News Ticker

Festival writers conference Sept. 22


SAINT AUGUSTINE – Future novelists, screenplay writers, and graphic illustrators are invited to learn from three experienced professionals during the 2017 Florida Heritage Book Festival Writers Conference on Sept. 22.

James O. Born, mystery writer; Allan Marcil, a creator of screenplays; and Andre Frattino, illustrator of graphic novels and children’s literature, will give workshops at the St. Johns County Convention Center at the World Golf Village, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Born’s topic will be crafting a novel, 9 a.m. to noon. Frattino’s presentation will be on graphic novels and illustrations for children’s books, 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. Marcil’s session will be on creating screenplays, 2:30 p.m. to 4 p.m.

The $60 advance fee ($75 at the door) covers the three workshops. Lunch is not included. Register online via Paypal at or, by mail, with a check payable to FHBF, FHBF Writers Conference,  P.O. Box 4011, St. Augustine, Fl. 32085.  For additional information, email

About  the presenters:

James O. Born, a Florida State University graduate, received a master’s degree from the University of Southern Mississippi in psychology.  His career in law enforcement began as an agent with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). He was part of the late 1990’s Miami drug war.  He later was a Special Agent with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. Born received the Law Enforcement Officer of the Year award from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, the Silver Medal of ValorThe Distinguished Service Award and the Life Saving Medal after rescuing a family from a SUV, which had plunged into a canal. He has written articles for magazines and newspapers.

He was chosen in 2009 as one of Florida’s 21 most intriguing people by Florida Monthly Magazine. His book, Escape Clause, won the inaugural Florida Book Award gold medal in genre fiction in 2006. His latest books are Haunted which comes out Sept. 18, co-authored with novelist James Patterson, and Putin’s Gambit: A Novel which came out in June, co-authored with TV commentator Lou Dobbs. Born has also written under the pseudonym James O’Neal.

Andre Frattino, a Florida native, balances his skills and trade across three areas: Storytelling, Education and the Paranormal. Since 2012, his ongoing Florida-based graphic novel series has been published with Pineapple Press (to this date, Andre is the first and only graphic novelist published by the veteran publishers). The titles include: The Reaper of St. George Street, Lost Souls of Savannah and most recently, The Vampirate of Matanzas Inlet. Frattino is a graduate of both Savannah College of Art and Design (BFA, Sequential Art, 2009) and the University of Florida (MA, Art Education, 2013). He continues to write and illustrate for comics and children’s books. Other clients include Author Shelley Fraser Mickle, The Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings Foundation, and Firehouse Subs. He has conducted ghost tours in Savannah, GA, for the past 10 years. He has appeared in previous years at The Florida Heritage Book Festival.

Allan Marcil launched his film and TV career in the graduate film program at the University of Southern California’s School of Cinema. Subsequently, Marcil developed a producing career in both film and television, where he has produced, executive produced and created over 100 hours of award winning and/or nominated television.

Marcil, with his then-partner in Stonehenge Productions, Richard Berg, pioneered the mini-series format with productions that included A Rumor of War, the first television drama to examine the Vietnam War, based on Philip Caputo’s celebrated memoir; James Michener’s SPACE, and Wallenberg: A Hero’s Story.

Marcil has also produced a number of provocative and award winning movies-for television and has worked extensively with literary artists such as Elmore Leonard, Norman Mailer, Philip Caputo, Israel Horovitz, and Peter Benchley.

Marcil’s awards include: Golden Globe nomination and Cable ACE nomination, for White Mile; Imagen Award, For The Love of My Child; Emmy nominations for SPACE, episode 5; Wallenberg, and White Mile; Cine Golden Eagle, Best Dramatic Short, Jacksonville Film Festival, El Dorado; Prism Award, honorable mention, Rated X; Florida Senior Playwright’s Festival, winner, The Specialist.













About PluggedInto (994 Articles)
PluggedInto is an ePublication covering news, history, local events and more in the Putnam/Flagler/St. Johns tricounty area.

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