September Speaker: Gregory Fournier

Our Speaker in September, Gregory A. Fournier, will speak about his experience writing the true story of the Ypsilanti serial killer.

Fournier received his bachelor and master’s degrees from Eastern Michigan University in Ypsilanti while the Washtenaw County murders were occurring. He lived one block up the street from John Norman Collins and had several unpleasant brushes with him. Like so many other people in Ypsilanti, it was not until Collins was arrested and his photograph ran on the front pages that Greg could link a name with the face. He has first-hand knowledge of the Ypsilanti/Ann Arbor area and many of the people associated with these cases.

Literary Classics has selected Fournier’s book, Terror in Ypsilanti, to receive the Literary Classics Seal of Approval. The CLC Seal of Approval is a designation reserved for those books which uphold the rigorous criteria set forth by the Literary Classics review committee, a team comprised of individuals with backgrounds in publishing, editing, writing, illustration and graphic design. The same organization awarded the book its 2017 Literary Classics Silver Book Award in their true crime category. In May, the 2017 International Book Awards selected the book as a finalist in their true crime category.

Greg has appeared on the Investigation Discovery Channel as a guest expert on John Norman Collins for their true crime series A Crime to Remember in an episode entitled “A New Kind of Monster.” He is the author of Zug Island: A Detroit Riot Novel and writes a blog entitled Fornology.

Expired: August Speaker: Fauzia Burke


On August 28, join us to hear Fauzia Burke speak about online publicity, social media, and website development. Fauzia is the Founder and President of FSB Associates, an online publicity and marketing firm specializing in creating awareness for books and authors. She’s also the author of Online Marketing for Busy Authors (Berrett-Koehler), a nationally recognized speaker, online marketing consultant and coach. Fauzia has been featured on the cover of Book Business Magazine and on the websites of Fast Company, Forbes, Inc, HuffPo and more. She has spoken at Book Expo, Writer’s Digest, the San Francisco Writers Conference, The Muse and The Marketplace, and more. Her consulting services have helped many an author through the maze of publishing and marketing options open to them today.

Upcoming Events


  • July 20: SD/PEN presents “To Attend or Not to Attend: Choosing the Right Writers Conference for You,” with Antoinette Kuritz, founder of the La Jolla Writers Conference. For more information, see
  • August 26: The first ever San Diego Festival of Books will be held at Liberty Station, hosted by the San Diego Union-Tribune and KPBS. The free event will run from 10 AM to 6 PM, and is expected to draw thousands of book lovers. This year’s “One Book San Diego” selection will be announced at the festival. Author signings, discussions and appearances, along with food, music and children’s activities will be featured at the event. Those interested in booking an exhibitor booth may contact for more information.
  • September 23: The Northwest Independent Editors Guild hosts Red Pencil 6: Tracking Changes in Editing conference in Kenmore, WA. Keynote speaker is Karen Yin of the Conscious Style Guide and AP vs. Chicago websites. SDWEG members receive a $20 affiliate discount with the code RPCALI17, as well as an additional $30 off when registering through the early-bird deadline of July 31. For more information, see

What You Missed


by Mardie Schroeder

On June 26, Jonathan Maberry spoke to the Guild about crossing genres. In his opinion, a writer should be able to write about anything. He said that although there may not always be a big market for your genre, there is always a market for every subject.

Well-known authors Richard Matheson and Stephen King are just two examples of successful writers who have written everything from sci-fi, horror, fantasy, adult fiction, suspense, thrillers, and more.

You can have more than one genre in a book. Go with the mix you love to write about.

Different genres bring in different income streams. If you have two books in the same genre at the same time they compete with each other.

Jonathan writes eight hours a day. He makes a bullet outline and writes the ending, although he may change it. He does take breaks to write something entirely different. While writing a book he will do research for a new book.

Jonathan suggests bringing characters from your other books into new ones. He’s all for taking creative risks (experimentation) but respecting your audience.

If you write about what makes you excited to write, your passion will show through. Write a story that you would go out of your way to read.

If you write with the same passion you have for reading, you will write a good book.

Resources for Short Stories

Expired: July Meeting: Open Mic Night


Join our members as they read their own words at our July 24 meeting. There may still be slots available for members to sign up to read up to three minutes from works, published or still in progress. Audience members may provide feedback to readers.

Hurry to sign up for a slot. Contact Ruth Leyse-Wallace at rthlys (at) by July 15 with your name and the title of your piece.

Please note that there will be NO official speaker for the July meeting. The Marketing Support Group, however, will still meet at 5:30.

Expired: SD/PEN Presents Antoinette Kuritz July 20

July 20 (Thursday) — Antoinette Kuritz, SDWEG honorary member and founder of the La Jolla Writers Conference, will offer tips on getting the most out of attending writers conferences at the next program meeting of the San Diego Professional Editors Network (SD/PEN). The meeting, “To Attend or Not to Attend: Choosing the Right Writers Conference for You,” will take place at 6:30 p.m. in the San Diego County Health Services Complex.

The right writers conference can not only be pivotal to a writer’s career, it can be a great boon to editors looking to find new clients. But between travel expenses and the cost of conferences themselves, attending a conference can be a major investment. What should you look for, how can you vet a conference, and how do you best take advantage of what a conference has to offer both editors and writers?

Antoinette Kuritz is the founder of STRATEGIES, a firm that focuses on literary development, publishing, business modeling, marketing, and public relations. She has worked with self-published, small press, and NY Times best-selling authors. This past year, The Kuritz Group, Inc., launched Nightstand Press.

The cost is free to SD/PEN members and only $10.00 for nonmembers. The evening will include snacks and beverages as well as the opportunity to network before and after the presentation. RSVP via email to no later than Wednesday, July 19.

San Diego County Health Services Complex, 3851 Rosecrans Street, San Diego, CA 92110. Event URL:

Membership Benefit of the Month–Meetings

Each month, on the fourth Monday but adjusted for federal holidays when necessary, the San Diego Writers/Editors Guild invites speakers to share their experience as authors, editors, publishers, publicists, and marketing specialists. There is no cost to SDW/EG members for these presentations. A $5.00 fee is requested from non-members.

Speakers and programs in the past two years have included the following:

  • Neil Senturia and Barbara Bry, Humor in Business Writing
  • Charlene Baldridge, My Writing and All It Entails
  • Carolyn Wheat: Author of Suspense and Mystery
  • Richard Lederer: Celebrating Shakespeare
  • Margaret Harmon: Character-Building: Literary Games
  • Ingrid Croce and Jimmy Rock: the Jim Croce Story
  • Alan Kilpatrick, Ph.D.: Crafting Plays
  • Kathleen B Jones, Ph.D.: Biography and Hannah Arendt
  • Larry Edwards: How He Did It (Self-publishing and marketing); Using Social Media
  • Richard Lederer: Monsters Unleashed
  • Kathi Diamant: The Art of Giving and Receiving Critiques
  • Judy Reeves: “First Paragraphs and What They Must Do”
  • Hutton Marshall: editor of the San Diego Uptown News
  • Zoe Ghahremani: The Arc of a Writer
  • Bonnie ZoBell: Writing What Happens
  • Donna Eckstein: Telling Your Story
  • Alan Russell: Ghostwriting
  • Jefferson Parker: Writing a Hometown Story
  • Richard Lederer: American Presidents; Shakespeare
  • Martin Kruming: Legal Issues for Authors
  • Gered Beebe: Creative Non-Fiction
  • Marnie Freedman: 7 Essential Writing Tools
  • Dennis Lynch, Leslie Johansen Nack, and Lauri Taylor: Panel of Memoirists
  • Wendy Patrick: The Darker Side of Social Media
  • Antoinette Kuritz: The Business of Writing
  • David Wogahn: Metadata, Registration, and ISBMs
  • Jonathan LaPoma: Screenwriting
  • Christina Alexandra: Romance Writing
  • Diane Hinds: Marketing Your Books
  • Mark Reichenthal: Legal Issues for Authors
  • Penn Wallace: Marketing 101
  • Jonathan Maberry: Writing for MG and YA audiences

The Board of Directors is always interested to know of speakers members would like to invite for meetings. To suggest a speaker, send a message to

Expired: Jonathan Maberry Presents in June

Jonathan Maberry

Crossing genre lines is one of the most reliable paths to a successful and sustainable writing career. Not just within a single story (though that works, too!) but by stretching out into new areas, trying new things, and building yourself into a stronger and more diverse writer. New York Times bestseller Jonathan Maberry is the author of more than thirty novels and over a hundred short stories that cross and sometimes blur genre lines. He has published mysteries, thrillers, horror, noir crime, science fiction, epic fantasy, dark fantasy, urban fantasy, alt-history, comedy, and more; and his market includes adults, young adult, and middle grade, as well as comics and nonfiction. Writing cross-genre and multi-genre fiction allows for greater creative freedom and draws on different demographics within the book-buying public. Maberry will share trade secrets for how to maximize your selling potential while growing as a writer and having fun.
JONATHAN MABERRY is a New York Times bestselling author, 5-time Bram Stoker Award-winner, and comic book writer. He writes in multiple genres including suspense, thriller, horror, science fiction, fantasy, and action, for adults, teens and middle grade. His works include the Joe Ledger Thrillers, X-Files Origins: Devil’s Advocate, Mars One, and many others. Several of his works are in development for film and TV. He is the editor of high-profile anthologies including The X-Files, V-Wars, Scary Out There, Out of Tune, Baker Street Irregulars, Nights of the Living Dead, and others. He lives in Del Mar, California. Find him online at
We meet at the San Diego County Health Services Center, 3851 Rosecrans, San Diego, CA 92110.
A Marketing Support Group meets at 5:30 p.m., before the regular meeting. Anyone interested in sharing or learning about marketing tips is welcome to attend.

What You Missed

From the June issue of the newsletter, by Mardie Schroeder

Jeniffer Thompson spoke on creating your personal branding. A brand helps you stand out. You need a logo and a style guide. Use the same typeface. Color is important. Everything should be consistent and recognizable. A brand will give you self-confidence. Consider having more than one domain name.

Begin with a strong platform and build on it. Connect the dots with everything you put out on social media so they work together. Drive all traffic to your website. Get people invested in you.

Make a five-year goal of what you want to do: write, teach, speak, conduct workshops, etc. At times you may have to redirect your course.

Write lots of content and share it with as many people as you can. Every time you speak or contribute an article include a bio with a link back to your website.

Jeniffer suggests updating your bios with different word lengths: 10, 25, 80, 180, and long form. You need a good head shot updated every few years (3 to 4 max).

Find out who your audience is, ask them what they want and need. Share personal stories. Get them interested in you.

Other authors are not your competition. They are influencers! Follow them, network with them, and subscribe to them. They will become part of your tribe.

Be consistent and passionate with everything you do. Budget your time and money, as well as your emotional resources. Remember that you don’t have to do anything that doesn’t bring you joy.

Connect with Jeniffer Thompson with your questions about branding! She is on Twitter @jeniffergrace; on Facebook at; and on Instagram @jeniffer_grace.

EDITOR’S NOTE: As per Jeniffer’s suggestion, the Board of Directors is currently compiling an SDWEG style guide to make use of our new logo (seen at the top of this email) and help direct our own branding strategy moving forward.

What You Missed

What You Missed

by Mardie Schroeder (from the May issue of The Writer’s Life)

Penn Wallace’s presentation–Pyramid Marketing–was geared to those who want to quit their jobs and become professional writers. It takes five times of exposure before someone will see your work. You need to commit to two hours every day for marketing: Facebook, emails, tweets, going to meetings, readings, book shows, etc.

Build Your Brand: Find your target audience. Ask your readers what they want. Make a loyal fan list and get feedback from beta readers. Tailor your books to what your readers want. Become one of them. Penn was surprised to learn that 60% of his readers are female.

Start Marketing Early: Use your social media outlets to build a buzz about your book. Keep your readers involved with how your book is coming along.

Build An Author Brand: Have a collection of personality traits, attitudes, and values that your brand showcases on a regular basis to help connect with a certain audience segment. Visualize this as someone you know.

Action Items: Join the writer’s community–critique groups, online communities, publish a blog (this is where you sell your books), and connect it to your website. Keep your readers coming back with updates on your writing and with personal anecdotes. Start an email list with 100 loyal followers and build it to 1,000.

Spend Where Necessary: Hire specialists to proofread and to create an interesting cover that draws the reader in and that is relevant to the story.

Cross-Promotions: Ask for author interviews, promote others’ books on your blog, put the first chapter of similar authors’ books in the back of your book, put a paragraph in the back of each book asking for reviews and sign-ups for readers’ lists.

Wrap Up: Write a good book. The best way to market your book is to publish another book. Don’t publish the first book until the third book is done, then write like hell to finish the fourth book! Get five books on Amazon. Track your sales. Never give up. You have to blow your own horn. For a complete PowerPoint presentation of Marketing 101, go to