Application process underway for Poe Museum’s 2016 Young Writers’ Conference

Attention serious writers of the high school persuasion: you have until April 15th to put yourself in the running for a spot in a five-day residency writing program hosted by the Edgar Allan Poe Museum.

Photo by: Fyn Kynd Photography

Last week the Edgar Allan Poe Museum opened up the application process for its 2016 Young Writers’ Conference, a five-day residency writing program for high school writers who, according to a press release from the museum, “would like to hone their writing skills in a stimulating environment with other like-minded young writers.”

The conference will take place June 19th through 23rd with each day looking a little something like this:

Morning presentation: After breakfast, students will hear from a keynote speaker offering an hour-long presentation on his or her speciality. Speakers will represent a variety of genres, including fiction, poetry, drama, journalism, and non-fiction.

Workshop: Students will read from their work and receive critique, instruction, and support from their workshop leader and fellow conference participants. They’ll take part in writing exercises to help develop their skills–particularly those related to the keynote for that day.

Honing the craft of writing: Each afternoon students will have independent creative time to practice their writing–hopefully implementing skills learned that morning and on previous days–and work on a piece to read aloud on the last evening of the conference.

Focus on Poe: One of the goals of this conference, as it is sponsored by the Poe Museum, is to further Poe’s legacy as a writer, poet, journalist, editor, and critic. Richmond served as the stomping grounds of Poe’s youth, and he returned here off and on throughout his career. Students will be given daily opportunities to learn more about Poe’s life and work through lectures, tours, presentations, and activities.

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The 2016 Young Writers’ Conference is open to anyone who is enrolled in the 9th, 10th, 11th, or 12th grade at the time they apply. But please note: this conference isn’t for those feeling wishy-washy about their love for the written word. As the press release states, “Those who apply to the 2016 Young Writers’ Conference should be high school students who are actively engaged in writing and serious about improving their skills and contributing to a residential writing community.”

Applications are due to the Poe Museum by Friday, April 15th and must include…

  • A completed application form
  • A writing sample of fiction, poetry, journalism, or non-fiction essay of not more than five pages, double-spaced
  • A completed recommendation form from a teacher familiar with your ability and interest in writing (sent directly to the Poe Museum)
  • A completed recommendation from a parent or guardian who can attest to your maturity and ability to work within a close-knit community (sent directly to the Poe Museum).

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The cost of the conference is $750 per participant and includes four nights’ lodging at the Linden Row Inn and three meals a day for the four full days of the conference, plus dinner on the first night after arrival.

Applicants will be notified if they’ve made the cut by May 6th. Those who are accepted into the program will be expected to pay a deposit of $100 by May 27th to secure their spot.

For more information on the 2016 Young Writers’ Conference (and to download an application) visit the Poe Museum’s blog.

(Does anyone else hate the fact that they are no longer a high schooler right now?)

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Valerie Catrow

Valerie Catrow is editor of RVAFamily, mother to a mop-topped first grader, and always really excited to go to bed.

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