The Back Room: Cocktails & Conversation With Your Favorite Authors
An Evening With Joshilyn Jackson, Jessica Strawser, Steph Cha, and Emily Carpenter
Sunday, March 7, 7 p.m. EST (free Eventbrite registration required)

Reading With Robin: Tell Me About Your Book
Tuesday, March 23, 4 p.m. EST, Live on Instagram @robinkallink

Adriana Ink! The World’s Biggest Book Club
Jessica Strawser In Conversation with Adriana Trigiani
Tuesday, March 23, 6 p.m. EST, via Facebook Live (streaming live) & YouTube (on demand afterward)

Joseph-Beth Booksellers Presents: A Million Reasons Why
Jessica Strawser in Conversation with Colleen Oakley
Wednesday, March 24, 7 p.m. EST (via Zoom: RSVP for free event link)

The Penguin Bookshop Writers Series Book Launch: A Million Reasons Why
Jessica Strawser In Conversation with Kristin Bair
Thursday, March 25, 7 p.m. EST, via Zoom (ticketed event; registration required)

Macmillan Publishers Presents: Author Agent Virtual Tell-All
With Jessica Strawser & Barbara Poelle (Co-sponsored by Writer’s Digest)
Tuesday, March 30, 7 p.m. EST, via Crowdcast (free; registration required)

Cuyahoga Public Library Author Series
A Conversation With Jessica Strawser: On A Million Reasons Why
Wednesday, March 31, 7 p.m. EST, via Zoom (free registration required)

National Society of Newspaper Columnists Virtual Conference
Virtual Session Facilitator, April 16, 2021

Ohioana Book Festival 2021
Free Virtual Event, Featured Author/Panelist, April 23-25, 2021

Wright Memorial Public Library: Virtual Writing Workshop
May 4, 2021, 7-8:30 p.m. EST
Free & Open to the Public: Advance Registration Required

Career Authors & MIT Endicott House Intensive Writer’s Workshop
Virtual Event Faculty, May 7-8, 2021

In Conversation With Catherine McKenzie: Six Weeks to Live Tour
Joseph-Beth Booksellers, live on FB & Zoom, May 18, 2021, 7 p.m. EST.

Carmel Clay Public Library: Virtual Author Series
Facebook Live, June 3, 2021, 11 a.m. EST

Midwest Writers Workshop 2021
Virtual Conference, July 28-31, Instructor/Panelist

(Events are being added on a rolling basis! Please check back often.)



I attend private book club meetings by invitation, and am happy to join your group via Skype or even in person! Visit the contact page for discussion guide questions and to inquire about availability.
Looking for an experienced keynote speaker, instructor, or panelist who offers a seasoned editor’s expertise as well as a writer’s perspective? Contact me! (Don’t take my word for it: Testimonials below.) Session topics include (not a complete list):
  • 10 All-Time Best Writing Lessons From 10 Years of Interviews With the All-Time Best Writers: This session distills a decade of collected wisdom into the all-time best insights into the creative process, the writing life, the craft of writing and the business of publishing. Get new perspectives on revolutionizing your writing routine, following the path of your story, revising with the right mindset, persevering through rejection, and more—from award-winners and bestsellers including Alice Walker, David Sedaris, David Baldacci, Patricia Cornwell, Khaled Hosseini, Brad Meltzer and Lisa Scottoline.
  • Building Suspense by Acting Out of Character: Once you’ve established who your characters are, you can thicken your plot by giving them reasons to act out of character. (Think of the meek heroine who suddenly lashes out, the reliable parent who runs off, or the villain who shows an unexpected kindness—all make you want to know why.) Learn how this underutilized technique can be used on a large scale (propelling an entire plot) or a small one (adding twists, turns and interest) to create page-turners sure to satisfy.
  • Surprise & Delight Your Readers on Every Page: Suspense isn’t just for thrillers. It’s not even just for fiction. Whether we’re reading a humorous essay, a heartfelt memoir, or a page-turning novel, we love the build of anticipation, the satisfaction of the unexpected. This interactive workshop uses prompts, examples, and tips to help you master tricks for keeping your readers on the hook, from the paragraph level to the story’s premise. You’ll twist turns of phrase, uncover your character’s secrets (even if that character is you!), pull the rug out, and leave with plenty of ideas for adapting these techniques to your own work-in-progress.
  • How to Become a Regular Contributor to Any Publication: Becoming a regular contributor is the dream scenario in terms of steady paychecks, easier-to-come-by assignments, and more byline opportunities for freelance writers, and yet so many freelancers go about this the wrong way. This session teaches you how to make ANY assignment the first of many, build relationships with editors, recognize opportunities other writers miss, earn more money with less effort, and strengthen your freelance writing career without driving yourself query-crazy.
  • Smart Ways to Build Your Author Platform: You’ve probably heard that editors and agents look for authors who’ve built a platform—and/or that a platform is key to promoting self-published books successfully. But what exactly platform means and how it differs for fiction & nonfiction writers has been the subject of much debate. In this session, get perspectives from both sides of the desk, as an editor-turned-author shares what publishing pros really want to see in an author and what those theories look like in practice. You’ll begin to define a strategy for making yourself stand out; understand how to put a basic framework in place (if you don’t already have one) with a website, email list, and social media presence; focus your efforts on doing a few things well rather than trying to be everywhere at once; explore partnerships with likeminded writers to broaden your reach; and get tips for landing freelance writing credits to boost your visibility.
  • “Jessica delivered exactly what we look for in faculty for our writers’ conference – a luncheon keynote and instructional sessions that both inspired and elicited interaction. She was engaging, insightful and stimulating. Her presentations generated a memorable experience for our attendees and quite a number of “aha” moments. She was a delight.” —Jama Kehoe Bigger, Director, Midwest Writers Workshop
  • “Jessica delivered the kickoff ‘inspiration’ talk at the Saturday Seminar portion of our 32nd Annual Writers’ Workshop ... and an inspiration it was! Her carefully prepared, yet warmly delivered keynote offered plenty of reassurance, encouragement and guidance, coupled with practical how-tos and tips. After her presentation, Jessica also took questions from our audience of fifty-plus writers in a manner that was gracious, thoughtful and insightful. Jessica provided a winning combination: in-depth experience from years of working with the top authors of our day plus a humble presentation style that conveyed that we’re all on this writing journey together equaled exactly what our audience of beginning to more advance writers needed: inspiration and roll-up-your sleeves techniques that set a positive, energizing tone for our whole conference. Our post conference survey results showed that Jessica is one of the most popular speakers we’ve engaged. I would gladly recommend Jessica as a speaker for any writing conference, and look forward to having her back in the future.” —Sharon Short, Executive Director, Antioch Writers’ Workshop
  • “As keynote speaker of the 2019 University of New Mexico’s Writers Conference, Jessica Strawser delivered an informative, entertaining, and inspiring presentation which attendees are still talking about. Jessica is an engaging speaker with a unique insight into the publishing industry as both a seasoned editor and a successful writer. … She was a true asset to our conference and her shoes will be hard to fill next year!” —Lorena Hughes, UNM Writers Conference Coordinator
  • “[Your keynote] inspired the entire room with the way you channeled and paid forward the wisdom of so many authors—yourself included. We also greatly appreciated how you engaged so enthusiastically with our members throughout the conference. An absolute pleasure. —Hilary Hauck, President, Pennwriters


Erma Bombeck Writers’ Workshop (Sponsor Representative)
University of Dayton, Ohio, March 31 – April 2, 2016

5th Annual Books-in-Progress Conference(Featured Speaker)
Carnegie Center, Lexington, Kentucky, June 3, 2016

Joseph-Beth Booksellers (Almost Missed You Launch / Signing!)
Rookwood Pavilion, Cincinnati, OH

March 28, 2017, 7 p.m.

Penguin Bookshop (Almost Missed You Launch / Signing)
Sewickley, PA

April 6, 2017, 6 p.m.

Sheraton Columbus Hotel at Capitol Square, Columbus, OH

April 8, 2017

Colorado Springs, CO

May 5-6, 2017

May 10, 2017, 6 p.m.

Erlanger, KY

May 16, 2017, 7 p.m.

Antioch Writers’ Workshop LitSalon (Featured Author)

May 21, 2017, 4-7 p.m.

Green Tree Public Library (Joint Event With Author Rebecca Drake)

Pittsburgh, PA

June 29, 2017, 7 p.m. (discussion of my Almost Missed You, Rebecca’s Only Ever You and the domestic suspense trend, followed by Q&A and book signing)

Oakmont, PA

July 1, 2017, 10:30 a.m.

Antioch Writers’ Workshop(Instructor)

Yellow Springs, OH

July 8, 2017 (daytime workshop + evening faculty signing)

Midwest Writers Workshop(Keynote Speaker / Panelist)
Ball State University, Muncie, IN

July 20-22, 2017

Main Campus, 800 Vine St., Cincinnati, OH

August 1, 2017, 7 p.m.

Florence Freedom Better in a Book Night(Celebration of Local Authors at the Ballpark)
UC Health Stadium, Florence, KY

August 4, 2017, 7 p.m.

Carnegie Center for Literacy & Learning, Lexington, KY

August 10, 2017, 5:30-7:15 p.m.
Info / Registration ($30 Fee)

Writer’s Digest Conference (Speaker / Sponsor Staff / Panelist)
New York Hilton Midtown, NY, NY
August 18-20, 2017
Free & Open to the Public!
Discussion, Q&A, Signing (With Authors Charlie Lovett & Fred McGavran) 
Episcopal Church of the Redeemer, 2944 Erie Ave., Hyde Park, OH
Sunday, September 17, 2017, 1 p.m.
Duke Energy Convention Center, Cincinnati, OH

Saturday, October 28, 2017, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

Alltech Arena at the Kentucky Horse Park, Lexington, KY
Saturday, November 18, 2017, 9 a.m.-4 p.m.
The Bookshelf, Madeira, OH
Saturday, December 2, 2017, 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m
Murder and Mayhem (Panelist, 1-Day Event for Mystery/Crime Writers & Readers)*
Roosevelt University, Chicago, IL
Saturday, March 17, 2018
*Special: The first hardcover copies of Not That I Could Tell will be available for purchase/signing in advance of official on-sale date!
Penguin Bookshop, Sewickley, PA
Thursday, March 22, 2018, 7 p.m.
Coffee & Crime (Joint Event With Author Rebecca Drake)
Mystery Lovers Bookshop, Oakmont, PA
Saturday, March 24, 2018, 10:30 a.m.-12 p.m.
Joseph-Beth Booksellers, Cincinnati, OH
Tuesday, March 27, 2018, 7 p.m.
Books & Co., Dayton, OH
Wednesday, March 28, 2018, 7 p.m.
Erma Bombeck Writers’ Workshop (Faculty)
University of Dayton, OH
April 5-7, 2018
Sheraton Capitol Square, Columbus, OH
April 14, 2018
Bowling Green, KY
April 20, 2018

SOKY Book Fest 

Bowling Green, KY
April 21, 2018
Lexington, KY
June 1, 2018
Columbus, OH
July 25, 2018, 5:30-8:30 p.m. (dinner optional; program begins at 6:45)
Hilton Midtown, New York, NY
August 10-12, 2018
Alliance, OH
September 8, 2018
Cincinnati, OH
October 20, 2018
Main Library, Reading Garden Lounge
Wednesday, Jan. 30, 2019, 7 p.m.
In Conversation With Jess Montgomery
Books & Co., Dayton, OH
Wednesday, Feb. 6, 2019, 7 p.m.
In Conversation With Leah Stewart
Joseph-Beth Booksellers, Cincinnati, OH
Thursday, Feb. 7, 2019, 7 p.m.
Penguin Bookshop, Sewickley, PA
Friday, Feb. 15, 2018, 7 p.m.
In Conversation With Kristen Lepionka
The Book Loft of German Village, Columbus, OH
Sunday, Feb. 17, 2019, 1 p.m.
In Conversation Moderator: Laurie Halse Anderson, SHOUT(Ticketed Event)
Joseph-Beth Booksellers, Cincinnati, OH
Thursday, March 14, 2019, 7 p.m.
Lebanon, OH
Saturday, March 16, 2019, 1 p.m.
Marion Public Library, OH
Saturday, March 23, 1-3 p.m.

The Top 10 Writing Lessons From 10 Years of Interviewing Bestselling Authors
Main Library, Saturday, March 30, 2019, 1 p.m.

Albuquerque, NM
April 13, 2019
Columbus Metropolitan Library, OH
Saturday, April 27, 2019
Pittsburgh, PA
May 17-19, 2019
Moon Township, PA
May 19, 2019
The Carnegie Center for Literacy & Learning, Lexington, KY
May 31, 2019

Cincinnati Public Library Writer’s Workshop (Free & Open to the Public)
Fiction Writers’ Workshop: Building Suspense by Acting Out of Character
Main Library, Saturday, June 8, 2019, 1 p.m..

Hilton Midtown, New York, NY
August 23-25, 2019
School for the Creative & Performing Arts, Cincinnati, OH
Sept. 11, 2019, 7:00 p.m.

Cincinnati Public Library Writer’s Workshop (Free & Open to the Public)
Your Publishing Questions Answered—From Both Sides of the Desk
Main Library, Saturday, Sept. 14, 2019, 1 p.m.

AAUW Lunch & Literature (Ticketed Fundraiser)
American Association of University Women, Erie, PA, Chapter
The Kahkwa Club, Erie, PA
Saturday, Sept. 28, 2019

Clermont County Public Library Area Writers Festival (Keynote Address)

Miami Township Branch Library
Saturday, Oct. 5, 2019, 12:30-4:30 p.m.

Assistance League of Greater Cincinnati: Books & Brunch (Ticketed Fundraiser)
Kenwood Country Club
Thursday, Oct. 17, 10:30 a.m.

Books by the Banks
Duke Energy Center, Cincinnati, OH
Saturday, Oct. 26, 10:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.

Kentucky Book Fair
Alltech Arena, Kentucky Horse Park, Lexington, KY
November 16, 2019

Forget You Know Me Paperback Launch
In Conversation With Kimmery Martin
Joseph-Beth Booksellers, Cincinnati, Ohio
March 4, 2020, 7 p.m.
Kentucky Writers Conference (Faculty) (Cancelled Due to Public Health Concerns) Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green, KY
March 20, 2020
SOKY Book Fest (Cancelled Due to Public Health Concerns)
Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green, KY
March 21, 2020
Tipp City Public Library Virtual Author Discussion, Not That I Could Tell
Tipp City, OH / Facebook Live
June 22, 2020, 7:00 p.m.
Miami University Low-Res MFA Summer Residency (Visiting Faculty)
Virtual Campus (Oxford, Ohio)
July 2020

Erma Bombeck Writers Workshop (Faculty)
Virtual Event
October 29-31, 2020

Easton Book Festival (Panelist) — Virtual Event
Tall Poppy Writers: Raising Up Strong Women’s Voices in Fiction
November 1, 2020, 4 p.m. EST

Writer’s Digest Annual Conference: 100th Anniversary Celebration (Instructor)
Virtual Event
November 5-7, 2020
Virtual 2020 Buckeye Book Fair (Featured Author)
November 6-15, 2020

Penguin Bookshop Writers Series: In Conversation With Kristin Bair
Virtual Launch Event: Bair’s Agatha Arch Is Afraid of Everything
November 10, 2020, 7 p.m.