Speakers Series

Speakers are the highlight of our monthly meetings. We showcase industry leaders: authors, editors, publishers, and teachers who may inform writers about topics related to the art and craft of writing, the publishing industry, and the business of writing.

The “Opening Act” features members sharing their good works. We recognize  published and emerging CWC members with a few minutes at the mic before each speaker. Contact us if you are a member and would like to read at a meeting!

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Interviews with Recent Speakers

Interview with award-winning activist poet, Jan Steckel (meet her Sunday!)

Get to know award-winning poet and activist Jan Steckel in advance of her speaking at Sunday’s meeting.

An Interview with our November Guest, Author Joan Gelfand

Four questions for Joan Gelfand, an author whose reviews, stories, essays and poetry have appeared in over 100 national and

More Speaker Interviews

Speaker Series Events

11/17 SPEAKER – "You Can Be a Winning Writer" with Joan Gelfland

In this participatory workshop, author Joan Gelfand will discuss her 4 C’s approach to becoming a successful author. Joan will discuss how to incorporate craft, commitment, community, and confidence into a writing practice. Joan and her clients have produced significant results by incorporating this approach into their own writing practices.  Accompanied by a thirty-minute Power…

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10/20 SPEAKER – "How Writers Can Avoid Legal Trouble" with Nicholas Jollymore, esq

Writers can get into legal trouble without knowing it. Learn best practices and get the basics about libel, invasion of privacy, copyright infringement, subpoenas, confidential sources, and the California Shield Law from Literary Lawyer Nicholas J. Jollymore.  About Nick Jollymore Nick Jollymore has run a legal practice out of a home office since he moved…

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Some Writing Advice from October's Featured Member, Art Deco Novelist Alice Jurow

Some Writing Advice from October's Featured Member, Art Deco Novelist Alice Jurow

Sunday, October 21st we'll be featuring a short reading from our featured member, Alice Jurow. Alice has a degree in Aesthetic Studies from UC Santa Cruz, and is not afraid to use it. Her obsession with the 1920s has led to a long-standing involvement with the Art Deco Society of California, and she was the editor…

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SPEAKER 9/16—Marty Nemko, "The Arc of My Career"

SPEAKER 9/16—Marty Nemko, "The Arc of My Career"

In his road to redemption, Joe has become a successful writer, editor and anthologist.  He will speak to how the truth will set us free in any genre, and any project.  Clifford will share the lessons he has learned, insecurities about his success, and his insights of utilizing our struggles to become our strengths.

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The Road to Redemption: From Homelessness to Publishing

The Road to Redemption: From Homelessness to Publishing

In his road to redemption, Joe has become a successful writer, editor and anthologist.  He will speak to how the truth will set us free in any genre, and any project.  Clifford will share the lessons he has learned, insecurities about his success, and his insights of utilizing our struggles to become our strengths.

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April 15th: The Art of Giving Live Readings with Amos White

April 15th: The Art of Giving Live Readings with Amos White

Come hear this engaging and educational speaker to learn how the subtleties of tone and time can move an audience with but a word. At the presentation you will learn: * How to perform like a pro * How to find open mics readings * The dos & don'ts of reading etiquette * How to…

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Save the date for our April 15th Event on Giving Live Readings

Save the date for our April 15th Event on Giving Live Readings

For poetry month we welcome Amos White to speak to the Berkeley CWC on joining and succeeding at giving public readings. Amos White will share with us tips on securing public readings, as well as how to make a big splash once you walk on stage. If you’ve ever met Amos White, you’ll know why…

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March 18th: Bookstore Owners Panel Discussion

March 18th: Bookstore Owners Panel Discussion

No matter what kind of writing you do, you want to be in bookstores. But how do the buyers for those book stores decide what to carry? There are 100,000 new books published every year, that's an enormous amount of competition for a limited amount of shelf space. Did  you know that stores like Barnes…

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An Interview with Sunday's Speaker, Jacqueline Luckett

Jacqueline Luckett Gives Us a Preview on Writing Great Characters Grounded in Reality This Sunday in Preservation Park, Jacqueline Luckett will speak to the club on writing stronger characters. Luckett's two novels are Passing Love and Searching for Tina Turner, and she writes essays in the Huffington Post and Best Women’s Travel Writing 2011.

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Feb 18th: "Grounding Our Characters to the Real World" with Jacqueline Luckett

Our members have told us that want more opportunities to improve their craft, and we listened. on Sunday, February 18th, novelist Jacqueline Luckett will help us improve our character writing in her feature lecture, "Grounding Our Characters to the Real World." In the real world, we’re eager to learn as much as we can about…

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An Interview with Sunday's Speaker: Laurie Ann Doyle, Dialogue and You

An Interview with Sunday's Speaker: Laurie Ann Doyle, Dialogue and You

We caught up with Laurie Ann Doyle before she speaks for the club this Sunday. At our monthly meeting, she’ll be talking all about writing better dialogue. Doyle knows her stuff: she’s been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and won the Alligator Juniper National Fiction Award. Her work has been published in The Los Angeles…

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10/15 SPEAKER— "Said and Unsaid: Dialogue in Fiction and Memoir" with Laurie Ann Doyle

10/15 SPEAKER— "Said and Unsaid: Dialogue in Fiction and Memoir" with Laurie Ann Doyle

Is dialogue meant to reveal or conceal? Strong dialogue in fiction and memoir actually accomplishes both, revealing the characters by what is said and not said. October’s featured speaker Laurie Ann Doyle will share excerpts from masters of dialogue, examining how artfully crafted speech, gesture, and silence helps the writer not only develop character, but…

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JUNE 18: How to Turn Your Book into an Audiobook with Howard Van Es

JUNE 18: How to Turn Your Book into an Audiobook with Howard Van Es

Our June meeting will feature Howard Van Es, president of Let's Write Books, Inc. He's going to talk to us about audiobooks. The market for audiobooks is exploding due to the growing number of computers, smartphones, and tablets, which make it easy for the consumer to purchase and instantly listen to their favorite books. Interestingly,…

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Get Inside Your Reader's Brain with Novelist and Scientist Ransom Stephens

Get Inside Your Reader's Brain with Novelist and Scientist Ransom Stephens

The Neuroscience of Reading How to Make Readers Laugh and Cry Neuroscience is like looking under the hood to see how It works. When you know how readers process your writing you can figure out what grabs readers, what bores them, and why. In this presentation, we’ll investigate how to write in ways that administer…

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Jan 15: Best-Selling Writer Joshua Mohr’s Innovative Approach to Plot and Character

The Kiss between Plot and Character with Best-Seller Joshua Mohr Sunday Jan 15th 12-4 p.m. Learn an exciting new approach to writing from an author whose books have been praised by The New York Times, The SF Chronicle, and O magazine. Josh Mohr’s unique voice won him the Northern California Book Award. This Sunday he teaches…

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“Inventing Zorgos” – June 16th’s Speakers are Louise Hart and Kristen Caven

When their editor called authors Louise Hart and Kristen Caven to announce the new title for their book, they were stunned. What is the antidote to bullying? Come listen to this mother- daughter writing team talk about their long journey through the publishing world. Since their first book was published in 1989, they’ve been published,…

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A concise list of previous CWC Berkeley Speakers

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Do you have a suggestion for a speaker?  We are always on the lookout for lively presenters, people with unique perspectives.  Send us your suggestions!