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Craft Workshop: Opening Pages, Acquisitions, and Demystifying Publishing

Megha Majumdar, Zell Visiting Writers Series
Friday, October 30, 2020
10:00-11:30 AM Off Campus Location
Login here (no pre-registration needed):

This is a two-part craft workshop. In the first part, we will look at the opening page of selected students' novels (or of a short story) and consider how an acquisitions editor might read that page—what they might look for in an opening, and how the story can present the best possible opening. In the second part, we will discuss the acquisitions process (How are decisions made? What are editors looking for?) as well as publishing process, answering practical questions (At what stage should you look for an agent? At what stage does the agent submit to editors? What kind of edits will an editor do with you? How can you be sure the integrity of your work is protected during the publication process?). Attendees will come away feeling that the acquisitions and publishing process has been demystified to some degree.

Megha Majumdar’s debut novel, A Burning, follows three unforgettable characters whose lives are entangled in the wake of a catastrophe in contemporary India. Her work tackles class, fate, corruption, justice, and what it feels like to face profound obstacles and yet nurture big dreams in a country spinning toward extremism.

Majumdar was born and raised in Kolkata, India. She moved to the United States to attend college at Harvard University, where she was a Traub Scholar, followed by graduate school in social anthropology at Johns Hopkins University. She works as an associate editor at Catapult, and lives in New York City.

The Zell Visiting Writers Series brings outstanding writers to campus each semester. The Series is made possible through a generous gift from U-M alumna Helen Zell (BA ’64, LLDHon ’13). For more information, please visit the Zell Visiting Writers Program webpage:

For any questions about the event or to share accommodation needs, please email we are eager to help ensure that this event is inclusive to you. Copies of the readings and live, high quality auto-captions/transcriptions will be provided at all events.
Building: Off Campus Location
Location: Virtual
Event Type: Lecture / Discussion
Tags: Storytelling, Writing
Source: Happening @ Michigan from Zell Visiting Writers Series, Residential College, University of Michigan Museum of Art (UMMA), Center for South Asian Studies, University of Michigan Helen Zell Writers' Program, Department of English Language and Literature