2018 David R. Collins Writers Conference at St. Ambrose University -- June 28 through 30.

Thursday, June 28, through Saturday, June 30

St. Ambrose University's McCargy Hall, 518 West Locust Street, Davenport IA

Authors of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and more will share their talents and help strenghten the talents of others during the Midwest Writing Center's annual David R. Collins Writers Conference, the June 28 through 30 celebration of the written word boasting workshops, readings, book pitches, short films, and more.

For burgeoning area writers, five three-day workshops will be held at this year's conference. New York Times and Washington Post journalist Lyz Lenz presents “Intimacy Issues: Writing the Not-So-Personal Personal Essay,” which explores the craft of blending genres and weaving styles in order to create cohesive narratives. Novelist Amy Hassinger teaches “Revving the Machine of Desire: How to Write a Compelling Novel Opening,” explaining why the introduction is so important to the work's overall arc, looking at successful novel openings, and initiating classroom workshops.

Comic-book artist, poet, and Iowa Writers' Workshop fellowship recipient Lauren Halderman leads two workshops at this year's conference: “Mixology: Fresh Poetry from Source Material,” which employs found language, theme-based inquiry, and even field trips to inspire insights and literary creations; and “Pop + Fizz: Digital Storytelling with Comics + Video,” which will give participants a generative, hands-on experience with digital storytelling and comics. And Keith Lesmeister, author of the recently published story collection We Could've Been Happy Here, delivers his workshop “Hooking Up: Rethinking the First Few Pages of Our Fiction & Nonfiction Narratives,” a close look at the opening pages of fiction and nonfiction works designed to explore precisely how they hook their readers.

Numerous additional events are scheduled for the 2018 David R. Collins Writers Conference, which kicks off with the Figge Art Museum's June 28 hosting of the 6 p.m. Conference Keynote, featuring hors d'oeuvres, meet-and-greats with conference participants, and a screening of Motionpoems' Dear Mr. President, which boasts visual poetry by the likes of Tiana Clark, Peter LaBerge, and Danez Smith. On June 29, Rock Island's Rozz-Toxx hosts a DRC Conference Social Mixer at 5:30 p.m. and a Faculty Reading & Book Signing at 7 p.m. In St. Ambrose's Gottlieb Lounge on June 30, local authors seeking publication can pitch their works to representatives from Paradisiac Publishing (10 a.m. to noon) and MWC Press (2:30 to 4:30 p.m.). And a concluding luncheon will also be held in the Gottlieb Lounge at noon at Saturday, in which conference sponsors will be recognized and the faculty will reflect on their workshops over a catered lunch.

For more information on all of the events in this year's June 28 through 30 David R. Collins Writers Conference, and to register for conference workshops, call the Midwest Writing Center at (309)732-7330 or visit MWCQC.org.

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