April is normally a great month for conferences. But due to the coronavirus pandemic, many have been canceled. (Two are online.) I’ve indicated which conferences have been canceled. Some have already been rescheduled. Keep these events on your radar for upcoming changes.
All of these conferences and workshops charge tuition, but some offer financial assistance. There are deadlines for applying for aid, so if any of these looking appealing, plan ahead for next time.
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.)
Rananim online classes Courses run for eight weeks from April through May. “Participants receive personalized feedback on assignments from their instructor, as well as responses from classmates on discussion board forums. All instructors are university professors and/or working professional writers, who have experience teaching at the Taos Summer Writers’ Conference. Classes are limited to 15 students who will engage in conversation with you and your work. Firm deadlines and feedback help keep you writing and improving your work throughout the class.” International students accepted. Cost: $400 per class.
IBPA Publishing University. April 3–4, 2020, Redondo Beach, CA. The Independent Book Publishers Association offers 30+ educational sessions including experiential learning labs, insightful keynotes, a gala book award ceremony, networking events, and so more! Cost: $195-$475. Canceled.
Liberty States Fiction Writers Conference. April 4, 2020: Clark, NJ. “We are so excited about what promises to be a very special, educational, and entertaining 11th Anniversary Conference. In addition to our wonderful and diverse keynote speakers, we have a number of editors and agents who will be attending to take pitches as well as some awesome writer and reader workshops!” Canceled. New date October 10.
Tennessee Mountain Writers Annual Conference, Apr 2–4, 2020: Oak Ridge, TN. Speakers and session leaders include Joseph Bathanti, Karen Salyer McElmurray, Tracy Barrett, and more! Canceled. New date April 8–10 2021.
Las Vegas Writer’s Conference is sponsored by the Henderson Writers’ Group, Sam’s Town Hotel and Gambling Hall, Las Vegas, Nevada. April 2–4, 2020. Join writing professionals, agents publishers and marketing experts for a weekend of workshops and enlightening discussions about the publishing industry. A chance to pitch your manuscript and ideas to agents. This Year’s Conference is ONLINE Thursday thru Saturday April 2–4, 2020.
Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers Retreat. April 2–5, 2020, Colorado Springs, CO. An intensive 3-day writing retreat. Canceled.
Grub Street Muse and the Marketplace Conference. April 3–5, 2020, Boston, Massachusetts. The Muse and the Marketplace is a three-day literary conference designed to give aspiring writers a better understanding about the craft of writing fiction and non-fiction, to prepare them for the changing world of publishing and promotion, and to create opportunities for meaningful networking. On all three days, prominent and nationally-recognized established and emerging authors lead sessions on the craft of writing — the “muse” side of things — while editors, literary agents, publicists and other industry professionals lead sessions on the business side — the “marketplace.” Canceled.
New York Writers Workshop Fiction Pitch Conference. April 3–5, 2020: Ripley-Grier Studios (NY Spaces) 520 Eighth Ave (36th/37th), 16th Fl. Participants polish their pitches with the help of conference leaders who are members of the New York Writers Workshop faculty, then they present them to three different editors from major New York publishing houses. Editors provide feedback and may request proposals and manuscripts after the conference.
San Antonio Book Festival. April 4, 2020, San Antonio, TX. The San Antonio Book Festival is a FREE, annual, daylong event that unites readers and writers in a celebration of ideas, books, libraries, and literary culture. Featuring more than 80 nationally and regionally acclaimed authors, the Festival offers programming for all ages. Next fair will be held on April 10, 2021.
Great Plains Writers Conference. April 4, 2020: South Dakota State University. “Intimate conversations about the writing craft.”
Rally of Writers Conference. April 4, 2020, Lansing, Michigan. Michigan authors and educators in 15 breakout sessions and workshops on all aspects of writing, including poetry, fiction, nonfiction, screenwriting, the Nuts & Bolts of manuscript submissions, and more. Canceled. New date April 17, 2021.
Breakout Novel Intensive 2.0. April 6–12, 2020: Hood River, Oregon. “Writers of commercial fiction who wish to soar out of category, as well as literary novelists who want to learn how to make powerful story principles work for them, will find the Breakout Novel Intensive 2.0 an idea-packed and career enriching experience. This workshop is as ideal for those just beginning a new project as it is for those embarking on a revision of a completed work. Breakout fundamentals are also covered: strong characters, inner conflict, personal stakes, plot layers, powerful scenes, micro-tension, practical theme techniques and much more.”
Norwescon. April 9–12, 2020: Sea Tac, WA. Norwescon is one of the largest regional Science Fiction and Fantasy conventions in the United States. Canceled.
WonderCon. April 10–12, 2020, Anaheim, CA. HUGE comic book convention. Canceled.
Chanticleer Authors Conference. April 17 — April 19, 2020: Bellingham, Washington. Sessions with a special focus on the business of being a working writer on topics such as marketing, publicity, platform, sales tools & strategies, publishing, production, distribution, organization, storycraft, editing, and more. Canceled. Rescheduled for September 4 — September 6, 2020.
The Pikes Peak Writers Conference. April 17–19, 2020. Colorado Springs, Colorado. “The three-day conference is full of topical, in-depth workshops, dynamic keynote speakers, opportunities for one-on-one time with agents and editors, the chance to read your work aloud for constructive critique, plus time to socialize with fellow writers. Canceled.
William Paterson University Spring Writer’s Conference. April 18, 2020: Wayne, New Jersey. Readings and workshops in poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction. Featuring the poet Brenda Shaughnessy. Canceled.
North Carolina Writers’ Network Spring Conference. April 18, 2020, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Greensboro, North Carolina. Features intensive workshops in poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction, as well as publisher exhibits, on-site “lunch with an author” readings, and an open mic.
ASJA (American Society of Journalists and Authors) Writers Conference, April 19–20, 2020 NYC, NY. Focus on Autobiography/Memoir, Business/Technical, Humor, Journalism, Marketing, Nature, Non-fiction, Publishing, Religion, Screenwriting, Travel. Attending: more than 100 editors, authors, literary agents, and publicists. Canceled.
Six Bridges Book Festival. April 23–26, 2020: Little Rock, Arkansas. “Prestigious award-winners, screenwriters, comedians, an expert witness, artists, and a Pulitzer Prize-winning poet are among the diverse roster of presenters who will be providing sessions.” Free. Canceled.
Ozarks Writers League Conference. April 24–25, 2020: Branson, MO. The Ozarks Writers League is a group of like-minded individuals dedicated to promoting writing, literacy, photography, and art. Since 1983, OWL has welcomed individuals at all stages of their development.
Idaho Writers Guild Conference. April 24–25, 2020, Boise, Idaho. Meet with agents, editors, and authors. Panel discussions, workshops, and a keynote speaker. Your registration — $195 for IWG members, $225 for non-members. Canceled. Rescheduled for May 21–22, 2020.
Poetry at Round Top Festival. April 24–26, 2020. Round Top, Texas. he faculty includes Mark Doty, Allison Joseph, Alicia Ostriker, ire’ne lara silva, Mary Szybist, Edward Vidaurre, and Jenny Xie. The cost of the conference is $150 ($50 for students) or $75 for Saturday only. Workshops are an additional $40. Private manuscript consultations are available for an additional $70. Canceled. Rescheduled for April 16–18, 2021.
Monadnock Pastoral Poetry Retreat. Apr 24–26, 2020. Greenfield, NH. Includes workshops, individual conferences, participant & mentor readings; hiking & kayaking (weather permitting). Each workshop uses dual mentors.
The Spring Writers’ Conference. April 25, 2020: Rochester, MI. Lectures, Workshops, and Panel Discussions with a focus on nonfiction. Open to new writers, working journalists, and published authors. Professional development to move writers to the next level.
Northeast Texas Writers Organization. April 25, 2020, Jefferson, TX. One-day bootcamp.
Michigan Writers Conference, April 25, 2020, Detroit, MI. This is a special one-day “How to Get Published” writing workshop at the Embassy Suites by Hilton Detroit Livonia Novi. In other words, it’s one day full of classes and advice designed to give you the best instruction concerning how to get your writing & books published. We’ll discuss your publishing opportunities today, how to write queries & pitches, how to market yourself and your books, what makes an agent/editor stop reading your manuscript, and more. No matter what you’re writing — fiction or nonfiction — the day’s classes will help point you in the right direction. Writers of all genres are welcome.
Writing in the Pines. April 25, 2020, Stockton University, Galloway, NJ. Choose from workshops in memoir, poetry and revision. Each workshop will meet for 6 hours and will offer craft discussion, writing prompts, writing time, sharing and inspiration.
Chicago-North RWA’s Spring Fling. April 30 — May 2, 2020, Oak Brook, IL. Three day Biennial writer’s conference geared towards both aspiring and established writers of any genre but focused on romantic fiction. Bookseller/Blogger/Librarian event, Masterclass in Craft and Marketing, Closing Gala. Canceled.
Northern Colorado Writers Conference. April 30 — May 2, 2020, Fort Collins, CO. Workshops, seminars, speakers, entertainment, agent roundtables, pitch sessions, networking with authors and industry professionals.
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