• Inspiration Into Action
  • Whatcom County
2017 Chuckanut Writers Conference
Bellingham, WA | Whatcom Community College | Friday & Saturday June 23 & 24

Our mission is to profoundly inspire your writing life. In support of this mission, we’ve gathered a renowned faculty and developed a dynamic program with an unwavering commitment to excellence. We invite you to take part in this unique event, one we hope you’ll remember for years to come.


why attend?

  • Study with some of the best writing faculty anywhere.
  • Practice your craft in a supportive, collegial setting.
  • Learn valuable writing techniques and gain new insights.
  • Interact in person with dynamic authors, literary agents, marketing experts,
    and fellow writers.
  • Enhance your knowledge of the business of writing.
  • Return home energized, inspired and ready to write.
  • Earn 16 clock hours if you’re a WA State K-12 teacher and you attend the entire conference (administrative fee applies).

Fee includes:

  • All sessions (see schedule) and free parking
  • Faculty readings
  • Author book signings

Options (additional cost):

  • Pitch sessions
  • Marketing consultations
  • Master Classes: These classes will fill up fast, so make sure to register early!
  • Box lunches

Whatcom Community College

Whatcom Community College is a comprehensive two-year college serving over 12,000 students annually. Set on a 63-acre campus, considered by many to be the most picturesque in the state, WCC offers transfer degrees, professional technical training programs and Community & Continuing Education (lifelong learning) courses. The Community Education mission statement: We are sincerely dedicated to serving our community by offering quality lifelong learning experiences that are relevant, accessible, enjoyable, and enriching.

Village Books

Founded in 1980 by Chuck and Dee Robinson, Village Books is a community-based, independent bookstore located in the historic Fairhaven district of Bellingham, Washington, where it has been awarded the Tourism Business of the Year by the members of the Convention and Visitors Bureau. Since 1980 it has been Whatcom County, Washington’s “Community Bookshop for Browsing.” The store was also honored as the 2008 Outstanding Philanthropic Small Business in Washington State. Village Books’ mission is “building community, one book at a time,” which it does daily through a dedicated staff, by collaborating with numerous community organizations and through its Literature Live author event series, through which it hosts about 250 authors each year. Village Books is excited to co-present the Chuckanut Writers Conference, and eager to help it prosper for many years to come.

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June 22*-24, 2017(*Preconference events on June 22)

2016 Program Overview | Whatcom Community College

Click here for a printable pdf of the 2016 conference schedule!

The Chuckanut Writers Conference Pre-Conference events start on Thursday at 1:00 pm, with three Master Classes featuring faculty members Sara Donati, Elaina Ellis, and Robert Michael Pyle. The Chuckanut Radio Hour starts at 6:30 pm.

Conference check-in opens Friday at 9:00 AM. The conference begins at 10 AM with featured speakers and multiple breakout craft sessions, extending into an early evening of a reception with readings and signings by faculty author presenters. The program continues Saturday, June 25, with a full day of author sessions, panels, and an additional book signing. The conference concludes Saturday evening with concurrent open mics for conference attendees at venues in Bellingham’s historic Fairhaven district.

Plan to arrive by 9:30 AM (or earlier) to park, check in, receive conference materials, and proceed to Heiner Theatre for the Welcome/Opening Address beginning promptly at 10 AM.

Village Books Conference Bookstore will be open throughout the conference. As co-presenter of the Chuckanut Writers Conference, Village Books will be the exclusive on-site bookseller for the conference and will have titles by the faculty authors available for purchase. Village Books is a community-based, independent bookstore located in the historic Fairhaven district of Bellingham, where it has celebrated building community one book at a time since 1980.

Agent Pitch Sessions and Marketing Consultations will be scheduled concurrently with other sessions throughout the conference. Pre-registration for pitch sessions is required. There will be no sign-ups during the conference.

the faculty
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Erik Larson Headshot Resized
Erik Larson

Erik Larson is the author, most recently, of Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania, which he describes as a non-fiction maritime thriller. He is the author of four previous New York Times bestsellers, including In the Garden of Beasts, which hit #1 and remained on the hardcover list for 35 weeks. It has…

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Robert Michael Pyle

Robert Michael Pyle was born and raised in Colorado and has lived in the Pacific Northwest, California, New England, and Great Britain. His B.Sc. in Nature Perception and Protection and M.Sc. in Nature Interpretation from the University of Washington were followed by a Ph.D. in Lepidoptera Ecology and Conservation from Yale University. He worked as…

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Roby Blecker

Roby Blecker has extensive experience as an author, teacher, editor, public speaker, and spiritual director. The author of both fiction (as Roby James) and nonfiction, her first book was published in 1996, and her nonfiction has appeared in both local and national media, including the lead op-ed piece in the Washington Post on Easter Sunday…

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