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Sanibel Island Writers Conference

Sanibel Island Writers Conference

Sanibel Island Writers Conference
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Tom DeMarchi, Director
Sanibel Island Writers Conference

Reed Hall 242
Florida Gulf Coast University
10501 FGCU Blvd S
Fort Myers, FL. 33965-6565



Steve Almond:

General Craft Workshop--Characterization

Small-Group Manuscript Workshop--Creative Nonfiction  

Steve Almond

Steve Almond is the author of ten books of fiction and non-fiction, including the NYT bestsellers Candyfreak and Against Football. His recent book, Bad Stories: What the Hell Just Happened to Our Country, is a literary investigation of our moral erosion as a nation. It is not a comedy. His short stories have appeared in The Best American Short Stories, the Best American Mysteries, and Best American Erotica anthologies. Isn’t that weird? He hosts the Dear Sugars podcast with Cheryl Strayed and lives with his wife  and children outside Boston. He is tired.

For more on Steve Almond, including music recommendations, visit:




Andrea Askowitz:

General Craft Workshop--How to Write a Story to Tell Out Loud

Andrea Askowitz

I’m the author of the memoir My Miserable, Lonely, Lesbian Pregnancy (Cleis 2008) and the editor of Badass: Lip Service True Stories, the Double Album(Lominy Books 2015). My stories have appeared in various publications including The New York TimesSalonThe Rumpus429Brain, ChildxoJaneManifest-Station, and AEONand have aired on NPR andPBS. For nine years, I created and produced the true-stories reading series Lip Service and received a John S. and James L. Knight Arts Challenge Award. Currently, I teach memoir writing and co-host the podcast Writing Class Radio, which in just two years has been downloaded more than 200,000 times. Also, I’m just putting the finishing touches on a new essay collection currently titled, No One Knows I’m Famous.

For more www.andreaaskowitz.comor www.writingclassradio.comor contact me @andreaaskowitz or @wrtgclassradio or


Julianna Baggott:

General Craft Workshop--Young Adult Fiction

Julianna Baggott

Julianna Baggott is the author of over twenty books including literary novels, four collections of poems, and weird whimsy for children. She's published two New York Times Notable Books of the Year, an ALA Alex Award Winner, and Kirkus Best Book of the Year. She teaches in Florida State’s College of Motion Picture Arts and at the Vermont College of Fine Arts.



Lynne Barrett:

General Craft Fiction Workshop--Plot and Structure

Lynne Barrett

Lynne Barrett’s third story collection is Magpies (Gold Medal, Florida Book Awards), and she is the author of What Editors Want, a guide to submitting to literary magazines. She edited Tigertail: Florida Flash, co-edited Birth: A Literary Companion, and is editor of The Florida Book Review. Her recent work can be found in Mystery Tribune, The Miami Rail, Necessary Fiction, Fort Lauderdale Magazine, and Just to Watch Them Die: Crime Stories Inspired by the Songs of Johnny Cash. She teaches in the MFA program at Florida International University. 

For more info about Lynne Barrett, visit:




John Dufresne:

General Craft Workshop--Flash Fiction

Morning Writing Exercises

John Dufresne

John Dufresne is the author of two short story collections, The Way That Water Enters Stone and Johnny Too Bad, the novels Louisiana Power & LightLove Warps the Mind a Little, both New York Times Notable Books of the Year, Deep in the Shade of ParadiseRequiemMass. and No RegretsCoyote, and books on writing, The Lie That Tells a Truth and Is Life Like This? His short stories have twice been named Best American Mystery Stories. He's written the screenplays for The Freezer Jesus and To Live and Die in Dixie.

For more information on Dufresne, visit:


Beth Ann Fennelly (General Craft Workshop--Tiny Texts)

Beth Anne Fennelly

Beth Ann Fennelly, Poet Laureate of Mississippi, teaches in the MFA Program at the University of Mississippi, where she was named Outstanding Teacher of the Year. She’s won grants and awards from the N.E.A., the United States Artists, a Pushcart, and a Fulbright to Brazil.  Fennelly has published three poetry books: Open House, Tender Hooks, and Unmentionables, a book of nonfiction, Great with Child, and The Tilted World, a novel she co-authored with her husband, Tom Franklin.  Heating & Cooling: 52 Micro-Memoirs will be published by Norton in fall ‘17. Fennelly and Franklin live in Oxford with their three children.

For more info, visit


Christopher Schelling:

Literary Agent/Panelist




Christopher Schelling is a literary agent whose list spans a wide range of fiction and nonfiction, including New York Times bestselling memoirist Augusten Burroughs (Running With Scissors, This Is How) and bestselling YA novelists Rainbow Rowell (Eleanor & Park, Fangirl) and Cinda Williams Chima (The Seven Realms, The Heir Chronicles). Schelling has been representing writers since 1997, and started his own agency, Selectric Artists, in 2011. He is also the publisher of Roadswell Editions, a curated ebook imprint with a list including Jon Katz (Listening to Dogs), Kathe Koja (The Mercury Waltz) and Kim Stanley Robinson (A Short Sharp Shock). Prior to being an agent, he held Executive Editor positions at Dutton and HarperCollins.

For more info on Schelling, visit: or

Twitter: @CRSRipley  


Darin Strauss:

General Craft Workshop--Narrative

Darin Strauss

A recipient of a National Book Critics Circle Award, the Guggenheim Fellowship, the American Library Association Award, and numerous other prizes, Darin Strauss is a national- and internationally-bestselling author. His books have been New York Times, Newsweek, Los Angeles Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Chicago Tribune, Entertainment Weekly and NPR Best Books of the Year, among other honors; he has appeared on Good Morning America, CBS’s The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, NBC News, among many others. 

Strauss recently finished a short stint as an opinion columnist at Al-Jazeera America, has written screenplays for Disney, Gary Oldman, and Julie Taylor, and currently has a production deal with Sony Pictures Television. He is the Clinical Professor of Fiction at NYU's creative writing program. His work has been translated into fourteen languages and published in nineteen countries. 

For more info, visit:

Twitter: @darinstrauss