F133. The Year of Practical Thinking: Getting a First Book to Print

Gold Salon 2, JW Marriott LA, 1st Floor
Friday, April 1, 2016
10:30 am to 11:45 am


Five fiction and memoir authors from wide-ranging backgrounds—from Big Five houses to tiny indie presses—discuss the process of getting their debut book to print. We discuss the agent query and search, the sale (including money), the editing process, publicity, and planning a book tour. Everyone talks about how to get published. What do you do once you sign the contract?



Jennifer Pashley is the author two story collections, and a novel, The Scamp. Her fiction and essays have appeared in PANK, SmokeLong Quarterly, Mississippi Review, The Butter Blog, and Spectre Magazine, among many others.

Shanna Mahin is a high school dropout with a fierce desire to disprove her 9th-grade English teacher's prediction of a lifetime of wasted potential. She is a PEN Emerging Voices Fellow, a MacDowell Colony and Norman Mailer Colony Fellow, and author of the novel Oh! You Pretty Things.

Matt Sumell is the author of Making Nice. A graduate of UC Irvine's MFA program in writing, his short fiction has since appeared in the Paris Review, Esquire, One Story, Electric Literature, Noon, and elsewhere.

Gwendolyn Knapp is the editor of Eater NOLA, and the author of the memoir After a While You Just Get Used to It: A Tale of Family Clutter.

Kevin Sampsell is the publisher of Future Tense Books, as well as a bookseller (Powell's Books), collage artist, and author. His books include This Is Between Us and A Common Pornography. One of his essays was included in Best American Essays 2013.


February 7–10, 2024
Kansas City, Missouri

Kansas City Convention Center