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Writing Workshops and Conferences 2020: Early Registration

Whether a one day session, one week conference, or a month-long writing workshop writing related events are a good way to commune with other writers. They are opportunities to network and get your name out there. In some instances, you can meet and mingle with editors and agents. Some offer critiques or pitching sessions. Nowhere will you find a higher concentration of introverts enjoying each other's company.

Local conferences are a good place to meet potential critique groups or recruit members.

Some are free. Some require a fee. Some are more social than others. Many are for new writers, but a few dig deep into craft. You should choose an event that speaks to your needs and desires.

The following is a list of conferences that require early registration or application.


May 9-16, 2020 Longleaf Writers' Conference, Seaside, Florida. Application due by January 10, 2020.

March 21-22, 2020 Chicago Writers Association Conference, Chicago, Illinois. Must register before February for housing at the hotel.

April 17-19, 2020 Pikes Peak Writers Conference is at the DoubleTree by Hilton Colorado Springs, CO 80906. Registration begins November 2019.

May 28- June 1, 2020 Bear River Writers' Conference, Boyne City, Michigan. Registration will be open for a period of 48 hours starting February 3, 2020 at 9:00 am.. Once the 48-hour window has ended, registrants will be chosen by a random lottery system and notified via email.

June 1 - July 10, 2020 Odyssey Fantasy Writing Workshop, Saint Anselm College, Manchester, New Hampshire. Early action application deadline is January 31, 2020. Regular application deadline is April 1, 2020.

June 8–14, 2020  VCFA Novel Retreat, Vermont College of Fine Arts, Montpelier, Vermont. Registration begins November 2019.

July 19-August 1, 2020 Kenyon Review Young Writers Workshop, Kenyon College, Gambier, Ohio. Applications are due by March 1. 2020.

June 21-27 2020 Colgate Writers’ Conference, Hamilton, New York. Registration deadline is March 2020.

June 22-28, 2020 Minnesota Northwoods Writers Conference, Bemidji State University, Minnesota. Registration begins January 2020.

June 25 - 27, 2020 The 27th Jackson Hole Writers Conference, Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Registration begins November 29, 2019.

June 28-July 11, 2020 Kenyon Review Young Writers Workshop, Kenyon College, Gambier, Ohio
Applications are due by March 1. 2020

July 6-13, 2020 Squaw Valley Writer's Conference, Squaw Valley, California. Application deadline March 2020.

July 16-18, 2020 Realm Makers Conference, Atlantic City, New Jersey. Registration begins February 2020.

July 19 - 26, 2020 Juniper Institute for Young Writers, Amherst, Massachusetts. It is for high school students finishing grades 9, 10, or 11. Registration begins October 2019.

July 30 - August 1, 2020 Mendocino Coast Publishing Boot Camp is in Mendocino, California. Registration begins March 1, 2020.

July 30 - August 2, 2020 GenCon Gaming Convention is at the Indiana Convention Center, Indianapolis, Indiana. Registration begins January 26, 2020, housing registration begins February 1, 2020.

August 10–16, 2020 Postgraduate Writers' Conference,  Vermont College of Fine Arts, Montpelier, Vermont. Registration Begins 1/16/2020.

Bread Loaf Writers' Conference is August 12 - 22, 2020 in Middlebury, Vermont. Registration begins January 1, 2020.

August 20 - 23, 2020 Killer Nashville, Franklin, Tennessee. Registration starts January 1, 2020.

October 15-18, 2020  Boucheron World Mystery Convention, Sacramento, California. Registration begins January 1, 2020.

October 23-25 2020  Surry International Writers Conference, Surry, British Columbia, Canada. Registration begins June 1, 2020.

November 13-15, 2020 Kauai Writers Conference Kauai. Registration begins January 1, 2020

Diana Hurwitz is the author of Story Building Blocks: The Four Layers of Conflict, Story Building Blocks II: Crafting Believable Conflict, Story Building Blocks III: The Revision Layers, and the YA adventure series Mythikas Island. Her weekly blog, Game On: Crafting Believable Conflict explores how characters behave and misbehave. Visit for more information and free writing tools. You can follow her on Facebook and Twitter.