CALM Celebrates 30 Years of Celebrity Authors and Unforgettable Stories

Posted on Mar 22 by Leslie Dinaberg

Frances Schultz will be interviewed at CALM's annual Celebrity Author's Luncheon, photo by Tiffany Evitts.

Frances Schultz will be interviewed at CALM’s annual Celebrity Author’s Luncheon, photo by Tiffany Evitts.

Always one of our favorite literary and philanthropic events, the CALM Auxiliary‘s  30th Annual Celebrity Authors Luncheon on April 2 is a benefit for CALM’s (Child Abuse Listening Mediation) vital programs across the county that help prevent child abuse and treat children and families who have suffered from violence and abuse.

This year’s event features interviews and book signings by a variety of critically acclaimed writers, including Meg Waite Clayton, Gregg Hurwitz, and Frances Schultz (featured on the cover of Santa Barbara Seasonscurrent spring 2016 issue).

The event, which starts with book sales and signings at 10 a.m. at The Fess Parker – A Doubletree by Hilton Resort (633 E. Cabrillo Blvd.), also includes a lunch (11:45 a.m.) and author interviews (12:45 p.m.) with Clayton, Hurwitz and Schultz.

New York Times and USA Today bestseller Meg Waite Clayton is the author of five novels, including The Race for Paris and The Wednesday Sisters, one of Entertainment Weekly‘s 25 Essential Best Friend Novels of all time. Her first novel, The Language of Light, was a finalist for the Bellwether Prize for Socially Engaged Fiction (now the PEN/Bellwether). She’s written for the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Washington Post, San Francisco Chronicle, Runner’s World and public radio, often on the subject of the particular challenges women face. Clayton’s new novel was 15 years in the making and inspired by real women journalists who defied military regulations and gender barriers to report on WWII.

Meg Waite Clayton will be interviewed at CALM's annual Celebrity Author's Luncheon, courtesy photo.

Meg Waite Clayton will be interviewed at CALM’s annual Celebrity Author’s Luncheon, courtesy photo.

Gregg Hurwitz is the New York Times bestselling author of 15 thrillers, most recently, Orphan X. His novels have been shortlisted for numerous literary awards, graced top ten lists, and been translated into 26 languages. He is also a New York Times bestselling comic book writer, having penned stories for Marvel (Wolverine, Punisher) and DC (Batman, Penguin). Additionally, he’s written screenplays for or sold spec scripts to many of the major studios, and written, developed, and produced television for various networks.

Frances Schultz, journalist, tastemaker, world traveler, hostess, Southerner, Sunday painter, and outdoors lover, is an enthusiast on decoration and design, food and entertaining, travel and style. She is author and co-author of several books, including The Bee Cottage Story—How I Made a Muddle of Things and Decorated My Way Back to Happiness. A contributing editor to House Beautiful magazine and former editor-at-large for Veranda, she has also written for The Wall Street Journal, Town & Country, Indagare and The New York Social Diary. She was the on-air host for six years of the award-winning cable television show Southern Living Presents and has appeared on The Today Show, The Nate Berkus Show, CNN’s Open House and many others. With husband Tom Dittmer, dog Stella, assorted horses and critters, she lives in the Santa Ynez Valley with visits to Manhattan and summers at Bee Cottage in East Hampton.

Andrew Firestone is serving once again as Master of Ceremonies. Hank Phillippi Ryan, an interviewed author at last year’s luncheon, returns to the stage this year alongside Tom Weitzel, to interview the 2016 celebrity authors.

Greg Hurwitz will be interviewed at CALM's annual Celebrity Author's Luncheon, courtesy photo.

Greg Hurwitz will be interviewed at CALM’s annual Celebrity Author’s Luncheon, courtesy photo.

In addition to the interviewed authors, these authors will also attend the event and be available for book signing:

Melissa Broughton, Cowboy Dad: Love, Alcoholism, and a Dying Way of Life

Jane Coleman, Life Is All About Range

Lydia Edwards, Odyssey of Innocents

Margarita Fairbanks, Valentino, The Love Bunny

Jeff Farrell, My Olympic Story, Rome 1960

Lisa Guadagno, The Lucky Ones

Dana Kent, Brussels to Beirut to Bali: The 1958 World Travels of Four Girls in a Second-Hand Chevy

Peggy O’Toole, Then I Won’t Seem So Far Away

Chris Messner, Cuba Open From the Inside, Travels in the Forbidden Land

Tracy Shawn, The Grace of Crows

M.L. VanBlaricum, Reflections in a Boomer’s Eye

Ernie WithamWhere Are Pat and Ernie Now? A Santa Barbara Couple’s Humorous Travel Adventures

“The CALM Auxiliary is very proud to have hosted such a wonderful community event for 30 years. We have been so lucky to have had some of the greatest authors donate their time and talent, all the while supporting CALM’s important cause. The entire Auxiliary has been behind this project from the start and we couldn’t do our job without every one of them. We feel fortunate to be involved and are proud to help CALM in its mission to protect children and families from abuse,” say event co-chairs Becky Cohn and Carolyn Gillio.

For tickets and event information, please call 805/969-5590 or click here.  All ticket proceeds and a percentage of book sales will benefit CALM, the only nonprofit in Santa Barbara County focused solely on preventing and treating child abuse. CALM was founded in 1970 to reach stressed parents before they hurt their children.  CALM continues to be the only nonprofit agency in Santa Barbara County focusing solely on preventing, assessing, and treating child abuse and family violence through comprehensive, cutting-edge programs.  CALM offers children, families, and adults a safe, non-judgmental, caring, and strength-based environment to heal and increase family well-being.  For more information about all of CALM’s services, please call 805/965-2376 or visit

Leslie Dinaberg


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