Saturday, 21 May 2016

A choice of two workshops:

How to Publish a Book
with Jessica Bell

Jessica is editor of the Vine Leaves Journal, an author of both novels and non-fiction, plus a writing coach and cover designer.

Her workshop, suitable for writers of fiction/non-fiction, is filled with useful advice and highly productive, with exercises and activities to put theory into practice. By the end of Saturday, you will have all the information you need to perfect and publish your book. This session will cover:

  • Editing & Polishing Your Work to Publication Standard Part 1 (Content)
  • Editing & Polishing Your Work to Publication Standard Part 2 (Style)
  • Preparing Your Manuscript for Publication (Copy)
  • Making Your Book (Formatting Your Manuscript)
  • Cover Design Considerations
  • Retailers & Distributors
  • Q&A

How To Market a Book
with Helen Lewis

Helen Lewis, Director of boutique publicity agency Literally PR and Co-Founder of The Author School has a wealth of expertise when it comes to promotion.

Helen’s session is comprehensive and realistic, involving participants in creating their own PR stories, advance information sheets and finding what works for you. By the end of this workshops, you’ll take away concrete ideas and immediately applicable techniques to help you find your readers. This session will cover:

  • Publicity Masterclass #1 (What you need)
  • Publicity Masterclass #2 (What you can do)
  • How to write your own Advance Information Sheet
  • What makes your author story and/or your book appealing to the press?
  • Building your author platform (offline)
  • Social media health-check
  • Q&A



Kulturhaus Helferei
Kirchgasse 13
8001 Zürich

By public transport:
Tram Nr. 4 or 15 until “Helmhaus”

By car:
nearest parkhouse “Hohe Promenade”


Brought to you by Zurich’s Literary Online Magazine


SPEAKERS 21 May 2016


Jessica Bell

Lead Graphic Designers

Jessica Bell is a writer, editor, musician, book cover designer and the Publishing Editor of Vine Leaves Literary Journal and Vine Leaves Press. She is also an editor/writer for English Language Teaching publishers worldwide.

In addition to her novels, poetry collections and her bestselling pocket writing guides (Writing in a Nutshell Series), she has published a variety of works in online and print literary journals and anthologies, including Australia’s Cordite Review, Writer’s Digest, and the anthologies 100 Stories For Queensland and From Stage Door Shadows, both released through Brisbane, Australia’s eMergent Publishing.

Helen Lewis

Literally PR / Book Promotion

With extensive experience as a freelance PR and NCTJ-accredited journalist, Helen started her career at Reuters in the publishing division, and took a giant leap of faith into the freelance world (as a journalist first – 2004 and then as a PR – 2006). Helen founded in 2006. The website continues to provide a free service to the 5000+ members including journalists, PRs, foodies, producers and retailers.

Following repeated requests from food and drink contacts, Helen started to work with authors in 2011 and fell in love with ‘book publicity’ as an extension of her PR work.

Helen’s ‘perfect’ job combines her passions: food, drink and books. When she’s not working, Helen will be found running around after her four and six year old daughters, or relaxing with friends with a G&T or three.

JJ Marsh – Moderator

Author / Journalist / Alliance of Independent Authors Swiss rep

JJ Marsh is the author of The Beatrice Stubbs series, featured in The Guardian Readers’ Recommend and The Bookseller’s Editor’s Choice.

Jill is:

  • A founder member of Triskele Books, an award-winning author collective founded in 2011. In addition to publishing 21 books, Triskele creates initiatives to support other writers, eg The Indie Author Fair and The Big Five Competition.
  • Swiss Ambassador for The Alliance of Independent Authors
  • Co-editor of The Woolf, Zürich’s literary ezine and writers’ workshop
  • Journalist for Words with JAM, the magazine for writers.
  • Reviewer for Bookmuse, the readers’ site with a difference.

Originally from Wales, Jill spent time in Africa, the Middle East, Portugal and France before finally settling in Switzerland with her husband and dogs. Nowadays, in an attic overlooking a cemetery, she writes crime.

Twitter: @JJMarsh1


Libby O’Loghlin – Moderator

Author / Ghostwriter / Media Literacy Educator

Co-founder of The Woolf Quarterly, Libby is a ghostwriterauthor and prize-winning short story writer. She has written, produced and reviewed narrative media (radio, film, TV, gaming, digital and print publishing) for 20+ years.

A native Australian, Libby now lives in Switzerland. She’s co-founder and board member of The Powerhouse Network for Professional Women in Zürich, and is the owner of Rowing Girl Productions.


Detailed Schedule 21 May 2016


How to Market a Book
with Helen Lewis

How to Publish a Book
with Jessica Bell

Introduction: About Helen and Literally PR


Publicity Masterclass #1

How to find a book publicist and questions to ask

What does a book publicist do?

The need to change your mindset from baby to business!


9.00 – 10.00

Editing & Polishing Your Work to Publication Standard Part 1

First Line Hook

Character Consistency & Point of View (POV) Switches

Dialogue Tags

Tightening Descriptions

Chapter Endings

Exercise: Rewrite the first line hook and chapter ending for sample chapter provided.


Publicity Masterclass #2

Marketing investments – the huge disparity between author investments

What marketing does a publisher do for you?

When should you start publicising/marketing your book?

Blogging and vlogging – providing engaging online content

Some publicity ideas you can do for yourself

10.00 – 11.00

Editing & Polishing Your Work to Publication Standard Part 2

Removing Superfluous Words

Identifying & Replacing Tics (Overused Words)

First Person & Third Person Pronouns

Tense Consistency

Line Edits

Exercise: Edit an 500-word vignette to publication standard

 Coffee chat

11.00 – 11:30

 Coffee chat

How to write your own Advance Information Sheet

Using a template and looking at examples of other AIs (some good, some not so good) each author will work on creating their own AI using bullets and notes. This can then be worked on in more detail after the event and sent to Helen who will edit and publish on the Literally PR blog!


11.30 – 12.30

Preparing Your Manuscript for Publication

Spelling & Punctuation Consistency (AmE or BrE?)

Typographical Considerations (Numbers, Time, Quotes & Apostrophes, Dashes, Italics, Paragraph Indents, Spaces)

Titles & Chapter Heading Considerations

Front & Back matter: What goes in it?

Blurb, Genre, and Basic Metadata: Who is Your Target Audience?

Exercise: Write a blurb for a work in progress.



12.30 – 13.30



What makes your author story and/or your book appealing to the press?

Identifying media angles around your book’s themes (and your own unique media appeal points as an author).

Consider examples of other media angles that have proved successful for our authors.

13.30 – 14.30

Making Your Book (Formatting Your Manuscript)

Formatting for Print in Microsoft Word and Adobe Acrobat

The Importance of Proofreading formatted pages and what glitches to look out for

Formatting for eBook in HTML using Microsoft Word and Notepad++

Using Calibre to export HTML into an ePub (eBook) file

Exercise: Format a short text into HTML and export into ePub.

Building your author platform (offline)

Putting together a pitch for literary festivals and events – why should they choose you over the myriad other authors pitching to them?

Discussing what other authors have done to make more people know about them and they’re books (not online).

Looking at possible events and places you could pitch to talk at and sell to.

The big fee debate – should authors be paid to talk and sell books at literary events?


14.30 – 15.30

Cover Design Considerations

What makes a striking cover that readers will want to pick up?

Tips on how to design one yourself using basic Photoshop skills, or outsource to a freelance designer.

Exercise: Write a design brief for a freelance designer

Coffee chat


15.30 – 16.00

Coffee chat


Social media MOT

Helen will review each of your social media platforms and do a cross-comparison with you and the others, plus those authors who are hugely successful online, to show you what you can be doing to improve your online platform by learning from others. This is a chance to discuss Helen’s top twitter tips, have a conversation about what works and what doesn’t, and answer questions commonly asked to Helen such as ‘why am I not selling books via social media?’ and ‘what’s the point of social media?’


16.00 – 16.30

Retailers & Distributors

Learn about various formats and what they are.

Retailer and distributor options and how to ‘publish’


16.30 – 17.00