Community, but not Communicable
April 16-18, 2020
The North Carolina Writers' Network brings you the first-ever CABIN FEVER CONFERENCE, 630 minutes of high-quality, socially-distant instruction in the craft and business of writing.
Registration ends at 9:00 A.M. on Thursday, April 16.
You can join the Network when you register, and pay the member rates plus the appropriate member dues:
$80 standard 1-year membership
$60 reduced membership (senior 65+, full-time student, writers under 30, writers with disabilities)
$140 2-year membership
$110 2-year reduced membership
For Writers with Special Needs
The North Carolina Writers' Network strives to make our programs and services accessible to all writers, including those with special needs. If you require closed captioning, please let us know no later than Monday, April 13.
- April 10: Deadline for all scholarship applications
- April 13: Deadline for special-needs requests
- April 15: Deadline to receive a refund for cancellation
- April 16: Deadline for registration
|Thursday, April 16|
|5:30-7:00 pm||Make a Scene: Emotional Building Blocks of Fiction with Quinn Dalton|
|7:30-9:00 pm||The Art of Writing Memoir with M. Randal O’Wain|
|Friday, April 17|
|5:30-7:00 pm||More than Meaning (poetry) with Timothy O’Keefe|
|7:30-9:00 pm||Public Speaking for Writers with Cameron Kent|
|Saturday, April 18|
|9:00-10:30 am||What a Long Strange Trip: From Manuscript to Finished Book with Robin Miura and Lynn York|
|11:00 am - 12:30 pm||Writing Your Life: Turning Personal Stories into Universal Narratives with Bridgette A. Lacy|
|1:00-2:30 pm||Narrative Medicine: Stories of Illness & the Power of Reflective Writing with Aimee Mepham|
|3:00-4:00 pm||Open Mic Readings|
|4:30-5:30 pm||Faculty Readings|
THURSDAY, APRIL 16
Make a Scene: Emotional Building Blocks of Fiction with Quinn Dalton
What is a scene? How do you know when you need one? How do you get “in” and “out” of it? Through discussion and in-class exercises you’ll understand the necessary elements of scenes, how they are built, and how to use them to propel your story.
The Art of Writing Memoir with M. Randal O’Wain
We all have a story inside of us that is itching to be shared with others and as nonfiction writers we have the drive to put these memories on paper. How do we reconstruct the past and all of the messy components of life onto the page? How do we breathe personality into the people we love, and how do we illustrate the settings and landscapes that made us who we are so that a reader can experience these meaningful life events with compassion and empathy? During our workshop period, we will practice the foundations of writing memoir artfully through exercises and readings that exemplify compelling narrative persona, vivid imagery, sensory details, and turn anecdotes into satisfying narratives that are relatable and fulfilled.
FRIDAY, APRIL 17
More than Meaning (poetry) with Timothy O’Keefe
For many people, learning to read poetry is tantamount to becoming a word detective—one is taught to look for signs and clues in order to arrive at the “deep meaning” of the poem. Or, worse yet, they attempt to translate “what the poet was really trying to say.” This class will explore poetic approaches to the doing of a poem—the poem as an event on the page—instead of focusing on the traditional markers of meaning (symbol, metaphor, allusion, etc.). The goal is not to dispense with meaning altogether, but to reposition it as just one of many experiences the poem can present to an attentive reader.
Public Speaking for Writers with Cameron Kent
Are you one of those people who is uncomfortable with public speaking? Many writers are. It can be daunting, but if you want to market your writing and sell more books, then you need to be able to effectively talk to people at book launches, book clubs, and even pitch meetings. Cameron Kent will teach you how to prepare your remarks, overcome your nervousness, and successfully deliver your speech to groups of people large and small.
SATURDAY, APRIL 18
What a Long Strange Trip: From Manuscript to Finished Book with Robin Miura and Lynn York
So, you’ve finished your manuscript, and miraculously you’ve found a publisher. What happens next? In this workshop, two leaders from Blair, a Durham-based nonprofit press, will guide you along the perilous and winding path to publication. They’ll discuss ideas for working with an editor, understanding your publishing team, considering the design for your book, handling the copyediting and proofreading process, building your fan base, participating in the marketing plan for your book, becoming an advocate for yourself and your book, budgeting time and resources for the endeavor, managing your expectations, and preparing to enjoy every step of the crazy process. Between the two of them, your guides for this workshop have found themselves in the roles of author, agent, editor, copyeditor, proofreader, marketer, and sales rep, so this workshop will be a mix of nuts-and-bolts advice, war stories, and best practices—with plenty of time reserved for responding to your questions.
11:00 - 12:30 pm
Writing Your Life: Turning Personal Stories into Universal Narratives with Bridgette A. Lacy
Bridgette A. Lacy writes about the big and small moments of life, ranging from losing her sense of smell to a brain tumor to crafting essays on Sunday Dinner. Join her for a ninety-minute creative nonfiction class, where she’ll discus turning our private moments into literary gold. To make readers connect to our story, our work must show the turmoil, the joy, and those private moments that resonate in our own lives. During her class, she will share some techniques for focusing our life stories and fine-tuning them for publication.
1:00 - 2:30 pm
Narrative Medicine: Stories of Illness & the Power of Reflective Writing with Aimee Mepham
This session will provide a brief introduction to the field of narrative medicine—the scholarly and clinical movement that centers the power of story in health care—and the wide-ranging ways it can be practiced by writers who are patients, caregivers, or simply want to explore the connection between writing and healing. We will read and discuss select short pieces about health and illness, followed by practicing several reflective writing prompts/exercises that allow writers to explore their relationship with writing’s therapeutic potential.
3:00 - 4:00 pm
Open Mic Readings
You must have registered for at least one Cabin Fever Conference class to sign up for one of the 20 spots available in this online open mic. All are welcome to join the virtual audience, though, and hear work by your friends and fellow writers.
To read, select the Open Mic Reading along with your class choices when you register for the Cabin Fever Conference. To listen, look for your invitation, which we will e-mail to you before the conference.
4:30 - 5:30 pm
Stay there to come hear short readings by our Cabin Fever Conference instructors, a fitting end to our virtual gathering.
Virtual Exhibit Hall
During the conference, exhibitors will offer special pricing on select titles through our Virtual Exhibit Hall. Our exhibitors represent NC-based publishers and literary organizations that rely on handselling their products in-person at physical events. We can't replicate that personal touch here, but please take some time over the weekend to poke around the exhibitor sites and purchase a few things to read during this time of social distancing.
Looking for a book by a faculty member? Scuppernong Books is the exclusive carrier of books by conference faculty.
Click here to visit the Virtual Exhibit Hall! (Coming Soon!)
The Cabin Fever Conference 2020 is made possible with support from the North Carolina Arts Council.