Skip to content

2nd Annual Creative Writing Studies Conference

\”Creative Writing Studies in Trump’s USA\”

November 10-13, 2017

Blue Ridge Assembly, Black Mountain, NC


All conference attendees including presenters must be current CWSO members. To become a member, click here.


Conference registration fee on or before August 31 (early bird rate extended): $125

August 31-November 1: $175

If you need to register after November 1, please email the below address.

The conference fee includes access to all conference programming, a reception, three breakfasts at the conference venue, and two box lunches.

We are sorry, but we are unable to refund conference registration fees for cancellations.

Questions? Email

Lodging Information

Please stay with us at the Blue Ridge Assembly, the site of the 2017 Creative Writing Studies Conference! Enjoy a private room, beautiful grounds, and quick access to all conference programming. Network and socialize with fellow scholars, and have easy access to your room and all of your things during our program. All conference events will take place on site. Rooms are available in a block for Friday night, Saturday night, and Sunday night. The rate for a single room is $260, and a shared room is $160. 

To reserve a room at Blue Ridge Assembly, complete the web reservation form. Payment is due at the time of check-in. 

Log in with your CWSO member account to Register for Conference.


Creative Writing Studies Conference 2017 Schedule
Note: this schedule is subject to change


Friday, November 10


keynote speaker Katharine Haake, author of What Our Speech Disrupts: Feminism and Creative Writing Studies



Radical Hope: A Political Poetry Workshop 

Julie Babcock, Megan Levad



Welcome Reception


Saturday, November 11





Teaching Creative Writing in the “Alt-Fact” Era: Research, Facts, and Feelings 

Alyse Bensel, Jameelah Lang, Jennifer Pullen



Accommodating Ableism: How Creative Writing Privileges Normates & What We Are Doing About It 

Jillian Weise, Meg Day



 Telling “Ghost Stories”: Creative-Critical Writing in First-Year Composition

Catalina Bartlett, Kathleen Livingson






Old Dog, New Tricks: Can CWS Make It in Trump’s America?

Mitch James

We Cannot See What We Cannot Say: Difficulties of Opacity in Creative Writing Studies Scholarship

Hannah Kroonblawd

“It’s Gonna be Huge”: Creative Writing and Anti-Intellectualism in the Trump Era

Tim Mayers




Before the First Draft: Cultivating Inspiration and Creative Insight in the Classroom

Brandi Reissenweber

Rethinking Inspiration in Creative Writing

Jill Stukenberg

The Place of the Turn in Poetry Writing Pedagogy: An Empirical Approach

Michael Theune



Not Just for Scientists: Poster Presentations in the Creative Writing Classroom

Callista Buchen

What’s Technical About Creative Writing? Technical Writing’s Relevance to Creative Writing Studies

Erick Piller

Teaching Creativity As Character:  A Dialogue Between Composition and Creative Writing

Karen Schiler




Transmedia Storytelling and Creative Writing

Trent Hergenrader

What\’s the Point?  Teaching Creative Writers How to Write and Publish for Popular Media

Craig Olsen



Building Community: Teaching Collaborative Poetry in Trump’s America

Callista Buchen, Amy Ash


9PM S’mores, outdoor fireplace


Sunday, November 12





Curating a Professional Identity for the 21st Century Job Market

Stephanie Vanderslice, Kate Kostelnik, Janelle Adsit, Jennie Case



Creative Destruction: Using New Media Texts for Political Resistance in the Age of Trumplandia

Anita August



Collaborative Worldbuilding Workshop

Trent Hergenrader






Workshops, Studios, Critiques, and Benchwork: Qualitative Research into Creative Writing Workshops and their Parallel Teaching Spaces in the Arts

Ben Ristow

Where you’re going, where you’ve been: A case study of creative writer-teachers’ histories, trajectories, and identities

Jonathan Udelson

The Page as Palimpsest: History, Self, and Writing-Over in Raymond Federman\’s Double or Nothing

Eric Blix




The Situation: Embodiment, Literature, and Agency in the Creative Writing Classroom

Jenni Moody

Alternative Facts: Teaching and Writing True Stories Through Feminist and Womanist Epistemologies

Anthony Moll

Research in and Through Creative Writing 

Graeme Harper



“There Must Be Some Way Out of Here”: The Utility of Secondary Creative Writing in the Current Political Moment

Chris Drew

Presidential Oratory and Creative Writing\’s Relationship to Rhetoric

Phil Sandick

Teaching Professional Development in the MFA Program

Evan Lavender-Smith




Alternative Narratives: Teaching Creative Writing to Students in Recovery

Lindsay Starck

Judging YA Book Covers

Kerry Spencer

Networked Artistic Community Development as Radical Resistance

Michael Dean Clark



Conversation with Stephanie Vanderslice and Melody Moezzi



Board Meeting, open to all CWSO members


[Send-off Breakfast included Monday morning]


Original Call for Papers

The Creative Writing Studies Conference is focused on research and scholarship in creative writing. We seek proposals that are well written, well researched, theoretically grounded, and connected to current conversations in the field. Proposals should demonstrate an understanding of previous scholarship on the subject under investigation and should aim to create new knowledge and/or challenge disciplinary conceptions and practices. Proposals based solely on the author’s own experience may be appropriate if they are the result of well-defined action research and used established research methods. It is expected that research involving human subjects will conform to the highest standards of ethical conduct as outlined by the Institutional Review Board of the scholar’s home university.


The CFP submission form will be open from February 9-April 1 extended to April 15. Read the below guidlines and follow the link at the bottom of the page.


Conference Tracks and Theme: \”Creative Writing Studies in Trump’s USA\”

We are interested in proposals that concern creative writing and pedagogy; history; qualitative and quantitative research; the digital and multimodal; diversity and inclusion; professionalization and labor; theory, craft, and culture; and social action.

This year, in addition to papers that correspond to the above tracks, we also seek papers that respond to this political moment. As scholars and teachers, how do we respond to Donald Trump’s presidency and policies and to the rise of white nationalism? Papers that respond to this special topic should also correspond to one of the conference tracks. 

We seek articles on creative writing pedagogies that offer both a theoretical and historical background as well as practical applications to engage and reinvigorate the creative process for both students and teachers. We also welcome articles that advance and enlarge theoretical perspectives for creative writing pedagogy scholarship. 

We welcome proposals exploring the histories of individuals, groups, and communities; institutions (broadly defined); and texts related to creative writing as a process, taught subject, or cultural practice. We seek proposals on creative writing pedagogies that offer both a theoretical and historical background as well as practical applications to engage and reinvigorate the creative process for both students and teachers. We also welcome proposals that advance and enlarge theoretical perspectives for creative writing pedagogy scholarship.

Qualitative and Quantitative Research
We seek proposals that investigate the practice, pedagogy, and history of creative writing based on empirical research. We are also open to receiving work that is grounded in research while also challenging the assumptions and conventions of academic discourse in narrative, lyrical, dramatic, avant-garde, theoretical, or meta-theoretical modes. Additionally, we are interested in proposals that interrogate the definition and practice of creative writing research itself. 

Digital and Multimodal
Creative Writing Studies scholarship welcomes examination of and engagement with changes in the technologies–especially digital technologies–that affect the composition, publication, and distribution of creative writing of all genres. 

Diversity and inclusion
We particularly seek proposals that directly address race, ethnicity, ability, culture, class, language, and gender/sexuality difference as experienced and studied in the creative writing academic arena. 

Professionalization and Labor
Teaching creative writing in the university or college intersects employment and institutional issues that often go unexamined. We seek proposals that discuss adjunct/contingent or professorial status; exploitative and/or uneven workloads, pay, and/or benefits; teacher training; interdisciplinarity; assessment; funding; and diversity requirements (or lack thereof). 

Theory, Craft, and Culture
For years, creative writers have taught \”craft\” as if it were a transparent set of values—fixed and universally agreed-upon in how it defines a particular genre.  But creative writing is always embedded in particular cultural, aesthetic, critical, and (often) institutional contexts. We seek proposals that investigate the relationship between authors and these respective contexts, particularly as it stands to theoretically ground creative writing studies in the humanities at large and to further enrich what we talk about when we talk about \”craft.\”

Social Action
We seek proposals that examine the connection between creative writing and its role in the public sphere. More specifically, we seek scholarly essays that reveal how creative writing is being used to engender social change, promote community activism, or intervene in culture in ways that reconnect poetics and politics, form and function, innovation and action, play and protest, artfulness and utility.

Workshops are 60-minute sessions where participants will be actively involved in doing or making something related to creative writing, such as classroom activities or how to use tools or techniques. Workshops must be grounded in sound pedagogical theory and evidence-based practice; we are not interested in lore-based writing prompts (even if they\’re really good ones!) unless they connect to one of the conference tracks in an explicit way, for example using digital tools, engaging with social action, or addressing issues of diversity and inclusion.


Before you begin, note that in order to complete the CFP you will need:

  • Names and email addresses of all presenters
  • A description of your submission that does not exceed 500 words
  • A minimum of 5 relevant scholarly citations that support the proposal\’s description