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Events Calendar

Lunch with a Book: Our Souls at Night

Following up on our popular “Dinner with a Book” format, this time we’re meeting for lunch!

DATE: Monday, March 28th
TIME: 12:30 pm to 2 pm
LOCATION: Cantina Feliz, Fort Washington

Click HERE to register.

our souls at nightJoin Lynn Rosen for a lively and in-depth conversation about Kent Haruf’s novel, Our Souls at Night. We’ll convene over delicious Mexican cuisine in the private room at Cantina Feliz in Ft. Washington, PA.

Like all of Haruf’s work, Our Souls at Night takes place in the fictional town of Holt, Colorado, a small agricultural town in the eastern part of the state. Here we meet Addie and Louis, who are in their 70s and each live alone, save for memories of spouses who have died and children who have moved away. Each has regrets; each is lonely. But Addie aims to change that.

In what is, sadly, the author’s final work, you will encounter the moving story of these two people who somehow manage to cobble together something revitalizing and meaningful, in spite of all the obstacles, only to have forces around them try to snatch it away.

COST: $50
Include a copy of the book: $70
(*Note: the hardcover retails for $24 + tax)

Click HERE to register.


FIRST COURSE (for the table)
Guacamole Traditional: avocado, jalapeno, onion, cilantro
Chop Salad: romaine, baby arugula, cucumber, green apple, honey-yogurt dressing

SECOND COURSE (choose 1)
Carnitas Tacos: pulled pork, salsa roja, onions,cilantro, avocado
Chicken Tinga Quesadilla: poblanos, crema, guacamole
Vegetable Enchiladas: cauliflower, butternut squash, rajas corn, mole Amarillo

DESSERT (for the table)
Chocolate Cake: Caramel sauce, whipped cream

Click HERE to register.

The 2nd Annual Writers at Work Conference: Managing the Business of Being an Author

As a published author, you wear many hats: entrepreneur, writer, designer, public speaker, hats-hepublicist, and more. How can you best juggle all these roles, and support your book in the best way possible? And how can you manage the business side of your writing life without losing time for your art, or your other jobs, or your family?

hats-sheThis one-day conference will address these challenges and introduce you to range of publishing experts who can help you learn ways to successfully manage your authorial career. You’ll learn a range of new skills and make new industry contacts, all in an inspiring setting!

DATE: Sunday, March 13, 2016

TIME: 9am – 5:30pm

LOCATION: The Manor House at Whitpain Farm, Blue Bell, PA

Click HERE to register.

The Writers at Work Conference is a joint production of Open Book and Philadelphia Stories magazine.


9 am-9:30 am: Registration

9:30 am – 10:20 am
A Conversation with Andy Kahan of the Free Library of Philadelphia

Andy Kahan

Andy Kahan

For the past fifteen years, Kahan has directed the star-studded series of author events and readings at the main branch of the Free Library of Philadelphia. Readers and book lovers know that this series is the place to be to hear a steady stream of top authors share stories, read from their work, and interact with the audience, year after year. Here Kahan will speak about his experience: how he chooses authors, what makes for a successful program (and what doesn’t), and how you can strive to be the best presenter possible and enlarge your speaking opportunities. Kahan will share backstage stories and answer your questions about author events.

10:30 am-11:45 am
Career Management: How to Be a Successful Published Author
Your book has been published (hurrah and congratulations!) and now, as some say, the hard part begins. You have a lot to do! You have to get involved in promotion and publicity and marketing and sales and …. so much more! And possibly pay some attention as well to another job, a family, and myriad other things in your life.

In this session, you’ll get expert advice on how to anticipate what the authorial demands on your time will be, and how to successfully manage those demands.

Moderator: Lynn Rosen, Open Book Bookstore
Jennifer Kasius, Editorial Director, Running Press

Jennifer Kasius

Jennifer Kasius


Clare Pelino

Clare Pelino, President, Pro Literary Consultants & Profile Public Relations

Eric Smith

Eric Smith

Eric Smith, Associate Literary Agent at P.S. Literary


 12 pm-12:30 pm: Lunch


12:30 pm-1:30 pm: Lunch Keynote

Publishing Industry Updates and What They May Mean for You

Kat Meyer

Kat Meyer

Kat Meyer is one of the publishing industry’s most respected analysts of trends. During her many years as a chair of various major publishing conferences, she has brought together some of the industry’s most innovative companies and executives. Today she will speak about trends and changes in the industry, focusing on what authors need to be on top of in terms of ways the industry is changing. She’ll also talk about the important work done by Book Industry Study Group to build the tools to provide us with a detailed picture of industry sales and buying patterns.

About the speaker:
Kat Meyer is the Director of Content Development and Acquisition for the Book Industry Study Group. A 20 plus year veteran of the publishing industry, Kat has worn a number of bookish hats, including: director of events for Publishers Weekly; conference chair for O’Reilly Media’s Tools of Change and the Frankfurt Book Fair’s CONTEC Frankfurt; and marketing manager for a number of regional, trade and academic publishers. As a media consultant focused on community development and events management, she has also worked with the Bologna Children’s Book Fair, Books in Browsers, Sourcebooks, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, NetGalley, Communication Skill Builders, the University of Arizona Press and Rio Nuevo Publishers.

Click HERE to register.

1:40 pm-2:40 pm
The Art of Getting Attention: Manageable and Realistic Ways to Get Your Book Noticed
Here is one of the greatest challenges: getting your book noticed among all the clutter and noise out there. What does it take to get attention for your book? There are many ways, and our expert panelists will share some techniques for getting attention: from the media, on the bookshelves in bookstores and other retail outlets (both virtual and bricks & mortar), and by building and growing your platform and your exposure in the press and elsewhere.

Corinne Liccketto-Moulder

Corinne Liccketto-Moulder

Moderator: Christine Weiser, Philadelphia Stories

Moneka Hewlett

Moneka Hewlett

Moneka Hewlett, Vice President, Sales, Quirk Books
Corinne Liccketto-Moulder, Director of Business Development, Smith Publicity, Inc.

Cathy Rubin

Cathy Rubin

Cathy Rubin, Lifestyle Editor, The Philadelphia Inquirer

2:45 pm-2:55 pm: Refreshments and Networking

3:00 pm-3:30 pm
What I Learned From Working with Authors: A Conversation with Booksellers
Booksellers are on the front lines in the world of book publishing, making the connection between authors and readers by helping customers find just the right books and by supporting authors through events, handselling, and other activities. And if you think booksellers probably have some pretty crazy stories to tell about what they’ve seen, you’re right! Booksellers have their fingers on the pulse of what it takes to reach readers. In this session, a range of local booksellers will share insight and advice about what authors can do to support book sales, as well as what they shouldn’t do–and they’ll share some good stories in the telling!
Moderator: Christine Weiser, Philadelphia Stories
Lynn Rosen, Co-Owner, Open Book Bookstore
Cathy Fiebach, Owner, Main Point Books
Ashley Montague, Owner, Penn Book Center

bryna new headshot sm

Bryna Nelson Paston

3:30 pm-4:15 pm
The Entrepreneurial Author
You wouldn’t give it up – the chance you’ve made for yourself to be an author, write a book, and make a difference by reaching readers with your work. It’s hard work, but you’ve made a commitment and you’re making a go of it. In this panel, gather encouragement from some authors who’ve had success by being creative, inventive, entrepreneurial,

Donna Galanti

Donna Galanti

and just plain dogged. Their methods and fresh approaches will inspire you!
Bryna Nelson Paston, author of How to be the Perfect Grandma

Dana Bate

Dana Bate

Dana Bate, author of Too Many Cooks
Donna Galanti, author of Joshua and the Lightning Road 

Click HERE to register.

4:15 pm-5:30 pm
Wine & Cheese Reception
Relax and unwind with new friends to review what you’ve learned and how you will apply these tips to your writing & cheese

Three Rounds with Three Irish Lassie Writers

DATE: Thursday, March 17thirish
TIME: 7 pm to 9 pm
LOCATION: Open Book Bookstore, 7900 High School Rd. Elkins Park PA

What could be a better way to celebrate St. Patrick’s day in literary style? Join us as three local writers, all of whom have a bit o’ the Irish in them, sit around talking blarney about literature, their new books, and whatever else comes up!

We’re pleased to present:

Kelly Simmons

Kelly Simmons

Kelly Simmons’ novels have been hailed as electrifying, complex and poignant, and aren’t those nice words? Her third novel, ONE MORE DAY, just came out and everyone calls it riveting, so don’t buy it unless you want to stay up all night reading it.  She’s a member of The Liars Club, a group of published novelists dedicated to helping fledgling writers.


Liz Moore

Liz Moore

Liz Moore is the author of the novels The Words of Every Song and Heft. Her novel The Unseen World is forthcoming in July 2016 from W.W. Norton. A winner of the 2014 Rome Prize in Literature, she lives in Philadelphia and teaches at Holy Family University.heft SQUARE



Kate Moretti

Katie Moretti

Kate Moretti lives in Pennsylvania with her husband and two children. She’s worked in the pharmaceutical industry for ten years as a scientist and is the author of New York Times bestselling THOUGHT I KNEW YOU. She enjoys traveling and cooking, although with two kids, a day job, and writing, she doesn’t get to do those things as much as she’d like. Her lifelong dream is to buy an old house with a secret passageway.

BYO favorite Irish beverage to share, and we’ll provide a few as well, along with snacks.

Oh hey, anybody make a great Irish soda bread? If you’d care to prove it, bring it along. You might just win a prize…

Hot Off the Press: Fall/Winter 2015-2016

hot off pressA new session of Hot Off the Press will begin in April 2016. Save the dates: Tuesday evening, April 5th, May 3rd, May 31st, and June 28th. Book selections to be announced soon!

In this lively monthly book discussion class led by Lynn Rosen, participants read and discuss new literary fiction. Class conversations include analysis of the book as well as background information provided by Lynn about the author and the book’s path to publication. We talk serious book talk, but have a lot of laughs too!

Class will take place monthly on Tuesday evenings from 7pm to 8:30pm

Dates: October 13, November 10, December 8, January 12, February 9

Location: The Open Book Bookstore at 7900 High School Road, Elkins Park, PA 19027

Cost: $135

To sign up click HERE.

Class members also  receive discounts if they purchase their class books from the Open Book Bookstore.

Here are the book selections:

October 13
Above the Waterfall by Ron Rash
The author of Serena (one of my favorite novels published in the last few years) is back with another book set in Appalachia, a country the author knows well and in which he explores, in poetic language, characters’ strong connection to the land.
Books are available now! Call 267-627-4888 to reserve your copy!

November 10
Did You Ever Have a Family by Bill Clegg
This new novel by Clegg, a former literary agent and author of the acclaimed memoir Portrait of an Addict as a Young Man, has been nominated for a Man Booker Award. This fiction debut explores the after-effects of tragedy.

December 8
Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff
Another favorite author returns with a new novel that explores marital dynamics in her trademark insightful (and mythological) way. A look behind closed doors that is both comic and tragic.
Note: Join me to hear Lauren Groff speak at the Free Library of Philadelphia on December 14th.

January 12
The Mare by Mary Gaitskill
Eleven year-old Velvet, living in tough conditions with her mother and brother in Brooklyn, is sent, via the Fresh Air Fund, for two weeks in upstate New York to live with Ginger and Paul, starting a relationship that continues for several years and affects both families.

February 9
Your Heart Is a Muscle the Size of a Fist by Sunil Yapa
Life in Seattle during the 1999 WTO riots as seen from the point of view of six different characters. Called a “raw and breathtaking” novel and published by the editor who also published The Story of Edgar Sawtelle.

To sign up click HERE.

How to Love a Poem: A Poetry Party!

hand and penCome join us as we party with poetry!

WHEN: Thursday, February 11th
TIME:    7pm to 9pm
WHERE: Open Book Bookstore, 7900 High School Rd. Elkins Park, PA

Poetry lovers, we invite you to join us as we celebrate the season of love and the coming of Valentine’s Day with an evening of sharing poetry aloud. Local poets Margaret Sayers and Annie Boagni will lead an evening of poetry readings and recitations in which all are welcome. Some of you may wish to read a poem aloud to the group, and others might like to just listen. Either way, we’ll join together to appreciate the beauty of poetry.

*Note: Please BYO adult beverage!

About our Co-Hosts

Margaret Sayers

Margaret Sayers

Margaret Sayers is a lover of poetry with a long list of favorite poets including Tony Hoagland and Kay Ryan. When she is not busy with her family, her multiple psychology jobs, or volunteer work, she writes poetry as well as flash fiction and short stories. Margaret is especially drawn to poems that capture the beauty of everyday and unexpected moments.

Annie Boagni

Annie Boagni

Annie Boagni is a high school teacher who has always been enamoured with words. When her 2nd  grade teacher wrote on the chalkboard: “Do you have the audacity to doubt my veracity or even insinuate that I would prevaricate?” she swooned. Since then, word work and word play have been a part of her everyday life. In addition to her pithy, and sometimes witty commentary on high school student essays, Annie writes poetry and fiction.


7 – 7:30pm: Meet and mingle, enjoy refreshments. (We’ll provide some, but please feel free to bring!)

7:30pm: The readings begin. Guests are invited to read a poem. If you’d like to read, please email to sign up ahead of time. Your name will be placed in the hat and on the night of the event we’ll pull out names in random order and you will be invited up to share your poem of choice. If you are a poet, you are welcome to bring a piece of your own to share. We’ll also have copies of poems at the event to choose from. Keep in mind that the theme of the evening is love!  [Note: one poem per reader; time limit 5 minutes per reading.]

Recitation: Did your high school English teacher make you memorize Chaucer or Frost or another well-known poem? Throughout the evening, we’ll invite guests to trot out that old poem and recite it for us. You may win a prize!

The program will run until about 8:45pm. Open Book Bookstore will also have a selection of poetry books available for purchase. Call ahead if you’d like any volumes special ordered.

To RSVP or with questions call the store at 267-627-4888 or email

And remember, spots for readers are limited, so sign up ahead of time!