About the Central Coast Writers Conference
We are excited to announce the return of the Cuesta College Central Coast Writers Conference on Saturday, October 14, 2023. With equal excitement, we’re introducing Brian Schwartz as our new conference event director. Brian is the past president of the Colorado Independent Publishers Association and writes the 'Local Author' feature in SLO LIFE Magazine. He's the author of two books and the CEO of a publishing services consulting firm based in San Luis Obispo. For the past 15 years, beginning with a small publishing company he founded, Brian has worked with hundreds of authors including several New York Times bestsellers.
A former Cuesta & Cal Poly graduate, he and his wife returned to the central coast in 2013. Brian has been actively involved with local writer groups where he continues to teach and lecture. He is a past instructor with Cal Poly's Bestsellers and Storytellers writer's program and a presenter at writers' conferences around the country. You can discover more about Brian on his website at SelfPublish.org.
Wes Martin, Community Programs Coordinator
Wes is the Community Programs Coordinator at Cuesta College and plays an instrumental in turning the Event Director's vision into reality at Cuesta College. With a deep love for reading, he immerses himself in a book every night, and more often than not, falls asleep in the process. He is dedicated to fostering a supportive literary community, coordinating workshops and networking opportunities that inspire growth and collaboration. Wes cherishes his role in bringing this extraordinary event to life, fueling the passion for content creators on the Central Coast.
Claire Sakelson, Sponsorship Coordinator
Claire Sakelson is a third year at Cal Poly where she is concurrently pursuing her BA and MA in English and a minor in Psychology. During the school year she works as a Library Research Assistance Technician at Kennedy Library; last summer she applied her research skills at the Jerwood Centre in Grasmere, England. Her short stories have been published in Byzantium, The Oakland Arts Review, and Fresh Voices. When she isn’t working on her English skills, Claire enjoys exploring SLO’s outdoors by climbing, hiking, and surfing.
Meagan Friberg, Volunteer Coordinator
Meagan Friberg has been a volunteer with the Cuesta College Writers’ Conference for nearly a decade, and began serving as the Volunteer Coordinator in 2017. She has a heart for helping others, and values the commitment each volunteer contributes to make the conference run smoothly. A former newspaper reporter and magazine editor, Meagan created her freelance writing business as a means to enjoy travel and spend more time with family. Her articles have been published in numerous magazines, newspapers, and online sites including San Luis Obispo Visitors Guide, Paso Robles Magazine, Edible SLO, and Grays Harbor Talk.
Sophie Stoll, Social Media / Community Outreach
Sophie Stoll recently graduated at Cal Poly SLO with a major in English and a minor in Law and Society. She pursued her interests in technical writing and publishing by obtaining a Technical and Professional Communication Certificate, as well as serving on the editorial board of her university's literary and art journal, Intertidal. Her own short story, "Adulthood," is featured in the journal, and she hopes to publish more of her creative works in the future. Along with her work for the CCWC, she serves as a Network Leadership Coach for Partners in Health Engage, where she intersects her passions for writing and global health equity.
Jack Fowler, Speaker/Panelist Coordinator
Jack Fowler is a recent graduate of Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, having received a Bachelor of Arts in both English and History. At Cal Poly Jack was part of a small team of editors which published the first edition of the journal Intertidal, which prides itself on taking fiction and poetry from students of all majors. He even published his own short story “The Monster” within the journal. Jack is very excited for the conference this year and can't wait to meet the Central Coast's passionate writing community!