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Past 2015 Events


Events and Activities for Southern California Writers

GENERAL MEETING/ Panel Discussion
ANNUAL LITERARY AGENTS PANEL: What Writers Must Know About Working With Representation Today — and Tomorrow

Monday, April 27, 2015
7:30 to 9:15 p.m. (networking follows the program)

In a fast-changing marketplace, it’s more important than ever to have an advocate to fight for you when going the route of traditional publishing. Our annual Agent's program this April 27 will present a panel of stellar Southern California agents who will provide a look at their world today. Topics we'll be covering (and there will be time for Q&A from the audience) will include:

  • Do's and Don’ts — how to get an agent's attention in a good way, what agents are especially on the lookout for (and what they DON'T want to see) in cover/query letters and proposals.
  • How to make your cover, query, or proposal irresistible, and how to match yourself with the right agent for your "brand" and interests as a writer.
  • The future of the agent/author/publisher relationship in our new era of digital technology, E-books, and self- and small-press publishing. What an agent can – and can't – do in our brave new world.
  • Establishing your platform – both in terms of expertise and social or magazine media visibility.
  • Young adult, graphic/comic book novels, and genre or series vs. "literary" stand-alone fiction, and self/small press publishing vs. mainstream – which would work best for your book?
  • Writing for a 21st century audience – how to make your characters or nonfiction subject matter relevant and come alive to a wired, diverse, Gen-X and Millennial audience by using up-to-the-minute techniques, styles, and genres.

We will ALSO have a top Hollywood motion picture and TV agent for those who are pursuing screenwriting rather than (or in addition to) book writing.

Our terrific lineup — more names to be announced soon! — will include:

ToniTONI LOPOPOLO is founder and president of Toni Lopopolo Literary Management. She has a book-publishing resume that began in 1970 in the publicity department of Bantam Books. As executive editor at both Macmillan and later St. Martins, she published Judy Mazel’s "Beverly Hills Diet" and popular best-selling women’s fiction by Barbara Raskin and Kate Coscarelli. Her literary agency was founded in 1991.

She has made deals for authors such as novelist/nonfiction author Sol Stein ("Stein on Writing"), novelist/nonfiction author Shelly Lowenkopf ("The Fiction Writer’s Handbook"), gritty Chicano noir mystery writer Manuel Ramos ("Brown-on-Brown: A Luis Montez Mystery"), and romance author Flo Fitzgerald ("Ghost of a Chance"), and worked with Hollywood legends like Jacqueline Susann, Hermione Gingold, and Robert Stack.

Toni looks for well-written, well-edited fiction: mysteries/thrillers, mainstream fiction with proactive female protagonists, and ethnic writers (including Hispanic). In nonfiction, she is interested in memoir with a message, family-oriented subjects, health, coping with special problems, and topical subjects. Toni conducts workshops for novelists and memoirists, and offers coaching on creating irresistible pitches and book proposals.

Toni's website is: LopopoloLiterary.com.

JENNIFER AZANTIANJENNIFER AZANTIAN began her career over three thousand miles away from the hub of traditional publishing, in Southern California. As a teenager, she had two main loves: her love of literature and her love of children. Though she was always reading and writing, Jennifer pursued a career in clinical and developmental psychology, with a focus on young people.

In 2010, she graduated with a BS degree and honors from UC San Diego and pursued an internship with the prestigious Sandra Dijkstra Literary Agency. Within three months, she had a job as an assistant to Elise Capron and Sandy Dijkstra, and a few months later, she was open to submissions.

During her years at the Dijkstra agency, Jennifer learned from the best and had the pleasure of working with some of the most prolific and talented authors around. She also developed her taste for fantasy, science-fiction, and horror that focuses on characters that feel real, the kind whose stories she can get invested in regardless of extravagance in plot or setting. She is fascinated by the basic human truths that emerge at the heart of all the greatest fantasies.

You can learn more about her services at AzantianLitAgency.com.

Jennifer RofeJENNIFER ROFE handles children's fiction for arguably the most powerful and longest-established Children's and YA agency on the West Coast, Andrea Brown Literary.

Jennifer handles children's fiction projects, from picture books to young adult. Middle grade is her soft spot; she's open to all genres in this category, especially the tender or hilarious. For YA, Jennifer’s drawn to contemporary works; dramatic or funny romance; and urban fantasy/light sci-fi.

For picture books, early readers, and chapter books, she’s interested in character-driven projects and smart, exceptional writing. Jennifer also enjoys how-to and sports-related nonfiction. Her clients include Laurie David, Cambria Gordon, Crystal Allen, and Barry Wolverton.

Jennifer is co-author of the picture book, "Piggies in the Pumpkin Patch."

Check her and her colleagues out at AndreaBrownLit.com.

PaulPAUL S. LEVINE, PAUL S. LEVINE LITERARY AGENCY, is a lawyer and a literary agent. He has practiced entertainment law for over 30 years, representing authors, writers, producers, actors, directors, composers, musicians, artists, photographers, publishers, in the fields of publishing, motion pictures, television, interactive multimedia, live stage, recorded music, concerts, and the visual arts.

Levine has sold over one hundred fiction and nonfiction books and has had many books developed as movies-for-television and feature films.

His biggest successes have been with self-published authors with impressive sales who wanted to have their books republished by a major publishing house.

His website is PaulSLevineLit.com

TellyTELLY DAVIDSON is author of the acclaimed media tie-in book "TV's Grooviest Variety Shows,"
cited as a Book of the Year by the TV Academy, and the forthcoming nonfiction book "What Didn't You Like About It," a serious (and seriously funny) look back at the politics and pop culture of the 1990s.

For two years he was senior "Culture Columnist" for David Frum's enormously spopular FrumForum.com, and his writing has appeared in more than a dozen commercial publications and websites including AllAboutJazz, FilmStew, YahooMovies, the Los Angeles Daily News, Entertainment Today, and on the TV specials "Pioneers of Television," "Most Outrageous Game Show Moments,” and as associate producer for KCET's "The WRITE Environment."

Currently Telly works with veteran film producers' representative Jeff Porter in acquisitions and research for his company, Porter Pictures, and he is a proud and active member of IWOSC, having hosted or served on several panels including "Books-to-Film," "Biographies & Memoirs," and earlier "Trends in Publishing" programs.


Veterans Memorial Building
4117 Overland Avenue
Culver City, California
Parking entrance on Culver 
Corner of Culver Boulevard.
Map of location.
Parking is free.

Note: Wear layered clothing as the temperature in the room can vary.

IWOSC members - free

Non-members - $15

Reservations by email only.
Reservation deadline: space permitting, 12:00 noon on Monday, the day of the meeting.

To reserve:
Email the IWOSC office with "IWOSC Reservation" and the date or meeting month in the subject line.
Be sure to tell us your first name, your last name, a phone number, and whether you are a member or not.

Your name will be on a list at the check-in table.
For proof of your reservation, bring a printout of your email or show a smartphone version of your “sent” email or confirmation. Please arrive before 7:20 pm to be seated. Doors open to everyone at 7:20 p.m. and people will be admitted as space permits.

If you have a blocker such as Boxbe, be sure to add info(at-sign)iwosc.org to your OK list or you will never see your confirmation.

If you reserve and can not attend, please email our office to let us know.
For information call 310-773-8075.

Future IWOSC General Meeting/Panel Discussion

As a rule, IWOSC meetings are the 4th Monday of the month.
We don't hold meetings in August or December, opting for parties those months.

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The Seven Steps to a Successful Book

Saturday, April 25, 2015
10:30 am to 1:00 p.m.

Nearly all nonfiction books are sold with a proposal that enlists the aid of a literary agent in convincing an acquisitions editor at a publishing entity to advance funds to a writer with an idea.

Bring paper and pen (or a laptop or iPad) and your best idea for a nonfiction* book, and learn how to write irresistible query letters and book proposals. Marvin J. Wolf, author of a dozen nonfiction books, as well as a novel and several photography books, will take you through the seven steps to a successful book.

*Except for a handful of superstars, selling a novel or a screenplay requires that the writer create a brilliant first draft of the work. Nevertheless, novelists and screenwriters will find this workshop valuable.

Our Presenter: MARVIN J. WOLFMavin Wolf
The author of 17 books, including a novel, and the screenplay for “Ladies Night” (USA Network, 2005), Wolf is a charter member of IWOSC and four-time past president. He also belongs to the Writers Guild of America, West, the American Society of Journalists and Authors, and the USMC Combat Correspondents Association.

He served in Vietnam as a combat photographer and was awarded a battlefield commission as well as the Bronze Star, the Air Medal and the Purple Heart.

Wolf sold his first book, “The Japanese Conspiracy” (Empire Books, 1983) without an agent. This was an investigative exposé of the secret collusion between the Japanese government and industrial conglomerates in violation of international trade agreements.

Since then, usually with the services of an agent, he has written on his own or collaborated as co-author or ghost writer to produce well-regarded autobiographies of ABC Broadcasting founder Leonard Goldenson (“Beating The Odds”), Native American leader Russell Means (“Where White Men Fear To Tread”), and former South Vietnam Prime Minister Nguyen Cao Ky (“Buddha’s Child”).

His latest book (February 2015) is “Abandoned In Hell, The Fight For Vietnam's Firebase Kate.”

Veterans Memorial Building
4117 Overland Avenue
Culver City, California
Corner of Culver Boulevard.
Parking entrance on Culver. Parking is free.

Wear layered clothing; the room is usually comfortable, but the temperature can vary.

IWOSC members: $15
Non-members: $35
If you pay for the meeting and decide to join that day, you will be credited for the member rate.

Reservations Required — Space is limited.
Reservation deadline: 5 p.m. the Friday before the seminar.

For further information you may phone 310-773-8075 or email the office.

Reservations are by email only.
Send your reservation email to the IWOSC office, info(at-sign)iwosc.org
When reserving:
Please write “IWOSC Reservation – [the date] seminar” in the subject line.
Provide your first name, your last name, a phone number, and let us know whether you are a member or not so we can accurately list you on our check-in sheet.

You will receive a confirming email from IWOSC, and your name will be on a list at check-in. For proof of your reservation, bring a printout of your email or show a Smartphone version of your “sent” email or confirmation. Doors open at 10:00 a.m. Please arrive by 10:20 a.m. to be assured a seat.

People without reservations will be admitted as space permits starting at 10:20 a.m.

If you have a blocker such as Boxbe, please add info(at-sign)iwosc.org to your OK list or you will never see your confirmations.

NOTE: If you reserve and can not attend, please email the IWOSC office (info(at-sign)iwosc.org) or (310) 773-8075 to let us know.


Future IWOSC Seminar/Workshops

As a rule, IWOSC seminars are held on the 3rd Saturday of each month.
We don't hold a seminar in August or December as those are our party months.


IWOSC's monthly drop-in satellite sessions are free and open to all writers — both members and non-members.
Bring your writing, your ideas, problems, questions, and complaints. Receive support, laughs, juicy controversy, and plenty of networking. And please support our hosts by purchasing snacks and other products.

You may notice the Orange County Satellite has di

Westside Satellite

IWOSC's Westside Satellite meets the 2nd Thursday at 10 a.m. at the Santa Monica Bay Woman's Club in Santa Monica.

Hosted by: Vickey Kalambakal

Next meetings:
Thursday, March 12
Thursday, April 9
Thursday, May 14

Time: 10 to 11:30 a.m.

Santa Monica Bay Woman's Club
1210 4th Street
Santa Monica, California 90401

We alternate between reading our own work, listening to a speaker, or just going around the table asking questions, sharing gripes and discussing insights.

Parking: You can park for free in the small lot south of the Woman's Club, but due to other events, you may have to wait 10 minutes or so to retrieve your car afterward. Parking is also available in the city lot next door; the first 90 minutes are free.

Admission: There is a fee of $3 per meeting. This fee is donated to a charity.

RSVPs are appreciated, but not necessary.
Please email Vickey with your RSVPs or questions.

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Ventura County Satellite (Thousand Oaks)

IWOSC's Ventura County satellite meets the 2nd Thursday at 10 a.m. at Linda Parks, County of Ventura Board of Supervisor, Second District Office at 625 West Hillcrest Drive, Thousand Oaks, 91360

Hosted by: Sharon Schnell.

Next meetings:
Thursday, March 12
Thursday, April 9
Thursday, May 14

Time: 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Free to both IWOSC members and non-members.

Linda Parks, County of Ventura Board of Supervisor, Second District Office
625 West Hillcrest Drive
Thousand Oaks, California 91360

Pasadena/Altadena Satellite

IWOSC's Pasadena/Altadena Satellite meets the 2nd Friday of the month at Coffee Gallery.

Hosted by: Jane Neff Rollins

Next meetings:
Friday, Mar 13
Friday, Apr 10
Friday, May 8

Time: 8:30 a.m. to 10 a.m.

Coffee Gallery
2029 N. Lake Avenue
Altadena, California 91001

Free to both IWOSC members and non-members.
However, we'd like you to purchase coffee or a snack in support of our host.

For more information about this satellite,
write to Jane Neff Rollins or call her at (818) 957-3405.

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West San Fernando Valley (Woodland Hills/SFV) Satellite

IWOSC's San Fernando Valley Satellite meets in Sherman Oaks (pretty much) each 2nd Wednesday. If you live in the area or just happen to be around at meeting time, come join Sylvia and fellow scribes in a free-flowing exchange of ideas about their work and the writing business.

Hosted by: Sylvia Cary

Next meetings:
Wednesday, March 11
Wednesday, April 8
Wednesday, May 13

Time: 10:15 to 11:30 a.m.

Crown Books at the Promenade
6100 Topanga Canyon Blvd Suite 1340
Woodland Hills, CA 91367

Free parking in the shopping center

Free to both IWOSC members and non-members.

For any questions write to Sylvia Cary.

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South Bay Satellite

IWOSC's South Bay Satellite is for writers who live or work south of Culver City. This South Bay area extends from the Pacific to Manhattan Beach, Hermosa Beach, Redondo Beach, El Segundo, and the book loving towns of Torrance, Gardena and Lomita. Gutsy travelers from San Pedro and Long Beach are more than welcome.

We meet on the third Tuesday of each month.

Hosted by: Barbie Herrera (with thanks to Joan Rodman for her years of greatleadership and coordinaion)

Next meetings:
Tuesday, March 17
Tuesday, April 21
Tuesday, May 19

10:00 a.m.

Marmalade Cafe in El Segundo
2014 Park Place
(just east of PCH, a block north of Rosecrans)
El Segundo, California

Free to both IWOSC members and non-members.

If you have any questions/suggestions about this satellite, please write to: Barbie Herrera, BarbsArt at RoadRunner.com

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Orange County Satellite

IWOSC's Orange County Satellite is back, thanks to our wonderful new OC satellite host, Andrea Ring. Attendees of the inaugural meeting on February 4 are all looking forward to the next meetings and are spreading the word.

If you are used to attending the previous meetings, please note that there is now a new meeting pattern, the first Wednesday of every month, and a new location, Zito’s Bar and Grill, stated below.

Hosted by: Andrea Ring

Next meetings:
Wednesday, March 4
Wednesday, April 1
Wednesday, May 6

7:00 - 9:00 p.m.

Location — new:
Zito’s Bar and Grill
17320 17th St.
Tustin, CA 92780

Free to both IWOSC members and non-members. Food/beverage purchase is not required, but in appreciation of our restaurant host, it is suggested. If you’re going to order food, please arrive early so you can order and get your food before the meeting starts.

Reservations are not required, but a quick email to Andrea letting her know you’re coming would be appreciated. Contact her at aring633 at gmail.com.

The group aslo has its own web page at IWOSCOC.weebly.com.

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IWOSC Reads Its Own — Everyone is invited!

Sunday, August 2
2:00 to 4:00 p.m.


Vroman's Bookstore
695 E. Colorado Blvd
Pasadena, California 91101

There is plenty of parking on Colorado and neighboring streets.

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Some of Our Past Events

Wondering what other events and types of events we've had?

Past 2006 events ~ Past 2007 events ~ Past 2008 events ~ Past 2009 events ~ Past 2010 events
Past 2011 events ~ Past 2012 events ~ Past 2013 events ~ Past 2014 events ~ Past 2015 events