UTOPiA Idea Xchange


We are excited to announce the return of the popular UTOPiA Idea Xchange talks, Ideas with Heart™. This is a time for leaders in our community to share powerful ideas that have the potential to shape the present and future of the publishing industry.


These talks will no doubt be inspirational, educational, and motivational. What they will not be is a rant or negativity toward authors, vendors or particular paths of publishing. The purpose of the UTOPiA Idea Xchange is to share ideas that can help all of us move forward in this crazy beautiful world.
All Talks take place in Maxwell’s on the ground floor of the Millennium Maxwell House Hotel.


Chelsea Fine

Chelsea Fine

Thursday June 23, 2016 10:30am

USA Today best-selling author, Chelsea Fine, went from riding high on book sales, to chronic depression brought on by the success that came fast, the deadlines that came even faster, and the slow death of her creativity.

In her UTOPiA Idea Xchange talk, you’ll hear how years of doing anything and everything to get help and get better didn’t work…until she did this…

In only 7 days, Chelsea was able to transform her brain, her heart, and her art. You’ll hear her story. 

TEDxYouth Speaker Chelsea Fine is a women’s activist, and the author of the bestselling NA romance Finding Fate series, as well as the author of the YA Archers of Avalon series. 

Kate Corcino

Kate Corcino

Thursday June 23, 2016 11:30am

Imposter Syndrome is the name given to the feeling that one is a fraud–the internal feeling that success is not deserved or is the result of luck, and if others realized how XX (incompetent, foolish, untalented, etc.) she is, they would realize she doesn’t deserve whatever success is achieved. It is particularly common among women. However, from personal experience, I know that it can be overcome. This talk will show others the biggest tool to conquer this debilitating mindset, and where to find it.

Kate Corcino is a reformed shy girl, a people-pleasing good girl gone bad who has found her voice (and uses it…a lot). She believes in the transformative power of screwing up and second chances. Cheers to both!

She is currently gearing up for publication of Spark Rising, the first in the Progenitor Saga, a post-apocalyptic/dystopian romantic series featuring dark protagonists with no guarantee of a happily-ever-after for either of them. She’s also working on Spirit Twin, the first book in the New Adult urban fantasy series Ascendant Spirits, about the magic created by friendship and self-acceptance.

Brian McDonough

Brian McDonough

Thursday June 23, 2016 12:30pm

There are reality TV shows about everything under the sun: fashionistas, athletes, fixer-uppers, housewives, duck hunters, even Donald Trump, but not one about writers. Why?

Reality TV veteran, Brian McDonough (The Voice, Shark Tank), addresses the challenges writers have inside Hollywood (and out) with a humorous look at writing, an activity that takes place, as Stephen King puts it, telepathically — from mind to mind. Watching someone write would be silly, like watching paint drying. It’s an inherently stationary occupation. The act of writing (or reading) contains no action. There is no plot. So, given a reality TV show is not in the works, how do writers break out from behind the keyboard to grab the spotlight??? To find out, mark your calendar to attend this entertaining commentary.


Brian McDonough is the co-founder of Writer, where you can launch a custom website with the easy-to-use, built-in marketing tools that every writer needs in under a minute. 
Heather Hildenbrand

Heather Hildenbrand

Friday, June 24, 2016 10:30am
We are bombarded by media almost every waking hour in the modern world. And the messages tramsmitted in the name of advertising and pop culture often say we’re too fat, too skinny, too loud, too quiet….too wrong in one way or another. That dysfunction affects our self-esteem and, subsequently, our choices. We choose hobbies and friends and even jobs and futures based on what we are “supposed” to be. And then wonder what went wrong when we discover we aren’t happy.
By breaking free of that cycle, by learning to love ourselves as we are, we change everything. Our choices are different, our attitude, our future–everything shifts. But it starts with loving ourselves. Pampering and especially protecting ourselves from those nasty messages society wants us to believe. This talk will address these issues and how to transform them.


Heather Hildenbrand was born and raised in a small town in northern Virginia where she was homeschooled through high school. (She’s only slightly socially awkward as a result.) She writes Young Adult & New Adult romance including the bestselling Dirty Blood & Imitation series’, the latter of which was optioned by NBC. She splits her time between coastal Virginia and the island of Guam and loves having a mobile career and outrageous lifestyle of living in two places. Her most frequent hobbies are riding motorcycles and avoiding killer slugs. Heather is also a publishing and success coach dedicated to teaching fellow writers how to create their own Laptop Lifestyle. For more information visit www.fictionauthorcoach.com. You can find out more about Heather and her books at www.heatherhildenbrand.com.
Angeline Kace

Angeline Kace

Friday, June 24, 2016 11:30am

I went from writing about vampires and demons to wrestling with my own. But I was able to go from feeling lost and defeated to living my best life in less than a year — raising a son who is the light of my life, and helping others conquer years of struggle to feel more confident and healthy. In my talk, I’ll share how you can banish demons in your own life, and how to attract and harness positive people and epic results within days not years.

Angeline Kace is a lifestyle coach and a fitness rep for Beachbody. Author of the paranormal YA Vampire Born Trilogy and the NA romance Wicked Thing.

Liz Long

Liz Long

Friday, June 24, 2016 12:30pm

If you’re indie, you know the looks. The ones where people get super excited to hear you’re a writer, then when they ask who published you, and you say, “I’m self-published,” you get “the look.” You know the one. “Oh,” they say, their shoulders deflating with disappointment. “I thought you were like, famous or something.” You don’t need to be a traditionally published author to understand what goes into your books. There are editors to check spelling and grammar, brilliant cover designers to catch readers’ attention, and marketing teams so that you’re going it alone and completely overwhelmed.

So how does an indie author celebrate the fact that you’re taking charge of your life by going after your dreams? That there are just as many indies out there who will and do succeed? This talk focuses on how to define, measure and manage not only your own success, but your confidence as well.

Liz Long is a proud graduate of Longwood University with a BA in English. Her fabulous day job as a Social Media & PR Strategist includes writing for a magazine publisher in Roanoke, VA. She is also the editor of a wedding magazine, runs her own social media business, Blue Fire Consulting, and is the PR Coordinator for UTOPiAcon. Liz has self-published six books, including the Donovan Circus Series. To learn more about Liz (including more information on her books, plus writing, marketing, and social media tips), visit her website: http://lizclong.com.


Eventbrite - UTOPiA 2016: Five-Year Anniversary Convention & Celebration for Writers & Fans