Schedule & Event Calendar

Browse our schedule below.

June 2:

IUWC 2018 Registration will be held in the Persimmon Room of the Indiana Memorial Union goes from 10:30 AM – 12:30 PM. Once you register, take a walk around the beautiful campus, grab some lunch at one of Bloomington’s many delicious restaurants, and return by 1 PM when we begin classes. If you are registered for workshops, you may attend all classes, readings, and panels; registration for classes gives you access to all sessions of the conference except the workshops.)

June 3 – June 6:

The workshops (fiction, poetry, and nonfiction) run concurrently from 9 – 11:30 AM.

Ada Limón’s Poetry Workshop: Ballantine Hall room 147

Matthew Klam’s Fiction Workshop: Ballantine Hall room 149

Kiese Laymon’s Nonfiction Workshop: Ballantine Hall room 138

Informal faculty panels run from 12:00 – 12:50.

Classes begin at 1 PM sharp, and run until 5 PM. Each day, you may attend all three 50-minute classes, which run consecutively with ten minute breaks between each class.

From 5 – 8 PM, enjoy Bloomington, write, exercise, dine, imbibe, sleep, email…essentially, do whatever you please. Readings and receptions are held each evening from 8 – 10 PM.

The conference workshops will be held in Ballantine Hall; panels and classes are all held at the Indiana Memorial Union (IMU) in the Dogwood Room; readings are at the Ted Jones Playhouse (formerly known as the Bloomington Playwrights Project).

June 6:

We wrap up the conference with the last session of the workshops and a visit to the Lilly Library (featuring original materials by Raymond Carver, Kurt Vonnegut, and Carolyn Kizer) at 12 PM.

Our 2018 Schedule: 

Click on workshops or classes to learn more!

Sat. June 2nd

Sun. June 3rd

Mon. June 4th

Tue. June 5th

Wed. June 6th

  • Workshops


  • Lilly Library Visit





Kiese Laymon

Ballantine Hall room 138

Poetry is not only dream and vision; it is the skeleton architecture of our lives. It lays the foundations for a future of change, a bridge across our fears of what has never been before. — Audre Lorde

Who is your audience? What do you want of your audience? Should we perform that discovery for our readers? Can we write and read through the ambiguities implicit in gender, race, place, time, sexuality, class, shame and identity while keeping all our readers locked in, eager to turn the page? How does the shifting of one’s geographic or metaphorical place shape one’s internal voice and sense of home? Do you see useful distinctions between craft and content, politics and prose, identity and characterization? Can you get better as a reader, writer and human through the writing and reading of essays? These are questions we’ll explicitly and implicitly in this summer’s workshop.

Ada Limóm

Ballantine Hall room 147

With a constant focus on balance–the light and the dark, the real and the artful, the lyric and the narrative–we’ll explore how to make poems go deeper, get messier, get sharper, and finally feel more real and complete to ourselves as writers. We’ll read numerous contemporary poems that will help inspire and guide us in our own work. With rigorous in-class writing exercises and deep readings, we’ll try to break open something new while breathing life into older work. You will need a notebook or laptop, a willingness to experiment, and and open mind.

Matthew Klam

Ballantine Hall room 149

Intensive writing workshops are the most inspiring and effective creative experiences I’ve ever been part of. There’s something profound that happens in a concentrated period of days that’s entirely different from, say, a class that meets once or twice a week. I led a workshop at Indiana University Writers’ Conference a few years ago, and the people who showed up there, the students and faculty, were on a really high level. Indiana is a perfect example of this kind of experience, where you have breakthroughs and epiphanies, and meet like minded people and make lasting friendships. I loved it, and can’t wait to go back.


Chanelle Benz: Where Is The Voice Coming From?

Whether in Ernest Hemingway or David Mitchell, Kazuo Ishiguro, Claire Vaye Watkins, or Marlon James, a work of fiction’s voice must feel authentic, revelatory, and close to preordained. But the process of creating the right voice is hardly ever delivered straight from the muse. No matter how transparent or dialed-up the style, voice is a literary performance which is as much about where the voice is coming from as it is about what is being communicated.

In this class, we will read and dissect authorial voices from a range of stories while examining the creation of voice in our own work. We will explore a number of ways to create different voices and deepen the questions that these voices are asking

Alison Gaylin: Crafting the Perfect Crime Novel

Chills, thrills and surprises, flawed, fascinating characters, stories that detail both our darkest impulses and our capacity for redemption. The perfect crime novel incorporates all of these components, and in this class, we will explore the many ways to bring them to the page.

Specially designed writing exercises and prompts will spark your imagination while helping you to better understand such elements as characterization, setting, dialogue and pacing — and how they all ultimately serve to fuel a crime novel’s plot. We’ll also take a look at the work of some of crime fiction’s greatest storytellers, both classic and modern, noting how they used their unique voices and skill-sets to get their messages across.

Jason Katzenstein: The Single Panel Cartoon

What can you do with one still image and a few words?

In this course, you will become close readers of single panel cartoons. We’ll become experts in cartoon tropes and visual shorthand, and we will learn how to make cartoons of our own. Your panels don’t need to be comedic; our emphasis is on creating visual short stories.

A revelation a poet and I had editing each other’s work: a stanza is a little room, and so is a comics panel.

You will leave this class with a better understanding of how to use words and images clearly, economically and in service of telling a story. You’ll learn to imply a world of motion, conversation and relationships that exist just outside the lens of your panel.

With few — if any — words and only one image, you’ll learn to say something.

Ife-Chudeni Oputa: The Illusion of the One-Way Mirror: Craft and the Writer <|> Audience Relationship

In this class we will explore how craft choices invite or resist collaboration between the writer and their audience in shaping both how a poem creates meaning and the meaning it creates. We will consider these choices for poems as they are presented on the page and in public readings.

Please note that this class will intentionally resist an expert/apprentice binary between facilitator and participants, and will decenter knowledge/knowing as the goal of the learning process, favoring instead mystery and discovery.