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!

Congratulations to FiLMLaBtv's 2019 Writers' Room!

The 2019 winning script is "Stripes," written by Alexandra Keister. "Stripes," explores the idea that not all family issues are black and white -- even in a family of mimes.

FiLMLaBtv will bring Keister’s script into the Writers’ Room with runner-up, Jason Rosenblatt, and these talented screenwriters (in alphabetical order): Mary Andonian, Ashley Blincow, Amy Fredericks, Nancy Froeschle, Tim Johnson, Lindiwe Mueller-Westernhagen, Britt Olson and Dale Winton.

Find out more about this year's Writers' Room here, and follow their progress.

Congratulations to the 2019 FiLMLaBtv Writers’ Room!

FiLMLaBtv winners

Join the Willamette Writers Conference - August 2-4, 2019

Our 50th annual conference (50!!!) will be a BLAST! 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 2nd-4th, 2019 in Portland, Oregon at the Airport Sheraton Hotel.

After a successful launch of our Master Classes with industry professionals at our 2018 conference, we are doing it again in 2019. Early registrations get first pick of our Master Class offerings in early March!

We'll also be 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, if you register now, you'll find your seat with our pitch pros first. It is going to be an amazing weekend! See you in August!

Member News

Member News: Steven Mayfield signs with Regal House Publishing

Treasure of the Blue Whale, a novel by Steven Mayfield, will be published by Regal House as part of their spring 2020 list. Mayfield is the author of Howling at the Moon, a 2010 Best Books selection by USA Book News. Find out more.

Member News: OPA Spring Poetry Contest Open

Deadline for submitting electronically and postmarked by March 1, 2019. Find out more

Member News: Stories about Willamette Falls

Dede Montgomery, author of “My Music Man,” was filmed by the Willamette Falls Legacy Project in stories about Willamette Falls at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jdri5L9pi4M&t=42sDede will share her memoir on Oregon’s February 14 birthday at our Oregon State Capitol, and at the End of the Trail Interpretive Center on March 2. Her Capitol talk and slides will be…

Member News: PDX Writers Winter Workshops

We’ve planned some workshops that will spark excitement and give you fresh eyes as you return to your previous project. Our Elements of Fiction and Critique workshops will give you new insights and inspiration. The Historical Fiction workshop offers prompts, structural support, and facilitator critique. Still stuck on structure? Hammer & Nails is a one-on-one…

Member News: Story of an Unlikely Writer

Philip Kenney’s short essay, “The Story of an Unlikely Writer,” was recently published in the Author Magazine of The Pacific Northwest Writer’s Association. Philip didn’t begin writing until the age of 45. This piece tells the remarkable story of that beginning following a bout with depression and a trial run with Prozac. Read about how…


RALEIGH, NORTH CAROLINA. December, 2018 Regal House Publishing is pleased to announce the March 15, 2019 release of La Luministe: Berthe Morisot, Painter of Light, about the artist who survived the siege of Paris—and the love of Édouard Manet—to become the sole female founder of the Impressionist movement. If Frida Kahlo was “a ribbon around…

Member News: Scholarship for Writers to Attend AWP 2019

This year, RACC has scholarships to award to 45 writers based in Clackamas, Multnomah, and Washington Counties for the 2019 Association of Writers and Writing Programs (AWP) Conference and Bookfair at the Oregon Convention Center from March 27-30th. AWP is the largest literary conference for writers, teachers, students, editors, and publishers across North America, featuring…

Willamette Writers Author Signing: Teresa Klepinger

Teresa Klepinger will be signing books at booth 39 at the Portland Book Festival on November 10th. Teresa Klepinger believes a dose of imagination can improve just about anything. Her love of storytelling began with “Genie” bedtime stories told by her father, continued through years of teaching elementary school, and stays close to her heart…

Willamette Writers Author Signing: C. LaVielle

C. LaVielle will be signing books at booth 39 at the Portland Book Festival on November 10th. I began my grown-up life as a biologist because I was, and still am, fascinated by people, plants, and animals and what makes them tick. I became a wife, a mother, and a healer specializing in tarot divination,…

Willamette Writers Author Signing: Rosemary Douglas Lombard

Rosemary Douglas Lombard will be signing books at booth 39 at the Portland Book Festival on November 10th. Rosemary Lombard, former university teacher, editor, and naturalist, now independent interdisciplinary researcher in animal cognition, brings to her writing decades of surprise and delight exploring turtles’ cognitive potential. Award winner in creative nonfiction and poetry, she has…

On Writing from Willamette Writers

Hollywood is Looking For Your Book

By Maren Anderson

by Maren Bradley Anderson I am pitching my novels at the Willamette Writers Conference this year, but maybe not to the people you expect. I am pitching to literary agents and editors, of course, but I’m also pitching many projects…

Willamette Writers Conference Networking Opportunities

By Benjamin Gorman

So you’re planning on going to the Willamette Writers Conference, eh? Well, before you go, you need to know the most important rule: You do not talk about the Willamette Writers Conference! No, wait, that’s something else. The first rule…

Authors: Use a Logline to Describe Your Book (screenwriters have been using them for years…)

By Orit Ofri

Do you have a logline for your story? Screenwriters have been using loglines to sell their scripts for years. Authors can use them too. Wait, what’s a logline? A logline is the shortest good response to the prompt: “tell me about your book.” Here…

Pitching with Confidence- Marvin Baker’s Story

By Kate Ristau

Screenwriter Marvin Baker knows how to tell a story.

Pitching with Confidence – Part Two

By Kate Ristau

Be Yourself. It’s a corny phrase, “Be Yourself.” But it works.

FiLMLaB Podcast Episode 3: Copyright

By Willamette Writers

FiLMLaB’s third podcast deals with copyright; a brief discussion with screenwriter Randall Jahnson, WW Visual Media Director Ruth Witteried, and attorney and FiLMLaB co-founder, Stefan Feuerherdt. [soundcloud url=”https://soundcloud.com/ww-filmlab/wwc-filmlab-copyright” params=”color=00cc11&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_artwork=true&visual=false” width=”100%” height=”166″ iframe=”true” /]

Join a Meeting or a Workshop Near You

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

Salem: Write + Publish Fierce in 2019 with Sage Cohen

February 19 @ 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
Write + Publish Fierce in 2019 It’s on the third Tuesday, instead of the third Wednesday. Want to make 2019 your most productive writing year yet? Want to become more authentic and authoritative in your work? Author Sage Cohen can help you make the most of your writing life with her top success strategies for…

Salem: Monthly Meeting

February 21 @ 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
Please join us for our Salem monthly meeting! Put the date on your calendar. More information will be coming soon.

Cynthia Whitcomb’s Screenwriting Class

February 23 @ 9:00 am - 3:00 pm
Cynthia Whitcomb’s Screenwriting Class Spring 2019 Six Saturdays 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Feb. 23, March 2, 9, 16, 23 and 30 Cost $495 Location: Cynthia’s Home in North Wilsonville To register, click here. From Idea to Completed Script Includes structure, scene cards, storyboards, set ups, payoffs, subplots, character development, research, format, dialogue, hiding exposition,…

Corvallis: Alternate Writing Tools: Writing for Different Abilities with Maren Anderson

February 25 @ 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
Alternate Writing Tools: Writing for Different Abilities Writing is a physical activity that can present challenges to people with different abilities ranging from those who develop Repetitive Strain Injuries (RSI), to those who have visual differences, to those who cannot sit still for long periods (backs and ADHD). This presentation will present alternatives for writers…

Southern Oregon: Monthly Meeting

March 2 @ 10:00 am - 3:30 pm
Please join us for our Central Point monthly meeting! Put the date on your calendar. More information will be coming soon.

Portland: Monthly Meeting

March 5 @ 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
Please join us for our Portland monthly meeting! Put the date on your calendar. More information will be coming soon.

The Willamette Writers Conference

Julie Whipple Book Signing at Powells

Julie Whipple will be reading and signing copies of her new book, Crash Course Join Julie Whipple at Powell’s downtown flagship store on West Burnside on Monday, August 20 at 7:30 (http://www.powells.com/book/-9780692070406#product_details) and award-winning audiobook narrator Heather Henderson for a special performance of excerpts from the book. Long-time Portland residents vividly recall the crash of…


We’re excited that Erick Mertz is a member of the faculty at the upcoming Willamette Writers Conference. Erick is a Portland-based ghostwriter and fiction/memoir manuscript consultant. Over the last five years as a full-time freelancer he has written manuscripts for a variety of clients. In a blog he posted this past December, he shares advice…

The 7 Things Writers Need to Make a Living by Sonia Simone

Written by SONIA SIMONE Reprinted with permission from Copyblogger.  If you’re a writer, you might have heard this most of your life: People don’t make a living writing. You should find something practical to do with your life. Smart, capable writers grimly pass around war stories on Facebook. Penny-a-word assignments, clients who don’t pay, disdain for our…

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…

Experiences at The Willamette Writers Conference

“A writers conference can be an empowering and uplifting experience,” according to Scott Myers, a producer, writer, and assistant director. Myers presented at the Willamette Writers Conference this year, and said it was a “special experience.” He explains on his website about his conference experience that he met so many writers and old friends, and his classes were packed. His…

Writing Through the Tough Times by Julie Fast

All writers come to a point where it feels impossible to write another word. This happened to me with one month left before I had to turn in the manuscript for my first book. I felt overwhelmed with the idea of making the book perfect. All of it had to flow. It had to be…

New Conference Opportunity for Members: Sell Your Books at the Consignment Booth

Thanks for checking out this opportunity. We are finalizing the details and should have them for you this week. In the meantime, please let us know you’re interested by completing the short form below or via this link (same form, use whatever works better for you). We will let you know when we have more…

New Opportunity at Conference: Author Headshots

For the first time ever, the 2017 Willamette Writers Conference will have a professional photographer at the conference to take author headshots. A limited number of slots will be offered Friday and Saturday afternoon, so book your slot before they are all taken. Why Do Author’s Need Headshots? Last year’s conference keynote speaker Jane Friedman…

Hone Your Craft: The 2017 Conference Offers Opportunity for Advanced & Beginning Writers

As we’ve mentioned before, our schedule of educational programming includes 9 tracks of themed content from across the spectrum of what writers need to know and want to celebrate. Our Genre offerings for this year take up two of those tracks: one for beginners and novices, the other for intermediate and professional writers. And the…

Our News

Willamette Writers Authors Sign Books at The Portland Book Festival

by Ari Mathae Willamette Writers, the Portland literary community, and book lovers near and far will meet again Saturday 10, 2018, for the largest celebration of books in the Pacific Northwest: The Portland Book Festival. The event starts at 9 A.M. at the Portland Art Museum and continues there and at other neighboring venues in the…

Member News: Mary Andonian & David Poulshock launch ISA Third Thursdays

Mary Andonian & David Poulshock launch ISA Third Thursdays Members Mary and David are launching the local chapter of the International Screenwriters Association(ISA). It’s a monthly mixer for screenwriters on Third Thursdays, where you can mingle with fellow screenwriters, meet film and television industry professionals, and win door prizes — including a free Willamette Writer’s…

How To Happily Write A Query Letter

We’re excited that Bill Kenower is a member of the faculty at the upcoming Willamette Writers Conference. Bill is the author of Fearless Writing: How to Create Boldly and Write With Confidence and Write Within Yourself: An Author’s Companion. In a blog he posted this past June, he shares his perspective on how he learned…


We’re excited that Erick Mertz is a member of the faculty at the upcoming Willamette Writers Conference. Erick is a Portland-based ghostwriter and fiction/memoir manuscript consultant. Over the last five years as a full-time freelancer he has written manuscripts for a variety of clients. In a blog he posted this past December, he shares advice…

Attend FiLMLaB.tv workshops and get all the value without even attending!

Attend FiLMLaB.tv workshops and get all the value without even attending! Well, not really. Eventually you’ll have to “attend.” But thanks to space-age technology, Willamette Writers is presenting two valuable workshops online that you will be able to access 24/7 AND multiple times right up until the conference. That means that even if you’re not…

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,…

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…