Monday, February 1, 2016

2016 Craft-Focused Writing Retreats and Workshops

Hello out there! After a short hiatus in January, we're back with our regular twice-a-week posting schedule. Check back regularly for tips, interviews, resources, and other tidbits we hope will be of interest to YA writers.

If you've been following this blog for a while, you know I'm a big proponent of writing conferences (in fact, that's where I met co-bloggers Stacy, Jenn, and Lauren!). Most of the conferences I've attended are a pretty even mix of writing advice and publishing information, including agent/editor pitch sessions, query writing seminars, etc.

But what if you want to attend a workshop, retreat, or conference primarily to focus on your craft? Here are some popular craft-focused conferences happening in 2016.

Wordsmith Retreat
March 30—April 3, 2016
Warrenton, VA

This YA-focused workshop includes critique sessions, plenty of quiet writing time, and craft seminars. YA writers Beth Revis, Cristin Terrill, and Jennifer Armentrout lead sessions and provide expert feedback. You'll stay in a fully-equipped farmhouse and enjoy meals made by a private chef.

Highlights Whole Novel Workshop
August 7—13, 2016
near Honesdale, PA

Do you have a whole YA or MG novel that needs polishing? Many people swear by the Highlights Foundation's Whole Novel Workshops. You get the chance to get feedback on your whole novel (a nice change if you've only ever had your first few chapters critiqued) and to attend craft seminars and group discussions. You'll submit your novel far in advance to give the professional writers on the faculty time to read and critique it before the workshop begins.

Out of Excuses Writing Workshop
September 17—24, 2016
Oasis of the Seas, sailing from Ft. Lauderdale, FL

Want to really get away from it all? You can't get much farther than a writing workshop on a cruise ship. Authors Brandon Sanderson, Mary Robinette Kowal, Howard Tayler, and Dan Wells (who also host the brilliant Writing Excuses podcast) offer workshops and one-on-one critique sessions. There's also an impressive list of guest hosts this year (check out the full list at the link above).

Do you have a favorite craft-focused writing retreat or workshop? Let us know in the comments!

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