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Portland, August 4th. Over 50 literary agents and Hollywood film managers were in Portland looking for the next breakthrough talent at the 43rd annual Willamette Writers Conference. Ruth Witteried, the film coordinator for the conference recruited among others: Grace Ledding from Agile Entertainment, Alex Budzinski from Stage Coach Entertainment and Jacqueline Gault from Jackal Films. The conference was August 3-5th at the Portland Airport Sheraton Hotel and attracted 850 people.

Andy Ross from Andy Ross Literary Agency and Laurie McLean, Literary Agent from Larsen Pomada

Andy Ross from Andy Ross Literary Agency and Laurie McLean, Literary Agent from Larsen Pomada

Stefan Feuerherdt, Willamette Writers Conference Chair and Bill Johnson Office Manager and Registration Chair

Stefan Feuerherdt, Willamette Writers Conference Chair and Bill Johnson Office Manager and Registration Chair for the nonprofit Willamette Writers

Marcia Turnquist, Rod Gramer and Sue Sammons

Writers Marcia Turnquist, Rod Gramer and Sue Sammons

Writers waiting to pitch their books to literary agents

Writers wait to pitch their books to literary agents.

Book sellers offer a variety of fiction and nonfiction, many written and signed by conference speakers.

Book sellers offer a variety of fiction and nonfiction, many written and signed by conference speakers.

Willamette Writers honored at the conference included, among others:  Humanitarian Award, Mary Margaret Maitland; Distinguished NW Writer, David Guterson; Lifetime Achievement, Dean Wesley Smith & Kristine Kathryn Rusch.

The conference offered over 100 workshops, panels, speeches, and a chance for pitching manuscripts.

According to a fact sheet distributed with the welcome packets, “Usually about 25 people acquire an agent to represent them, and three to six get published or have a script optioned at each conference.”

In the video below, Diana Page Jordan interviews agent Laurie McLean and author Marni Barnes who met at the at the 2010 conference.

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