Past Events


Events and Activities for Southern California Writers

What Writers Must Know About Working With Representation Today — and Tomorrow

Monday, April 28, 2014
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 28th will present a panel of stellar Southern California agents who will provide a look at their world today. We’ll cover what you need to know to find the right representative, how to get their attention, "do's and don'ts," what kind of feedback you can expect to receive, and the steps you should take to create the strongest and longest-lasting relationships with writers and editors — as well as touch on what the future of the author/agent relationship will be in our new era of publishing, film/cable, and technology. We will also have a top Hollywood motion picture and TV agent who specializes in working with newer writers, for those who are pursuing screenwriting rather than (or in addition to) book writing. And we’ll be examining the E-book factor, transitioning from self-publishing to traditional publishing, book-to-film deals, and more. Come join us!

Our stellar lineup of panelists includes:

TONI LOPOPOLO, founder and president of Toni Lopopolo Literary Management, 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.

ToniHer 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.

EDDIE PIETZAK, an agent with the legendary Alan Nevins' Renaissance Literary & Talent Agency of Hollywood, has spent the past four years of his career working for Renaissance, and currently manages all areas of the operation. He is instrumental in identifying new talent for the core publishing business and conducts the day-to-day foreign rights licensing for the company. After receiving his degree in television and politics from Ithaca College, Pietzak moved to the West Coast to start his career at Abrams Artists Agency, where he spent time learning the trade and developed a passion for talent representation. It was from that point he felt his true calling for the literary world and decided to join Renaissance Literary & Talent.

An avid reader and lover of books, Pietzak includes biography, memoir, historical fiction, science fiction, pop culture, business, culinary, political, self-help, and humor among his wide-ranging reading interests.

Dana NewmanDANA NEWMAN, president and founder of Dana Newman Literary, is an experienced contracts and intellectual property attorney, and longtime LA-based literary agent.

She combines her professional insight gained from working in the entertainment industry during the tumultuous transition from analog to digital platforms in film and audio with an educational background including a B.A. in Comparative Literature from UC Berkeley and her Juris Doctorate from the University of San Francisco, and a lifelong love of reading to provide a sophisticated and innovative approach to her role as a literary agent.

Dana focuses on both practical and narrative nonfiction in the areas of memoir/biography, pop culture, business, current affairs, health and wellness, and sports, as well as a select amount of commercial literary fiction.

BJ RobbinsBJ ROBBINS, BJ Robbins Literary Agency, began her book publishing career in the P\publicity department at Simon & Schuster and later moved to Harcourt, where she was Director of Marketing and then Senior Editor. In 1992, she started her own Los Angeles-based literary agency.

Her client list includes novelists James D. Houston (Bird of Another Heaven), CBS TV Late Late Show host Craig Ferguson (Between the Bridge and the River), and Nafisa Haji (The Sweetness of Tears); memoirists Wendy Werris (An Alphabetical Life: Living It Up in the World of Books) and Carol Ann Harris (Storms: My Life with Lindsey Buckingham and Fleetwood Mac); nonfiction writer Roger Love (Love Your Voice); and travel writer J. Maarten Troost (The Sex Lives of Cannibals).

Her agency represents quality fiction and general nonfiction, with a particular interest in literary fiction, mystery, commercial fiction, historical fiction, thrillers, offbeat/quirky memoir, history, sports, medicine, current affairs, business, psychology and health.

Tim LambertTIM LAMBERT is the president and founder of Abbot Entertainment, a full-service agency providing complete coverage, consultation, and representation for motion picture and TV writers. Tim has worked in the development departments of Spyglass Entertainment, Ithaca Films, Twenty Two Productions, Teatown Communications Group, and Goldcrest. After graduating from Cornell University, Tim moved to New York City where he produced television commercials and supervised multi-million-dollar film buys.

Seeking a career focused on new and emerging technologies and their applications in motion picture and television production (as well as warmer winters!), Tim relocated to Southern California, founding Abbot Entertainment in 2008.

Telly DavidsonModerator
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 satirical novel Pop Culture.

For two years he was senior "Culture Columnist" for David Frum's enormously popular FrumForum.com, and his writing has appeared in over 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 is working with veteran film producers' representative Jeff Porter in acquisitions and research for his company, Porter Pictures, and on the launch of their new online streaming cable network in partnership with Open Vision Networks, True Indie TV.

Telly is a proud and active member of IWOSC and PEN-USA, having hosted or served on several IWOSC 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" 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 Meetings

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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Quality Queries & Powerful Proposals: What Do Agents and Publishers REALLY Want?

Saturday, April 26, 2014
10:30 am to 1:00 p.m.

In this interactive seminar, we’ll look at why a great query and proposal are crucial for any author who’s seeking a traditional publishing deal -- and almost as important for authors who want to self-publish.

We’ll focus on:

  • Queries and proposals: where the creative and business aspects of publishing meet
  • How to think like an agent
  • Are proposals necessary for fiction?
  • Using queries and proposals to enhance your creative process
  • Why queries and proposals are important even if you want to self-publish

Our presenter: MONICA FAULKNER.
In today’s competitive and fast-changing marketplace, it isn’t just about “the book” — it's even more about building a career. Editor and publishing consultant Monica Faulkner is dedicated to helping authors maximize the creative and commercial potential of their fiction, nonfiction, screenplays, and other writing projects.

Monica FaulknerA published author with a journalism background, she offers a complete range of editing services, including: manuscript analyses and evaluations; developmental editing, with a special emphasis on one-on-one coaching through rewrites; copyediting, line editing, and proofreading; strategic planning about the most effective ways to self-publish or get published; submissions to agents and established traditional publishers for author clients; complete project management, from editorial through design and production for authors who want to independently publish, market, and promote their own projects; and working with authors to turn their expertise and knowledge into a rewarding and profitable speaking career.

To learn more, visit her at MonicaFaulkner.com.


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 email to the IWOSC office, info(at-sign)iwosc.org
When reserving:
Please write “IWOSC Reservation” 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.

For proof of your reservation, bring a printout of your email or show a smartphone version of your “sent” email or confirmation.

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 to let us know.


Future IWOSC Seminar and 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.

Pasadena/Altadena Satellite

IWOSC's Pasadena/Altadena Satellite meets the 2nd Friday of the month at Coffee Gallery. This is a joint meeting of our IWOSC Pasadena Satellite and the Alameda Writers Group Special Interest Group (SIG).

Hosted by: Jane Neff Rollins

Next meetings:
Friday, April 11
Friday, May 9
Friday, June 13
Friday, July 11

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, April 9
Wednesday, May 14
Wednesday, June 11
Wednesday, July 9

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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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: Dawn Wood. Dawn is a published poet, physician, and medical script consultant, who recently taught medical narrative fiction at a University of Iowa workshop, The Examined Life: Writing and the Art of Medicine.

Next meetings:
Thursday, April 10
Thursday, May 8
Thursday, June 12
Thursday, July 10

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

Please email to let Dawn Wood know you'll be coming.

More info: This group has its own website at iwoscventura.ning.com.

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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, April 10
Thursday, May 8
Thursday, June 12
Thursday, July 10

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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Orange County Satellite

IWOSC's Orange County Satellite meets on the 3rd Thursday of the month at 7 p.m. at the Tustin Library.

Hosted by: Kurt Bensworth

Next meetings:
Thursday, April 17
Thursday, May 15
Thursday, June 19
Thursday, July 17

Time: 7 to 9 p.m.

Tustin Library
345 E. Main Street
Tustin, California

Free to both IWOSC members and non-members.

If you have any questions about this satellite,
contact Kurt by email.

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South Bay Satellite

IWOSC's new 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.

The South Bay Satellite of IWOSC will meet on the third Tuesday of each month at 10a.m. at the Marmalade Cafe in El Segundo: 2014 Park Place. (just east of PCH, a block north of Rosecrans)

Next meetings:
Tuesday, April 22 — Date change because writing events are coming at us right and left so this gives us a little breathing space. We'll meet on Earth Day and celebrate under the trees on the patio. Bring jacket or sweater for comfort.
Tuesday, May 20
Tuesday, June 17
Tuesday, July 15

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: Joan Rodman, writeratwork@yahoo.com

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WInter Party 2013As independent writers in Southern California, we love opportunities to get together and learn. But a couple of times a year we also enjoy putting our official writing presenations aside and simply socializng with our fellow writers.

We kept our tradition of holding our Winter Party at the historic, elegant, architecturally striking Millennium Biltmore Hotel, downtown LA. We met for no-host cocktails in the gorgeous Rendezvous Court. Some of us took an escorted tour of the hotel, including the elegant ballrooms and indoor pool. At Smeraldi’s Restaurant, we dined on the Biltmore’s famous custom pasta bar with all the trimmings, salad, beverages and great desserts. Awards and drawings followed.

Biltmore Hotel
506 South Grand Avenue,
Los Angeles, CA 90071

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IWOSC Reads Its Own

Join us for a afternoon of eclectic, eccentric, and exemplary works — from poems to true stories to hilarious monologues and beyond — read aloud by distinguished IWOSC scribes. We’ll be regaled with their wit, have our emotions stirred, or be plunged into deep thought as these talented member writers read short excerpts from their published, unpublished, or in-progress works at the beautiful independent bookstore, Vroman's Bookstore in Pasadena, California. We'll list our readers closer to this date.

Our readers this Sunday are:

  • G. L. HELM

Sunday, March 16, 2014
2 to 4 p.m.

Free. The public is welcome.
No reservations necessary.

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

There is plenty of parking on Colorado and neighboring streets.


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