Insider Scoop: 2013 Chuckanut Writers Conference

cwcDear Writers:

This year’s Chuckanut Writers Conference is right around the corner! Guess what, I have a bunch of insider information to leak in advance of the website going live later this month. Please don’t tell a single person about this—instead, tell everyone you know! Because it’s gonna be another great conference with an awesome lineup of authors, and I can’t wait to see you there.

WHO’S COMING: Alice Acheson, Bruce Beasley, Jeff Bender, Wendy Call, Karen Finneyfrock, Waverly Fitzgerald, Kathleen Flenniken, Mary Hammerbeck, Thor Hanson, Gary Luke, Frances McCue, Suzanne Paola, Brenda Peterson, Naseem Rakha, Natalie Serber, Jennie Shortridge, Elizabeth Kracht, and Mr. Art of Racing in the Rain himself, Garth Stein.

WHAT GOES ON: The 3rd Annual Chuckanut Writers Conference is an intensive, craft-focused, cross-genre symposium designed to inspire writers of all experience levels by spotlighting both talented authors who are distinguished writing teachers, and respected agents who will share industry insights and hear pitches. The program includes featured speakers, multiple breakout craft sessions, faculty readings, author sessions and speaker panel discussions.

WHEN: Friday, June 21 through Saturday, June 22, 2013. Check-in and registration begins 9 a.m. Friday. The conference kicks off at 10 a.m. On Saturday, attendees may join optional 8 a.m. sessions. Regular conference activities begin at 9 a.m. and continue until 5 p.m.

WHERE: Whatcom Community College campus, Bellingham. Special evening events will be held at off-campus locations in Bellingham and the historic Fairhaven District.

PITCHING: For those of you with proposals or manuscripts ready to show, A) I will give a pitching briefing during registration and B) when registering you can sign up for an in-person pitch to an agent.

Art of Racing in the RainOPEN MICS: Conference attendees may participate in concurrent open mics Saturday evening at venues in Bellingham’s historic Fairhaven district. The public is invited to hear some of the freshest new work in the West. These are historically a blast, so make sure to attend! Bring an intact piece that you can read in about 2 minutes.


  • The Chuckanut Writers Conference was launched in 2011 to strengthen connections among WCC’s talented Community Education writing faculty, the region’s strong base of published authors, and aspiring writers seeking inspiration and education. Approximately 200 writers attend the annual event.
  • Past faculty members include an American Book Award winner, a recipient of the 2012 International Latino Book Award for Best History/Political Book, multiple PNBA award winners, a recipient of multiple Pushcart Prizes, a Tobias Wolff Award winner, and the Washington State Poet Laureate … And me. 🙂

REGISTRATION: The website will go live this month for online registration. Register by May 15 for the early bird rate of $229.  After May 15, the rate will be $259.  There is a limited number of reduced-rate student enrollments. To qualify for the $149 student rate, students must register in person with a current student ID at WCC’s Community & Continuing Education office.  Although there is no age requirement, parents or guardians should use discretion when considering registering a minor. The conference format and content are designed with adults aged 18 or older in mind.

 All other conference participants may register by phone at 360.383.3200 or via the conference website, starting on Feb 18,  Updates are also shared on the conference’s Facebook page.

WHERE TO STAY: Conference participants who will need hotel rooms are encouraged to reserve accommodations as soon as possible. The conference dates are during Bellingham’s busy summer season when hotels are often fully booked. Western Washington University is a conference sponsor and will provide affordable dorm rooms (6 miles south of the WCC campus) for conference participants. Travel and accommodation information will be included on the website.

CONFERENCE ORGANIZERS: Whatcom Community College’s Community and Continuing Education Department,, and Village Books,

CONTACT: Anna Wolff, 360.383.3882,

Mad love to you all,

Laurel Leigh

4 thoughts on “Insider Scoop: 2013 Chuckanut Writers Conference

  1. Pingback: February Open Mic @ Village Books + Alex! | Dear Writers

  2. Pingback: Insider Scoop: 2013 Chuckanut Writers Conference | cjprinceauthor

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