MBA Summer Events

Issue September 2010

"Lawyer Writers" event attracts three dozen fans, aspiring authors

A panel of nine attorney authors shared their inspirations, writing styles and advice for finding a publisher with three dozen fans and aspiring authors at a free panel discussion and reception June 24.

The MBA Meet and Mingle Lawyer Writers event at the MBA's Boston office featured published authors of everything from legal thrillers to poetry collections to historical nonfiction. The event was moderated by the Hon. James F. McHugh, an associate justice with the Massachusetts Appeals Court and the former book review editor of the Massachusetts Law Review.

The event included the authors Michael Fredrickson, Miriam Kurtzig Freedman, Iris Gomez, David Hosp, Margaret McLean, the Hon. Gerald D. McLellan (ret.), Christian G. Samito, Robert A. Shaines and Raffi Yessayan.

Suspense novelist Yessayan talked about creating a frightening serial killer for his first novel, Iris Gomez talked about how her poetry impacted writing her first novel, and, in response to audience questions, several panelists suggested finding an agent before trying to land a publishing deal.

McLean, who teaches business law at Boston College and is president of the New England branch of the Mystery Writers of America, said she attended writers conferences to find herself an agent.

"It's hard, when you sit down and write that first book. You say, 'Thank God I didn't know how hard this would be,'" she said.
Samito, an attorney with Jouret & Samito LLP, said he cultivated interest in his six nonfiction books about the Civil War by presenting at academic conferences.

Freedman said she self-published first to prove that she could sell copies through a publisher, then found "I'm better at selling my own books."

After an hour-and-a-half of discussion and questions, authors mingled with audience members, discussing their books and autographing copies.

Second Annual MBA Summer Social

About 130 people attended the Massachusetts Bar Association's Second Annual Summer Social, where judges, attorneys, legal industry professionals and students mingled at the Aug 19 free event at Tia's Restaurant on the Boston Waterfront.