Quick Little Info!

I know…I know…its been weeks since I’ve blogged! Crazy life stuff has been keeping me busy as I’m sure everyone has experienced one time or another. Anyway, sadly I won’t be able to attend any of these this year, but I wanted to share a list of upcoming writing conferences in case anyone else might be able to attend. Good luck and happy writing ya’ll!

Agent-Conference Opportunities There are plenty of opportunities for writers to meet agents face to face at writers’ conferences and pitch their work in 2015. Remember: Meeting agents in person is a great way to get past the slush pile. If an agent is interested in your work and requests a sample or book proposal, you can write “Requested Material” on your submission, making sure it gets a fair read and consideration. Know that there are two types of conferences. There are general writers’ conferences, that address a variety of subjects, and then there are specialized conferences, which usually tend to focus on a single genre-such as western, romance, or mystery. You will find both kinds in this list below.

Carolina Writing Conferences, Columbia, SC (April 17) and Charlotte, NC (April 18) Attending agents: Sam Morgan (Jabberwocky Literary); Melissa Jeglinski (The Knight Agency); Diana Flegal (Hartline Literary); Cherry Weiner (Cherry Weiner Literary); and Robin Mizell (Robin Mizell Literary Representation).

Las Vegas Writers Conference, April 23-25, 2015, Las Vegas, NV Attending agents: Pam van Hylckama Vlieg (D4EO Literary); Paul Lucas (Janklow & Nesbit); and Caitlan Rubino Bradway (LKG Agency).

Northeast Texas Writers Conference, April 24-25, 2015, Mt. Pleasant, TX Attending agents: Cherry Weiner (Cherry Weiner Literary).

Milwaukee Writing Conference, May 15, 2015, Milwaukee, WI Attending agents: Jennie Goloboy (Red Sofa Literary); Laura Crockett (Triada US Literary); Abby Saul (Browne & Miller Literary); Elizabeth Evans (Jean V. Naggar Literary); Jodell Sadler (Sadler Children’s Literary); and Dawn Frederick (Red Sofa Literary).

Chicago Writing Workshop, May 16, 2015, Chicago, IL Attending agents: Marcy Posner (Folio Literary); Jen Karsbaek (Fuse Literary); Jennifer Mattson (Andrea Brown Literary); Tina Schwartz (The Purcell Agency); Dan Balow (Steve Laube Literary); Jodell Sadler (The Sadler Agency); and Laura Crockett (Triada US Literary).

Pennwriters Conference, May 15-17, 2015, Pittsburgh, PA Attending agents: Danielle Chiotti (Upstart Crow Literary); Uwe Stender (TriadaUS Literary); and June Clark (FinePrint Literary).

Books-in-Progress Writers Conference, June 5-6, 2015, Lexington, KY Attending agents: Adriann Ranta (Wolf Literary); and Melissa Flashman (Trident Media).

SoCal Mystery Writers of America Conference, June 6-7, 2015, Culver City, CA Attending agents: Joshua Bilmes (JABberwocky Literary); Jessica Faust (BookEnds Literary); and Kimberley Cameron (Kimberley Cameron Literary).

Jackson Hole Writers Conference, June 25-27, 2015, Jackson Hole, WY Attending agents: Sarah Levitt (Zoë Pagnamenta Agency); Elizabeth Winick Rubinstein (McIntosh & Otis); Katherine Fausset (Curtis Brown, Ltd); and Ken Sherman (Ken Sherman Associates).

Writer’s Digest Conference East, July 31 – Aug. 2, 2015, New York, NY The website is live, and we have 47 agents already confirmed to be there. The conference’s Pitch Slam features more than 50 literary agents to pitch.

Mix-It up Monday Post #6 – Honey Bees

beekeeper

So my husband has started a new hobby. Apparently, in a short while we will embark on the new world of bee keeping. Well…he will. I’m still a little skeptical of getting stung by a bunch of those little guys.

I will say though, there is more to a honey bee than meets the eye. They’re a really important part of our ecosystem and some things I never even knew about until my husband started researching them.

Here’s a cool article about 10 Fascinating Facts about Honey Bees: http://insects.about.com/od/antsbeeswasps/a/10-facts-honey-bees.htm

On a serious note, did you also know that there is a danger in them becoming extinct? This could greatly effect our ecosystem in ALOT of different ways. They don’t just make honey.

Honey bees throughout North America and Canada are continuing to disappear at an alarmingly rapid rate, signaling a dire threat to the production of countless food sources.

Albert Einstein first famously speculated that “if the bee disappeared off the surface of the globe, man would have only four years to live.” Although Einstein’s claims were often considered outrageous, the plight of the honey bees has become a documented problem threatening much of the economy’s natural resources.

Nearly five years ago, reports of bees dying in large numbers began to surface, and beekeepers began to report that their hives were becoming defunct, causing the agricultural community to become alarmed and to search for an explanation, which has yet to be scientifically determined. There is little insight into why hives have been completely deserted, with almost all adult bees seemingly disappearing, causing honey production to massively decline, and the bee industry to become crippled.

A mite, similar to a tick, was accidentlly transported from Asia and is suspected of being a leading cause of CCD.

A mite, similar to a tick, was accidentlly transported from Asia and is suspected of being a leading cause of CCD.

According to Tom Hill, member of the Macon County Beekeepers Association, the majority of scientists have almost pinpointed the problem down to a mite that was accidently imported to the United States from Asia nearly 20 years ago. “The parasite attacks the honey bees similar to what ticks do to dogs,” said Hill. “The larva of the mite feeds on the larva of the bees, killing them before they are even fully developed.”

In addition to the parasite simply feeding on the honey bees, the open wounds and bite marks are filled with the mite’s salvia, preventing it from ever healing, causing the bees to become extremely susceptible to disease and infections. The diseases obtained from the injuries of the bite slowly weaken a colony, ultimately killing it off over a period of time.

Hill explained that North Carolina’s wild bee population is virtually depleted, and less than two percent of the bees remain in comparison to the population from 20 years ago.

“We are constantly adding more beekeepers, and are replacing the queens of the colonies more rapidly to prevent CCD [Colony Collapse Disorder] from wiping out the bee population in Macon County,” said Hill. “The Beekeepers Association has continued to grow and beekeepers have become the sole factor in sustaining the population. Until the problem is completely solved, it is up to us to keep the bees alive.”

The Macon County Beekeepers Association currently has more than 50 members, and according to Hill, within Macon County, there are nearly 100 individual beekeepers.

The honey bee population is at two percent compared to 20 years ago.

The honey bee population is at two percent compared to 20 years ago.

Although there is not a specific documented cause, the phenomenon has been deemed Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD), and has continued to threaten the nation’s agricultural community. The honey bee population has been in decline for a number of years now, suffering from the enigmatic colony collapse disorder The latest research on U.S. honey bees only increases speculation over future food production, as bees are directly responsible for pollinating nearly 90 percent of the world’s commercial plants, from fruits and vegetables to coffee and cotton.

Researchers have proposed that multiple factors contribute to CCD, which is why a specific cause can not be identified. Among causes being explored are malnutrition, pathogens, immunodeficiencies, fungus, pesticides, and beekeeping practices such as the use of antibiotics and steroids.

In 2007, The United States Department of Agriculture assembled the CCD Response Effort, which includes the Steering Committee and Working Team, developed the CCD Action Plan to address the increasing concerns in the bee community. According to the CCD Steering Committee’s executive summary, pollination is responsible for $15 billion in added crop value, specifically for crops such as nuts, berries, fruits and vegetables, and if researchers are unable to find a solution, beekeepers will be unable to meet the demands to continue producing the crops.

The committee, which is comprised of scientists throughout the United States, is geared toward four main components in attempt to alleviate the problem. The focus points include survey and data collection, analysis of samples, hypotheses-driven research, and mitigation and preventative action.

Here’s another post about it: http://guardianlv.com/2014/04/bees-becoming-extinct/

Our Food Source Survival

We depend on bees to fertilize our food-producing plant. Without bees transferring pollen from one flower to another to fertilize it, crops and plants will not become fertilized and bear fruit. Some of the fruits and vegetables that rely on pollination include watermelon, apples, pears, strawberries, almonds, corn, cucumbers and tomatoes.

Wow! Who knew right? Bees are pretty important. Sooo, I’ll keep everyone posted on our occupation as beekeepers. It definitely seems like something pretty worth while and interesting. As my father-in-law says, “BEE KEEPER FOR LIFE!!”

Happy Monday ya’ll!