F294. To the Finish Line: Completing and Promoting the Novel

Room 204AB, Washington Convention Center, Level Two
Friday, February 10, 2017
4:30 pm to 5:45 pm


From the first fifty pages to the last, the first novel, for most writers, takes years. What is the real process and faith it actually takes to complete and sell a novel? What are the tools that writers need years into the process of writing a novel? What can a writer do to make sure a book delivers on its promise? What contacts make a difference when it is time to tour, sell, and promote it? Three first time novelists and two publicists explore the different ways to get to “the end.”



Melissa X. Golebiowski is an independent publicist who provides genuine and individualized marketing for authors. Her focuses include creating impactful media materials, experimental book marketing, media outreach, and planning targeted custom events among other traditional publicity efforts.

Cynthia Bond is a New York Times bestselling author. Her debut novel Ruby was an Oprah Book Club selection and was short listed for the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize and the Baileys Prize. A Pen Rosenthal Fellow, she taught writing to homeless youth for 15 years. Her second novel Wishing Bone is forthcoming.

J. Ryan Stradal is the author of the New York Times bestselling novel Kitchens of the Great Midwest, winner of the 2016 ABA Indie's Choice Award for Adult Debut Book of the Year. He lives in Los Angeles, where he is an editor at large at Unnamed Press and fiction editor at the Nervous Breakdown.

Katie Freeman is associate director of publicity at Riverhead Books and she is getting her MA in arts administration. She has served on committees for the National Book Foundation, PEN American Center, Words Without Borders, Narrative 4, and Community-Word Project, among others. Find her @foxyhedgehog.

Carmiel Banasky


February 7–10, 2024
Kansas City, Missouri

Kansas City Convention Center