Friday, April 22, 2011

Kia Ricchi to Speak Thursday, April 28

Kia Ricchi (aka The Contractress) is a Florida-licensed building contractor. Since earning her licensure in 1998, Kia has completed numerous residential and commercial projects including several for the State of Florida.

Kia Ricchi has written articles for national publications such as Fine Homebuilding, Remodeling, and Image.

She is also a frequent guest on NPR and other nationally syndicated radio show.

Avoiding The Con in Construction has won the 2010 Indie Excellence Book Award and the Independent Publisher’s Living Well Award. Her book is endorsed by the Building Officials Association of Florida and the National Association of Contractor Licensing. The Library Journal review stated:

"In this extremely useful book, Ricchi, a woman building contractor, introduces property owners to construction contracting in understandable language. She discusses how to avoid common pitfalls and survive the entire process. The purpose here is not to defame contractors but to make readers knowledgeable customers. Planning, pricing, and many other important factors are neatly explained. This specialized book is highly recommended."

For free information about your next remodeling project, visit

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Speakers Provide Valuable Information

On March 31, Rebekah Hunter Scott and Michael Ray King shared their perspectives on query letters.

Rebekah, author of Motherhood is Easy, provided tips for writing successful query letters and explained the synergy of the publishing industry. From her blog came a book, that made editors want her magazine articles, those marketed her book and blog, and that launched the writing of a second see the possibilities.

"Know your goals and then research publishers to find a good fit for those goals," advises publisher Michael Ray King of ClearView Press, Inc. When you find the right publisher, be sure to follow submission guidelines to the letter. Not doing so almost certainly guarantees your submission a home in the publisher's circular file. He expressed surprise at how few authors abide by this simple caveat. Mike has just three submission guidelines: write one paragraph each about yourself, your project, and your niche market and marketing plan. He reminded us that to be successful, writing is 10 percent, but marketing is 90 percent. In that vein, he suggested that all writers have a 30-second synopsis of their project memorized for conferences and chance meetings.

We don't want people to steal our work, but we must be equally vigilant not to steal the work of others. On April 7, Lucille Ponte, professor of law at Florida Coastal School of Law, made a PowerPoint presentation on the ins and outs of copyright law. Downloading video and music from the internet or too closely mirroring a scene from a book or movie could be intentional or unintentional copyright infringement, she warned. To know what is and isn't allowed she directed us to the federal government's web site, or if you prefer video tutorials, visit Cornell University.

To protect our own rights, she recommends consulting an attorney certified in intellectual property before signing any contracts for your work. Attorneys can be found through the Florida Bar.

Our next speaker will be Kia Ricchi on Thursday, April 28, 2011.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

The ABCs of Copyright - April 7, 2011

Lucille Ponte, Professor of Law, Florida Coastal School of Law, will present an educational talk on the basics of copyright. She will discuss what types of works are subject to copyright, the main statutory rights of copyright holders, the key aspects of copyright infringement and the main infringement defenses. Resources on copyright and the importance of seeking appropriate legal counsel will also be addressed.

Professor Ponte teaches and writes about intellectual property, contracts, and cyberlaw at Florida Coastal School of Law. A member of the MA bar, she previously served as in-house counsel for government agencies and technology companies in Massachusetts and Washington, D.C., negotiating complex commercial agreements and handling a broad range of internal legal matters, including products liability and employment issues. She has authored two books and numerous legal and travel publications, including articles in the The Boston Globe, Hemispheres, Richmond Times-Dispatch, Roanoke Times, Alternatives, and LegalZoom.

Under her pen name, Bridges DelPonte, she is a member of the Florida Writers Association and Sisters in Crime, Inc. and has written one mystery, Deadly Sacrifices, and is currently working on an undersea fantasy novel, The Last Emissary. Her essay, Brick, appeared in the 2010 anthology, Living Lessons (Whispering Angel Books). Her short story, Claire de Lune, will be published in a 2011 Dragon Moon Press anthology. To learn more about her writing, visit her author website at