Matthew Zinman is a television writer/producer who moved out to California after graduating from Syracuse University. He worked as a production assistant on numerous cancelled shows before landing a gig as the showrunners’ assistant at How I Met Your Mother during season three. By season...Read More »


Elna Baker is a writer and comedic storyteller. She’s appeared on This American Life, The Moth Radio Hour, BBC Radio 4, All Things Considered, WTF with Marc Maron, Studio 360, The Joy Behar Show and in the book The Moth: 50 true stories. She’s written for ELLE,...Read More »


Emily Cunningham is an Associate Editor at Harper, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, where she has worked for more than four years. She edits narrative nonfiction, including history, biography, memoir, reportage, science, and more. Recent or forthcoming titles include Jacob Silverman’s Terms of Service, Linda Hervieux’s Forgotten, and...Read More »


Matthew Specktor is the author of the novels American Dream Machine and That Summertime Sound, as well as a nonfiction book about the motion picture The Sting. His writing has appeared or is forthcoming in The Paris Review, McSweeney’s The Believer, Tin House, Black Clock, and, among...Read More »


Pat Charles has written on Sons of Anarchy for F/X, has been a writer and producer on Bones for FOX and a writer and supervising producer on Resurrection for ABC. He has also developed and sold pilots to HBO and Showtime. Pat is a graduate of the...Read More »


Robyn Schneider is the author of the internationally bestselling young adult novel THE BEGINNING OF EVERYTHING, published by HarperCollins, which has been translated widely and has received major critical acclaim as an iTunes Editor’s Pick, a B&N Teen Buyer’s Pick, an Amazon Best Book of the Month, an...Read More »


Liza Palmer is the internationally bestselling author of six novels, including her first book, “Conversations with the Fat Girl”, which has been optioned for series by HBO. “Conversations with the Fat Girl” became an international bestseller its first week in publication, as well as hitting Number 1 on...Read More »


Ron Koertge is an award-winning author of over 19 novels and 16 books of poetry. Ron’s poetry has been included twice in The Best American Poetry. He won multiple ALA awards for his YA fiction and has gotten several Booklist started reviews. He also received the P.E.N. prize...Read More »


Monica Holloway is the critically acclaimed author of the memoir “Driving With Dead People”, described by Newsweek as “unforgettable,” christened by Glamour as “a classic,” and deemed “irresistible” by the Washington Post. Monica has also written articles and essays for Psychology Today, Parents, Parent Guide Magazine, amongst other...Read More »


Jessie Rosen is a writer/producer. Jessie works as a freelance fashion and entertainment writer for E! Online. She recently sold a YA novel to James Frey’s publishing company, Full Fathom Five. Jessie’s blog,, was named a Top 25 Blog by TIME magazine and among the Top 100...Read More »


Guest instructor Marc Cooper is an award winning journalist, author and professor who has reported on politics and culture from across the country and around the world for four decades. His articles, interviews and essays have appeared in dozens of publications ranging from The New Yorker, The...Read More »


Sara Benincasa is an award-winning comedian and author of the books “Great” and “Agorafabulous!: Dispatches From My Bedroom” from William Morrow (a division of Harper Collins), a book based on her critically acclaimed solo show about panic attacks and agoraphobia. Sara has sold Agorafabulous to a major cable...Read More »


Chad Snopek is a manager, producer and former agent who represents screenwriters in both TV and Film. His clients include Pablo Fenjves (“Man on a Ledge”), and Mark Friedman (Executive Producer, NBC’s “Believe”). His clients have written films for Pixar, Dreamworks, Warner Brothers, New Line, Disney, MGM, Miramax,...Read More »


Sam Ernst is the co-creator/executive producer of SyFy Network’s HAVEN, based on a book by Stephen King.  Haven is currently in production on Seasons 5 and 6.  Sam has been on staff for THE DEAD ZONE, which aired for 5 seasons on the USA network.  He’s currently consulting...Read More »


D.J. MacHale is a writer, director, executive producer and creator of several popular television series and movies. As an author, he has published 20 books he wrote from scratch and another 14 that have been published as novelizations or spin offs of his TV shows and book series....Read More »


Eric Beetner is the author of “The Devil Doesn’t Want Me,” “Dig Two Graves”, “White Hot Pistol,” “The Year I Dies Seven Times,” “Stripper Pole At The End Of The World,” ” Split Decision,” and “A Mouth Full Of Blood.” He has published over 60 short stories online...Read More »


Bob Carlson an award winning audio producer, musician and broadcaster.  He’s the host and producer of UnFictional, a weekly program of unusual stories and compelling personal documentaries airing on KCRW radio, and podcast on During his long career at KCRW, he served as director of production and...Read More »


Amber Benson is a writer, director, actor and maker of things. She wrote the five-book Calliope Reaper-Jones urban fantasy series for Penguin and the middle grade book, Among The Ghosts, for Simon and Schuster. She co-directed the Slamdance feature, Drones, and (co-wrote) and directed the BBC animated series,...Read More »


Taylor Martindale is a literary agent with Full Circle Literary, actively acquiring fiction and non-fiction projects. She began agenting with the Sandra Dijkstra Literary Agency and is a graduate of The College of William and Mary, where she studied English and Hispanic Studies. Taylor is looking for young...Read More »


Christopher Reed has sold 5 original screenplays and written 6 other screenplays under contract to various studios including Sony Pictures and Nickelodeon with his writing partner, Cynthia Carle. Chris’s screenwriting career began at Disney Feature Animation where he wrote the feature screenplay, JAGUAR, a concept that would later...Read More »


A seasoned development executive, Nikki Levy served as Vice President of Wedge Works, a feature film production company with a deal at Fox Animation where she developed the animated film, EPIC. Prior to that, she was Director of Development at Ron Howard and Brian Grazer’s Imagine Entertainment where...Read More »


Gloria Calderón Kellett is currently a writer on iZombie. Before that, she was a supervising producer and writer on the ABC series “MIXOLOGY”, a writer and co-producer on the CBS series, “How I Met Your Mother” for three seasons, during which she won an Alma Award for Outstanding...Read More »


Michael Saltzman is currently a writer on AMC’s “Hell on Wheels.” He was a writer and Consulting Producer on the multi-Emmy-winning AMC drama, “Mad Men” for two seasons. He has written for numerous TV shows, including NBC’s “Wings,” CBS’s “Murphy Brown,” and NBC’s “The Naked Truth.” He ran...Read More »


Cole Kazdin’s is a three-time Moth GrandSLAM champion and storyteller in Los Angeles. Cole tells stories all over the country, and tours with the The Moth’s Mainstage. Her essays and stories have been published in The New York Times Modern Love column, Salon, Yoga Journal, Smith Magazine, ABC...Read More »


Neil Katcher is a writer and producer. He is currently the Executive Producer of “Mortified“, a grassroots storytelling project where adults share the strange and embarrassing things they created as kids. He is the producer of feature-length documentary, “Mortified Nation” and co-creator of “The Mortified Sessions” on...Read More »


Elise Capron is an agent at the Sandra Dijkstra Literary Agency–proclaimed by the LA Times and Newsweek as “the most powerful literary” agency in the West. They represent bestselling fiction and non-fiction authors, such as Amy Tan, Lisa See, and Maxine Hong Kingston, and many more. Some of...Read More »


Maureen McHugh has written two collections of short stories and four novels, including “China Mountain Zhang” which was nominated for both the Hugo and Nebula award and won the James Tiptree, Jr. award. Her latest short story collection, “After the Apocalypse” (Small Beer Press),...Read More »


Victor Levin has written for numerous TV shows, including AMC’s “Mad Men”, NBC’s “Mad About You,” which he ran in its final two seasons, HBO’s “Dream On” and that network’s “The Larry Sanders Show.” He has shared Emmy nominations for Mad Men, Mad About You and Sanders, and...Read More »


Lauren Weedman is an award-winning comedic actress, playwright and author. She has written and performed 8 solo plays. (“Homecoming”, “Amsterdam”, “If Ornaments Had Lips”, “Huu”, “Rash”, “Wreckage”, “Bust”, “No You. . .Shutup”). Her first show, “Homecoming” went on to go off-Broadway in NYC. “Bust”, about her work in...Read More »


Brett Paesel’s stories, essays, and articles have been published in The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times,, More magazine, Self, Family Fun, amongst other publications. In addition, she was a contributing editor to Parents and Wondertime (where she was also a beauty and wellness columnist). Brett...Read More »


Erin Aubry Kaplan is an award-winning essayist, journalist and columnist who has written about African-American political, economic and cultural issues since 1992. She is currently a contributing editor to the op-ed section of the Los Angeles Times, and from 2005 to 2007 was a weekly columnist the first black...Read More »



Lauren Strasnick’s debut novel, “Nothing Like You” (Simon Pulse/S&S, 2009), was a RWA RITA award finalist in two categories, Best First Book and YA Romance. Her second novel, “Her and Me and You” (Simon Pulse/S&S, 2010), was a 2012 ALA Quick Pick for Reluctant Young Adult Readers. “Then You...Read More »



Rob Gokee is the author of the “In the Belly of the Fail Whale: How Twitter Changed My Life In One Year” an autobiographical account of his life as a film and television composer, and how drastically his life changed over a 12 month period by marketing...Read More »


DC Pierson is a comedian, author, and actor. His first novel, “The Boy Who Couldn’t Sleep And Never Had To” (Vintage Contemporary) won an Alex Award for adult books with special appeal for teen readers from the American Library Association. His second book, “Crap Kingdom” was published March...Read More »


Reyna Grande is an award-winning novelist and memoirist. She has received an American Book Award, the El Premio Aztlán Literary Award, and the Latino Book Award. In 2012, she was a finalist for the prestigious National Book Critics Circle Awards. Her works have...Read More »


James Scott Bell is the #1 bestselling author of “Plot & Structure”, and thrillers like “Deceived”, “Try Dying”, “Watch Your Back”, and “One More Lie” (International Thriller Writers Award finalist). Jim attended the University of California, Santa Barbara where he studied writing with Raymond Carver. He graduated...Read More »


Ben Loory’s fables and tales have appeared online and in print in journals of all shapes and sizes, including Gargoyle Magazine, Pank, SmokeLong Quarterly, The Antioch Review, The Collagist, Fairy Tale Review, The Rattling Wall, Quick Fiction, and The Los Angeles Review of Books. They have also...Read More »


BJ Robbins opened her Los Angeles-based agency in 1992 after a multi-faceted career in book publishing, first in publicity at Simon & Schuster and later as Marketing Director and then Senior Editor at Harcourt. Her agency represents quality fiction, both literary and commercial, and general...Read More »


Award-winning travel writer Eric Hiss regularly navigates the world in search of unexpected and enlightening stories. In a career spanning nearly two decades, he has contributed to dozens of publications and websites, including the New York Times, Condé Nast Traveler, Robb Report, Los Angeles Times, Delta Sky, Los Angeles...Read More »


Having sold or been hired to write over 50 film and TV projects for six figure fees, Peter Iliff has written under contract for nearly every major studio and TV network in Hollywood. He broke into Hollywood’s A-List while working as a...Read More »