Conferences/Retreats

Writing Conferences and Retreats

Click here for an extensive list of writing conferences and retreats around the state and the country.

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Virtual Sonoma County Writers Camp

July 28–August 1, 2021
Facilitators: Ellen Sussman and Elizabeth Stark
On Zoom!

Cost: $995

Theme: Your First Four Pages

You pick up a book, read the jacket copy, and crack it open. You take in the first line, and then—maybe—the second. If it pulls you in, raises questions, gives you a voice that hooks you, you keep reading. By the end of four pages, you’re in love or you’ve left the store (virtual or otherwise) empty-handed. Your opening pages do a lot of heavy lifting. How do you start your story (novel, memoir, short)? When? Do you throw your reader into the deep end of the pond or take their hand and show them around? Do you start when everything begins to change or after or before? What makes an opening irresistible?

This will be an unusual version of Sonoma County Writers Camp, because we will both run critique workshops. You will each work with both teachers; your own submission will be arbitrarily assigned to one of us. Through a deep-dive into story, novel and memoir openings, we will glean insights into what works when, and why. We will craft our openings into stories readers—agents, editors, and bookworms—can’t put down.

For more information: click here: https://sonomacountywriterscamp.com

Breaking News: We will have an in-person camp in October! Save the dates: October 18-22. We’ll soon announce a new retreat site and our next theme!

How to register for July Virtual Camp: Email office@sonomacountywriterscamp.com. We’ll ask for a non-refundable deposit of $495. The balance ($500) will be due on June 28. Or you can pay in full at once. Details about how to pay when you register.

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Napa Valley Writers Conference

August 1-6, 2021

Workshops, craft talks, and readings with acclaimed poets, fiction writers, & translators. For the conference’s 40th anniversary
, they are moving forward with plans for an in-person conference in 2021, contingent on their ability to host a safe event.

2021 Faculty:
Poetry: Victoria Chang, Brenda Hillmanm, Gillian Conoley
Fiction: Charles Baxter, Lan Samantha Chang, Daniel Orozco, Joan Silber
Translation: Robert Hass

Cost: $1,100
Applications for the 2021 Napa Valley Writers’ Conference have closed, except for Poetry in Translation, but the wait list may re-open. Details at: www.napawritersconference.org

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Mendocino Coast Writers’ Conference

August 5-7, 2021, online

MCWC features intensive workshops over the three days of the conference, followed by afternoons packed with open mics, craft seminars, and agent panels, including pitch panels and our popular Blind Critique panel. Evenings feature faculty readings, which are also open to the public.

2021 workshop faculty include Lillian Li (Novel), Chris Dennis (Short Fiction), Alaya Dawn Johnson (Speculative Fiction), Alex Sanchez (MG/YA), Saretta Morgan (Poetry), Krys Malcolm Belc (Memoir), Suzanne Rivecca (Nonfiction), and Sam Krowchenko (Emerging Writers). Wendy C. Ortiz is the featured keynote speaker, and agents Elise Capron from Sandra Dijkstra Literary Agency and Tricia Skinner from Fuse Literary will join as well.

There are still spots available in our workshops (though novel and speculative fiction are full). Registration is open until June 30th, and there is no application required to register. This year offers a unique opportunity to experience MCWC from the comfort of your home, with all the same valuable content offered at a discounted price of $475. Feel free to email info@mcwc.org with any registration questions.

Details at: https://mcwc.org

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Sonoma County Writers Camp

October 18 – 22, 2021
at Bishop’s Ranch in Healdsburg, CA
Topic: Your First Four Pages

You pick up a book, read the jacket copy, and crack it open. You take in the first line, and then—maybe —the second. If it pulls you in, raises questions, gives you a voice that hooks you, you keep reading. By the end of four pages, you’re in love or you’ve left the store (virtual or otherwise) empty-handed. Your opening pages do a lot of heavy lifting. How do you start your story (novel, memoir, short)? When? Do you throw your reader into the deep end of the pond or take their hand and show them around? Do you start when everything begins to change or after or before? What makes an opening irresistible?

This will be an unusual version of Sonoma County Writers Camp, because we will both run critique workshops. You will each work with both teachers; your own submission will be arbitrarily assigned to one of us. Through a deep dive into story, novel, and memoir openings, we will glean insights into what works when, and why. We will craft our openings into stories readers—agents, editors, and bookworms—can’t put down.

COST:
$1995 double room
VACCINATION REQUIRED

To enroll, email office@sonomacountywriterscamp.com

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