Consult Fest

One of the best things about CCWC is the joining of editors, agents, and authors of all stages of career, whether current award-winning best sellers or the award-winning best sellers of next year – all in the same location. Writing is a solitary affair, but publishing takes a village. You’ve done the hard part, started a project, maybe even finished, and emerged from the darkness ready to take off your writer hat and strap into your business helmet. But you don’t know the business. Maybe you’re not ready to pitch, able to sum up your story, are unsure of whether you need a developmental editor, a line editor, don’t know when to use effect vs affect… You’d like help from an industry professional, without the threat of burning a bridge or being seen as an amateur. 

Presenting CCWC 2023 Consult Fest!

For an additional fee, registered attendees can submit up to 2000 words of their work, fiction or non, include a brief summary, even a list of questions you’ve always wanted to know about the industry, up to one month before CCWC. Your material will be reviewed by professional editors working in the industry right now. Then, on Sunday, June 11, you will sit, safely, in-person, with that editor and discuss whatever you want to discuss. It’s your dime. That said, this is an opportunity to gauge if your work is ready for publication, without the threat of rejection. This is a chance to see what’s working and what could use some work, a chance to make a human connection in an industry that begins with a long line of closed doors.

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Our Editors

Lisa Diane Kastner

Lisa Diane Kastner

Founder, Executive Editor, Running Wild Press

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Kastner is the Founder and Executive Editor of Running Wild Press. She’s been a writer and editor for more than twenty years. Featured in Forbes, she has her MFA in Creative Writing with concentrations in Fiction and Nonfiction from Fairfield University, her MBA from Pennsylvania State University, her undergraduate from Drexel University. Lisa began Running Wild with the belief that we can change the world through story. Books published by Running Wild have been named the best of 2019 and best of 2020 according to Kirkus Review. They've received several starred reviews and additional acclaim.

Dan López

Assistant Editor at Counterpoint

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López is an Assistant Editor at Counterpoint based in Los Angeles. His interests include literary and commercial fiction, cultural histories, works in translation (particularly from the Spanish), and books that explore the Hispanic/Latino(a)/Latinx experience. Learn more at counterpointpress.com, and follow Dan on Twitter @dan_lopez82.

Dan López
Zoe Quinton

Zoe Quinton

Editing and Publishing Consultant

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As the daughter of a religious studies professor and a New York Times-bestselling mystery author,  Quinton was born with stories in her blood. She earned a Master’s degree from the London School of Economics, then in 2007 began working as her mother’s business manager and head publicist. After a decade in the publishing industry, Zoe branched out to found her own freelance editing and publishing consultancy business in 2017. Since then, she has edited both aspiring and many-times-published authors as well as helping others find agents or navigate the ups and downs of self-publishing. When she’s not reading for work or pleasure—which is rare—you can find her trail running, drinking good coffee or wine, gardening, and spending time with her husband, their two small people, and a very loud Siamese-tortoiseshell cat in their lovely home in Santa Cruz, California. 

Dr. Helga Schier, PhD

Editorial Director, CamCat Books

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Schier is the Editorial Director of CamCat Books (camcatbooks.com), a boutique publisher of award-winning genre fiction. With over 25 years of experience powering her work, Helga guides authors through the development and revision process. Helga focuses on concept, story, and approach, helping writers sharpen their vision, refine their voice, and unlock the potential of their manuscripts. A former academic, Helga has lectured on literature and creative writing, published essays on contemporary English and American fiction, and has translated several novels, screenplays, and memoirs (visit withpenandpaper.com for more information).

Helga Schier
Cody Sisco

Cody Sisco

Editor, Running Wild Press, author, community organizer

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Sisco is an author, editor, publisher, and literary community organizer. His LGBT psychological science fiction series includes two novels thus far, Broken Mirror and Tortured Echoes. He is a freelance editor specializing in genre-bending fiction and an editor for Running Wild Press. In 2017, he co-founded Made in L.A. Writers, an indie author co-op dedicated to the support and appreciation of independent authors. His startup, BookSwell, is a literary events and media production company dedicated to lifting up marginalized voices and connecting readers and writers in Southern California and beyond. He serves as a Co-Executive on the Board of Governors for the Editorial Freelancers Association and as a board member at APLA Health.

ConsultFest FAQ

Sign up link below.

Can I Submit to More Than One Editor or More Than One Piece to the Same Editor?

Initial submissions will be limited to one per author until April 1st. After that date, additional entries, whether the same piece to a second editor or an additional sample, will be considered, based on availability. 

How Long Do I Get With the Editor?

The editors will have one month with your submission and will meet with you for a 15-minute in-person session on Sunday, June 11. Consult Fest will take place over 3 1-hour sessions. You will receive your assigned time when you check into the conference.

Which Editor Will Read My Submission?

The submission form allows the selection of your top 2 preferred editors and all efforts will be made to pair accordingly. However, demand will be spread upon all consultants. Additionally, editors may be swapped out in case of emergency, cancellation, or further pandemic issues. 

Does My Submission Need to Be Ready When I Sign Up?

Submission materials do not need to be included with registration. Once both your registration and payment for Consult Fest have been received, you will receive a link via email where you can submit your material. This link will be good until the submission deadline of May 1st, 2023.

What If I Want to Revise My Submission After I’ve Uploaded?

The submission form will allow for revision of an existing entry. The last entry submitted by May 1st, 2023 will be selected as the official submission.

What If I Need to Cancel My Consult Fest Registration?

2023 CCWC Consult Fest Cancellation Policy. If you cancel before May 1st, 2023, you will receive a full refund minus the booking fee. If you cancel between May 1st and June 1st, 2023, you will receive a 50% refund minus the booking fee. No refunds will be available after June 1st, 2023. If you cancel your CCWC 2023 registration, it is understood that your Consult Fest registration will also be canceled and refunded accordingly.

Who Do I Contact for Consult Fest Cancellation, Refund, Corrections, Clarifications, Additional Questions?

Please contact submissions@ccwconference.org

Will This Get Me Discovered, Published, Allow Me to Quit My Job?

Again, Consult Fest is not designed to pitch material to publishers. This is an opportunity to gauge your positioning among your fellow writers, improve your craft, and answer questions you may have about the industry through paid access to a professional currently working on books that are getting made. That said, if an acquiring editor asks to see your manuscript and that leads to greatness, all the better. If a developmental editor offers additional paid services, you may or may not follow them up on their offer, no pressure whatsoever. CCWC makes no guarantees, other than a safe, constructive critique environment and the professional handling of your materials.

How Much Does It Cost?

$50 per submission and 15-minute in-person review. See 2023 CCWC Consult Fest Cancellation Policy for details.

How Do I Sign Up?

If you have not already registered for the conference, sign up now on the registration page. ConsultFest is only open to conference attendees.

If you signed up before January 15, then you should have received an email from us with the access code to buy a session. If you signed up after January 15, then check your registration confirmation email – the access code is in there. Can’t find either email? Please contact submissions@ccwconference.org to verify your registration and request the access code.