Tuesday, October 8, 2013

The Collingswood Book Festival

On Saturday, The South Jersey Writers’ Group participated in the Collingswood Book Festival.  This was the Book Festival’s 11th year and each year it gets bigger and better.  One of the things that made it better this year, was that the SJWG’s had a table. 

Our table had a great location, and a very nice tent to shade group members from the sweltering sun.  Although it was October, it felt more like August. The heat seemed to make everyone feel a little less energetic.
The group worked hard selling books.  Tall Tales and Short Stories was for sale and other group members had some table space to sell their books.


Jordanna East (Blood in the Past), Gregg Feistman (The War Merchants) and John Farquhar ( What to Expect When You're Dead) all sold copies of their books.

SJWG also worked at promoting the group.  Amy came up with the idea for these great pins.
They worked because people did in fact ask us about our writers’ group and we were ready to hand out our nifty postcards out to anyone who asked. 
One of the best parts about the Collingswood Book Festival is the chance to meet and talk with all of the authors and listen to the panel discussions.
Amy, Shelley and I really enjoyed the panel called, Publishing Your First Novel.  The panel featured four newly published young adult authors.
-Alison Ashley Formento –Twigs
-David Lubar- Extremities: Stories of Death, Murder, and Revenge
-Kit Grindstaff- The Flame in the Mist
-Evan Roskos- Dr. Bird’s Advice for Sad Poets
They were very honest about the trials of publishing your first novel, and gave encouragement about how to handle rejection.  Author Kit Grindstaff recommended chocolate. 


Amy and I also attended a panel called, What’s the Buzz in YA Fiction-Fantasy or Realism?  The authors on this panel were

Elisa Ludwig – Pretty Crooked
Ty Drago- The Undertakers: Rise of Corpses
Ellen Jensen Abbott- Watersmeet; The Centaur’s Daughter
James Mascia- High School Heroes

The authors on this panel were quite encouraging about writing the story that you want to write and not worrying too much about whether or not your story is hitting on a particular trend (examples- vampires, zombies,  wizards, etc..).  By the time you are finished writing and revising your novel, the trends may have changed.   

It seemed that all of the authors that attended the festival were genuinely nice people as well as being talented writers. 
At the end of the day, we drank a lot of water, we sold some books, we sold some tote bags, and got some people interested in joining the group.  If you missed the Collingswood Book Festival or if you had a great time at the festival this year, be sure to mark your calendars for Saturday, October 11th 2014.

(by Sarah Hawkins Miduski-guest blogger)




  1. Great post, Sarah. Like the pictures too.

  2. Great post..sorry I missed the panels now!!

  3. Thanks everyone! It was a fun day.

  4. This was a great post and I'm sorry that I was away and missed this:)_


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