, for only those who sign up. Spaces are limited for these premium meetings, and pricing/detail is explained below.)

PRICING

$236 CAD / $179 USD — EARLY BIRD registration pricing! This is the complete base price for registration to the 2016 TWW and access to all workshops, all day.

Add $38 CAD / $29 USD — to secure a 10-minute one-on-one meeting with any of our literary agents in attendance. Use this special meeting as a chance to pitch your work and get professional feedback on your pitch. (Spaces limited.) If they wish, attendees are free to sign up for multiple 10-minute pitch sessions at $29USD/session — pitching multiple individuals, or securing 20 minutes to pitch one person rather than the usual 10.

Add $91 CAD / $69 USD — for an in-depth, personal critique of your one-page query letter.

How to pay/register — Registration is now open. Reach out to workshop organizer Kimiko Nakamura via email: WDWcoordinator@gmail.com, and she will provide specific instructions for payment and registration to get you a reserved seat at the event. Payment is by either PayPal or check. Because Kimiko plans different workshops, make sure you note that you’re inquiring about the Toronto workshop specifically.

REGISTRATION

Because of limited space at the venue of the Marriott Toronto downtown, the workshop can only allow 175 registrants, unless spacing issues change. For this reason, we encourage you to book sooner rather than later.

Are spaces still available? Yes, we still have spaces available. We will announce RIGHT HERE, at this point on this web page, when all spaces are taken. If you do not see a note right here saying how all spaces are booked, then yes, we still have room, and you are encouraged to register.

How to Register: The easy first step is simply to reach out to workshop organizer Kimiko Nakamura via email: WDWcoordinator@gmail.com. She will pass along registration information to you, and give instructions on how to pay by PayPal or check. Once payment is complete, you will have a reserved seat at the event. The TWW will send out periodic e-mail updates to all registered attendees with any & all news about the event. Because Kimiko plans different workshops, make sure you note that you’re inquiring about the Toronto workshop specifically.

Refunds: If you sign up for the event and have to cancel for any reason, you will receive 50% of your total payment back [sent by PayPal or U.S. dollar check]. The other 50% is nonrefundable and will not be returned, and helps the workshop ensure that only those truly interested in the limited spacing sign up for the event. (Please note that query editing payments are completely non-refundable if the instructor has already edited your letter.)

 

Advertisements

Get to Know an Agent in Attendance: Léonicka Valcius of Transatlantic Agency

Screen Shot 2018-11-13 at 10.57.13 PM.pngLéonicka Valcius is a literary agent with Transatlantic Agency.

I am eager to work with people of color, including (but not limited to) trans people, disabled people, religious minorities, and queer folks.

“In adult and young adult fiction, I like fun commercial fiction, romance that ranges from sweet to steamy, otherworldly fantasy, and sweeping historical fiction. I do not represent mysteries or thrillers.

“In adult nonfiction, I like narrative nonfiction that explains complex issues through the lens of a personal story. I am also seeking books that straddle the self-help/lifestyle line (#selfcare #liveyourbestlife) and the self-help/business line (#productivityhack #riseandgrind).

“For middle grade and younger, I love humour, adventure, and make believe. I also enjoy stories about children navigating their changing relationships with family and friends. I strongly prefer books with at least one human character.”

Get to Know an Agent in Attendance: Lindsay Leggett of The Rights Factory

Screen Shot 2018-11-13 at 10.53.04 PM.pngLindsay Leggett is a literary agent with The Rights Factory.

Lindsay grew up in the frozen wilds of Northern Ontario, and turned a love of reading and writing into a passion for editing. After working for a variety of authors and publishers, she found a home at The Rights Factory.

Lindsay is focused on young adult, middle grade, and children’s books with unique, engaging, and diverse world’s and unforgettable characters. Within these kidlit realms, she would like to see horror, thriller, magical realism, fantasy, science fiction, LGBTTQIA+, #ownvoices.

Get to Know an Agent in Attendance: Nicole Bezanson of Metamorphosis Literary Agency

Screen Shot 2018-11-13 at 10.48.30 PM.pngNicole Bea is a literary agent at Metamorphosis Literary Agency. At the 2019 event, she will be taking pitches on behalf of all her co-agents at the agency.

Nicole is happy to hear pitches for the following:

  • romance in all age groups and genres
  • women’s fiction
  • contemporary stories in both adult and young adult
  • sports stories of any kind
  • Any kind of young adult fiction
  • paranormal (romance or not)
  • horror
  • general fiction
  • LGBTQ+
  • book club reads
  • adult science fiction and fantasy
  • thrillers

Nicole is a short story author & novelist who primarily focuses on contemporary teen fiction. An avid storyteller since childhood, she has honed her skills through a variety of different educational programs. When she isn’t busy updating her manuscript portfolio, she can usually be found reading, avoiding domestic chores, & pursuing her new hobby of learning how to cook. She & her husband share their home in Eastern Canada with a collection of disabled cats and a lifetime’s worth of books.

 

Get to Know an Agent in Attedance: Paige Sisley of CookeMcDermid

Screen Shot 2018-11-13 at 10.43.58 PM.pngPaige Sisley is a literary agent at CookeMcDermid.

She is currently seeking well-written commercial fiction that both entertains and has something to say, and she is always on the lookout for nonfiction in the memoir, lifestyle, and health & wellness areas.

In addition to developing her own list, Paige oversees CookeMcDermid clients’ film and TV rights and handles marketing and publicity for the agency. Previously, she was a rights assistant for Cooke International, an agency specializing in foreign rights management for a diverse group of publishing clients.

Paige has her Master of Arts from Ryerson University’s Literatures of Modernity program and a Bachelor’s degree in English from the University of King’s College and Dalhousie University. A born and bred Torontonian, she loves a good adventure and has also lived in LA, New Zealand and Halifax.

Get to Know an Agent in Attendance: Cassandra Rodgers of The Rights Factory

Screen Shot 2016-04-29 at 8.09.26 PM.pngCassandra Rodgers is a literary agent with The Rights Factory.

Cassandra has a diverse group of clients from across North America that ranges from debut authors to celebrities. Actively building her list, she is interested in adult literary and commercial women’s fiction. With a degree in history and political science from the University of Toronto, she does have a weakness for historical fiction. Nonfiction is another passion – particularly politics, history, science, and finance. Memoirs that can make her laugh, cry, or inspire her are always welcome.

After a long career in finance, Cassandra Rodgers decided to pursue her love of literature by getting involved with running a literary festival. Organizing panels, looking after authors and managing promotions paved the way to her current career as an agent. She joined The Rights Factory in 2013, where she uses her discerning tastes and sharp business acumen in the service of her clients’ literary careers.

When not at her laptop and reading manuscripts, her time is directed to her two children, her friends, and infrequent visits to the gym. The stacks of books that have taken over her home indicate that reading is still a joy as well as a business. She lives in central Toronto.

Get to Know an Agent in Attendance: Ali McDonald of The Rights Factory

Screen Shot 2016-04-29 at 10.30.39 AM.pngAli McDonald is a literary agent at The Rights Factory.

Now the lead agent specializing in children’s literature at The Rights Factory, Ali represents a select list of authors with projects ranging from novelty, board books, picture books, early readers, chapter books, and graphic novels, to middle grade, young adult and new adult fiction & nonfiction. She enjoys working primarily with debut authors, but also has the distinguished pleasure of representing literary stars among her international clients.

After ten years in the service industry, Ali McDonald decided to make use of her BA in English Literature & Linguistics (Glendon College, York University). She enrolled in the Ryerson University publishing program and applied to The Rights Factory. In the year that followed, Ali graduated from agency assistant to editorial associate to associate agent. That was 2009.

In the wild, Ali can be seen typically reading a book (kidlit, of course), watching guilty pleasure TV, or the rare cameo at the family-run restaurant. She lives with her husband and in-laws in Toronto’s east end.