Session and Speaker Preview: Laura Apperson, From Headlines to Hardcover: Journalism and Narrative Nonfiction

laura appersonLaura Apperson works with journalists to turn their feature stories into bestselling books. As a narrative nonfiction editor at St. Martin’s Press, Laura has a wealth of industry experience, and she’s sharing her wisdom with us in Pitch Sessions, the Agents and Editors on CNF Today panel, and From Headlines to Hardcover: Journalism and Narrative Nonfiction.

Laura took time to speak to us about why she’s looking forward to HippoCamp 2016.

Hippocampus: Please share something that you hope attendees will take away from your talk that isn’t found on the program description.

Laura: I believe that sometimes journalists feel that their only job description is to succinctly and accurately report the news—and on a day-to-day basis, it often is. But what I hope to communicate through this session is that journalists are also storytellers who have the unique advantage to reveal something about our society that academics can’t always do. This makes for some killer narrative nonfiction books.

Who would benefit most from your session and why?

Even though “journalist” is in the title, I think anyone who hopes to improve their storytelling and take some tips from journalism to implement into their nonfiction could learn a lot from this session.

What is your best advice for those attending a writing conference, whether it’s for newbies or veterans? 

Be sure to walk into one or two sessions that might be a bit out of your comfort zone. Conferences are a great time to be unexpectedly enlightened!

Aside from speaking, what you are most looking forward to about being part of the HippoCamp?

I can’t wait to meet the spectacular writers and editors who will also be attending and/or speaking!

What’s on your personal conference agenda? Perhaps share with us a session/event you don’t want to miss.

I’m very much looking forward to Mary Karr’s keynote, but the session and panel lineup is fantastic. As a writer as well as an editor, I’m eager to learn from all the rockstars who will be attending this year.


We’re eager to hear Laura’s wisdom, and if you are just as eager as we are, make sure you join us for HippoCamp 2016. Early-bird registrations end March 31st, so register today!