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!

Thank You for a Great Conference! 2019 Registration Now Open!

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 Master Classes Day with industry professionals at our 2018 conference, we are doing it again in 2019. So stay tuned for details about opportunities to learn from top instructors in a small group setting.

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, 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 Loved Hearing from You at the 2018 Conference!

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

Member News: Books for Hispanic Heritage Month

In recognition of National Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15-Oct.15) please consider these titles by award-winning writer Patricia Santos Marcantonio featuring Hispanic stories, culture and characters. VERDICT IN THE DESERT – Murder and prejudice in an Arizona town. RED RIDIN’ IN THE HOOD – Familiar fairy tales retold with Latino flavor. An award-winner. THE WEEPING WOMAN…

Member News: Patricia L. Brooks Pens Third Memoir

Sick as My Secrets, the third memoir, of award-winning author Patricia L. Brooks, is a powerful, compassionate, moving memoir told by a strong and honest woman who overcame a desperate need for alcohol to handle stress in her young life. Patricia, immensely proud of her thirty-five years of sobriety, openly and lovingly reveals her compelling…

Member News: Mary Andonian & David Poulshock launch ISA 3rd Thursdays

Mary Andonian & David Poulshock launch ISA 3rd Thursdays Members Mary and David are launching the local chapter of the International Screenwriters Association(ISA). It’s a monthly mixer for screenwriters on 3rd Thursdays, where you can mingle with fellow screenwriters, meet film and television industry professionals, and win door prizes — including a free Willamette Writer’s…

Member News: Mollie Hunt launches CAT CAFÉ, a new Crazy Cat Lady Cozy Mystery

What better way to celebrate a book whose hero is a dedicated cat shelter volunteer than to launch her latest tale for National Cat Day? Mollie Hunt will be bringing out CAT CAFÉ, her 5th Crazy Cat Lady cozy mystery with a reading, book signing, and meet & greet at Another Read Through bookstore. (http://www.anotherreadthrough.com/)…

Member News: Two New Publications by Rhonda Zimlich

I am thrilled to share two new (brief) memoirs. The first is part of the Brevity Podcast series; this episode is “One-Minute Memoirs” and can be heard here  (https://wp.me/pMFr-3oL) The second comes from the musings of writer Donald Quist in his creation of Past-Ten and can be read here:(https://www.past-ten.com/single-post/RhondaZimlich) For more information about Rhonda Zimlich,…

Member News: Beach Bum by Robert Freedman Published

Congratulations to Robert Freedman on the Release of Beach Bum Beach Bum: A Life in Pieces looks at the many paths and people that go into the making of a life. It is a pessimist’s endorsement of hope and keeping on. In a series of connected personal essays, both humorous and deadly serious, Freedman traces…

Member News: Open to Submissions

A new online literary magazine, focused on women, is looking for submissions for their inaugural launch. “Hot Flash Fiction’s” stories and articles will be by, for, about and/or of interest to women “of a certain age.” HFF will publish fiction and other versions of the truth—so lots of room for interpretation. They hope to find…

Member News: Majestic Eight Ten-Minute Play Festival

The Majestic Playwrght’s Lab will soon be accepting submissions for its second statewide Majestic Eight Ten-Minute Play Festival. The eight finalists will have their work presented at the Majestic Theatre in Corvallis on April 20, 2019. ● The competition is open to all Oregon residents and students registered at Oregon universities and colleges. ● There…

Member News: Mystery/Thriller Group: New writer needed

A dear member of our west side group has recently moved and we are looking for one or two new members. We meet 1-2 times per month. Sometimes we exchange/critique our work: sometimes we brainstorm ideas re plot, characterization, tone, marketing, etc. We are both self and small (very small) press published. We take our…

Member News: Publishing News

Kim Taylor Blakemore is thrilled to announce her novel The Companion has sold to Lake Union Publishing, for a March 2020 release. Find out more. 

On Writing from Willamette Writers

Revision strategies

Revision Strategies with Maren Anderson

By Maren Anderson

Revision Strategies with Maren Anderson I just wrote “The End” on the first draft of a manuscript I’ve been picking at for months. My normal M.O. is to write a very fast, very bad first draft. But my revision strategies…

4 obstacles keeping you from your manuscript

4 Obstacles Keeping You from Finishing Your Manuscript

By Benjamin Gorman

4 Obstacles Keeping You from Finishing Your Manuscript Disclaimer – Before I can be slapped with the charge of hypocrisy, let me be the first to say that I have succumbed to all four of the manuscript impediments listed below. I…

Jill Kelly

Revise with Jill Kelly | Writing Tips and Tricks

By Kate Ristau

Willamette Writer member and writing instructor Jill Kelly knows how to revise. An award-winning author and editor and a former professor of grammar and literature, she’s helped hundreds of writers move their work to excellence. This month, she’ll be leading two…

How to Submit to Literary Journals

By Kate Ristau

At Poets and Writers Live in Portland, several literary journal editors offered their perspectives on how to submit to literary journals. Travis Meyer of the journal Poor Claudia got right down to business: “Put your name in the top right…

Ellen Urbani, author and speaker, talks about preparing your book to launch

Pre-Launch Machinations

By Willamette Writers

You wrote a book. It’s been acquired! Now what in the world do you do with yourself?
Every writer has heard the axiom that penning a book is only the first in a long run of hurdles, and if we’re honest with ourselves every last one of us has believed that must be a mendacious proposition. Writing is hard work.

Agent Chip MacGregor

Ten Words To Keep In Mind For A Writer’s Conference

By Willamette Writers

by Chip MacGregor As you begin preparing for this year’s Willamette Writers Conference, I’d like to suggest you keep ten words in mind… • READ. Don’t just show up and wonder who the speakers are. Read the blog of the…

Join a Meeting or a Workshop Near You

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

Third Thursdays with International Screenwriters Association

October 18 @ 7:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Willamette Writers is proud to be a co-sponsor of this event for screenwriters. A not-to-miss event! ISA 3rd Thursdays, starting October 18th. A monthly mixer for screenwriters and writers who want th...

Fall Screenwriting Class with Cynthia Whitcomb

October 20
Go from idea to completed script! Join Cynthia Whitcomb for a small, intensive screenwriting class. Over the course of six Saturdays, you will learn how to choose an idea, break into the business, pol...

Newport: Deborah Reed

October 21 @ 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Opening Up Editors and agents often say that the opening pages of a novel are the most important. If the writing doesn’t grab the reader in this short amount of time, the manuscript will most li...

Corvallis: Harry Demarest

October 22 @ 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
Creating the 50 word story Fifty-word stories (exactly 50 words) seem difficult, but are actually easy to write. By writing them you rapidly learn the skills of conciseness, shortening, and word choic...

Eugene: Maren Bradley Anderson

November 1 @ 6:30 pm - 9:00 pm
Nanowrimo: What is National Novel Writing Month and How to Get Involved? It’s November. That means it’s National Novel Writing Month. Perhaps you’ve heard of it and have wondered how...

Eugene: Nanowrimo: What is National Novel Writing Month and How to Get Involved? With Maren Bradley Anderson

November 1 @ 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
Nanowrimo: What is National Novel Writing Month and How to Get Involved?   Mahonia Community Room (NOVEMBER LOCATION ONLY) 120 Shelton Mcmurphey Blvd, Eugene, OR 97401 *There will be a code to ge...

Southern Oregon: Anna Elkins

November 3 @ 10:00 am - 3:30 pm
The Poetry of Process Join Anna Elkins, who lives to be found by poetry in her everyday life. We will be taking a look at how poetry has the potential to touch different genres through the eyes of a t...

YWW Southern Oregon: Secrets from the Gutter – The Storytelling Advantages of Comics

November 3 @ 10:00 am - 3:30 pm
Secrets from the Gutter – The Storytelling Advantages of Comics Comic books and graphics novels are unique and entertaining. The storytelling process uses both the written word and pictures, creatin...

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…

HOW TO WIN THE SUBMISSION WAITING GAME

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

Member News: Mary Andonian & David Poulshock launch ISA 3rd Thursdays

Mary Andonian & David Poulshock launch ISA 3rd Thursdays Members Mary and David are launching the local chapter of the International Screenwriters Association(ISA). It’s a monthly mixer for screenwriters on 3rd 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…

HOW TO WIN THE SUBMISSION WAITING GAME

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…

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,”…