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Sanibel Island Writers Conference

Sanibel Island Writers Conference

Sanibel Island Writers Conference
Related Links

Tom DeMarchi, Director
Sanibel Island Writers Conference

Reed Hall 242
Florida Gulf Coast University
10501 FGCU Blvd S
Fort Myers, FL. 33965-6565



Steve Almond (General Craft Workshop--Characterization & Small-Group Manuscript Workshop--Creative Nonfiction)  

Steve Almond

Steve Almond is the author the story collections My Life in Heavy Metal, The Evil B.B. Chow, and God Bless America, the novel Which Brings Me to You (with Julianna Baggott), and the non-fiction books, the best-selling Candyfreak and (Not That You Asked). His memoir Rock and Roll Will Save Your Life was published in Spring 2010. His most recent book, Against Football, an anguished manifesto about the dubious morality of being a football fan, was released in fall 2014. He also, crazily, self-published three books: This Won't Take But a Minute, Honey, which is composed of 30 very brief stories, and 30 very brief essays on the psychology and practice of writing; Letters From People Who Hate Me, a collection of letters and responses between Steve and his indignant readers; and Bad Poetry, a collection of previously unpublished verse and accompanying self-criticism. Almond lives outside Boston with his wife, three children, and mounting debt.

For more on Steve Almond, including music recommendations, visit:




Laura Apperson (Editor/Panelist)

Bio coming soon.


Andrea Askowitz (General Craft Workshop--Storytelling)

Andrea Askowitz

Andrea Askowitz is the author of the memoir My Miserable, Lonely, Lesbian Pregnancy and the editor of Badass:  True Stories, the Double Album. Her stories have appeared in publications including The New York Times,, xoJane, Brain, Child and, and have aired on NPR and PBS.  She is the founder of the Knight award-winning, true-stories reading series Lip Service, and is now the executive producer and host of the podcast Writing Class Radio. Andrea grew up in Miami where she lives with her wife Victoria and children Natasha, Sebastian and Beast.

Tweet her at @andreaaskowitz and @wrtgclassradio. 


Lynne Barrett (General Craft Fiction Workshop--Plot) 

Lynne Barrett

Lynne Barrett is the author of the story collections Magpies (Gold Medal, Florida Book Awards), The Secret Names of Women, and The Land of Go. She edited Tigertail: Florida Flash and co-edited Birth: A Literary Companion. Recent work appears in The Southern Womens Review, Trouble in the Heartland: Crime Fiction Inspired by the Songs of Bruce Springsteen, Fifteen Views of Miami, Fort Lauderdale Magazine, Wraparound South, and One Year to a Writing Life. A recipient of the Edgar Award for best mystery story, she teaches in the MFA program at Florida International University and is editor of The Florida Book Review

Learn more about Lynne here:




Sandra Beasley (General Craft Workshop--Food Writing & Small-Group Manuscript Workshop--Poetry)

Bio coming soon.



Richard Blanco (General Craft Workshop--Memoir)

Bio coming soon.


Nickole Brown (General Craft Workshop--Poetry)

Bio coming soon.


Jim Daniels (General Craft Workshop--Poetry)

Jim Daniels

Jim Daniels’ fifteenth book of poems, Rowing Inland, will be published in 2017 by Wayne State University Press. His previous book, Birth Marks (BOA Editions, 2013) received the Milton Kessler Poetry Book Award, and the Poetry Gold Medal from the Independent Publisher Book Awards. His fifth book of short fiction, Eight Mile High (Michigan State University Press, 2014) was a Michigan Notable Book and a finalist for the Paterson Fiction Prize. “The End of Blessings,” (2105), his fourth film, appeared in many festivals earlier this year. His poems have been featured on “Prairie Home Companion,” Garrison Keillor's "Writer's Almanac," in Billy Collins' Poetry 180 anthologies, and Ted Kooser's "American Life in Poetry" series. His poem "Factory Love" is displayed on the roof of a racecar. He has received the Brittingham Prize, the Tillie Olsen Prize, the Blue Lynx Prize, two fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, and two from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts. His poems have appeared in the Pushcart Prize and Best American Poetry anthologies. A native of Detroit, Daniels is the Thomas Stockham University Professor of English at Carnegie Mellon University. 

John Dufresne (Flash Fiction Workshop/Morning Writing Exercises)  

John Dufresne

John Dufresne is the author of two short story collections, The Way That Water Enters Stone and Johnny Too Bad, the novels Louisiana Power & LightLove Warps the Mind a Little, both New York Times Notable Books of the Year, Deep in the Shade of ParadiseRequiemMass. and No RegretsCoyote, and books on writing, The Lie That Tells a Truth and Is Life Like This? His short stories have twice been named Best American Mystery Stories. He's written the screenplays for The Freezer Jesus and To Live and Die in Dixie.

For more information on Dufresne, visit


Stephen Elliott (Screenwriting Workshop)

Stephen Elliott

Stephen Elliott is the founding editor of the popular online literary magazine The Rumpus. He has directed three movies. The first, About Cherry was released by IFC in 2012. In 2013 he directed an adaptation of his novel Happy Baby. His newest movie, After Adderall, will premier in 2016. He is the the author of seven books including The Adderall Diaries and Happy Baby. His writing has been featured in EsquireThe New York TimesThe Believer, GQ, Best American Non-Required Reading 2005 and 2007, Best American Erotica, and Best Sex Writing 2006. He is currently Senior Editor for Epic Magazine

For more info, visit


Gina Frangello (Fiction Workshop/Editor Panelist)

Gina Frangello 

Gina Frangello’s forthcoming novel, Every Kind of Wanting, will be released on Counterpoint in September 2016. Her last novel, A Life in Men (Algonquin 2014), was selected for the Target Emerging Authors series, has been optioned by Universal Cable Productions/Denver & Delilah, and was a book club selection for NYLON magazine, The Rumpus and The Nervous Breakdown. She is also the author of two other books of fiction: Slut Lullabies (Emergency Press 2010), which was a Foreword Magazine Best Book of the Year finalist, and My Sister’s Continent (Chiasmus 2006).  She has nearly 20 years of experience as an editor, having founded both the independent press Other Voices Books, and the fiction section of the popular online literary community The Nervous Breakdown. She has also served as the Sunday editor for The Rumpus, the Executive Editor for Other Voices magazine, and the faculty editor for TriQuarterly Online. Her short fiction, essays, book reviews and journalism have been published in such venues as Salon, Dame, Ploughshares, the Boston Globe, BuzzFeed, the Chicago Tribune, the Huffington Post, Fence, FiveChapters, Prairie Schooner, the Chicago Reader, and in many other magazines and anthologies. 

For more info, visit or @ginafrangello on Twitter.

Ben Greenman (Fiction Workshop/Collaboration Panelist)

Ben Greenman

Ben Greenman is a contributing writer to the New Yorker and a New York Times-bestselling  author who has written both fiction and nonfiction. His most recent novel is The Slippage; his most recent collection of stories is What He's Poised To Do. He also has collaborated with Questlove on the hip-hop memoir Mo Meta Blues and Something To Food About, an investigation of the intersection of creativity and food, and he co-wrote George Clinton's memoir BrothasBe, Yo Like George, Ain't That Funkin' Kinda Hard on You?

For more info, visit:
Twitter: @bengreenman


Nathan Hill (Fiction Workshop)

Nathan Hill

Nathan Hill's first novel, The Nix, is being published this year by Knopf. His short fiction has appeared in many literary journals, including The Iowa ReviewAGNIThe Gettysburg Review, and Fiction, where he was awarded the annual Fiction Prize. A native Iowan, he now lives in Naples, Florida.

For more on Nathan Hill, visit:

Twitter: @nathanreads
Joyce Maynard (General Craft Workshop--Fiction)
Joyce Maynard is the author of sixteen books including the novels To Die For and Labor Day (both adapted for film) and the best-selling memoir, At Home in the World—translated into seventeen languages. A frequent performer with The Moth and a fellow of the MacDowell Colony and Yaddo, she founded the Lake Atitlan Writers’ Workshop in 2001, bringing writers to explore the art of memoir surrounded by a deep volcanic lake and five volcanoes.  The rest of the time, Maynard makes her home in Lafayette, Ca, where she is currently at work on the screenplay for her latest novel, just released this spring, Under the Influence. 

Christopher Schelling (Literary Agent/Panelist) 





Christopher Schelling is a literary agent whose list spans a wide range of fiction and nonfiction, including New York Times bestselling memoirist Augusten Burroughs (Running With Scissors, This Is How) and bestselling YA novelists Rainbow Rowell (Eleanor & Park, Fangirl) and Cinda Williams Chima (The Seven Realms, The Heir Chronicles). Schelling has been representing writers since 1997, and started his own agency, Selectric Artists, in 2011. He is also the publisher of Roadswell Editions, a curated ebook imprint with a list including Jon Katz (Listening to Dogs), Kathe Koja (The Mercury Waltz) and Kim Stanley Robinson (A Short Sharp Shock). Prior to being an agent, he held Executive Editor positions at Dutton and HarperCollins.

For more info on Schelling, visit: or

Twitter: @CRSRipley  


Darin Strauss (Narrative Workshop)

Darin Strauss

A recipient of a National Book Critics Circle Award, the Guggenheim Fellowship, the American Library Association Award, and numerous other prizes, Darin Strauss is a national- and internationally-bestselling author. His books have been New York Times, Newsweek, Los Angeles Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Chicago Tribune, Entertainment Weekly and NPR Best Books of the Year, among other honors; he has appeared on Good Morning America, CBS’s The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, NBC News, among many others. 

Strauss recently finished a short stint as an opinion columnist at Al-Jazeera America, has written screenplays for Disney, Gary Oldman, and Julie Taylor, and currently has a production deal with Sony Pictures Television. He is the Clinical Professor of Fiction at NYU's creative writing program. His work has been translated into fourteen languages and published in nineteen countries. 

For more info, visit

Twitter: @darinstrauss