Monday, August 26, 2019

36 Fabulous Writing Conferences in September 2019

With the change in seasons, writers are energized, and raring to go. This September there are 36 conferences, intensive workshops, retreats and book fairs from coast to coast. You will also have a chance to pitch your work to agents, meet editors, and get to know your fellow writers. Conferences provide great opportunities to network, so make the most of your experience!

I strongly recommend that you plan ahead for next year if you miss your perfect conference or workshop. Many of these conferences offer scholarships, but you have to apply early.

For a month-by-month list of conferences throughout the year see: Writing Conferences. (You will also find links to resources that can help you find conferences in your area on that page.)


Writing Retreat for Jewish Kidlit Authors! September 5 -8, 2019:  Honesdale, Pennsylvania. Sponsored by Highlights Foundation. A 4-day writers retreat. Special guest Agent Linda Epstein.

LoonSong Retreat. September 5 -9, 2019: Cook, Minnesota. Workshops for poetry, novels, picture books, nonfiction and manuscript consultations.

Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers Colorado Gold Conference. Sept. 6 - 8, 2019: Denver, CO. Keynote Speakers: Marie Force, John Gilstrap, and Anne Hillerman. Faculty includes a wide variety of published authors, marketers, editors, and agents. Opportunities to pitch projects to agents and editors.

Poets on the Coast. Sept. 6- 8, 2019: La Conner, Washington. Workshop, one-on-one mentoring, craft classes, and yoga for women poets. The faculty includes poets Kelli Russell Agodon and Susan Rich. Tuition, which does not include lodging or meals, is $429. (Closed but check for cancellations)

Slice Literary Writers’ Conference. September 7 - 8, 2019: Brooklyn, NY. Craft workshops, panels, and one-on-one agent meetings for poets, fiction writers, and nonfiction writers. Fiction and nonfiction writers Mira Jacob and Kiese Laymon will deliver the keynotes. Participating publishing professionals include agents Amy Elizabeth Bishop (Dystel, Goderich & Bourret), Sarah Bowlin (Aevitas Creative Management), Reiko Davis (DeFiore & Company), Stephanie Delman (Greenburger Associates), Mitch Hoffman (Aaron Priest Literary Agency), Annie Hwang (Folio Literary Management), Heather Jackson (Heather Jackson Literary Agency), Jacqueline Ko (Wylie Agency), Ayesha Pande (Ayesha Pande Literary), Anjali Singh (Ayesha Pande Literary), and DongWon Song (Howard Morhaim Literary Agency). The cost of the conference is $375 for both days or $275 for one day; students receive a $50 discount. Agent meetings are an additional $100 to $175; workshops are $50.

UCLA Extension Writing Retreat at Lake Arrowhead. Sept 8 - 13, 2019: Lake Arrowhead, CA. Join a small group of committed writers for four full days of uninterrupted writing time at UCLA’s beautiful conference center at Lake Arrowhead. Participants will enjoy private bedrooms, private baths, and three gourmet meals each day, along with complimentary beverages all day long. The Writers’ Program will coordinate some structured activities, including pre-dinner social hours and nightly open mic events, but your time will ultimately be yours to accomplish your writing goals at your own pace.

PNWA Conference. September 12 - 15, 2019, Seattle, Washington, Sponsored by the Pacific Northwest Writers Association. More than 50 seminars, editor/agent forums & appointments, practice pitching, keynote and featured speakers, reception, awards ceremony. Many agents and editors attending.

Creatures, Crimes & Creativity. September 13 - 17, 2019: Columbia, MD. A writer's and fan's conference for genre fiction covering mystery, suspense, thriller, sci-fi, fantasy, steampunk & horror.

San Francisco Writing for Change. September 14, 2019: San Francisco, CA. This event is for writers of nonfiction AND fiction who want to change the world for the better through their work.

The Art & Craft of Fiction. September 14, 2019: Litchfield, CT. Seven in-depth workshops with writer/editor/instructors John and Natalie Bates. Cost: $125 includes workshop, manuscript feedback, and lunch.

2019 Flathead River Writers Conference. Sept 14 - 15, 2019: Kalispell, MT. Writers help writers in this two day conference packed with energizing speakers and workshops. Features:Workshops on VOICE, HOOK, Your WORLD & TRIBE, MS preparation & submission, working with agents, movie deals, media use, & children's book publishing. Past presenters: Susan Adrian, Christine Carbo, Kathy Dunnehoff, Larry J. Martin, Jess Owen. Agents: Kate Testerman and Cindy Uh.

Connecting Writers with Hollywood. September 15, 2019: Spokane, WA. CWWH is a writers conference where writers and screenwriters can pitch their material directly to film agents and producers. It is a weekend of education, panels and pitch sessions.

Brooklyn Book Festival. September 16 - 23, 2019: Brooklyn, NY. The festival features readings, panels, and a book fair. Participants include poets Jericho Brown, Tina Chang, Rigoberto González, Ilya Kaminsky, and Sally Wen Mao; fiction writers Ted Chiang, Susan Choi, Edwidge Danticat, Jonathan Safran Foer, Amitav Ghosh, Aleksandar Hemon, Marlon James, N. K. Jemisin, Laila Lalami, Courtney Maum, Maaza Mengiste, Joyce Carol Oates, Téa Obreht, and Nell Zink; and nonfiction writers Christopher Bonanos, Dave Cullen, Benjamin Dreyer, Bill McKibben, Mary Norris, Rebecca Traister, and Damon Young. All events are free and open to the public.

Idaho Writers League Annual Conference. Sept 19 -21, 2019: Sandpoint, Idaho. Workshops focusing on writing, publishing, marketing and IWL awards. Faculty includes Mary Buckham, keynoter; active settings for all fiction; pacing; one-on-ones; Jack Nisbet, memoirs, non-fiction; Janet Oakley, researching/writing historical fiction; Tom Reppert, character development, time-travel; Jim Payne, Jennifer Lamont Le.

Hampton Roads Writers Eleventh Annual Writers' Conference. Sept 19 -21, 2019: Virginia Beach, Virginia. 1 evening plus 2-full days of workshops, 2 best-selling keynoters, 2 first ten-lines critique sessions, 60 workshops during 10 breakout sessions, ten-minute agent and/or publisher pitches, cash prize contests for short fiction, short nonfiction, and poetry, complimentary 90-minute cocktail social, 2-hour open mic, optional 4-hour add-on WRITER'S BOOT CAMP SESSION (pre-conference); workshops cover fiction, nonfiction, memoir, poetry, screenwriting, songwriting, marketing, and the business of getting published. A bookshop, book signings, and many networking opportunities.

Kentucky Women Writers Conference. Sept. 19–22, 2019: Lexington, KY. The Kentucky Women Writers Conference is the longest running literary festival of women in the nation. About 1,000 individuals attend the conference each year. Daytime sessions attract about 150 writers at all stages of development, and free evening events gather a lively community of readers. Most come seeking literary sisterhood, help with a manuscript, or practical advice about the publishing industry. Many are students or beginning writers.

New York Pitch ConferenceSept 19 - 22, 2019: New York, NY. Features publishing house editors from major houses such as Penguin, Random House, St. Martins, Harper Collins, Tor and Del Rey, Kensington Books and many more who are looking for new novels in a variety of genres, as well as narrative non-fiction. The event focuses on the art of the novel pitch as the best method not only for communicating your work, but for having you and your work taken seriously by industry professionals.Workshops, homework & pitch training, agent/editor feedback, market study, publication plan.

Writing for Illustrators: An Author/Illustrator Intensive. Sept 19 - 22, 2019: Honesdale, Pennsylvania. Sponsored by Highlights Foundation. Grow as a writer while honoring your illustration background. Join author/illustrators a three-day intensive workshop.

Ridgefield Writers Conference. Sept 20, 2019: Ridgefield, CT. Faculty-led workshops; agent, editor and publisher panels; networking; readings; and post-conference resources.

KABAM! (Kingman Area Books Are Magic). September 20-21, 2019: Kingman, AZ. The KABAM! book festival & writers conference welcomes writers of all skill levels to breakout sessions, pitching tables, and other events. Faculty includes Mystic Publishers; Crystal Publishing. Headline Author: YA - Randall Platt. Headline Poet: Myrlin Hepworth. Marketing Specialist: Brian Rouff Jo A. Wilkins, author/publisher/writing coach. Richard Draude, author/graphic design.

A Weekend For WordsSept 20 - 22, 2019: Irvine, CA. 60+ working, professional authors of fiction, nonfiction & screen, editors & agents. Costs $325-$425. Manuscript critique & one-on-one consultation additional.

The Pacific Coast Children's Novel Workshop & Retreat. Sept 20 - 22, 2019: Santa Cruz, CA. Intensive seminar offers editor or agent feedback on selected whole-novel manuscripts, including two in-person consults with your mentor. Editor and agent critiques on your polished, opening chapters. Faculty includes Agent Kari Sutherland, Editor Liesa Abrams, and Editor Samantha Gentry.

Connecticut Fiction Fest. Sponsored by Connecticut Chapter of Romance Writers of America. Sept. 21, 2019: Danbury, CT. Learn to Write Naked: A one-day craft & marketing workshop with Jennifer Probst.

Mini Writing Getaway. Sept 21, 2019: Atlantic City, NJ. Need a brief break from your life? Need to rekindle your love affair with writing? Join us for a welcoming getaway designed for writers of fiction, memoir, creative nonfiction and poetry. This retreat will trigger your imagination, giving you the freedom to compose new and exciting work. Spend the day immersed in the literary life: writing, discussing craft and sharing new drafts.No distractions. Just a day of writing. Led by Peter E. Murphy.

Chattahoochee Valley Writers Conference. Sept 21, 2019, Athens, GA. "Got Writer's Block? Give Your Creativity a Kick in the Pants! In this interactive workshop with editor Val M. Mathews, you’ll learn fun tools to jump-start your writing day, prevent the blank-page stare, and make your writing pop."

ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival at Boulder. Sept 21 - 22, 2019: Boulder, CO. Presentations, panels, readings, and music performances. In an uplifting celebration of the mind and heart, authors from the Americas, Asia, Africa, and Europe will take part in provocative conversations about life and society, economics and the arts, equity, freedom, and the care of our planet. In these critical times, the penetrating, intercultural dialogue exchanged speaks deeply to individuals and gives rise to the joy of community.

4th Annual Broadleaf Writers Conference. Sept 21 - 22, 2019: Decatur, GA. Headlined by #1 NYT bestseller Angie Thomas, bestselling writers, literary agents, and sessions packed with insightful information and experience, our conference offers what you need to improve your craft and get you on the road toward publication!

Plotting Madness Boot Camp, Scene Structure Book Camp. Sept 21 - 25, Sept 26 - 28, Sept 29 - Oct 2, 2019 : South Lake Tahoe, CA. Three intensive days in a mansion at South Lake Tahoe. With a small group of writers and instructors you will plot out a full novel outline. Breakfast and lunch included. Led by C. S. Lakin, author, editor and writing coach and Catharine Bramkamp author and writing coach.

Nurturing Your Artistic Voice: A Guide for Kidlit Rebels and Risk-takers. Sept 22 - 25, 2019: Honesdale, Pennsylvania. Sponsored by Highlights Foundation. Illustrator Carolyn Flores and author Meg Medina will lead participants in an exploration of identity, creativity, and publishing.

Breakout Novel Intensive 2.0. September 23 - 29, 2019: San  Antonio, Texas. Included are new or revised units on story discovery, strong voice, standout characters, the inner journey, compelling story worlds, beautiful writing, creating resonance and finding meaning in both story and process. Breakout fundamentals are also covered: strong characters, inner conflict, personal stakes, plot layers, powerful scenes, micro-tension, practical theme techniques and much more. Instructor: Donald Maass.

Algonkian Writer Retreat and Novel Workshop. September 25 - 29, 2019: Sterling,Virginia. This event is now enhanced with new pre-event studies and pre-event phone consultation, a broader range of faculty, an array of vital workshops, as well as extended personal time with business professionals. "You can be as goal-oriented or as hesitant in approach as you wish. You can show us your manuscript, improve your skills, have your work read by our writer mentors, attend our workshops, pitch a literary agent or two, whatever works for you, whatever helps you grow and discover your vision as a writer.

Taking Your Writing & Art to New Places: Published Authors and Illustrators at Work 2019. September 25 - 29, 2019: Honesdale, Pennsylvania. Sponsored by Highlights Foundation. With this workshop, we are aiming for meaningful conversation about how to continue to push the boundaries of our work. How do we acknowledge the power of our recurring themes and at the same time find ways to break new ground and find innovation? For published authors only.

TLA Power of Words Conference. September 26 - 29, 2019: Scottsdale, Arizona. Conference that explores the use of expressive language arts, including written, spoken, and sung words. Special tracks in Narrative Medicine, Right Livelihood, and Social Change.

Authorpreneur WorkshopSeptember 27 - 28, 2019: Red Bank, NJ. Workshop for authors of all genres that imparts writing and publishing business skills to attain success in the publishing industry, plus insider tips and guidance on everything from plotting to submissions to publishing deals. Faculty includes Marisa Corvisiero, Esq. Amy Bishop, Lit Agent, Dystel, Goderich & Bourret, Alec Shane, Lit Agent, Writers House, Caitlen Rubino-Bradway, Lit Agent, LKG Agency, Katherine Prosswimmer, Acq. Editor, McElderry, Simon & Schuster Eva Scalzo, Lit Agent.

LiTFUSE Poets’ Workshop. September 27 - 29, 2019: Tieton, WA. The workshop features readings, performances, and meditation for poets. The faculty includes poets Susan Blair, Thom Caraway, Laura Da’, Natalie Diaz, Christopher Howell, Claudia Castro Luna, Finn Menzies, Saretta Morgan, Cynthia Neely, Matthew Nienow, Dan Peters, and Maya Jewell Zeller. The registration fee, which includes weekend classes and a banquet dinner on Saturday night, is $220 until August 31 and $250 thereafter. Master classes are available for an additional $50 to $120 each.

Wrightwood Literary Festival. September 28 - 29, 2019: Wrightwood, CA. Features workshops and readings by new guest faculty.This year’s festival will also feature an all-new nature walk, a new member of the local faculty in Melissa Chadburn, and a keynote address by Janet Fitch.

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