BlogHer Writers '11 Speakers

Speakers

Rollover images for a quick look at the speaker's bio, or click the speaker's name to be taken directly to their profile.
Alice Tasman
Literary Agent, Jean V. Naggar Literary Agency
Speaking Events:
Alice Tasman
Literary Agent, Jean V. Naggar Literary Agency
Speaking Events:

Alice Tasman has been a literary agent at JVNLA since 1995. Her list comprises award winning writers, both literary and commercial. She is committed to working with authors over the long term and is very hands on in every stage of the publishing process—from editing manuscripts and refining proposals, to amassing the perfect list of editors for the project and negotiating contracts, to actively working with publishers on the publicity and marketing of the books.

She earned her BA from Brown University and her MFA from Sarah Lawrence College.

Amber Qureshi
Executive Editor, The Viking Press

Amber Qureshi is an Executive Editor at Viking acquiring literary fiction and narrative, progressive nonfiction. She was a 2007 Editorial Fellow at the Jerusalem Book Fair and is on the American board for the Fair now, has represented her list at the Frankfurt Book Fair, the IFOA Harbourfront Toronto Writers’ Festival, the Tennessee Williams New Orleans Literary Festival, the Adelaide Writers’ Festival, and the Salon du Livres in Paris, and has taught at writers' conferences at the New School in New York City, in Asheville, North Carolina, and in Aspen, Colorado.

Angela Tung
Author, BLACK FISH: MEMOIR OF A BAD LUCK GIRL

A former corporate cog and long-time New Yorker, Angela Tung is a writer in San Francisco. Her work has appeared in CNN Living, The Frisky, Matador Life, The New York Press, Carve Magazine, and elsewhere. She is a regular contributor to The Nervous Breakdown, an online magazine featuring the work of published and emerging authors from around the world. Her Young Adult novel, SONG OF THE STRANGER, was published by Roxbury Park Books.

Ann Napolitano
Author, A GOOD HARD LOOK and WITHIN ARM’S REACH

Ann Napolitano is the author of the novels A GOOD HARD LOOK and WITHIN ARM’S REACH. She received an MFA from New York University; she teaches fiction writing for New York University’s School of Continuing and Professional Studies and for Gotham Writers’ Workshop. She lives in New York City with her husband and two children.

Barbara Marcus
Strategic Innovations Advisor, Penguin
Speaking Events:
Barbara Marcus
Strategic Innovations Advisor, Penguin
Speaking Events:

Barbara Marcus has spent most of her career in the area of Children’s Publishing and Media and is considered a leading business and marketing strategist in the areas of children’s content and distribution.

Becky Vinter
Agent, FinePrint Literary Management
Speaking Events:
Becky Vinter
Agent, FinePrint Literary Management
Speaking Events:

Becky Vinter began her career in publishing at the Feminist Press in 2006, before moving to NAL/Penguin, where she edited commercial women’s fiction. She joined FinePrint Literary Management in 2011 and is currently looking for a range of both fiction and nonfiction projects.

Carleen Brice
Author, ORANGE MINT AND HONEY and CHILDREN OF THE WATERS
Carleen Brice
Author, ORANGE MINT AND HONEY and CHILDREN OF THE WATERS

Carleen Brice is author of ORANGE MINT AND HONEY, an Essence “Recommended Read” and a Target “Bookmarked Breakout Book,” and the best-selling CHILDREN OF THE WATERS. In February 2010, ORANGE MINT AND HONEY premiered on the Lifetime Movie Network as SINS OF THE MOTHER, starring Jill Scott. It was the second-highest rated original movie in LMN’s history and received two 2011 NAACP Image Awards. Brice is the recipient of the 2009 First Novelist Award from the Black Caucus of the American Library Association and the 2008 Break Out Author Award at the African American Literary Awards Show.

Colleen Lindsay
Community Manager for Book Country and Business Development at Penguin
Colleen Lindsay
Community Manager for Book Country and Business Development at Penguin

Colleen Lindsay is an unrepentant nerd and digital native who spent most of her formative years hiding beneath the blankets with a flashlight and a book. Her obsession with reading was a hard habit to break; as a result, she’s worked in the book industry since 1984. Her first job in publishing was in Northern California as a mass merchandise sales assistant for Ballantine Books.

Danielle Perez
Executive Editor, NAL/Penguin Group
Speaking Events:
Danielle Perez
Executive Editor, NAL/Penguin Group
Speaking Events:

A native New Yorker, Danielle Perez is an Executive Editor with Penguin's New American Library (NAL) imprint. Acquiring and editing both commercial fiction and non-fiction, she works with such diverse authors as #1 internationally bestselling Linwood Barclay, New York Times bestselling Keri Arthur, Stephanie Tyler, Sue Margolis, and memoirist Susan McCorkindale. She edited the recent blog to book HIPSTER PUPPIES.

Denise Silvestro
Executive Editor, Publishing Group
Speaking Events:
Denise Silvestro
Executive Editor, Publishing Group
Speaking Events:

Denise Silvestro is an Executive Editor at the Berkley Publishing Group, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA). In the publishing industry for more than twenty years, Denise acquires both commercial fiction and non-fiction, although her list is currently 90% non-fiction. She works within all genres, including narrative nonfiction, memoir, self-help/motivational, personal finance, health/well-being, inspirational and celebrity/pop culture. She has worked with bestselling authors such as Don Piper, psychic-medium John Edward, and minister T.D. Jakes.

Dominique Browning
Author, SLOW LOVE: HOW I LOST MY JOB, PUT ON MY PAJAMAS, AND FOUND HAPPINESS
Dominique Browning
Author, SLOW LOVE: HOW I LOST MY JOB, PUT ON MY PAJAMAS, AND FOUND HAPPINESS

Dominique Browning is a founder and the Senior Director of Moms Clean Air Force, a nonpartisan organization founded in 2011 to fight air pollution as a children’s health issue. To date we’ve rallied over 88,000 people who believe that sometimes, being a good mom—or dad--means being an engaged citizen. We’re fighting mercury, soot, ozone—and global warming. We believe that Moms can better leverage their political power together; no politician wants to make mothers angry. Browning also has a personal blog, Slow Love Life, about nurturing daily, healing connections with our miraculous world.

Ginny Smith
Editor, Penguin

Ginny Smith is a native of Macon, GA. She is an Editor at The Penguin Press and has worked with authors including Daniel Yergin, Rana Dasgupta, Ann Napolitano, Paula Broadwell, Pamela Druckerman, Gary Marcus, Alex Dryden, Gay Talese, Kenji Yoshino, Daniel J. Sharfstein, Jeet Thayil, Edward Behr, Mario Batali, Jessica Stern, Simon Schama, Thurston Clarke, and Nate Silver. Prior to coming to Penguin, she worked at Ecco/HarperCollins and Simon & Schuster.

Jane Schonberger
BlogHer Editor, CEO Pretty Tough Media LLC

Jane Schonberger is an award-winning writer/producer with a progressive background in traditional and digital media. With over 20 years of experience, she has been involved with every aspect of content, including development, production, licensing, syndication and distribution as well as sponsorship and marketing. Her track record of success includes identifying growth opportunities and market trends along with conceptualizing and creating media for delivery on a variety of consumption platforms.

Jean Kwok
Author, GIRL IN TRANSLATION

Jean Kwok immigrated from Hong Kong to Brooklyn when she was five and worked in a Chinatown clothing factory for much of her childhood. She won early admission to Harvard, where she worked as many as four jobs at a time, and graduated with honors in English and American literature, before going on to earn an MFA in fiction at Columbia. Her debut novel GIRL IN TRANSLATION (Riverhead, 2010) is a New York Times bestseller.

Jean Sagendorph
Founder, Mansion Street Literary Management
Speaking Events:
Jean Sagendorph
Founder, Mansion Street Literary Management
Speaking Events:

Jean Sagendorph is a twenty-year veteran of the entertainment industry whose award-winning work includes many New York Times bestsellers. Jean managed the publishing, interactive, film and music interests at United Media for over 15 years. United Media's clients included Peanuts, Dilbert, Raggedy Ann & Andy, Fancy Nancy, Iron Chef/America, and The History Channel among others before being sold in 2010. Never one to sit still, Jean formed her own literary/rights agency, Mansion Street Literary Management.

Kamy Wicoff
Founder, SheWrites.com and She Writes Press

Kamy Wicoff is the bestselling author of the new novel Wishful Thinking (She Writes Press) and the nonfiction book I Do But Don’t: Why The Way We Marry Matters (Da Capo Press), and founder of one of the world’s largest communities for women writers, www.shewrites.com. She is also founder, with Brooke Warner, of She Writes Press. She lives with her family in Brooklyn, New York. To learn more, visit kamywicoff.com.

Karen Ballum
BlogHer Community Moderator
Speaking Events:
Karen Ballum
BlogHer Community Moderator
Speaking Events:

Karen Ballum is a freelance writer, editor and community moderator. When asked in a job interview what gets her out of bed in the morning she replied, "Words." She is BlogHer.com Community Moderator which means she spends her days reading, promoting other women's words and forgetting to write on her own blog Sassymonkey.ca. She lives in Ottawa with her husband and cat. They may, or may not, be fake.

Kate Harrison
Senior Editor, Dial Books for Young Readers
Speaking Events:
Kate Harrison
Senior Editor, Dial Books for Young Readers
Speaking Events:

Kate Harrison is a senior editor at Dial Books for Young Readers, acquiring and editing everything from picture books up to young adult novels. She works with many critically acclaimed authors, including Ursula Vernon (the Dragonbreath series), Nathan Bransford (Jacob Wonderbar and the Cosmic Space Kapow), Paul Griffin (Stay with Me), Julia Hoban (Willow), Kathleen Van Cleve (Drizzle), and Newbery Honor winner Ingrid Law. She was previously an editor at Harcourt Children’s Books, and also teaches a young adult writing course.

Kate Lee
Agent, International Creative Management
Kate Lee
Agent, International Creative Management

Kate Lee is a literary agent at International Creative Management, where she represents a range of fantastic authors who write engaging and fresh nonfiction — entrepreneurial, journalistic, memoir, and everything in between — new commercial and literary voices in fiction, pop culture and young adult.  Her clients include novelists Charles Finch, Diana Spechler, Bernardine Evaristo, Paula Froelich, Michelle Haimoff, Neil Cross (creator of BBC’s LUTHER) and New Yorker writer Cristina Henriquez; biographers Howard Sounes and Paula Uruburu; business writers Jeffrey Rothfeder, Gilt Groupe f

Katherine McCahill
Digital Product Manager, Penguin

Katherine Tiernan McCahill is the Digital Product Manager at Penguin US. In this role she develops and ushers along the production and publication of Apps, enhanced eBooks, digital subscription models and more. Prior to her current role she has held positions in managing editoral, editorial, marketing and online development at St. Martin’s Press, HarperCollins and Penguin.

Kathleen Schmidt
Founder, KMS Public Relations, LLC
Speaking Events:
Kathleen Schmidt
Founder, KMS Public Relations, LLC
Speaking Events:

Kathleen Schmidt has over 15 years of experience in the publishing industry. She has worked with a distinguished list of New York Times bestselling authors such as Jodi Picoult, Jennifer Weiner, Eric Jerome Dickey, John Jakes and celebrity books by: Prince, Marlo Thomas, Shirley Maclaine, Jenny McCarthy, Al Franken, and Snoop Dogg.

She was part of the team that launched The Secret by Rhonda Byrne, and had the privilege of working on The Time of My Life by the late Patrick Swayze and his wife Lisa Niemi.

KATHY CANO-MURILLO
Crafter, Artist, and Author

One woman, one brand, multiple passions. Kathy Cano-Murillo is an author, artist & founder of the award-winning site, CraftyChica.com. She spreads the gospel of glitter – literally through her DIY projects and figuratively through her speeches, workshops, books, and essays. A former reporter for The Arizona Republic, she is now a full-time creativepreneur which has led to partnerships with Coca-Cola, HSN, HP, WordPress, Disney & many others.

Lauren Cerand
Independent Public Relations Representative and Consultant
Lauren Cerand
Independent Public Relations Representative and Consultant

Says Publishing Perspectives, “Lauren Cerand, an independent publicist based out of New York City, always seems to be a step ahead of the game.” “She really knows how to do campaigns right,” says Mediabistro, and has been called one of the “cultural gatekeepers in the literary world” by Time Out New York, the “Best of New York” by The Village Voice, and “a social media pioneer” by Svenska Dagbladet (Swedish Daily Paper).

Lauren Marino
Vice President, Editorial Director Gotham Books
Speaking Events:
Lauren Marino
Vice President, Editorial Director Gotham Books
Speaking Events:

Lauren Marino is VP. Editorial Director of Gotham Books, where she has been since starting the imprint with William Shinker in fall 2001.

Linda Cowen
Associate General Counsel, Penguin
Speaking Events:
Linda Cowen
Associate General Counsel, Penguin
Speaking Events:

Linda is a lawyer at Penguin Group (USA) Inc. where she advise on all matters related to publishing, including editorial (copyright, defamation, prepublication review), author contracts, marketing, new business development and digital publishing. As an in-house lawyer her objective is to facilitate business while making sure legal risk is avoided.

Linda Konner
Literary Agent
Speaking Events:

Linda Konner has been in the publishing business for over 30 years, as an agent, author, editor, columnist and lecturer.

Lydia Hirt
Assistant Marketing Manager Putnam and Riverhead, Penguin
Lydia Hirt
Assistant Marketing Manager Putnam and Riverhead, Penguin

Lydia is an unabashed lover of books and media. After dallying in advertising, she made her way into publishing and has been happily toiling away in the marketing department at the Putnam and Riverhead imprints at Penguin Group for over two years. In her current role, she's had the pleasure of working with a wide variety of authors including Kathryn Stockett, Eleanor Brown, Robert Crais, Jean Kwok and Steven Johnson, as well as making connections with influential and friendly bloggers. You can find Lydia on Twitter (@lydiahirt) inevitably discussing random things.

Lynn Forbes

Lynn Forbes is a digital strategy expert who has worked at the executive level for such companies as Hearst, Microsoft, Disney, Scripps Networks, Tennis Channel and BlogHer. With more than 25 years experience in content and product development, Lynn is a highly regarded digital consultant and blogger. Her blog, Employee to Employme: A Journey to Entrepreneurship, focuses on the evolution from employee mindset to entrepreneurship and how to joyfully embrace transition and change.

Marian Lizzi
Editor-in-Chief, PerigeeBooks
Marian Lizzi
Editor-in-Chief, PerigeeBooks

Marian Lizzi is Editor-in-Chief of Perigee Books, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA). She describes her list as "prescriptive with personality." Spanning pop reference, quirky how-to, health, special-needs parenting, memoir, and more, her books include READING THE OED, THE CLOUDSPOTTER'S GUIDE, EXTREME PUMPKINS, and THE OUT-OF-SYNC CHILD.

Marissa Walsh
Agent, FinePrint Literary Management
Speaking Events:
Marissa Walsh
Agent, FinePrint Literary Management
Speaking Events:

Marissa Walsh is an agent at FinePrint Literary Management. She specializes in pop culture, humor, memoir, and children's books (middle grade and YA).
 
She began her publishing career at Nan A. Talese/Doubleday and the Ellen Levine Literary Agency. She was an editor at Delacorte Press/Random House Children's Books for seven years, where she published E. Lockhart, Ned Vizzini, and Maryrose Wood.
 

Meg Thompson
Co-Director, Einstein Thompson Agency
Speaking Events:
Meg Thompson
Co-Director, Einstein Thompson Agency
Speaking Events:

Meg Thompson (Co-Director) grew up in Lubbock, TX and moved to New York in 1998 to attend New York University, where she graduated Phi Beta Kappa and Magna Cum Laude with a degree in British and American Literature. She started in publishing in 2002 working for President Bill Clinton in his Harlem office as a researcher and fact checker on his memoir, My Life.

Neeti Madan
Literary Agent, Sterling Lord Literistic
Neeti Madan
Literary Agent, Sterling Lord Literistic

Neeti Madan has been an agent for over 15 years and represents a wide range of authors, among them #1 New York Times best sellers Jenny Lawson (The Bloggess) and Lisa Lillien (Hungry Girl), Container Store Founder and CEO Kip Tindell, biographer Gretchen Holbrook Gerzina, and novelist Tommy Hays. Her books run the gamut from the commercial to the cerebral. She is drawn to memoir, journalism, history, popular culture, business, lifestyle and virtually any intelligent writing on intriguing topics.

Pamela Dorman
Vice President and Publisher, Pamela Dorman Books/Viking
Speaking Events:
Pamela Dorman
Vice President and Publisher, Pamela Dorman Books/Viking
Speaking Events:

Pamela Dorman is Vice President and Publisher of Pamela Dorman Books/Viking.  The imprint focuses on general fiction, especially debut fiction, with occasional non-fiction including memoirs, women’s issues and psychology.  Her previous authors include major bestsellers Helen Fielding, Sue Monk Kidd, and Kim Edwards.  Since her imprint’s inception, she has published numerous debuts, including the New York Times bestselling Saving CeeCee Honeycutt by Beth Hoffman, Paolo Giordano’s The Solitude of Prime Numbers, and New York Times bestselling 22 Britannia R

Patrick Mulligan
Senior Editor, Penguin

Patrick Mulligan is a senior editor at Gotham Books, where he has worked since 2003. Focused on the categories of pop culture, humor, and memoir, he has acquired and edited books by everyone from porn stars to physicists. He has brought a number of properties from the internet to the printed page, including the Chuck Norris Facts series of books, the LOLcat series of books, and Texts from Last Night.

Peter Harris
Director of the Penguin Development Group
Peter Harris
Director of the Penguin Development Group

Peter is the Director of the Penguin Development Group, an in-house team generating original ideas and opportunities for books and series to be published in imprints across the house, including young readers, mass market paperback and adult hardcover. The PDG is also currently and actively pitching all of these books in Hollywood, so that they can be developed commercially into feature films, original television series, as well as video games and on line entertainment.

Rayhané Sanders
Literary Manager, WSK Management LLC
Speaking Events:
Rayhané Sanders
Literary Manager, WSK Management LLC
Speaking Events:

Rayhané represents a wide range of adult titles, including narrative nonfiction, memoir, food and travel narratives, microhistory, psychology, pop culture, and literary, historical, and commercial fiction, including short story collections, as well as a small number of voice-driven YA titles. She is drawn to projects with strong narrators, foreign lands, cross-cultural themes, issues of identity and race, musical settings, underrepresented characters and pockets of culture, and Buddhist thought, but her bookshelf is inviting and she will take on any project that she’s passionate about.

Rebecca Hunt
Associate Editor, Penguin
Rebecca Hunt
Associate Editor, Penguin

Rebecca Hunt grew up in Berkeley, CA, and attended New York University. She has been at Penguin for 5 years, where she works on a range of genres, including humor, memoir, women's fiction, mystery, and reference.

Rita Arens
Deputy Editor, BlogHer.com; Surrender, Dorothy

Rita Arens is the deputy editor of BlogHer.com. She blogs at Surrender, Dorothy (http://www.surrenderdorothyblog.com). Rita is also the author of young adult novel THE OBVIOUS GAME (InkSpell Publishing, 2013); the co-editor of ROOTS: Where Food Comes From and Where It Takes Us (Open Road Media, 2013); and the editor of parenting anthology SLEEP IS FOR THE WEAK (Chicago Review Press, 2008). Follow Rita on Twitter @ritaarens.

Sarah Pinneo
Author of JULIA'S CHILD, Co-Author of THE SKI HOUSE COOKBOOK
Speaking Events:
Sarah Pinneo
Author of JULIA'S CHILD, Co-Author of THE SKI HOUSE COOKBOOK
Speaking Events:

Sarah Pinneo writes about food, family and fiction from Hanover, NH. She is the author of the novel JULIA’S CHILD, forthcoming from Plume/Penguin in February. She is the co-author of THE SKI HOUSE COOKBOOK (Clarkson Potter 2007), and a contributor to publications such as Boston Globe Magazine, Scholastic Parent & Child and Edible Communities Publications.

Susanna Einstein
Co-Director, Einstein Thompson Agency
Speaking Events:
Susanna Einstein
Co-Director, Einstein Thompson Agency
Speaking Events:

Susanna Einstein (Co-Director) a native New Yorker, graduated with distinction from Northwestern University and spent two years working in Chicago theater. She got her start in publishing in 1995 at what was then Warner Books, working first in publicity and then in editorial, and eventually at the before-its-time e-book imprint iPublish.com. She went on to work as a scout with Maria B. Campbell Associates, then moved on to become one of the founding agents at LJK Literary Management.

Tracy Bernstein
Executive Editor, New American Library
Speaking Events:
Tracy Bernstein
Executive Editor, New American Library
Speaking Events:
Tracy Bernstein entered publishing as a summer intern at Houghton Mifflin at age 19, fell in love with editing and has never tired of it. She edits both non-fiction, mainly in the areas of memoir, health and parenting, and fiction of many genres. Among her New York Times bestselling authors are Montel Williams, Marie Osmond, Wynonna Judd and Scott Hamilton. She has worked for many wonderful publishers, including Pocket, Kensington, Henry Holt, and Farrar, Straus & Giroux.
Menu