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How to Earn Money as a Physician Writer, February 8–9, 2018, Clearwater Beach, FL


Product Description

Writing is an enjoyable and low stress way for physicians to supplement their income. Writing can be done from home at hours of your own choosing, does not require Boards or an active practice (or even an active license), and what you learn while writing often makes you a better clinician. In this unique, two-day seminar, SEAK will orient you to five different avenues to making money from being a physician writer: Teaching/Consulting, Self-Publishing, Traditional Publishing (Advances and Royalties), Article Writing, and Freelance Technical Writing. All attendees will leave with an action plan on how they can start earning money as a physician writer. This course will only be offered once in 2018.

The Sandpearl Resort, Clearwater Beach, Florida
Thursday–Friday, February 8-9, 2018


NOTICE ABOUT HURRICANE IRMA: The Sandpearl Resort suffered no damage to the building, meeting spaces, or public areas and reopened two days after the storm.  Irma will have no effect on the SEAK Meetings scheduled for February 2018.


Click here for a PDF of the brochure 

Understand five viable avenues for supplementing or replacing your income through writing Teaching/Consulting, Self-Publishing, Traditional Publishing (Advances and Royalties), Article Writing, and Freelance Technical Writing.
Get feedback from experts on your potential writing ideas
Avoid common pitfalls and jumpstart your writing career
Learn proven techniques for promoting yourself and your writing
Appreciate what sells, what doesn’t sell and why this occurs
Learn how to get paid the maximum amount for your writing
Develop a personalized action plan to get started

Registration Information: Tuition is $1295 until November 18, 2017; $1395 November 19, 2017 – January 16, 2018; $1495 after January 16, 2018 and includes continental breakfast and lunch with faculty each day and a detailed conference manual. Register early and save. 

Continuing Education Information: SEAK, Inc. is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. SEAK, Inc. designates this live activity for a maximum of 14 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)TM. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. 

LOCATION/HOTEL ACCOMMODATIONS: A limited block of rooms will be available at special rates at the site hotel, the AAA Four Diamond Sandpearl Resort (www.sandpearl.com) ($229+tax single or double occupancy) in Clearwater Beach, FL. This rate includes access to the fitness center as well as internet access in your room. Rooms are limited and this rate expires on January 16, 2018 so you are encouraged to make your reservations as soon as possible. To make your reservations, please call 877.726.3111 and say that you are with SEAK, Inc. To book your hotel room online please click here, enter your arrival date and enter your departure date.   Click on SPECIAL CODES, select drop down box Group/Block and enter code: SEAK0218A.

The Sandpearl features a zero entry pool, Spa, private beach, beach-front fire pit, beach sports rentals, 24-hour room service, 24-hour bell service, live entertainment, concierge service, two restaurants (including the 4 diamond Caretta on the Gulf), and child care services. The Sandpearl is located within walking distance of dozens of restaurants and is a 20 miles/30 minutes cab, Uber or shuttle ride from Tampa International Airport, so we suggest saving money and time by not renting a car. 

CANCELLATIONS: Conference cancellations received in writing on or before January 16, 2018 will receive a full tuition refund. Persons cancelling after January 16, 2018 will receive a full tuition credit. 

Distinguished Faculty:

fairbank.jpgSorche Elizabeth Fairbank established Fairbank Literary Representation in 2002. Since then, Ms. Fairbank has had the pleasure of working with a wide, dynamic list, representing multiple best-selling authors, Pulitzer Prize finalists and winners, Edgar recipients, award-winning journalists, and of course her favorite kind of client, the first-time author. Her author/ doctor in the spotlight is Dr. Raoul Wientzen and his award-winning debut novel, The Assembler of Parts. In addition to her agenting duties, Ms. Fairbank can be found teaching courses and giving seminars and lectures on the elusive art of the query letter and other such writing/publishing courses. Updated information on Fairbank Literary can be found at www.publishersmarketplace.com/ members/SorcheFairbank.

Jmangraviti-james100px.jpgames J. Mangraviti, Jr., Esq. is the co-author of 30 books. He has had books published by Wolters Kluwer, Aspen, St. Martins, Wiley and Apress. In addition, he has self-published numerous books through his company, SEAK, Inc. Mr. Mangraviti’s titles have generated sales of several million dollars and have helped him to launch, expand, and nurture a successful career in lecturing, customized training and consulting. One of his consulting specialties is showing physicians how to supplement their income. Mr. Mangraviti currently serves as Principal of SEAK, Inc. He received his JD cum laude from Boston College Law School and his BA summa cum laude from Boston College.

armitage-mandy-circle.jpgMandy Armitage, MDis a successful medical writer who has experience both as a freelancer and as a full time employed writer. She currently serves as a Clinical Content Medical Writer for HealthLoop. Prior to transitioning to medical writing, Dr. Armitage practiced non-surgical sports medicine. She received her MD from Indiana University School of Medicine and her BS in Biology from Purdue.

Frequently Asked Questions about supplementing your clinical income through writing

Q.  Do I need to have an agent to make money through writing?  

A.  Absolutely not.  One of the key advantages of technical writing and self-publishing is that you do not need to secure an agent to represent you.

Q.  Is self-publishing a viable option?  

A.  Yes.  The publishing industry is undergoing a revolutionary transformation.  With the rise of the internet, digital publishing technology and e-books and the rapid demise of brick and mortar booksellers, self-publishing is now a very viable alternative to earning money as a physician writer.

Q.  Can I self-publish without breaking the bank?

A.  Yes, although you will want to make sure that your final product is polished and professional and reflects well on you.

Q.  How much can I make?

A.  It depends.  A successful technical writer can earn more per hour from writing than from practicing medicine.  Successful mass market physician writers like former SEAK Faculty members Michael Palmer, MD and Tess Gerritsen, MD have earned millions of dollars from writing.

Q.  Do I need an active medical license to make money as a physician writer.

A. No.

Q.  Do I need an active clinical practice to make money as a physician writer.

A.  No.

Q.  Do I need to be board certified to make money as a physician writer.

A.  No.

Q.  Are there other financial advantages to writing?

A.  Yes.  Writing and publishing can establish you as a thought leader and lead to lucrative teaching and consulting opportunities.  In addition, writing can lead to offers of full time non-clinical employment and/or help advance your clinical career.

Q.  What types of projects can freelance physician technical writers be called upon to assist with?

A.  Many different types of projects including: abstracts, posters, marketing materials, editing, CME material, training material, presentations/slides, proposals, regulatory documents, scripts, web content, news articles, materials for the pharmaceutical industry, and white papers.

Q.  What can I write about and get paid to do so?

A.  Anything that people are willing to pay for.  This runs the gamut from technical writing for the pharmaceutical industry to self-help books for the general public to romance novels or thrillers.



Day One (Thursday, February 8, 2018)


8:00 – 8:30 Introduction

The faculty and attendees will introduce themselves and discuss background and goals.

8:30 – 9:30 Leveraging Your Writing to Build or Expand a Consulting/Teaching Practice and/or Your Clinical Practice

The largest financial return on your writing is often not in the sales of the writing itself. The biggest financial upside often comes from the ancillary income possible from teaching, consulting or your clinical practice resulting from your having “wrote the book on a topic.” The faculty will explain how to use your writing to increase clinical income and/or support lucrative teaching and consulting practices. Several detailed case examples will be presented and discussed. Questions and Answers

9:30 – 10:00 The Publishing Landscape, And Why Self-Publishing May Now Be Your Smartest Option

Self-publishing had traditionally been a poor option for authors who were looking to make money from their books, with many readers looking down on “vanity presses” and self-published books. Those days are now long gone. The internet, print on demand, modern word processors and graphic design software, the demise of many brick and mortar bookstores and the explosion of e-books have made self-publishing in many cases your best bet to maximize earnings from writing a book on a non-commercial topic. In this segment the faculty will explain the advantages and disadvantages of self-publishing and provide a methodology for determining if self-publishing is your best bet. Questions and Answers


10:15 – 10:45 The Nuts and Bolts of Self Publishing: Printing and How to Make Your Book Look Professional

The faculty will explain the advantages and disadvantages of three major options for producing your book – bulk printing, print on demand, and e-books. The advantages and disadvantages of each will be explained. The authors will also provide practical suggestions for finding the best vendor for assisting with printing and negotiating the best price. Also provided will be suggestions for getting the proper assistance for producing a book that reads well and looks professionally laid out. Different options for performing this work will be explored. Questions and Answers

10:45 – 11:30 Promoting Yourself and Your Book

If you want your self-published or traditionally published book to sell, you need to be able to promote it. In this segment the faculty will explain numerous strategies for selling your book including, distributors, publicity, generating positive word of mouth, pricing, building buzz, teaching, direct marketing, blogging, speaking, giving interviews, networking, choosing the correct title, and search engine optimization. The faculty will lead an interactive exercise in which attendees are asked to create and discuss marketing plans for their books. Questions and Answers

11:30 – 12:00 How to Self-Evaluate Your Book Idea

Writing and publishing your book are ambitious undertakings. Before doing so, it is a best practice to take a hard look at what you are proposing. In this segment the faculty will provide a step-by-step protocol for critically evaluating your book idea including: feasibility of marketing, competition, delivering exceptional quality, pricing power, availability of distributors, follow-on revenue, and printing costs. Questions and Answers


12:45 – 2:00 What Publishers are Looking for — Book Ideas that Sell

Physicians commonly publish both non-fiction and fiction. The faculty will provide an overview and insights for what sells for each of the numerous popular types of fiction and non-fiction works including: trade, textbooks, self-help, thrillers, romance, sci-fi, and children’s. The faculty will explain what sells in various genres, and what does not. The faculty will explain what now drives the publishing industry and what publishers are most interested in. The faculty will provide numerous examples of works of fiction and non-fiction authored by physicians and of successful physician authors. Questions and Answers

2:00 – 3:00 How to Find the Right Agent

Success with traditional publishers is often heavily dependent on finding the right agent. In the segment the faculty will explain what a good agent does and does not do. Faculty will provide a step-by-step process that helps research, query, and land a motivated agent. Finally, the faculty will give practical tips for how to be a good client and get the most out of your agent. Questions and Answers


3:15 – 5:00 How to Draft a Killer Query Letter and Create and Deliver an Irresistible Pitch

The faculty will explain how to write an irresistible query letter. Sample query letters will be provided. The faculty will then conduct a group exercise where attendees will be asked to pitch their books in less than sixty seconds. Questions and Answers 

Day Two (Friday, February 9, 2018)


7:00 – 8:30 How to Write Book Proposals That Sell

The faculty will explain in a step-by-step fashion how to write a marketable book proposal. Sample book proposals will be included. The faculty will also discuss the biggest mistakes authors make when writing book proposals and will explain how to avoid each of these. The faculty will conduct an interactive exercise where attendees will be asked to outline a book proposal and submit their proposal to the faculty and class for feedback. Questions and Answers

8:30 – 9:30 The Business Side of Traditional Publishing, and Next Steps to Commercial Success

In this section the faculty will explain the issues in a typical publishing contract including territory, term, royalties, advances, payment schedules, competing works, illustrations, warranties and representations, copyright, marketing, foreign rights, titles, and termination. A sample publishing contract will be provided. The final half hour will be spent outlining next steps toward commercial success for attendees. Questions and Answers


9:45 – 10:45 How to Make Money From Writing Articles and How to Build Your Writing Portfolio

The faculty will give practical suggestions for how to get paid assignments writing articles for magazine and other media. In addition, the faculty will provide specific suggestions regarding how to build one’s portfolio and make yourself more attractive to agents and publishers. Questions and Answers


11:00 – 12:00 Freelance Technical Writing — Opportunities Available

The faculty will provide an overview of the many varied types of technical writing that physicians are called upon to perform including: abstracts, posters, marketing materials, editing, CME material, training material, presentations/ slides, proposals, regulatory documents, scripts, web content, news articles, materials for the pharmaceutical industry, and white papers and how these relate to The Pharmaceutical and Medical Communications industries. For each of these areas the faculty will explain what the work consists of, why it is needed and who within each industry would typically hire the physician to perform the work. Questions and Answers


12:45 – 1:45 The Business of Freelance Technical Writing — Landing Your First Clients, Negotiating Your Rates, Collecting Fees, and Marketing Your Services

The faculty will provide advice for how to break into this field. The faculty will also explain how to set and negotiate your rates, how and when to collect your fees, how to leverage your clinical skills and experience, how to earn repeat and word of mouth business, how to make yourself more attractive to potential services and how to market your services to both new and existing clients. Questions and Answers

1:45 – 2:30 Conclusion — Your Action Plan to Start Earning Money as a Physician Writer

By far, the biggest impediment to making money as a physician writer is inertia. In this section, each attendee will draft a concise action plan to follow to get started as physician writers. Attendees will be invited to share their plans with the faculty and their colleagues for feedback. Questions and Answers 



“Excellent, definitely met expectations and lit a fire” 

“Fantastic setting and very informative” 

“Full of helpful and insightful information” 

“The highlight for me was that Sorche sat with me at lunch the first day and talked to me one on one about my [book idea]----I didn't know in advance that she'd have and give me that much individual time” 

“Excellent seminar and highly recommend to any physicians looking to enhance or change careers” 

“Comprehensive information clearly laid out” 

“Extremely useful, cram packed of useful knowledge, glad to have the manual to supplement info gathered during lectures” 

“Very helpful and inspiring—both to continue working on my novel and to begin some freelance article writing” 

“Very good. Participant input and pearls very helpful” 

“Speakers were very informative, knowledgeable and made info interesting, clear and concise.” 

“Excellent and useful.” 

“Full of information.” 

“Great, eye opening.” 

“Liked the different segments, very helpful.” “Quite excellent.” 

“Really learned a lot.” 

“Very informative, particularly the emphasis on the business aspects of writing.” 

“Well organized and conceived.” “Very knowledgeable presenters.”  


“Excellent … I found it so incredibly helpful”  

“Fantastic setting and very informative”  

“Wealth of info”  

“On point, exactly what I came to hear about”  

“Very useful information and perspectives”  

“Very well done”  

“Well organized - interactive”  

“Jim, thanks for suggesting that I attend the course----it was well worth the flight from Newport Beach, CA. The highlight for me was that Sorche sat with me at lunch the first day and talked to me one on one about my [book idea]----I didn't know in advance that she'd have and give me that much individual time----she, you, and all of the lectures were wonderful, but for me, they were just frosting on the cake. Keep up the good work----“  

“Hi Jim, It was a very informative and useful course. I learned a lot from the topics you handled Yes, I will remember, good things happen to those who write. I needed this course to overcome the block I had after completing my iBook. This course helped me to see what was missing to complete the project. I know my angle on this is much better. Hope to share with you and Ms. Sorche once I am on Apple iBook Store. Who knows Ms. Sorche might find it useful for print medium down the road.”  

“Jim, Thank you for a most excellent program. I always knew anything produced by SEAK is a quality product. I am ready to hone my writing and look to a first book completion.”  

“I really enjoyed the conference and found it quite helpful. All of the presenters did such a great job.”  

“Jim, Great course from you all Thank you very much.”  

“I appreciated the candid discussion and the shared, practical information.”  

“Jim, The SEAK writing course was excellent, exactly what I needed.  Many thanks to you, Soche, and Mandy for an outstanding seminar.”  

“Hello! I just wanted to write to personally thank all three of you for the outstanding Seak Writing Course in Clearwater! I can not believe I learned so much in such a short time! I have been very inspired and enthusiastic since my return. On the way home in the airport, I started a leather journal to record important web sites and instructions I wanted to focus on after the conference. I used the back of the journal to list a flurry of ideas I had for articles on sleep medicine, sports medicine, general health, blog ideas, etc.   I have kept that journal by my bed and have added to it most days. Before the conference I had started on a journal article about the treatment of Narcolepsy during pregnancy. I am happy to report that today I submitted that article to The Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine. So now the waiting game begins......but at least I got it finished. I have been talking to my medical students, my nurse practitioner, and even a young girl down the street about the importance of writing and that "Good Things Happen To Those Who Write"! I will keep you posted on my progress. Thank you again for all of your help!!”  

“I am inspired. Your SEAK conference has lit a fire in me and for that, I'm saying THANKS ! Thanks for the how-to.” 

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