Ashland University to Hold River Teeth Nonfiction Writing Conference

Ashland University to Hold River Teeth Nonfiction Writing Conference

4/17/13 ASHLAND, Ohio – Well-known writers Rebecca McClanahan and Scott Russell Sanders will be guest speakers at the River Teeth Nonfiction Conference that will be held on the Ashland University campus May 17 to 19.

The conference, which will center on essay, memoir and literary journalism, will consist of two full days of manuscript consultations, seminars, readings and community, all focused on the craft of nonfiction.

The conference registration fee of $400 includes a 30-minute individual manuscript consultation (up to 25 pages), admission into all panels, seminars, social events, book signings, open-mics, breakfast on Saturday and Sunday mornings, and a complimentary one-year subscription to River Teeth. Attendees may request a book-length manuscript consultation for an additional fee.

McClanahan’s tenth book, The Tribal Knot: A Memoir of Family, Community, and a Century of Change,” is forthcoming from Indiana University Press in 2013. Her work has appeared in Best American Essays, Best American Poetry, The Kenyon Review, The Gettysburg Review, River Teeth, and numerous anthologies. The recipient of the Wood Prize from Poetry, a Pushcart Prize in fiction, the Glasgow Award for nonfiction, and literary fellowships from New York Foundation for the Arts and the North Carolina Arts Council, McClanahan teaches in the MFA programs of Queens University (Charlotte) and Rainier Writing Workshop. His website is

Sanders is the author of 20 books of fiction and nonfiction, including A Private History of Awe” and A Conservationist Manifesto.” The best of his essays from the past 30 years, plus nine new essays, are collected in Earth Works, published in 2012 by Indiana University Press. Among his honors are the Lannan Literary Award, the John Burroughs Essay Award, the Mark Twain Award, the Cecil Woods Award for Nonfiction, the Eugene and Marilyn Glick Indiana Authors Award, and fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts. In 2012, he was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He is a distinguished professor emeritus of English at Indiana University, where he taught from 1971 to 2009. He and his wife, Ruth, a biochemist, have reared two children in their hometown of Bloomington, in the hardwood hill country of Indiana’s White River Valley.

Other presenters for the conference will include Jill Christman, associate professor of English at Ball State University; Bob Cowser Jr., professor of English at St. Lawrence University; freelance writer Valerie Due; author and Antioch University-LA faculty member Hope Edelman; Steven Harvey, professor of English at Young Harris College; author Michelle Herman; author Kate Hopper; author and Fairfield University faculty member Sonya Huber; Dr. Joe Mackall, director of the Creative Writing Program and professor of English at Ashland University; author Brian Mockenhaupt; author and professor of English at the College of DuPage, Tom Montgomery Fate; author Robert Root; author Michael Steinberg; author Earl Swift; and Sarah Wells, managing editor for River Teeth.

Current MFA students can contact Sarah Wells about a discount to attend the conference without a manuscript consultation. 

A $100 deposit is due along with registration materials by May 3, 2013. Students currently enrolled in creative writing programs are eligible for an additional $50 discount.

To register, applicants need to submit a 10-page double-spaced writing sample and a statement of interest (500 words or less) describing why they are interested in attending this conference. Any questions should be directed to

Conference attendees are encouraged to stay on campus and to dine with other conference attendees. The meal plan, which includes dinner Friday evening and lunch and dinner Saturday and Sunday, is $85. Those conference participants who opt-out of meals will find several dining options within walking distance of the University.

There are two options for on-campus housing. Both options are for Friday through Monday (three nights): apartment or dormitory. The apartment housing is at a rate of $141.50 for three nights, Friday through Monday. Each apartment is an air-conditioned, fully-furnished suite of two bedrooms (four people in each suite) with a full kitchen. The dormitory housing is at a rate of $96.50 for a single air-conditioned room and linen package or $74 for a shared non-air-conditioned room and linen package. The linen package includes towels, sheets, blankets, and a pillow, but guests should bring their own toiletries. Attendees may choose to buy-out a dorm room for $35 a night or share a room with another guest for $17.50 a night (excludes linen package).

Ashland University, ranked in the top 200 colleges and universities in U.S. News and World Report’s National Universities category for 2013, is a mid-sized, private university conveniently located a short distance from Akron, Cleveland and Columbus, Ohio. Ashland University ( values the individual student and offers a unique educational experience that combines the challenge of strong, applied academic programs with a faculty and staff who build nurturing relationships with their students.

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