Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Conferences for Writers in 2015

Conferences for Writers in 2015
By Brad R Cook

One of the best places to learn about the craft and business of writing is at a writer’s conference. Below, I have listed a few being held this year.

A couple of suggestions:
Research the conference to see what workshops they are having and who is presenting. I’ve tried to include the websites for each conference.

Go where the professionals are. Conferences can be a great place to meet literary agents and publishers. However, if you’re looking to improve your craft then research the instructors.

Choose a conference you want to go to, don’t feel pressured, there are all kinds of different conferences and each one is different. So find the one that speaks to you.

Get the most out of the conference. Sign up for the extras if you want, but you don’t have too. If you can stay for the whole conference, do.

Talk to people. Find out what conferences other writers are attending. Make sure to network with attendees before, during, and after the conference.

Looking for advice on how to pick a conference? Check out Chuck Sambuchino’s blog:

Let’s start with the big ones – If you want to go to the super bowl of pitching visit the Pitch Slam at the Writer’s Digest Conference.

Writer’s Digest Conference East 2015

Need some mystery in your life… or just a mystery writer?

Killer Nashville Writers’ Conference
October 29-November 1, 2015
At the Omni Hotel in downtown Nashville, TN

Bouchercon 2015
Raleigh, North Carolina - October 8-11, 2015

Looking for a little romance… or maybe just romance writers.

RWA 2015 – The Romance Writers of America
Romance Writers of America® 35th Annual Conference
New York Marriott Marquis, New York, New York
July 22–25, 2015

RT 2015 – Romantic Times annual conference
Dallas, Texas – May 12-17

Writing books for kids, check out the Society for Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators.

SCBWI National Conference 2015
New York City – Feb 6-8 2015

SCBWI Regional Conferences
Check their website for a region near you.  

A lover of historical fiction then you might stop by the HNS International Conference.

Historical Novel Society
June 25-28 2015 in Denver, Colorado

Here are some great regional conferences, less price, smaller crowds, but you still get great authors, publishers, and agents.

Kentucky Writing Conference
Feb. 6, 2015: Kentucky Writing Conference (Louisville, KY)

Tennessee Writers Conference
Feb. 7, 2015: Tennessee Writers Conference (Nashville, TN)

Portland Writing Workshop
Feb. 20, 2015: Portland Writing Workshop (Portland, OR)

Seattle Writers Workshop
Feb. 21, 2015: Seattle Writers Workshop (Seattle, WA)

Chesapeake Writing Conference
March 27-28, 2015: Chesapeake Writing Conferences (Baltimore and DC)

Carolina Writing Workshop Conferences
April 17-18, 2015: CarolinaWriting Workshop Conferences (Charlotte, NC and Columbia, SC)

Milwaukee Writers Conference
May 15, 2015: Milwaukee Writers Conference (Milwaukee, WI)

Chicago Writers Workshop
May 16, 2015: Chicago Writers Workshop (Chicago, IL)

Jackson Hole Writers Conference
June 25-28, 2015: Jackson Hole Writers Conference (Jackson Hole, WY)

Books by the Banks Book Festival
October 2015: Books by the Banks Book Festival (Cincinnati, OH)

Are you in St. Louis or Missouri? Check out these regional conferences:

Writers in the Park 2015
The sixth annual festival of the writer
August 2015 in St. Louis, Missouri

All Write Now Conference
Saturday, July 11, 2015
Southeast Missouri State University, Cape Girardeau, Missouri

Penned Con
July 23-25, 2015
St. Louis, Missouri

There are more, so many more conferences to check out.
I recommend checking Shaw Guides at

Do you have a favorite conference? Let us know in the comments. 


  1. Very good advice! Different conferences for different needs and likes. I enjoy the smallish Ozarks Creative Writers Conference held annually in October, in Eureka Springs AR. It's not always polished and shiny, but it is friendly, inclusive, and chock full of useful sessions. There are open mics, a jam session, tons of contests, as well as approachable agents and professional guidance. It is three days but schedule at least one extra day to visit the unique village and area. Also very affordable.

  2. I highly recommend the Antioch Writers' Workshop in Yellow Springs, Ohio - great faculty for how-to-write sessions, intense workshop groups, and wonderful faculty readings/ agents/publishers to pitch to.

    Yes, I'm slightly biased since I'm Assistant Director, but I'm also a six-time alum!

  3. The Kauai Writers Conference, May 1-3, 2015, is a wonderful event in beautiful Kauai. We have an amazing faculty, focusing on fiction and memoir, with an emphasis on craft. We also have wonderful literary agents and editors with supportive and personalized opportunities to pitch and to receive critique. And there's plenty of information on the pathways to publishing. Full disclosure: I'm the conference director.