StoryStudio Chicago presents:
Pub Crawl: An Online Publishing Intensive
February 2022

We are thrilled to debut our first annual Pub Crawl: An Online Publishing Intensive. Curated by Artistic Director Rebecca Makkai, this month-long virtual intensive has an amazing line-up of literary talent, including Keynote Speaker Lisa Lucas.

Pub Crawl features classes and events centered on the publishing world all month long. This will lead up to our first ever Pitch Week (February 23rd-27th) for a chance to virtually meet and query agents and editors.

Registration opens November 18, 2021. 

One $265 ticket will get you access to the entire month of events.
All Add-On sessions (agent, editor, and query letter meetings) must be purchased separately.

Lisa Lucas is the Senior Vice President and Publisher of Pantheon and Schocken Books. Prior to her current position, Lisa served as the Executive Director of the National Book Foundation for five years. She also worked as the publisher of Guernica Magazine from 2014-2016 and was the Nonfiction Co-Chair of the Brooklyn Book Festival.

Every week of February will highlight one topic of the publishing industry. Each day of the week will host either a class, a panel/conversation, or a reading. See below for the general overview.


This ticket gives you access to all events under the Pub Crawl program. We will be recording all the zoom sessions, except for the Free Friday Panels. The recordings will be shared to ticket-holders only for a limited time after Pub Crawl ends.

TICKETS + Full Descriptions HERE

Week 1, January 31 – February  5: Everything You Wanted to Know About Publishing

  • Monday, January 31
    Kick-off Panel Party: Welcoming Remarks with Rebecca Makkai, featuring StoryStudio faculty (6:00pm – 7:00pm CT)
  • Tuesday, February 1
    The Publishing Industry: A Primer with Christine Sneed (6:00pm – 7:30pm CT)
  • Wednesday, February 2
    Behind the Book: Nancy Johnson, Liz Stein, and Danielle Bukowski (6:00pm – 7:00pm CT)
  • Thursday, February 3
    Leveling up: How to Get Closer to Your Publishing Goals with Courtney Maum (6:00pm – 7:30pm CT)
  • Friday, February 4
    Free Friday Panel: Writing in Color Moderated by Michael Zapata (6:00pm – 7:00pm CT)
  • Saturday, February 5
    Query Letter Workshop (Part 1 of 2) with Julia Fine (1:00pm – 2:00pm CT)

Week 2, February 7 – February  13: Small Press & Literary Journals

  • Monday, February 7
    Panel: Editors on Editing Moderated by Cyn Vargas (6:00pm – 7:00pm CT)
  • Tuesday, February 8
    Crossing the Space Between Revision and Publication: Preparing Your Work for Submission to Small Presses with Kathleen Rooney (6:00pm – 7:30pm CT)
  • Wednesday, February 9
    Behind the Book: Megan Stielstra & Parneshia Jones (6:00pm – 7:00pm CT)
  • Thursday, February 10
    Submission Guidelines: How and Where to Submit to Lit Journals with Sara Cutaia (6:00pm – 7:30pm CT)
  • Friday, February 11
    Free Friday Panel: Small Presses (6:00pm – 7:30pm CT)
  • Saturday, February 12
    Query Letter Workshop (Part 2 of 2) with Julia Fine (1:00pm – 2:00pm CT)

Week 3, February 14 – February 19: Agent Search

  • Monday, February 14
    Panel: Call My Agent! Moderated by Julia Fine (6:00pm – 7:00pm CT)
  • Tuesday, February 15
    Pitch Perfect: Hitting the Right Notes in the Agent Search with Kristin Aguilar (6:00pm – 7:30pm CT)
  • Wednesday, February 16
    Pitch Practice Workshop (6:00pm – 7:30pm CT)
  • Thursday, February 17
    Publishing Journey with Rakesh Satyal (6:00pm – 7:30pm CT)
  • Friday, February 18
    Free Friday Panel: Queering the Book World Moderated by James Klise (6:00pm – 7:00pm CT)

Week 4, February 21 – February 28: Pitch Week

  • Monday, February 21
    Panel: Best Practices for Pitching (6:00pm – 7:00pm CT)
  • Tuesday, February 22
    Panel: Query Letters (6:00pm – 7:00pm CT)
  • Wednesday, February 23
    Fail Better: We What Can Learn from Our Unpublished Work with Steve Almond (6:00pm – 7:30pm CT)
  • Thursday, February 24
    Keynote Conversation: Lisa Lucas and Rebecca Makkai (6:00pm – 7:00pm CT)
  • Friday, February 25 / Saturday, February 26
    Office Hours with Rebecca Makkai (2:00pm – 3:00pm CT)
  • Sunday, February 27
    Office Hours with Cyn Vargas (2:00pm – 3:00pm CT)
  • Monday, February 28
    Final Panel: StoryStudio Alumni Moderated by Sahar Mustafah (6:00pm – 7:00pm CT

Wednesday, February 23 – Sunday, February 28

Pitch Week

Agent & Editor meetings will be individually scheduled during this week. Meetings include: Agent pitch, Agent PLUS, Meet an Editor, Editor PLUS. 

*All agent/editor meetings must be purchased as an add-on with your Pub Crawl ticket.

Participating Agents include:
Kirsten Aguilar (Ladderbird Literary Agency)
Erin Harris (Folio Literary Management)
Kirby Kim (Janklow Nesbit)
Danya Kukafka (Trellis Literary)
Kayla Lightner (Pande Literary)
Joanna MacKenzie (Nelson Literary)
Anjali Singh (Pande Literary)
Mariah Stovall (Trellis Literary)

Participating Editors include:
Victoria Barrett (Engine Books)
Gerald Brennan (Tortoise Books)
Leland Cheuk (7.13 Books)
Parneshia Jones (Northwestern University Press)


Note: All sessions and meetings will take place via zoom. We will send you a link and instructions before your class begins. After registration you’ll receive a follow-up email confirming your place at Pub Crawl and any add-on sessions you have requested. Please note that registration and add-on sessions will be offered on a first-come, first-served basis.

Refunds: Registration and add-on sessions are fully refundable, minus a 25% cancellation fee through February 1st, 2022. After February 1st, tickets cannot be refunded. Charitable contributions cannot be refunded.