Sunday, March 27, 2011

Jubilee Jambalaya Writers Conference

Writers share stories, advice

Julia Rendleman//Staff
Jessica Plaisance (left) and Donna McBroom-Theriot listen to Rochelle Frazier talk about her book, “Sweeteas” Saturday during the Jubilee Jambalaya Writers Conference and Book Fair at the Terrebonne Parish Main Library in Houma.
Published: Sunday, March 27, 2011 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Saturday, March 26, 2011 at 10:40 p.m.
HOUMA — Speaking Saturday at the Jubilee Writer’s Conference, author Lisa Jackson wanted to show her audience how she works. So she put on her “jammies” — a loose white dress and pair of slippers.
“This is Lisa Jackson,” she told her audience in the Terrebonne Library. “Jammies may not be the answer for you, but they’re definitely the answer for me.”
Jackson, a New York Times-bestselling author, was the keynote speaker at the eighth annual conference, part of Nicholls State University’s Jubilee arts and culture festival.
Jackson discussed her three-decade career as a writer of mostly crime and detective novels and answered audience questions about breaking into the publishing market. That can be difficult because of the consolidation among publishing companies. Publishers may also be seeking only certain types of books, such as vampire-themed romance novels, to cash in on current trends.
“Let’s talk about the vampires,” Jackson said. She then frowned, poked two fingers into her neck and grimaced. Vampire books, Jackson said, are not for her.
Ultimately, she said, good novels are written from the heart. And if aspiring writers are unable to break into the traditional publishing market, then electronically publishing so-called “e-books” is gaining in popularity.
Electronic publishing was the theme at two of the conference’s seminars. Deborah LeBlanc, a Lafayette author who has written many novels featuring the supernatural, gave some “straight talk” about getting into e-publishing. Publishing electronically may mean that books sell for less money, but writers typically get a higher percentage of the revenue, she said.
Other workshops covered topics such as meeting and working with literary agents or writing a good cookbook. Five or six dozen aspiring writers were able to participate in one-on-one sessions with more-experienced authors.
The conference also included a contest that ranked poetry and fictional short-story submissions. First-time conference attendee Jodie Boudreaux entered a poem and a short story. She began shaking, she said, when she found out the short story was selected as the top fiction entry.
“I was not expecting it,” said the Houma nurse. Her story, “The City,” is about a future where there are no natural energy resources and the struggle of a woman in that society whose husband is unable to walk.


  1. VERY COOL! Sounds like it was a lot of fun! It's really neat that they took your picture! If you're anything like myself, I always have the camera so there are never pictures of me doing anything unless someone else happens to capture it!

    P.S. your house is soooo adorable. It looks like a magazine! I planted some flowers this year for the first time in front of our house but I think it won't be for a year or two before they sprout out and fill up the space. This Spring and Summer is all about our backyard. Maybe next Summer we can really focus on our front yard!

  2. Hi, good post. I have been thinking about this issue, so thanks for sharing. I will definitely be coming back to your blog.


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