The 2016 Conference

July 19 - 31, 2016


Rita, Simon, and John

From July 19–31, 2016, the University of the South will host the 27th session of the Sewanee Writers’ Conference. Thanks to the generosity of the Walter E. Dakin Memorial Fund, supported by the estate of the late Tennessee Williams, the Conference will gather a distinguished faculty to provide instruction and criticism through workshops and craft lectures in poetry, fiction, and playwriting.

This year’s faculty includes fiction writers Richard Bausch, John Casey, Tony Earley, Randall Kenan, Jill McCorkle, Alice McDermott, Erin McGraw, Christine Schutt, Allen Wier, and Steve Yarbrough; and poets Daniel Anderson, B.H. Fairchild, Robert Hass, Andrew Hudgins, Mark Jarman, Maurice Manning, A.E. Stallings, and Sidney Wade. Naomi Iizuka and Ken Weitzman will lead the playwriting workshop. Charles Martin, A.E. Stallings, and N.S. Thompson will offer a supplemental poetry translation workshop. Adrianne Harun, Charles Martin, and Wyatt Prunty will read from their work.

Martin and KenanIn addition, a group of distinguished writers, critics, agents, and visitors will take part. Those who will discuss writing from the point of view of editing or publishing include Millicent Bennett (Grand Central Publishing), Paul Bone (Measure), Valerie Borchardt (Georges Borchardt Literary Agency), MaryKatherine Callaway (LSU Press), George David Clark (32 Poems), Barbara Epler (New Directions), Gary Fisketjon (Alfred A. Knopf), Mary Flinn (Blackbird), Rob Griffith (Measure), Gail Hochman (Brandt & Hochman Literary Agents), Mike Levine (Northwestern University Press), David Lynn (The Kenyon Review), Alane Salierno Mason (W.W. Norton), Speer Morgan (The Missouri Review), Kathy Pories (Algonquin Books), Elisabeth Schmitz (Grove/Atlantic), Philip Terzian (The Weekly Standard), Liz Van Hoose (5E), Michael Wiegers (Copper Canyon Press), Robert Wilson (The American Scholar), and David Yezzi (The Hopkins Review and The New Criterion).

Other prominent visitors will include literary agents Michelle Brower (Zachary Shuster Harmsworth/Kuhn), Sarah Burnes (The Gernert Company), Emily Forland (Brandt & Hochman Literary Agents), Anna Stein (ICM Partners), Amy Williams (The Williams Company), and Renée Zuckerbrot (Renée Zuckerbrot Literary Agency). Two professional actors will assist the playwriting workshop. Beth Blickers, theatre agent with APA, and Les Waters, artistic director of the Actors Theatre of Louisville, will meet with playwrights.

Every Conference participant receives assistance covering two-thirds of the actual cost to attend. Additional funding is awarded to fellows and scholars. The Conference will offer its customary Walter E. Dakin Fellowships and Tennessee Williams Scholarships, as well as awards in memory of Stanley Elkin, Horton Foote, Barry Hannah, Anthony Hecht, John Hollander, Donald Justice, Romulus Linney, Howard Nemerov, Father William Ralston, Mark Strand, Peter Taylor, Mona Van Duyn, and John N. Wall. Additional scholarships have been made possible by Valerie Borchardt and Gail Hochman.

If you have further questions about the Conference, please contact Adam Latham at or 931-598-1654.