Register now for Sept. 20 Creative Writers Confere...

Register now for Sept. 20 Creative Writers Conference at MTSU

Friday, Sept. 5, is the deadline for area writers to register to attend the Sept. 20 Creative Writers Conference of Middle Tennessee in MTSU’s James Union Building.

MTSU Write graphic webThe daylong event will feature a keynote address by Tony Earley, author of “Jim the Boy,” “Somehow Form a Family” and “Mr. Tall.” Other award-winning authors scheduled to speak include poet Jeff Hardin, novelist Darnell Arnoult and essayist D.T. Lumpkin.

This second annual conference is sponsored by MTSU Write, a non-degree writing program at Middle Tennessee State University — formerly The Writer’s Loft — and is open to the public. More details are available at

General admission to the 10 a.m.-7:30 p.m. conference is $60. Writer’s Loft alumni, MTSU faculty and students can register for $40 each. Current MTSU Write participants can attend free. The registration fee covers all workshops and a buffet dinner.

“Beginning and experienced writers will gain insight and inspiration from this extraordinary line-up of speakers, while getting to chat and mingle with the community of writers we have in Middle Tennessee,” said MTSU Write director Karen Alea Ford, who also is an adjunct professor in MTSU’s Department of English.

“Our first conference was such a success that we wanted to keep it going.”

Tony Earley

Jeff Hardin

Earley, who is the Samuel Milton Fleming Chair in English at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, also is the author of “The Blue Star” and “Here We Are in Paradise.”

He was included in The New Yorker’s inaugural best “20 Under 40” list of fiction writers and Granta’s “20 Best Young American Novelists.”

Hardin’s poetry collections include “Fall Sanctuary,” “Notes For a Praise Book” and the soon-to-be-published “Restoring the Narrative,” which already has won the Donald Justice Prize for Poetry.

D.T. Lumpkin

Darnell Arnoult

Arnoult’s works include “What Travels With Us” and “Sufficient Grace.” She is writer-in-residence and co-director of the Mountain Heritage Literary Festival at Lincoln Memorial University in Harrogate, Tennessee.

Her honors include the Weatherford Award for Appalachian Literature and the 2007 Tennessee Writer of the Year Award from the Tennessee Writers Alliance.

Lumpkin, a lecturer in MTSU’s English department, has been published in The Mid-American Review and the Oxford American and was the recipient of the Association of Writers and Writing Programs’ Intro Journals Award.

He also is a facilitator of the creative writing workshop on the Death Row unit at Riverbend Maximum Security Penitentiary in Nashville.

The MTSU Write non-degree writing program is year-round and open to anyone interested in being mentored by a professional writer of fiction, nonfiction or poetry. Students work from home, spending three semesters honing their skills and preparing their work for publication.

For more information about the MTSU Write program, visit its website at or email Ford at

— Gina E. Fann (