Stay tuned for full details for the return of an in-person Worcester County Young Writers Conference in March 2022!

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In addition, you can peruse this site for information about past events to get an idea of what our conference is all about!

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Mentors (March 2021)
Mentor Tim Mudie
Workshops Tuesdays (March 2, 9, 16), 7:00 - 8:15 PM
Tim Mudie was born and raised in Worcester and attended St. John's, where he also participated in the Worcester County Young Writers’ Conference. For nine years, he worked as an editor at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, editing books such as Good as Gone by Amy Gentry and the bestselling The Fourth Monkey by J.D. Barker. Now, he serves as the book and map editor for the Appalachian Mountain Club. His fiction has been published in many magazines, anthologies, and podcasts, including Lightspeed, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Escape Pod, and Deep Magic. You can find links to his stories at

Mentor Loree Griffin Burns
Workshops Wednesdays (March 3, 10, 17), 7:00 - 8:15 PM
Loree Griffin Burns is a scientist by training and a writer by inclination, crafting articles, essays, and books that celebrate the natural world and people who are passionate about it. This work has led to far-flung adventures, from beachcombing on the western coast of the United States, to surveying birds in Central Park, to scaling Mexican mountains in search of monarch butterflies, to trapping insects on an uninhabited volcanic island in Iceland. It has also allowed her to stay home quite a lot, raising three children and getting to know the mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and (especially!) arthropods that are her nearest neighbors.  Loree teaches writing and the joys of close observation at Montserrat College of Art and Vermont College of Fine Arts. She and her husband Gerry keep bees, raise chickens, and tend vegetables in suburban central Massachusetts. Catch highlights from these exploits on Instagram (@LoreeGriffinBurns) or visit Loree’s website to read more of her work (
Mentor Rodger Martin
Workshops Thursdays (March 4, 11, 18) 7:15 - 8:30 PM
Rodger Martin is the author of three books of poetry, his latest, The Battlefield Guide and The Blue Moon Series, both published by Hobblebush Books. He is a New Hampshire State Council on the Arts in Education roster artist and also a touring artist for the New England States Touring Foundation administered by the New England Foundation for the Arts. He and six colleagues, as part of The Monadnock Pastoral Poets, have been featured in On the Monadnock: New Pastoral Poetry (Beijing Drama Press: 2007). In 2012, he represented the United States as one of twelve poets participating in the City of Hangzhou’s literary festival on West Lake, China.  In conjunction with the publication of Selection of New Chinese and American Pastoral Poets (Nanjing: 2015), he was invited to present a series of lectures about poets and poetry at both Shanghai University of International Business and Economics and Nanjing University. In addition to his writing, he teaches journalism at Keene State College and advises The Equinox, the college’s award-winning student news organization. Learn more about Rodger’s work at his website (

WCYWC Keynote Speakers

List of 7 items.

  • 2019: Andy and Veronica Fish

    This husband-and-wife team of graphic artists has been offering their unique and popular workshops for over 10 years to students of all ages. Andy Fish is a noted comic book artist, illustrator and painter—his work has been published all over the world and exhibited in galleries as far away as Sydney, Australia. His most recent graphic novel is Dracula’s Army: The Dead Travel Fast, an adaption of Dracula brings to light storylines that only lurked in the shadows of the original. Veronica Fish’s paintings have been shown in galleries around the world, and she's also worked on character design, storyboarding for film and TV, apparel design, and editorial illustration. Veronica recently illustrated a comic entitled Blackwood, a supernatural fantasy about a magical murder in a sorcery school. As visual storytellers who often work with writers to develop comics and graphic novels, Andy and Veronica bring a fresh, new perspective to our conference. The keynote address will begin at 4:00 and is free and open to the public.
  • 2018: Terry Farish

    Terry Farish is a writer with a passion for following the stories of people from many cultures who come as immigrants or refugees to the U.S. The Good Braider is her free verse novel for young adults and adults about 17-year old Viola and her family’s journey from war-torn Sudan, to Cairo, and finally to Portland, Maine.  She wrote The Good Braider after travel to Kakuma Refugee Camp on the border of Kenya and South Sudan and years of collecting oral histories among southern Sudanese families in Portland. The novel was selected as a Best Book of the Year by the American Library Association, Bank Street College of Education, and School Library Journal.  Her picture books include The Cat Who Liked Potato Soup, illus. by Barry Root and The Alleyway set in Lawrence, MA.  The Alleyway, about a small boy whose brother has been deployed in the US Army, is in production and will be illustrated by Oliver Dominquez. In 2015 her novel, Either the Beginning or the End of the World, will be published by Carolrhoda Books. Through the New Hampshire Humanities Council, Terry leads literacy programs with refugee and immigrant parents, and she also teaches writing at Manchester (NH) Community College. You can visit her site at
  • 2017: Regie Gibson

    Literary Performer and educator, Regie Gibson, received his MFA from New England College. He’s lectured and performed in the U.S., Cuba and Europe. Representing the U.S., Regie competed for and received the Absolute Poetry Award in Monfalcone, Italy. Himself and his work appear in “love jones”: a feature-film based on events in his life. He is a former National Poetry Slam Champion, has featured on HBO’s Def Poetry Jam, WBUR’s On Point, Radio Boston, and various other NPR programs. Regie has performed at TED X Boston, Ted X Bedford and TED X Natick, and has been nominated for a Boston Emmy. He’s received the Walker Scholarship for Poetry from the Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center and a YMCA Writer’s Fellowship. He’s been published in Poetry Magazine, Harvard’s Divinity Magazine, and The Iowa Review, among others. His volume of poems, “Storms Beneath the Skin”, has received the Golden Pen Award. He has received both an MCC Poetry Award and a Lexington Education Foundation Grant. Regie has performed with and composed texts for The Boston City Singers, The Mystic Chorale and Boston’s Handel+Haydn Society. He performs regularly with Atlas Soul: a world-music ensemble, his own word-music ensemble, The Regie Gibson Project, and is He one half of the duo, Shakespeare to Hip-Hop: An education and performance vehicle integrating the performance and study of classical and modern texts into English curriculums.
  • 2016: Jasmine Mans

    An author, performer, poet, teacher...yes to all of those titles, but more importantly Jasmine Mans is an artist who enjoys having various forums to express her thoughts, moods, opinions and a voice to speak out on behalf of others and the community around her. A recent graduate of the University of Wisconsin – Madison (2014), Jasmine received her BA in African-American Studies (Black Theory & Literature) and is the recipient of the Star Ledger – NJPAC; Arts Millennia; and (New York) Knicks Poetry Slam Scholarships and awards. However, Mans began stringing rhymes together as a middle-school student in her hometown of Newark, New Jersey. Those artistic skills were honed while attending the first performing arts high school in the nation, Newark Arts High School.

  • 2015: Adam Gottlieb

    Adam Gottlieb is a Poet, Singer/Songwriter, Teaching-Artist who advocates for the power of the spoken word. He was featured in the film Louder than a Bomb, a documentary described as a "celebration of American youth at their creative best." 

    "None of this prepares the viewer for the bomb that is Adam Gottlieb (from tony Northside College Prep), whose first reading at the 20-minute mark, of a poem celebrating poetry, announces a promising new American talent. It’s difficult to resist the comparison to Allen Ginsberg in Gottlieb’s nearly breathless recitation, his use of incantation and rhythmic attack, and the sense of an epic unfolding before our ears. His subsequent reading, on his Jewish roots in Chicago, is pitched in an entirely different register and suggests a novelistic sensibility." - Variety

  • 2014: Juliette Fay

    Author Juliette Fay was the keynote speaker at the 2014 Worcester County Young Writers Conference. Students from around the area gathered to work with writing professionals and share their own work in front of their peers. Student slam poets who competed at the Louder Than a Bomb poetry slam in Boston performed, and writing mentors spoke at a panel on publishing.

    Shelter Me, Juliette’s first published novel, was designated as one of the ten best works of fiction in 2009 by the Massachusetts Center for the Book, an affiliate of the Library of Congress. It was also named to the Indie Next List of the American Booksellers Association, was chosen as one of six novels for Target’s 2009 Bookmarked Club, and was a Good Housekeeping featured Book Pick. Her second novel, Deep Down True, was published in January 2011 by Viking Penguin, and was short-listed for the Women’s Fiction Award of the American Library Association. The Shortest Way Home, her third novel, was chosen as one of Library Journal‘s Top 5 BEST BOOKS of 2012: Women’s Fiction.

  • 2013: Matthew Quick

    Matthew Quick (aka Q) is the New York Times bestselling author of several novels, including THE SILVER LININGS PLAYBOOK, which was made into an Academy Award-nominated film. His work has been translated into more than twenty languages and has received a PEN/Hemingway Award Honorable Mention, among other accolades. Q lives in Massachusetts with his wife, novelist/pianist Alicia Bessette.

Pictures from the 25th Annual WCYWC (2015)

25th Annual Worcester County Young Writers Conference

To Register

Our registration period for the 2022 conference will open in January. Stay tuned for more details.

Frequently Asked Questions

List of 6 items.

  • Who is eligible to attend?

    Students grades 7-12 with an interest in creative writing. Normally,  80-100 students from over 40 schools from Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Connecticut participate. This year, because the event is virtual, we welcome students from across the globe to join us.
  • When and where is the event?

    Workshops will occur in the month of March:

    Mentor Tim Mudie
    Workshops Tuesdays (March 2, 9, 16), 7:00 - 8:15 PM EST

    Mentor Loree Griffin Burns
    Workshops Wednesdays (March 3, 10, 17), 7:00 - 8:15 PM EST

    Mentor Rodger Martin
    Workshops Thursdays (March 4, 11, 18) 7:15 - 8:30 PM EST

    Mentor Reading and Student Open Mic
    Thursday, March 25, 7:00 - 8:30 EST


  • What happens during workshops

    Students meet with writing mentors to learn aspects of craft, to generate new writing, and to share their work with their peers.
  • Who runs the writing workshops?

    Local writers who many years of experience publishing and mentoring. See mentor bios below.
  • What is the cost of the event and what does it include?

    The registration fee is $50. Registered students may participate in one, two, or even all three workshops.
  • What do I need to register?

    You must complete our electronic form to sign up. To register, you will need to provide
    • your name, 
    • your Email address and a parent’s Email address
    • your school and grade, 
    • your English teacher’s name and Email address
    The registration fee can be paid online by credit card or with a check by mail.
    • WCYWC Mentors

      Fiction Mentor Tim Mudie

    • WCYWC Mentors

      Nonfiction Mentor Loree Griffin Burns

    • WCYWC Mentors

      Loree's Recent Work

    • WCYWC Mentors

      Loree's Recent Work

    • WCYWC Mentors

      Poetry Mentor Rodger Martin

    • WCYWC Mentors

      Rodger's Recent Work

    • WCYWC Mentors

      Rodger's Recent Work

    • WCYWC Mentors

      Rodger's Recent Work

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