September features three dozen writing conferences, several of which focus on how to get published. Many offer pitch sessions with agents and editors. And, of course, there are numerous workshops, speakers, critique sessions, and readings.
A few of the conferences on this list are already closed. I’ve included them because they are, for the most part, annual events. If you’ve missed a conference you’d like to attend this year, you can catch when it comes around in 2017.
Note: You can find a full list of conferences (organized by month) as well as resources to find conferences in your area here: Writing Conferences
DragonCon. Sept. 2–5, 2016, Atlanta, Ga. HUGE sci-fi event, with parade, autograph sessions, live performances, readings, wrestling (!), workshops on belly dancing, writing (yes, there’s even some writing), art show. (This conference sounds really wild.)
Shore Thing Writing Getaway. September 3, 2016, Atlantic City, New Jersey. One-day workshop with Peter Murphy.
Sacramento Writing Conference. September 9, 2016, Sacramento, CA. A full-day “How to Get Published” workshop. Attending agents: Elizabeth Kracht (Kimberly Cameron Literary Agency); Jennifer March Soloway (Andrea Brown Literary); Carlie Webber (CK Webber Associates Literary); Patricia Nelson (Marsal Lyon Literary); Jen Hunt (Booker Albert Literary); and Jennifer Chen Tran (Fuse Literary)
Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers Colorado Gold Conference. Sept. 9- 11, 2016, Denver, CO. Keynote Speakers: Robert J. Sawyer and Ann Hood. Faculty includes a wide variety of published authors, marketers, editors, and agents. Opportunities to pitch projects to agents and editors.
49 Writers Tutka Bay Retreat. Sept. 9- 11, 2016, Tutka Bay, Alaska. Retreat leader is Rick Moody.
Connecticut Fiction Fest. Sept. 9- 11, 2016, Norwalk, CT. Keynote Sarah MacLean, master class taught by Barbara Samuel O’Neal. 20+ workshops, suitable for all genres and skill levels, full suspense-mystery track, manuscript critiques, opportunities to pitch major agents and editors.
Poets on the Coast. Sept. 9- 11, 2016, 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 $395. Application Deadline: July 31, 2016
Writer’s High Retreat. Sept. 9- 11, 2016, Young Harris, Georgia. workshops for poets, fiction writers, and creative nonfiction writers, as well as readings and talks. Participating writers include poet Clifford Brooks III, fiction writers Joshilyn Jackson and Michael Morris, and nonfiction writer Jessica Handler. The cost of the retreat, which includes lodging and all meals, is $754 for a single room and $559 for a double room until June 30, and $779 for a single room and $586 for a double room thereafter. The registration deadline is August 10.
San Francisco Writing for Change, Sept 10, 2016, San Francisco, CA. This event is for writers of nonfiction AND fiction who want to change the world for the better through their work.
Writing Workshop of San Francisco, September 10, 2016, San Francisco, CA. A full-day “How to Get Published” workshop. Attending agents: Paul S. Levine (Paul S. Levine Literary); Chelsea Lindman (Greenburger Associates); Elizabeth Kracht (Kimberley Cameron Literary Agency); Laurie McLean (Fuse Literary); Carlie Webber (CK Webber Associates Literary); Laurie Fox (Linda Chester Literary Agency); Mary C. Moore (Kimberley Cameron Literary Agency); Andy Ross (Andy Ross Agency); Patricia Nelson (Marsal Lyon Literary); Chiara Rosati (Veritas Literary Agency); and Lisa Abellera (Kimberley Cameron Literary Agency).
Chesapeake Writing Workshop, September 10, 2016, Washington DC. A full-day “How to Get Published” workshop. Attending agents: Adriann Ranta (Foundry Literary); Anna Sproul-Latimer (Ross Yoon Literary); Caitie Flum (Liza Dawson Associates); Rachel Marks (Rebecca Friedman Literary); Stacey Graham (Red Sofa Literary); Eric Smith (P.S. Literary); Kelly Peterson (Corvisiero Literary); Rachel Burkot (Holloway Literary); Maria Ribas (Stonesong); and possibly more to be announced.
Slice Literary Writers’ Conference. Sept 10–11, 2016, Brooklyn, NY. Craft workshops, panels, and one-on-one agent meetings for poets, fiction writers, and nonfiction writers. Panelists include: Noah Ballard, Agent, Curtis Brown, Ltd.; Andrea Barzvi, Agent, Empire Literary; Sarah Bowlin, Senior Editor, Henry Holt & Co.; Kim Brooks, Personal Essays Editor, Salon.com; Michelle Brower, Agent, Kuhn Projects; Julie Buntin, Editor, Catapult; Matthew Daddona, Associate Editor, Dey Street/HarperCollins; Stephanie Delman, Agent, Sanford J. Greenburger Associates; Marjorie DeWitt, Editor, Other Press; Jenni Ferrari-Adler, Agent, Union Literary; Michele Filgate, Essayist, Critic & Freelance Writer; Katie Freeman, Associate Director of Publicity, Riverhead/Penguin Random House; Erin Harris, Agent, Folio Literary Management; Bronwen Hruska, Publisher, Soho Press, Author, Accelerated; Brigid Hughes, Editor, A Public Space; Meredith Kaffel Simonoff, Agent, DeFiore & Company; Kirby Kim, Agent, Janklow & Nesbit; Jeff Kleinman, Agent/Founding Partner, Folio Literary Management; Maris Kreizman, Publishing Outreach Lead, Kickstarter; Tiffany Liao, Associate Editor, Razorbill/Penguin Random House; Paul Lucas, Agent, Janklow & Nesbit; Halimah Marcus, Editorial Director, Electric Literature; Paul Morris, Director of Literary Programs, PEN American Center; Andrea Morrison, Agent, Writers House; Monica Odom, Agent, Bradford Literary Agency; Miriam Parker, Associate Publisher, Ecco/HarperCollins; Kim Perel, Agent, Irene Goodman Literary Agency; Karen Russell, Author, Swamplandia!; Elissa Schappell, Founding Editor, Tin House, Author, Blueprints for Building Better Girls; Alex Slater, Agent, Trident Media Group; Sarah Smith, Agent, David Black Literary Agency; Rob Spillman, Editor, Tin House, Author, All Tomorrow’s Parties; Anna Stein, Agent, ICM; Sara Weiss, Editor, Ballantine/Penguin Random House.
The Craft and Heart of Writing Poetry for Children. Sept 11–15, 2016, Honesdale, Pennsylvania. “This workshop will offer plenty of interaction, direction, and free creative writing time. We’ll focus on all elements of poetry, from the importance of word choice to surprising metaphors. There will be plenty of writing exercises to inspire new poems followed by group discussions. As a group, we’ll brainstorm ideas, share our writing process, and generate original poems. You’ll be inspired to create new poems or bring works in progress to polish.” Featured Writers Include: Rebecca Kai Dotlich, Georgia Heard, Rebecca Davis.
Brooklyn Book Festival, September 12–18, 2016, Brooklyn, NY. Readings, panels, workshops, and a book fair. Participants include Margaret Atwood, Sherman Alexie, Ken Bruen, Margo Jefferson, Alexander Chee, Faith Erin Hicks, Russell Banks, Phoebe Gloeckner, Chester Brown, Salman Rushdie, Libba Bray, Stephanie Danler, Álvaro Enrigue, Gayle Forman, Pete Hamill, Jacqueline Woodson, Fred Kaplan, Karin Slaughter, Rebecca Traister, Marjorie Liu, Sayed Kashua, Joyce Carol Oates, A.O. Scott, Hua Hsu, Rob Sheffield, Yoss, Jessica Valenti, Cecily von Ziegesar, Ocean Vuong and hundreds more! All events are free and open to the public.
Surprise Valley Writers’ Conference. September 14–18, 2016, Cedarville, California. Features workshops in poetry, fiction, and creative nonfiction, as well as craft lectures, readings, open mics, and a Book Arts workshop. The faculty includes poet Julia Connor, fiction writer Christopher Coake, and nonfiction writer Ana Maria Spagna. Tuition is $525. Application Deadline: June 1, 2016.
Hampton Roads Writers Eighth Annual Writers’ Conference. Sept 15–17, 2016, Virginia Beach, Virginia. 1 evening plus 2 full days of workshops, 2 best-selling keynoters, 2 first ten-lines critique sessions, 50 workshops during 10 breakout sessions, ten-minute agent pitches, NO-FEE, cash-prize contests for short fiction, short non-fiction, and poetry, FREE 90-minute networking social with food and drink, and evening 2-hr open mic session. Optional conference features include: first 10-pages manuscript review. Workshops cover fiction, nonfiction, memoir, poetry, screenwriting, and the business of getting published. A book shop, book signings, and many networking opportunities will be available.
Florida Heritage Book Festival & Writers Conference. Sept 15–17, 2016, St. Augustine, Florida. Among this year’s scheduled authors are Lisa Black, Scott Eyman, John Dfresne, Mary Kay Andrews, Connie Mae Fowler, Jon Jefferson, and many more.
Kentucky Women Writers Conference, Sept. 16–17, 2016, 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. Application Deadline: August 12, 2016.
Casper College and ARTCORE Literary Conference. Sept 22–23, 2016, Casper, WY. Guest authors Linda Hogan, Doug Peacock, Mark Spragg, Dr. Joseph Campbell, & Julia Whyde.
New York Pitch Conference. Sept 22–25, 2016, 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.
Environmental Writing Institute. Sept 22–25, 2016, Missoula, Montana. Limited to 10 participants, features three half-day workshops and individual conferences with creative nonfiction writer Seth Kantner, as well as time to write. Tuition is $500, which includes some meals. Lodging is available at area hotels and inns. Submit an application, a writing sample of 2,000 to 4,000 words, and a one-page résumé or bio. Deadline: August 1.
A Weekend For Words. Sept 22–25, 2016, Irvine, CA. 60+ working, professional authors of fiction, nonfiction & screen, editors & agents. Costs$325-$425. Manuscript critique & one-on-one consultation additional.
North Coast Redwoods Writers’ Conference. Sept 23–24, 2016, Crescent City, CA. Workshops on writing, poetry, memoir, editing, social media, marketing, fiction, submitting.
Ridgefield Writers Conference. Sept 23–24, 2016, Ridgefield, CT . Faculty-led workshops; agent, editor and publisher panels; networking; readings; and post-conference resources.
Chicago Writers Conference. September 23–25, 2016, Chicago, Ill. Join other writers, editors, publishers and agents for a weekend of learning and fun! Panels, pitch sessions, and educational talks, along with a Friday night kick-off party. Sessions on publishing, self-publishing, how to pitch, craft of YA, meet the publishers, websites, nonfiction, and many more.
LiTFUSE Poets’ Workshop. September 23–25, 2016, Tieton, WA. Faculty includes Ilya Kaminsky, Susan Rich, Kelli Russell Agodon, Thomas Lux, Laura Read, and more.
Colrain Poetry Manuscript Conference. September 23–26, 2016, Whidbey Island, WA. Evaluation and discussion of book-length and chapbook-length manuscripts with poets, editors, and publishers. will meet and work with nationally known poets, publishers, and editors. Faculty includes: Rusty Morrison (Co-founder/Publisher Omnidawn Press); Fred Marchant (Professor Emeritus, Suffolk University); Jeff Shotts (Executive Editor, Graywolf Press); and Joan Houlihan (Conference Founder / Lesley University).
The Pacific Northwest Workshop & Retreat. Sept 23–25, 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 Peter Knapp, agent at Park Literary, and Kate Farrell, Senior Editor at Henry Holt Books for Young Readers.FILLED.
Tallahassee Writers Conference. Sept 24, 2016, Tallahassee, Florida. “Whether you are a beginner or an advanced writer of poetry, fiction, or nonfiction, you will have the opportunity to mix and mingle with other writers, editors, agents, cover designers, publishers and more!”
10th Annual Chattahoochee Valley Writers Conference. Sept 24, 2016, Columbus, GA, “Whether you write prose or poetry you can explore capturing thoughts, observations, and reflections with the written word. The sessions will be criticism free. You will be exposed to various writers and their styles, and work on editing, polishing and expanding writings into something that is reflective of your personality and talents. You should leave with a piece of original work and a sense of writing as an avenue to discovering self.”
Rom Com: Reader Weekend/University. September 29 — Oct 1, Denver, Colorado. 60+ Authors of all genres of romance — Contemporary, Erotic, Historical, Inspirational, Sci-Fi, Paranormal, & Suspense. 20 Author-led games and events- Interact with authors. 10+ Intimate Chats.
Write on the Sound Writers’ Conference and Pre-Conference. Sep 30 — Oct 2, 2016, Edmonds, WA. Faculty for 2016 includes: Margie Lawson, John Moe, Stella Pope Duarte, Tod Marshall, Meg Files, James Thayer, Bharti Kirchner, and more.
Creatures, Crimes & Creativity. September 30 — Oct 2, 2016, Columbia, MD. A writer’s and fan’s conference for genre fiction covering mystery, suspense, thriller, sci-fi, fantasy, steampunk & horror.
Northern Woodlands Writers & Readers Conference. September 30 — Oct 2, 2016, Fairlee, Vermont. Sponsored by The Trust for Public Land, the conference explores how writers, artists and educators express the rich forest heritage of the Northeast: both the natural history of our region, and the interactions of people and place. The event will include writing workshops, readings, a nature illustration class, special workshops for educators, woods walks, fun talks on forest topics, and plenty of time for informal conversations over meals and around the campfire. Plenary Speakers: Rick Bass, Todd Katzner, Jeffrey Lent, & Susan Morse. Keynote speaker: Richard Ober. Also: Robert Kimber, Adelaide Tyrol, Ted Levin, Verandah Porche, Eric Hanson, Jim Collins, Michael Caduto, Jay Heinrich, Terry Osborne & many others.
State Writing Conference & Convention, sponsored by The Kansas Authors Club, Sept. 30-Oct. 2, 2016, Topeka, Kansas. Writing workshops, panels, and presentations by James Gunn, Chad Lawhorn, Edna Bell-Pearson, Danny Close, Michael D. Graves, Nancy Richard, Warren Lane, and many more.
SF:SE 2016. Dates TBA, Orlando, FL. Focus: Speculative fiction. Workshops, panels and editor one-on-ones, together with convention debauchery like werewolf LARPing, masquerade balls and a tattoo gallery. All events to be shared with authorial greats like Orson Scott Card, Jacqueline Carey, Peter V. Brett, Kelley Armstrong, and industry icons. (Note: There is no information on this conference.)
Originally published at publishedtodeath.blogspot.com on August 23, 2016.
About the author: Erica Verrillo has published five books, four with major publishers and one on her own. She blogs about the publishing world, posts useful tips on how to get an agent, lists agents who are looking for clients as well as publishers accepting manuscripts directly from writers, explains how to market and promote your work, how to build your online platform, how to get reviews, how to self-publish, and where to find markets for your work on Publishing … and Other Forms of Insanity.