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SPAWNews is packed with writing, editing, illustrating, and publishing information. Each month you receive market opportunities, events, and articles you can use now!
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SPAWNews Archives

SPAWNews, June, 2007

Wendy Dager, Editor

For contributions to the newsletter and Letters to the Editor, please email the editor of SPAWNews:

Those of you who are SPAWN members, be sure to go to the first page of the site, and click on the “Visit Member Area” button. You will be asked to log in.

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Table of Contents

- Editor’s Note

- Market Update

- Los Angeles Times Festival of Books Report

- What Can You Expect From Your Editor?

- Ask the Book Doctor

- Member News

- Opportunities

- Contests

- Events and More

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Editor’s Note

By Wendy Dager

My 18-year-old daughter attends culinary school. The 15-month program is difficult, but, with hard work, she will graduate in November with an A.O.S. degree and Le Cordon Bleu diplôme.

She must complete a 3-month externship as a graduation requirement. This is where we’ve been having some conflict. She wants to go back to the restaurant at which she was working before she started school. The restaurant’s owners will pay her just a little over minimum wage, even with her Le Cordon Bleu training. My husband and I think our daughter should look for work elsewhere instead of settling for a job she’s outgrown.

How many times have you, as a writer, publisher or artist, "settled?" Have you taken a job just for a byline? Have you earned less than the going rate for a specific project? Have you worked for a customer that took advantage of you—because you’d let him?

There are times when this just—well—happens. Could be you lowered your fee or are doing volunteer work because it is a worthy organization or client. Maybe it is early on in your career and you are willing to make monetary sacrifices to get established. Or you’ve quoted a price for a job that ended up being a lot more involved than you’d expected.

Or, perhaps, devaluation is the constant state of your professional life.

Wouldn’t you rather reach out and grab opportunities that are more financially rewarding—and, possibly, more mentally challenging—than that for which you are settling?

My daughter, the chef-to-be, feels "safe" with her former employer. She wants to stay with what she knows because it’s easier than venturing out and looking for a bigger—pardon the culinary pun—slice of the pie. I understand her lack of confidence. Going on job interviews is intimidating, especially for someone so young. Still, her dad and I are encouraging her to step out of that safety zone and look for a place that will reward her commensurate with her experience and education.

Whether you are a chef, artist, writer, publisher or any other professional—life should never be about settling for less than you deserve. Carpe oportunitas! Seize the opportunities—and make the most of them.

–Wendy Dager is editor of SPAWNews. Her web site is

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Market Update

By Patricia Fry

Don’t miss the June SPAWN Market Update! This edition promises over 80 items of interest including more than 50 opportunities for authors, freelance writers, poets, artists and screenwriters. We’ve added new columns—including one for "Jobs and Other Opportunities." We also provide a list of regional publishing organizations throughout the U.S. that offer face-to-face meetings. If you live in Oregon, the Great Lakes area, Florida, San Diego, Los Angeles, New England, the Midwest, St. Louis or Seattle, you won't want to miss this report. Are you looking for a publicist or public relations’ company, poetry contests, a library directory or fiction markets? We provide links to databases for all of these in this month's SPAWN Market Update.

Whether you are seeking a publisher for your manuscript, book promotion resources, an automatic critique program, opportunities to show your script, paying poetry markets, networking opportunities, information on creating a book trailer, paying markets for fiction or industry news, it's all in the monthly SPAWN Market Update.

In this month’s June 2007 Market Update:

  • How to get your copyright at a reduced rate
  • IMPORTANT! Updates for your resources list – verified current/active URLs, contact email addresses, etc.
  • A web site that will include your book on their site for FREE
  • Seen movie trailers? How about “book trailers?”
  • How newspapers are discouraging reading
  • Network face-to-face with authors/publishers in YOUR area – We’ll tell you where.
  • “Book to the Future? “ A book-on-demand machine that can print and bind a chosen book in minutes
  • A new adult literacy program with an innovative participation plan

Join SPAWN NOW and you'll have access to this enormously valuable 12-page newsletter as well as our entire SPAWN Market Update archives. This single aspect of SPAWN membership is easily worth hundreds of dollars to any author, independent publisher, freelance writer, poet or screenwriter.

If you are not yet a member of SPAWN and would like to access Market Update and enjoy other benefits of membership, please join now online at

Note: If you are a free newsletter subscriber only, you will be unable to log onto SPAWN’s "Members Only" page.

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Los Angeles Times Festival of Books Report

By Patricia Fry

Seven SPAWN members experienced various measures of bookselling success at the huge Los Angeles Times Festival of Books this year. And what a grand time we had! We handed out nearly 300 copies of the "SPAWN Catalog of Members' Books and Services" to interested parties and received about the same number of signups for the free e-newsletter. Members who participated in the booth report that they sold around 80 books between them—with two members having sold over 20 books each. One member's book wasn't ready in time for the festival, but she had a signup sheet and collected names for her mailing list.

In addition to the benefit from immediate book sales, members were extremely pleased about the exposure they got at this well-attended event. One member said, "I sold books and I made some good contacts which I expect will result in even more sales." Another member said, "I made two very important contacts." And still another reported, "The best part (besides being with Patricia and Virginia) was meeting people who had key relationships with some big shots in Hollywood." That member has just met Steven Spielberg through the contact he made at the festival.

See some photos from the festival:

We collected some exciting ideas to use next year—ideas that will definitely result in more sales for our members. We have already reserved two booths for next year. So mark your calendars for the last weekend in April and start saving up so you can join us in the SPAWN booth at the 2008 Los Angeles Times Festival of Books!

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What Can You Expect From Your Editor?

By Patricia Fry

I’ve been doing quite a bit of editing lately and I love the work. I’ve edited a fantasy, a thriller, a few spiritual books and memoirs as well as a true crime, a historical, some how-to and self-help books and mass market novels.

While the books are different in content and purpose, there are some similarities between many of them as far as editing goes. Are you curious as to what they are?

Read about the latest editing rules and recommendations at

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Ask the Book Doctor: About Writing for a Living in Dumbed-Down America

By Bobbie Christmas

Q: I'm a teacher. This year the job is more demanding then ever. I really want to know if my novel is marketable and whether I should continue to consider creative writing as a replacement career for teaching.

A: I haven't seen your manuscript, so I'm speaking in generalities; I have no idea of your skill level. Consider creative writing as a potential way to produce supplemental income at first, rather than thinking of it as a replacement career.

We can't all be like J.K. Rowling and produce hits like the Harry Potter series. Only a few people can rely on creative writing to supply a reliable income, but many of us supplement our income with creative writing. I, for instance, sell my writing, but I also edit the work of others, which keeps a roof over my head and helps other writers, while I work with the raw materials I love: words.

Read about these and other interesting topics at

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Member News

Note: To have your announcements included in this section, you must be a paid member of SPAWN. Please email your news to

Leon Cooper is a WW II veteran of the South Pacific battles. During the research for his second book, Leon found that the beach at Tarawa, where thousands of Marines died, is now a garbage dump. He considers Tarawa Beach to be sacred ground, and he’s fighting to clean it up and put a memorial in its place. Leon Cooper invites everyone to view his video interview by CBS: To help in this campaign, contact Leon at

Brigitte Aflalo-Calderon announces that her article on women’s issues related to France’s recent elections appeared on

Patricia Hamilton’s book California Healthy, Southern California Edition: The adventurer's guide to local delicacies, fine wine, great walks and the good life is an Award-Winner in the Travel category of the National Indie Excellence 2007 Book Awards, To order the book or for more information: or

Lewis Goldstein of Revolving Door Books announces Luigi Enrico Pietra D’Oro’s new novel The Second Coming, The Last Parable of Jesus. The release date is June 21, 2007. To order or for more information: or, or call toll free 1-888-816-0732.

Patricia Fry has been teaching online courses for several years on a schedule. Lately, people have requested the courses according to their own agendas and Fry has found a way to accommodate them. Here's how it works: You sign up when you want to take the course and you'll receive a lecture and an assignment via email every week throughout the duration of the course. Fry is currently offering courses in "Article Writing," "How to Write a Book Proposal" and "Self-Publishing." Learn more at And tell your friends.

Barbara Florio Graham has completely overhauled her web site, and now offers a great deal of free information on a variety of topics. Check it out at One item recently posted is a warning about entering contests or submitting to anthologies. Graham suggests you read guidelines carefully to make sure the publisher doesn't take your material without compensation. A recent contest contained the wording: "All entries, photographs and images become the property of [name of publisher]." This means that you will lose all control over your original work, which may appear in any number of publications, web sites, or promotional materials without your receiving any payment. You may even not receive a byline or any other credit. See "Opportunities" below for a special offer from Graham for SPAWN members only.

Interested in investing in the stock market, but don't have the time or experience? Steve Haberman's Beginner's Guide to Top Low Cost Common Stock Mutual Funds (ISBN: 1-4166-6908-8) explains how. In eight detailed-filled chapters, the Guide explains how funds work, their tax aspects, and guidelines about when to sell. Also included are 13 top low expense funds, including one that turned $10,000 into over $396,000 over three decades. Investing in low expense funds let Steve Haberman quit the rat race early in life. They've also permitted him to travel to Europe many times. Available at For more information: and

SPAWNews editor Wendy Dager received an Honorable Mention for her story "Passing Through" in the Writers Weekly Spring, 2007 24-Hour Short Story Contest. To enter their Summer, 2007 contest go to

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FOR A LIMITED TIME ONLY: Any SPAWN member who purchases Barbara Florio Graham's Five Fast Steps to Low-Cost Publicity, will receive the Canadian Libraries List (90+ libraries with purchasing power) for just $10 (regularly $25). Descriptions and contact info at: If you are not yet a SPAWN member, join now by going to

You are invited to be a vendor at the Literary Pavilion of the 2007 African Marketplace & Cultural Faire at Rancho Cienga Park, August 18-19, 25-26, September 1-3, 2007. The event features book signings and celebrity readings, poetry salons, spoken word performances, storytelling and activities for children, teens, seniors and families, and workshops for young aspiring writers. For more information: or call (323) 392-1612.

Kingdom Publishing Group, Inc.'s First Annual Atlanta Christian Writer's Institute takes place August 24-25, 2007 at the Sheraton Gateway Hotel in Atlanta, Georgia. For more information:

SPAWN Founder Mary Embree announces The Second Annual Ventura Book Festival on Saturday, August 25, 2007 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Ventura, 5654 Ralston Street, Ventura, CA 93003. See details under Events in this issue.

Vendors are needed for the Bakersfield Californians Third Annual Festival of Books. The event is organized by the Kern Adult Literacy Council and will be held Saturday, November 3 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the California State University Bakersfield Icardo Center in Bakersfield, CA. For more information, email or call (661) 324-3213.

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Read about the latest contests at

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Events and More

Read about the upcoming events at

Note: SPAWNews advises "caveat emptor" when dealing with venues, contests or promotions unknown to you.

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SPAWN is a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization.

Donations are tax deductible.

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Join SPAWN now and receive one FREE book! See the selection from which you can choose your book at the Member Benefits page. As a member, you can enjoy the benefits of the Members Only Area. There you will find:

  • Member Forum. In the SPAWN Forum, you can discuss publishing with knowledgeable published writers and publishers.
  • Market Update. This valuable Market Update will appear every month, letting us know exactly what is going on with magazine and book publishers.
  • Event Calendar where you can submit your events. After approval, your events will be available for all members to see.
  • Member Webpages where you can upload your HTML pages to build your own web site. Your Web pages will be viewable by everyone on the Internet.
  • Member Catalog where you can list your books and services
  • Member Discussion list where you can discuss your triumphs and questions with your publishing peers.
Join SPAWN now by clicking on the "Join SPAWN Now" button at the top of this page.

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SPAWN is a nonprofit corporation. Donations are tax deductible.

Small Publishers, Artists & Writers Network

PMB 123

323 E. Matilija St., Suite 110

Ojai, CA 93023


Telephone: 805-646-3045

Fax: 805-640-8213

Wendy Dager

SPAWNews Editor, Membership and Database Coordinator


Virginia Lawrence, Ph.D.

SPAWN Webmaster


Virginia Lawrence, Ph.D.

SPAWN Executive Director


Patricia Fry

SPAWN President



To promote the literary arts and provide education, information, resources and a supportive networking environment for artists, writers, and other creative people interested in the publishing process.

Submission Guidelines

Members and Nonmembers: Please send your press releases, seminar information, and books for review to Wendy Dager, Editor, SPAWNews

PMB 123

323 E. Matilija St., Suite 110

Ojai, CA 93023

or email

SPAWN membership dues are $45 per year; spouses, half-price. Make your check payable to SPAWN and mail to P.O. Box 2653, Ventura, CA 93002-2653. Or click on Member Application to fill out the secure online form and pay your dues by credit card.

SPAWNews, Member Directory and web site listings, and discounts for SPAWN events are included in membership.

SPAWN is a nonprofit corporation. Donations are tax deductible.

Small Publishers, Artists & Writers Network

PMB 123

323 E. Matilija St., Suite 110

Ojai, CA 93023



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