Welcome to Willamette Writers

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Writers at all levels come to Willamette Writers to connect with their communities, develop their craft, and advance their careers.
Join us today to take advantage of membership benefits and to support writers in the Pacific Northwest!

Conference Registration Now Open!

Join Us at the Willamette Writers Conference - August 3-5

At our 49th annual conference we'll be Celebrating Diverse Voices in Writing with three full days of classes, workshops, keynotes, critiques, and events. We invite you to join us for a weekend of community as you develop your craft and expand your career on August 3rd-5th in Portland, Oregon at the Airport Sheraton Hotel.

This year, we added a very special offering of Master Classes with industry professionals in which you can learn from top instructors in a small group setting. We're also offering many options for one on one critique, including On the Spot Critiques and Advance Manuscript Critique. As always, we'll have a roster of agents, editors and film executives ready to hear about your project. Plus, we'll have our amazing community of PNW writers that you just can't find anywhere else. Join us!

2018 Award Winners

Congratulations Willamette Writers 2018 Annual Award Winners!

We are pleased to congratulate our esteemed Willamette Writers 2018 Award winners:

Chelsea Cain: Distinguished Northwest Writer

Gayle Brandeis: Multi-Genre Maverick

Ellen Urbani: New and Notable

Congratulations, Chelsea Cain, Gayle Brandeis, and Ellen Urbani! Please join us at the 2018 Willamette Writers Conference to celebrate these amazing writers -- for their work, their wisdom, and their contributions to the craft.

wilwrite18 Award Winners

Member News

Eric Witchey Wins Award

New Fantasy Genre—the Afterlife Fantasy—Is Born 2018 IPPY Book Awards Silver Medal – Fantasy Fiction 2018 International Book Awards Winner – Visionary Fiction Finalist – Fantasy Fiction Finalist – Cross-Genre Fiction Finalist – Best New Fiction In her quest for respect, a young grim reaper consumed with pride ventures beyond the boundaries of human-based dogma to…

The Family Stone

Before the supermarket boom, there were corner markets that predominated neighborhoods where most people did their grocery shopping. These corner markets sold all of your food staples and much, much more. They were convenient, hospitable, and served as a neighborhood junction for the exchange of ideas, beliefs and gossip in much the same way as…

Loving Lindsey: Raising a Daughter with Special Needs Wins International Book Award

“Loving Lindsey: Raising a Daughter with Special Needs,” by Linda Atwell, was selected as a Finalist in the 2018 International Best Book Awards in the category of Parenting & Family. This is the 5th award for “Loving Lindsey.” Find out more

Finding the Source: Research Strategies for Historical and Literary Fiction

“Finding the Source: Research Strategies for Historical and Literary Fiction” with Jennifer Springsteen, Kim Taylor Blakemore, and Joe Springsteen Sunday, June 10 from 3pm to 5pm at TaborSpace’s Muir Hall Research creates authenticity in your manuscript. It insures your heroine doesn’t go riding down the cobblestone streets when the streets in that part of the city were…

Member News: Shaun Radecki Wins Award

Willamette Writers member and FilmLab alum, Shaun Radecki, won Best Genre Short in the Academy Award-qualifying Nashville Film Festival’s Screenwriting Competition for his short screenplay Sergio: A Scorpion’s Tale. 

Member News: Jacqueline Lindenfeld’s novel published

This contemporary novel by Jacqueline Lindenfeld (a Willamette Writers member) has just been released bythe publisher. It is a work of fiction with historical flashbacks on the French Canadians who were the first permanent settlers in northwestern Oregon in the early 19th century. The author, a French American writer, published a first novel in France.…

Member News: Paul Fattig Published MADSTONE

“Madstone,” a true tale about two World War I and conscientious objectors who retreated to the southwest Oregon mountains to avoid the military draft, has just been published by Hellgate Press of Ashland. Written by Paul Fattig, a retired journalist, the book captures the trials and tribulations faced by the two men and brings to…

Member News: Cynthia Pappas Published homespun

Cynthia Pappas has published “homespun”, a collection of essays about the simple fabric of life, including gardening, parenting, sewing, empty-nesting, friendship and learning to farm. “Pappas’ stories will warm your heart… make you laugh and cry, and leave you wondering how one person can have the zest and courage to delve so deeply into so…

Member News: Sharleen Nelson Published THE TIME TOURISTS 

The Time Tourists, a new novel by Sharleen Nelson, is a rollicking adventure featuring a strong female heroine with a very special ability–she can travel into photos from the past! Follow her as she bops around time solving hippie-era mysteries, flirts in the button-up turn-of-the-century (not the recent one), and juggles a boyfriend, cat, and…

Member News: Crooked Grow the Trees by Carmel Hanes

Carmel Hanes announces the release of Crooked Grow the Trees. Congratulations, Carmel! Here is the announcement: • Mass shootings • Prisons and detention centers at capacity • Students expelled in elementary school • Adults polarized in contentious ideological debates How did we get here? As a school psychologist I worked for over thirty years in…

On Writing from Willamette Writers

Ten Tips for Writing an Effective Pitch

By Willamette Writers

By Alyssa Schaffer and Joanna Szabo Pitching your manuscript can be one of the more intimidating aspects of the writing process, so we’ve collected a few essential tips to help you prepare your next pitch. Start with a hook. This…

What Agents Want – Tips from Meeting with Literary Agent Laura Bradford

By Jennifer Zaczek

At the April 4 Willamette Writers meeting, attendees got to hear from Laura Bradford, founder of Bradford Literary Agency, about what agents look for in writers. Here are some key takeaways from the presentation. Are You Someone Agents Want to…

Turn Bad Writing Days into Good Ones

Turn Bad Writing Days into Good Ones

By Amy Foster Myer

The November 7th meeting of Willamette Writers brought William Kenower, teacher of the Fearless Writing Series, to the Old Church to share his perspectives for building up a strong writing life while keeping the topics that interest and engage us…

C. Lill Ahrens Tightens Writing

C. Lill Ahrens’ Tighty Writey Game

By Willamette Writers

by C. Lill Ahrens The old saying, “Can’t see the forest for the trees” can be a metaphor for wordy writing. Too many extra words obscure the view of your story. In contrast to “cutting,” (the deletion of an entire…

Author Marketing – Notes from WW Portland Meeting with Tex Thompson

By Amy Foster Myer

The June 6th Willamette Writers meeting was a wonderful time to be in community with one of my very favorite presenters from last year’s conference, Tex Thompson. The presentation focused on how writers can promote and market themselves, a topic…

Jessica Morrell Meeting Notes 2017 04 Willamette Writers PDX

Why Characters Do What They Do – Notes from WW Portland Meeting with Jessica Morrell

By Amy Foster Myer

This contributed piece brings notes from Willamette Writers Portland’s April 4th, 2017 Meeting with author and editor Jessica Morrell by member Amy Foster Myer. Enjoy! Having seen Jessica Morell present at the 2016 Willamette Writers Conference, I can tell you she…

Join a Meeting or a Workshop Near You

All Writers Welcome! Members & Full-Time Students Attend for Free!

Corvallis: Open Mic

June 25 @ 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
You wrote it… You sweated over it… Now read it aloud… at Willamette Writers on the River Open Mic Reading! Writers of all kinds have the opportunity to engage in one of the most impo...

Corvallis: Reading in public with Mo Daviau

July 23 @ 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
How to Read Prose in Public and Still Make Friends Let’s face it: literary prose can be kind of rough when you take it off the page and onto the stage. Mo Daviau, a veteran improv comedian as we...

Our News

Ten Tips for Writing an Effective Pitch

By Alyssa Schaffer and Joanna Szabo Pitching your manuscript can be one of the more intimidating aspects of the writing process, so we’ve collected a few essential tips to help you prepare your next pitch. Start with a hook. This should be one or two lines covering the most exciting thing about your book. However,…

Open Mic Night at the Willamette Writers Conference

Open Mic night started at the Willamette Writers Conference in 2013, when I mentioned to the conference chair that I attended a really fun Open Mic Night at another writing conference. This launched us into a talk about how we could make one for Willamette Writers and how we could make it even better than…

What’s New at the Willamette Writers Conference

Welcome to our 2018 Conference! This year, our theme for The Best Three Days in Writing is “Celebrating Diverse Voices in Writing.” The whole team is really looking forward to what we’ve got in store for you all this August 3rd -5th. As you know, the conference has grown and changed much over its 49-year…

Willamette Writers is Sponsoring Write to Publish

We are delighted to contribute to this year’s Write to Publish conference with Ooligan Press to help writers, agents, and publishers alike get more familiar the ins and outs of the industry! What: A one-day conference demystifying the publishing industry When: April 21, 2018 9:00 am – 6:00 pm Where: George C. Hoffmann Hall 1833…

Randall Jahnson and FiLMLaB Screenwriting Workshop

Screenwriting Workshop Willamette Writers and FiLMLaB invite you to join us for an online screenwriting workshop with Randall Jahnson. Details Date: Saturday, April 21st Time: 12-2PM Cost: Free Open to the public This is an online workshop Click here to register. About Randall Jahnson Randall Jahnson has written more than 20 feature-length screenplays. Not all…

Help Support Young Writers

What a wonderful year. We started out with our chapter meetings across the state, joined together at our annual conference, and finished the year with a closer — and much larger — community of support and friendship. Every day, Willamette Writers members are developing their craft and expanding their careers. Today, we ask you to…

Share your Thanksgiving stories with us!

Happy Thanksgiving, Willamette Writers! Every year, we gather around the dining room table to eat delicious food and share stories with our family and friends. These stories matter; they sustain us when we are apart and connect us to each other across the miles. Today, let’s share our stories of joy and thankfulness. Let’s move…

FiLMLaB Adds Showrunner for its Web Series Project: FiLMLaB.tv

Willamette Writers and FiLMLaB are thrilled to announce that veteran network television writer and producer F.J. Pratt has agreed to helm this year’s program, an Episodic Storytelling LaB: FiLMLaB.tv! About FiLMLaB.tv Showrunner F.J. Pratt F.J. Pratt has been a television comedy writer for twenty-five years, starting on the writing staff for network shows including “Frasier,”…

Willamette Writers at Wordstock this weekend with David D. Levine

Willamette Writers Celebrate Wordstock with David D. Levine! Thousands of book lovers are expected to fill Portland’s park blocks for this year’s Wordstock: Portland’s Book Festival on November 11th at the Portland Art Museum. They will revel in seeing the more than 100 authors who have come to present workshops, give readings and sign books.…

Join us for a meeting or write-in in November!

Happy November! We have a great month ahead of us at Willamette Writers. We’re kicking off the month talking about memoir in Eugene, and then Patricia Morrison will show us how to finish our projects. We will explore Fearless Writing in Portland with William Kenower, and also dive into improv with Marian Scadden. David Paul…