Have you ever dreamt of seeing your name on the front cover of your very own publication? Or maybe you already have and want to network and expand your horizons with other local authors. Whatever your personal situation may be, if you have a love for the written word, you cannot miss the 2017 David R. Collins Writers’ Conference.

The Midwest Writing Center (MWC) will be holding this year’s annual David R. Collins Writers’ Conference June 22-24 at St. Ambrose University, McCarthy Hall (518 W Locust St Davenport).

The David R. Collins Writers’ Conference will include intensive three-day workshops, book pitches, 1-on-1 manuscript critiques, luncheons, free readings, and a participant open mic. There will be plenty of information and enjoyment for writers and readers alike. For a full list of activities, you can view the conference brochure online at http://www.mwcqc.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/MWC-2017-Conference-Brochure_Final.pdf.

Whether you are a member of the MWC or not, you can choose to register for workshops such as “Revision Strategies for the Novel”, “Partnership: Finding, Working with, and Keeping an Agent” and more. There will also be two pitch sessions available on Saturday. To register for any part of the conference, you can visit http://www.mwcqc.org/events-opportunities/david-r-collins-writers-conference/drc-conference-registration/ or call (309) 732-7330.

This year, a new event has been added to the conference. A keynote address, free and open to the public, will be given by Pulitzer-Prize finalist Luis Alberto Urrea. A Member of the Latino Literature Hall of Fame, Urrea is the critically acclaimed and best-selling author of 16 books, winning numerous awards for his poetry, fiction, and essays. Urrea will give the conference keynote address at the Figge Art Museum (225 W 2nd Street Davenport) on Thursday June 22 at 7:30 p.m.

Rozz-Tox (2108 3rd Avenue Rock Island) will also be hosting the David R. Collins Writers’ Conference social mixer, faculty reading and participant open mic on Friday June 23. This event is free and open to the public, as well. The social mixer will start the evening off from 5:30-7 p.m. then will be followed by the faculty reading and open mic. After the readings, everyone is encouraged to stick around for ‘Fresh Wax: Low Tide with Liv Carrow’. Fresh Wax is a free and open cafe/bar night with a vinyl collector from the community on the decks playing the music they love. Liv Carrow will be spinning a liberal assortment of sounds (alternative/oldies/psych folk/world/post punk).

Mr. David R. Collins was a nationally known author of children and young adult books. He published over 80 books and wrote numerous articles in a variety of periodicals. He was chosen as one of the top 30 Quad Cities arts and entertainment figures of the 20th century. Mr. Collins was a teacher at Woodrow Wilson Junior High School in Moline from 1962-1982. In 1983, he transferred to Moline High School and remained until his retirement in 1997. The list of honors and recognitions Mr. Collins received throughout his lifetime was beyond impressive. He was one of the QC’s most treasured gems and was an inspiration to young authors all over. He was also the founder of the Midwest Writing Center.

The David R. Collins Writers’ Conference is made possible by the generous support of Modern Woodman of America (founding sponsor), the Riverboat Development Authority, the St. Ambrose University English Department, the Figge Art Museum and the Illinois Arts Council Agency.

 

Tess Abney is a freelance writer who was born and raised in the Quad Cities. She spends most of her time attempting to successfully raise three boys. In her free time, writing is her passion. Whether it is sharing local events and businesses with readers or sharing her thoughts on life, she finds comfort in the way words can bring people together.