Image: Donate Now Button
  • OP6-25-15-020
  • 1262727_376441045822909_1252925079_o-2
  • 1146436_10200656148951768_1887911761_o-2
  • 1381500_10204219531962341_6656282498034360125_n-2
  • 10540722_10152184625246820_640176968930747583_o-2
  • 10548717_10203292591101174_1078233125912578783_o-2
  • soda-fountain
  • OPPics6-26-15-007
  • 10568864_815222161852025_3157767102208254092_n-3
  • beachNewSalt
  • temple-porter
  • 21Beach
  • tennis
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14

76th Writers Conference at Ocean Park

The Writers Conference was founded by Adelbert M. Jakeman, Sr. of Westfield, Massachusetts and Loring Eugene Williams of Cleveland, Ohio. Jakeman was at one time head of the English department at Westfield High School and was Assembly Superintendent at Ocean Park for 31 years. Read more of Dr. Jim Brosnan's history of the Writers Conference here.

The Conference began in 1941 to provide, "an informal meeting place of inspiration and instruction for all persons interested in the writing arts, whether prose or poetry, whether or not they themselves are writers." This statement, written by The Conference's co-founder, Del Jakeman, Sr., continues to set the tone of The Conference today. Come to the Writers' Conference and find recognition, enthusiastic response, and kind encouragement to be the very best writer you can be.

This year the conference is August 8-12 and will take place in Porter Hall. For a registration form contact Jim Brosnan, P.O. Box 172, Assonet, MA, 02702, telephone 401-598-1424; or email

August 8: 4:00pm Opening Session
August 9: 8:00am – 8:00pm
August 10: 8:30am – 8:00pm
August 11: 8:30am – 8:00pm
August 12: 8:00am – 1:00pm Conclusion

Workshops begin on Tuesday morning and continue through Friday morning. Workshops in different genres are held in the morning and afternoon by established writers. This intimate conference creates a community of writers who encourage and nurture one another. Participants who come from a variety of backgrounds, ages, and geographic locations attend all of the sessions as part of a week-long commitment to the craft of writing.

On Thursday conference participants engage in a Beach Inspirational Poetry session at 7:30 am at the beach followed by coffee and refreshments at the Ocean Park Library. There are also two open-mic opportunities for conference participants. Material must be connected to newsletter prompts or workshop assignments.



Details 2016 conference presenters will appear here as they are added to the Conference.

Stuart Kestenbaum is the author of four collections of poems, Pilgrimage (Coyote Love Press), House of Thanksgiving, Prayers and Run-on Sentences, and Only Now (all Deerbrook Editions), and a collection of essays The View From Here (Brynmorgen Press). The director of the Haystack Mountain School of Crafts from 1988 until 2015, he has written and spoken widely on craft making and creativity, and his poems and writing have appeared in numerous small press publications and magazines including Tikkun, the Sun, the Beloit Poetry Journal, and on Garrison Keillor's Writer's Almanac. Former US Poet Laureate Ted Kooser has written "Stuart Kestenbaum writes the kind of poems I love to read, heartfelt responses to the privilege of having been given a life. No hidden agendas here, no theories to espouse, nothing but life, pure life, set down with craft and love." He was appointed Maine's poet laureate in 2016.

For three decades Carla Maria Verdino-Süllwold's music and visual arts reviews and features appeared regularly in Opera News, Gramophone, Opéra International, Opera, Music Magazine, Beaux Arts, and The Crisis, and her byline has headed numerous program essays and record liner notes. Among her non-fiction works, the best known is We Need A Hero! Heldentenors from Wagner's Time to the Present: A Critical History. Working for eleven years as baritone Thomas Hampson's personal assistant, she collaborated with him on his song research, recital planning, and helped to create several media projects, serving as associate producer and content consultant/writer, among them I Hear America Singing for WNET/PBS and Voices of the Heart: Stephen Foster for German television. She continues to work as a journalist and critic, specializing in opera, classical music and theatre, serving as senior writer for Scene4 Magazine, Maine regional editor for Broadway World, and a contributor to Fanfare Magazine. She has also published four fictional works, the most recent two collections of short stories, Bookends and Carousel, and a novel and screenplay, Raising Rufus: A Maine Love Story, which won the 2011 Grand Prize at the Rhode Island Film Festival, as well as another novel The Whaler's Bride.

Ann Joslin Williams is the author of the novel Down From Cascom Mountain (Bloomsbury, USA, 2011), and the short story collection, The Woman in the Woods which won the Spokane Prize for Short Fiction. She's the recipient of an NEA Grant and the winner of the New Hampshire Writers Project Award for Outstanding Book of Fiction, 2011. Her work has appeared in many literary magazines including: Ploughshares, the Missouri Review, the Iowa Review, Story Quarterly, Arts and Letters, and elsewhere. She is director of the MFA Program in Writing and an Associate Professor at the University of New Hampshire.

The following are PDF documents. Forms can be filled out in your browser and then printed and mailed or you may print them and fill out by hand before mailing.

Thank you for your Interest
2016 Registration
Daily Schedule
2016 1st Conference Newsletter ~ Contest Guidelines~ Prose Entry ~ Poetry Entry

Summer Season 2016