November 2010, Volume 14, Number 5


Aspiring Authors Find Inspiration, Advice at Miami Book Fair

Cristina García

Do you see yourself standing on the podium at the Miami Book Fair International, your debut work still offering up the wonderful scent of printer’s ink, an appreciative audience hanging on your every word and twist of your book’s plot? Aspiring authors are making their daydreams come true by attending the Fair’s many writing workshops.

Among this year’s offerings is Getting Started: A Fiction Workshop, taught by award-winning writer Cristina García, author of The Lady Matador’s Hotel and the critically acclaimed novel Dreaming in Cuban, which was nominated for a National Book Award. Drawing on her extensive teaching experience, García coaches eager writers on techniques for mining the unconscious to find inspiration and fresh ideas. She also emphasizes that writers learn from each other by sharing their favorite books.

In addition to writing, publishing is a focus of this year’s workshops, with five panelists sharing their insights, including literary agents Betsy Lerner and Arielle Eckstut, and columnists Kathi Kamen Goldmark and Sam Barry. These “Author Enablers'' tackle every publishing-related topic imaginable, including recognizing a good idea, crafting a pitch, finding the right agent/publisher and building a following through social media.

“It is the greatest time in history to be a writer,” says David Henry Sterry, who co-authored with Eckstut The Essential Guide to Getting Your Book Published. “The barrier to publishing has been torn down, and now anyone can get published. But to get published successfully is a whole other matter.”

Lerner is the author of Forest for the Trees (Revised and Updated): An Editor’s Advice to Writers. Barry and Goldmark co-authored Write That Book Already! The Tough Love You Need to Get Published Now.

Learn more about the workshops at

— Staff report

More Features Articles

Miami Dade College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award associate and baccalaureate degrees.
Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or call 404-679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of Miami Dade College.
Miami Dade College is an equal access/equal opportunity institution which does not discriminate on the basis of sex, race, color, marital status, age, religion, national origin,
disability, veteran’s status, ethnicity, pregnancy, sexual orientation or genetic information. Additional information may be obtained by contacting the
Office of Equal Opportunity Programs/ADA Coordinator/Title IX Coordinator, at 305.237.2577.