June 20th: Pitching Your Thing to the Media

Whatever you have to pitch to the media for coverage — your band’s new record, your new publishing company, the fact you won a big shiny award — it’s not always easy to attract their attention. While different media outlets and platforms have their idiosyncrasies, there are general rules and techniques that always work (and not necessarily include tucking a bottle of whisky into the package, although that does help). Come to the June Meeting and learn or re-learn the rules, share your own tips about successful pitches, and generally sharpen your pitching techniques.

Additional fun includes hearing “Bad Pitch Horror Stories”: Pitches from Bitches! Don’t miss this evening’s zany hilarity!

As always, tickets are $20 in advance [Eventbrite Link] (available ’till June 16th) or $25 at the door, and that includes dinner and a drink. The venue for this month’s event only is the Shebeen Whisk(e)y House, in a separate building behind the Irish Heather at 210 Carrall Street, just steps from Maple Tree Square. For our July Event, we will return to Revel Room (238 Abbott Street just south of Gastown)

  • LOCATION: the Shebeen Whisk(e)y House, 210 Carrall Street, Gastown
  • JUST $20!! GET YOUR TICKETS HERE! [Eventbrite Link!] includes dinner!
  • …or, bring $25 cash on the evening
  • Monday, June 20th
    • 6:00 – 6:30 | meet & mingle
    • 6:30 – 7:00-ish | listen & learn
    • 7:00-ish – ?:00 | conversation & congregation

UPDATE Nº1: Menu is as follows

  • MEAT IS YUMMY: Grilled Pork Ribs, Homemade BBQ Sauce, Savoy Cabbage Slaw, Roasted Potatoes.
  • VEGETABLES ONLY: Crispy Polenta, Organic Tomato Sauce, Fresh Basil & Parmesan Shavings

PLEASE NOTE: The Shebeen Whisk(e)y House has a maximum capacity of 60 people, and we’re already half-way there. BUYING YOUR TICKETS IN ADVANCE IS A SMART MOVE.

UPDATE Nº2: WALK-UPS ARE OF LIMITED CAPACITY, DUE TO KITCHEN CAPABILITIES. Chances are if we run out of the above items, you can bob into the pup proper after the presentation and grab a bite there, having then given the cooks a chance to catch their breath.

SPECIAL VANCOUVER MEDIA GUEST: Globe & Mail columnist and the host of CBC Radio One’s On the Coast: Stephen Quinn!

Mr. Stephen Quinn

Mr. Stephen Quinn


Stephen Quinn began his reporting career in 1996, after graduating from BCIT’s ‘Broadcast Journalism’ program. During his last year of school, he interned at CBC’s “As it Happens” in Toronto during the last Quebec referendum. He returned to Vancouver and was hired by CKNW as a general assignment news reporter where he spent more than four years covering various court cases, crime stories, breaking news and Vancouver City Council.

In 2000, Mr. Quinn was hired by CBC Radio as a civic affairs reporter. He covered Vancouver City Council, Translink, the GVRD Board (now MetroVancouver) and other civic issues.

He was also an occasional guest host of CBC’s local current affairs programs “The Early Edition”, “B.C. Almanac” and “On the Coast”. He co-produced and hosted a radio series on the 2005 provincial election campaign which won the RTNDA’s ‘Ron Laidlaw Award for Continuing Coverage’. He was also the recipient of the RTNDA’s ‘Gord Sinclair Award for Special Programming’ in 2009. Mr. Quinn has also been part of numerous award-winning newscasts and has received one honourable mention from the Jack Webster Foundation. He is creator of “Quinn’s Quiz”, a popular radio segment that first appeared on “The Early Edition”.

He has guest-hosted “Freestyle”, “Sounds Like Canada”, and “Q” for CBC National Radio. He has also produced and hosted a series on the media for CBC’s “The Current”.

In 2008 he was hired as the host of “On the Coast”, CBC Radio’s local afternoon show in Metro Vancouver.

Mr. Quinn grew up in Ottawa, Ont. where he attended Lisgar Collegiate Institute. He moved to Vancouver in 1983.

OTHERS’ EVENTS: The Reading Writer’s Tea Party

Sure, The Shebeen Club meeting tonight is the most important thing in everyone’s life, but what do you do between that and the next one? Well, here’s a suggestion, thanks to Kathrin Lake.

REMINDER: The Reading Writer’s Tea Party is next Saturday!!!

To RSVP you are coming if you have not already, see buy now button below, or email me your assurances and how many are coming. We have to reserve you a tea cup and a seat.

ALSO: If you are reading get me your 5 minute manuscript (2 pages max – may be abridged) for the desktop booklet BY Wednesday the 25th.

I will also have a very exciting announcement at the Tea Party that you all may be very interested in…. keep you in suspense.

You are cordially invited to…

The Reading Writers Group

My only wish for organizing events at the recent Women & Words conference was that I had hoped we could include an open mike reading event, cabaret or café to read in-process, new or favorite works. But it was too busy. So, as Spring dawns on the Wet Coast and brings the urge to use my grandmother’s tea cups again, I thought Tea Party! Ohhh… what about inviting all those W&W participants and on Saturday, May 28th, 3pm having…

  • Tea and coffee out of my precious, inherited, elegant tea cup collection
  • Yummy goodies, both healthy and sinful
  • Gabbing
  • Brilliant Readings from Authors or Will-be Authors
  • PLUS: Your own take away free booklet at the event that may have your own words published in it (see below*)
  • AND: A shelf to display and sell your own books again (bring no more than 5 copies if you have them)
  • Other surprises….

◊ WHY NOT make sure that the writers who are volunteering to read are rewarded by being PUBLISHED in a little desktop “booklet”

That’s right, if you are a writer who is reading your work at the tea party, and can send us the text a week in advance by May 21st (2 pages max), then we will print all or part in the “booklet” that will go home with everyone!

Entrance is less than $9 with everything included.

CLICK THIS SECURE LINK and buy now to reserve your spot. Pass this on to guests who will be joining you

Date: Saturday, May 28th 3pm to 6pm

Time: 3pm to 6:30pm

Location: #401 – 1288 Broughton – BUZZ 401 – in the English Bay area!

This is my large downtown apartment unless there is huge demand, and I may move the event to another downtown location. Parking is on the street meter, pay parking garages, and some lucky free parking, and transit is a block away.

May Meeting: Help Us Help You Help Us All

Mr. Grumpy Pants

Mr. Grumpy Pants

Why so serious, pookie?

Has your writing career got you down? Things not falling into your lap like those unicorn rainbows and lollipop dreams would have it? Wondering what to do and how to do that (short of offering to sleep with Jack McClelland)?

THEN YOU NEED TO COME TO THE MAY MEETING OF THE SHEBEEN CLUB!

What with raincoaster heading off to places to our north so as to discover new alcohol-based uses for ice, The Shebeen Club is being forced on a new sucker transferred to a new, bright, shining set of hands! Ian Alexander Martin (a guy comfortable with writing about himself in the 3rd person) wants to know what you — yes, you — want to see in the meetings!

Come on down to the Rebel Room, put him in a sleeper hold, and then calmly explain what you need to learn about and who should explain it to you as a presenter.

The best way to get what you want is to say what that is. No one is willing to admit they can read minds, so join us on Tuesday, May 24th at 7pm for a timely, lively discussion by you and other intelligent people who are writers, publishers, literary agents, PR and Media people, or just plain people involved in that Publishing Biz. Bring your questions, suggestions, and your brain!

As always, tickets are $20 in advance [Eventbrite Link; let us know you’re coming and we’ll give you the early bird price] (available till May 23rd) or $25 at the door, and that includes dinner and a drink. The venue is the upstairs lounge at Revel Room, 238 Abbott Street just south of Gastown.

  • Revel Room: 238 Abbott Street just south of Gastown [need a map? CLICK HERE]
  • JUST $20!! GET YOUR TICKETS HERE! [Eventbrite Link!] includes dinner!
  • …or, bring $25 cash on the evening
  • Tuesday, May 24th
    • 7:00 – 7:30 meet & mingle
    • 7:30 – 8:00-ish listen & learn

Fucking Writers’ Conferences: how do they work?

This is our April topic. I can drop an F bomb in it because the speaker said it was okay, and that was because the speaker is me and I’m the one who puts the PRO in profanity, right? Damn straight.

This month we’re on the 4th Tuesday instead of the 3rd Monday, but oh well, a foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of small minds, eh? And we’ll be starting at 6pm instead of 7, and it’s all cash, $20 a head for the set meal. Everybody gets the earlybird price this month.

There’s been a bit of chaos around Shebeen Global HQ this month, but we’re finally organized. We’ll be in the Revel Room upstairs again, from 6-8 or so. This way you don’t have to grab a snack before the meeting!

I’ll be speaking about how to get the most from a writer’s conference, and having been on the board of a couple and an attendee and speaker at more than I can count without taking off my shoes, I have a lot to share. If you do too, we want to hear from you.

And don’t forget the Women&Words conference this coming Friday and Saturday. Guess who’ll be speaking there as well? [insert smiley of your choice, as I am far too bloody dignified to use them myself]

By the way, if you have a favorite conference, please do drop a link to them in the comments. The more the merrier, and it’d be great to do one grand roundup post of all the conferences within reach of BC.

Shebeen Club Mixer Monday, March 21st

The Auld Shebeen

The Auld Shebeen

Just a social night this month: no speaker, no pressure. Bring whatever you’re working on for boasting/comparison purposes! $25 at the door gets you dinner and a drink and the best literary cadre of companions in all of Vangroover! That’s the price for our special menu, or this once you can order off the regular menu and “pay as you go.”

Next month we’ll be back to our usual meet&greet/presentation/arguing and drinking schedule.

UPDATE: It’s apparently World Poetry Day on Monday.

Monday is World Poetry Day and, coincidentally, the anniversary of the first twitter tweet. Celebrate with a “twaiku” by Elizabeth Alexander:

Teeny tiny poem

Teeny tiny poem/just enuf 2hold/1 xllent big word/Impluvium/open-eyed courtyrd/collectng rain/as all poems do/ skylife, open/birds do:/ tweet

More on UN World Poetry Day here
NYTimes article here
Four New Twitter poems (including Alexander’s) here