Writing the Rockies, 2016 Conference

Welcome to Writing the Rockies 2016
Wednesday, July 20 -- Sunday July 24, 2016

Thanks to dozens of staff, scores of presenters and hundreds of participants, Writing the Rockies 2015 was a tremendous success, by far our largest and most ambitious conference ever. We are already in the process of planning the 2016 conference, which will take place from Wednesday evening, July 20, through Sunday evening, July 24. Registration for the conference will go live in early November. Please return to this page regularly for updates.

Below is the program from 2015, which will be archived when we publish the 2016 program.

Welcome to Writing the Rockies 2015
Wednesday, July 22 -- Sunday July 26, 2015

"Something happened to literature over the last couple of hundred years that pulled it apart into sub-genres, fragments, refined technical or theoretical jargons, specialized subject areas, social and political enclaves--and divided the rough consensus that held together the audiences of Dante, Shakespeare, Goethe and Melville. Writing the Rockies is a blazingly imaginative and very successful essay at bringing it all back together. In the spectacular valley of the Gunnison each summer some of the best conversations about literature in all its forms are going on, together with a new perspective on our civilization and a very old pleasure in the beauty of the word." Frederick Turner, Founders Professor of Arts and Humanities at the University of Texas at Dallas

Now in its 16th year, Writing the Rockies is one of the region's preeminent writers' conferences. It takes place each year during the last long weekend of July as part of Western's low-residency Graduate Program in Creative Writing, and like that program offers events in poetry, genre fiction, screenwriting for film & tv, publishing and creative nonfiction.

The conference is co-sponsored by Western's Department of Communication Arts, Language and Literature and welcomes beginners, students, published writers in all genres, editors, teachers, and anyone else who believes in the magic and power of the written word.

Set in the beautiful Gunnison Valley of the central Colorado Rockies on the campus of Western State Colorado University, the conference offers a wide range of workshops, lectures, seminars, readings, and special events that create an intense, collegial writers' community and retreat across four days. The conference includes a book fair featuring hundreds of titles by the speakers and presenters.

Conference faculty are highly distinguished and have published in every genre imaginable, including fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry, screenwriting, journalism, criticism and scholarship, as well as having experience as editors, publishers and agents. In addition to enrolling in workshops or seminars and attending other events, participants can sign up for manuscript reviews and pitch sessions.

Click here to see a downloadable and printable poster for the 2015 conference.

Register Now for Writing the Rockies

Non-Matriculated Credit Options for "Writing the Rockies"

Most participants attend the conference as a free-standing event, but undergraduate and graduate students who are not enrolled in Western's Graduate Program in Creative Writing may apply to earn credit for attendance through Western's Division of Extended Studies. Undergraduates can earn degree-seeking credit. Students with an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution can earn one non-degree graduate-level credit in “ENG 510,” which is run through the Western Teachers Institute, administered by Western's Extended Studies Office. Additional fees apply. For more information contact Western's Extended Studies Program at or 1-800-876-5309 , ext. 7, or ExtendedStudies@western.edu.


Register Now for Writing the Rockies

Graduate Program in Creative Writing, Application Information


Faculty & Staff


Director of Genre Fiction Concentration
BA, University of Wisconsin; MFA, National University
Phone: 970.943.2025
Office Location:
Grad Creative Writing MFA Inst
BA, Rutgers University; MSt, Oxford University; PhD, Oxford University
Office Location:
Director of Screenwriting Concentration
BA, University of Delhi; MA, Wake Forest University; MFA, Loyola Marymount University;
Phone: 970.943.3016
Office Location:
Grad MFA Capstone Advising
BA, Fort Lewis College; MFA, University of Southern Maine; PhD, Georgia State University
Office Location:
Grad Creative Writing Master of Fine Arts Inst
BA, California College of Arts and Crafts; MFA in Popular Fiction, University of Southern Maine; MFA in Painting, Lone Mountain College;
Phone: 970.943.2025
Office Location: Taylor Hall 208
Director of Graduate Program in Creative Writing; Director of Poetry Concentration
AB, Harvard University; MA, University of Utah; PhD, New York University;
Phone: 970.943.2058
Office Location: Taylor Hall 222B
Director, Certificate in Publishing
Master of Public Health, University of Michigan; Master of Social Work, University of Michigan; Bachelor of Arts, Calvin College
Phone: 720.984.2810
Office Location: Off Campus
Professor of English
BA, MA, Eastern New Mexico University; PhD, Texas Tech University.
Phone: (970) 943-2016
Office Location: Taylor Hall 208G