BSU hosts Minnesota Northwoods Writers Conference

In July, the Minnesota Northwoods Writers Conference returns to Bemidji State University for a six-day series of workshops, readings and collaborations with visiting authors and teachers from across the country. Workshop topics include poetry, novice poetry fiction and creative non-fiction writing, and for the first time the conference is offering a literary translation workshop.

Each morning, participants will gather their thoughts, notebooks and writing utensils and head off to their workshops where their teacher and fellow participants will provide feedback and encouragement. Afternoons can be spent attending a literary event, writing, visiting with new friends, or exploring downtown Bemidji or any of the myriad outdoor activities available in the area.

The conference opens at noon on Sunday, July 14, and runs through noon on Friday, July 19. The conference carries a fee of $585, with a $40 discount for registration prior to the early-bird cutoff of May 1. The fee includes participation in the selected workshop, admission to all evening Reading Series events, a publishing seminar, all scheduled afternoon events and three conference meals. Lodging is available on campus for $15 per night for a single accommodation or $11 per night for a double.

Conference Fees and Lodging Information
Four $300 scholarships are available, one for each of the literary translation, creative nonfiction, fiction and poetry workshops, and one $410 scholarship is available to a Minnesota resident. Scholarship applications are due May 1 at

Individual consultation is also available with workshop faculty members for $30 per half hour; advance manuscript submission is required to use this service.

A $30 cancellation fee will be incurred for any cancellations prior to June 15; after June 15, no fees will be refunded.

2013 Conference Faculty
This year’s faculty include:
Jericho Brown, assistant professor at Emory University;
Danielle Evans, literature and creative writing instructor at American University;
Camille Dungy, professor of creative writing at San Francisco State University;
Geoffrey Brock, an instructor in creative writing and translation at the University of Arkansas; and
Joni Tevis, instructor of literature and creative writing at Furman University.

Distinguished Visiting Writer Ron Carlson
This year’s distinguished visiting writer is novelist Ron Carlson. Carlson is the director of the graduate program in fiction at the University of California, Irvine, and is a noted novelist and short-story writer. His most recent novel, “The Signal,” was published in May of 2010. His short stories have appeared in “Esquire,” “Harpers,” “The New Yorker” and a variety of anthologies including “The Norton Anthology of Short Fiction” and “The Pushcart Prize Anthology.” He also has written a book on writing, “Ron Carlson Writes a Story,” which is widely used by writing teachers.

Carlson has won an NEA Fellowship, the Cohen Prize at “Ploughshares,” the McGinnis Award at the “Iowa Review” and the Aspen Literary Award. His 2008 novel, “Five Skies,” was named One Book Rhode Island in 2009. He published a book of poems, “Room Service,” in 2012, and his new novel, “Return to Oakpine,” will be published in July.

Carlson was born in Logan, Utah.

Reading Series schedule
Each night during the conference, participating faculty will participate in an open reading series that is free to the public. Reading Series events will be held in Hagg-Sauer Hall on the BSU campus.
• July 14, 7:30 p.m.- Camille Dungy
• July 15, 7:30 p.m. – Ron Carlson
• July 16, 7:30 p.m. – Joni Tevis
• July 17, 6:30 p.m. – double-header, Geoffrey Brock & Danielle Evans
• July 18, 7:30 p.m. – Jericho Brown

The Minnesota Northwoods Writers Conference is made possible by the people of Minnesota through grants from the Minnesota State Arts Board, the Region 2 Arts Council and a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.

For more information on the Minnesota Northwoods Writers Conference, (218) 755-2068,, or

Ron Carlson bio at UC-Irvine
Ron Carlson on Amazon
• 2012 interview with Carlson in “Publishers Weekly”
Jericho Brown
Danielle Evans
Camille Dungy
Geoffrey Brock
Joni Tevis