March 7, 2020

Chesapeake College; Wye Mills, MD

Log in


The Bay to Ocean Writers Conference can help you become a better writer. Voted the best writing conference in Maryland by readers of Writer Magazine in 2019, BTO has been helping people improve their writing for more than two decades.

Sponsored by the nonprofit Eastern Shore Writers Association, BTO is dedicated to helping writers advance their craft by providing first-rate educational sessions and inspirational tips across a variety of writing genres. With 25 workshops packed into a single day, you'll be able to choose speakers and topics that suit your needs, whether they be in poetry, fiction, nonfiction, marketing or publishing. Click the image below to download the full printed program, with the schedule of events for BTO. Or scroll down to read an overview of sessions to be offered.:

The 23rd annual BTO conference will take place Saturday, March 7, 2020 at Chesapeake College in Wye Mills, Md.  This event--known for its relaxed, intimate setting and accessible, professional instructors--typically sells out in advance, so it's a good idea to register early if you plan to attend. No tickets will be available at the door. 

Eastern Shore novelist and nonfiction author Brent Lewis will deliver the keynote. We'll have special tracks for beginning and advanced fiction this year, plus workshops focused on form in many different genres. See photos from 2019 BTO.

Below is a list of sessions for 2020.  Click the blue category titles to see full session summaries and speaker bios for that particular track.


BTO 2020 -- Sessions

Keynote Address

Brent Lewis - The BTO 2020 keynote speaker, Brent Lewis, a novelist, playwright, and documentarian, will speak immediately following lunch.

"5 for 10" Writing – Kenton Kilgore

The Essence of Dialogue: Its Ultimate Nature - Judy Kelly 

Characterization from the Actor's Perspective – Gail Priest

Pudgy in the Middle – Suzanne Supplee

The Marathon Method of Plotting - Christie Wright Wild

See full session summaries

Flash Fiction: Fantastic New Forms  Tara Campbell

How to Write in the Voice of the Opposite Sex  – John DeDakis

Crossing the Length Bridge: Short & Long Form Fiction  – Kris Faatz 

Playing with the Page Meg Eden 

How to Hook Readers: It's a Brain Thing - Laura Oliver

See full session summaries


Beyond what the "I" Can See: Point of View for Poets – Sarah Freligh

Have You Ever Wanted to Write a Sonnet? – Jamie Brown 

On Reflection: Secrets to Revision – Jane Edna Mohler

Skinny Poetry Workshop  – Truth Thomas

Intro to Pi-ku, a Contemporary Variation of Japanese Short Form –  BLW McGrory

See full session summaries

 Publishing, Marketing, Editing

First Impressions & Editing Process – Michele Chynoweth and Judy Reveal

Publishing Options – Austin Camacho 

Intro to the Process of Getting Pieces Published in Journals, Reviews and Magazines – Tara A. Elliott 

Author's 2020 Guide to Career Survival – Robert Bidinotto

Building a Marketing Strategy: Where to Spend Your Time & Money – Ariele Sieling

See full session summaries


Craft & Nonfiction 

Unlocking Your Voice: Spoken Word Activism – Amber Green 

Writing the Family Memoir – Cheryl Somers Aubin  

The "Hermit Crab" Essay: How to Use Borrowed Forms to Structure Your Work – Randon Billings Noble

Using Historical Locations in Fiction & Creative Nonfiction  – Andi Cumbo-Floyd

Overlapping Fundamentals: Interview with a Playwright  -  Dylan Roche 

See full session summaries




Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software