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The 2021 BTO Conference is now over, however feel free to browse last year's conference for inspiration!


MARCH 20, 2021
Online via ZOOM -- See sessions below -- REGISTER HERE 


For Writers of All Levels

5 Workshops in One Exciting Day!

The 24th annual BTO conference will be held Saturday, March 20, 2021, online via Zoom. This eventlong known for its relaxed setting and professional instructorswill take place entirely online this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite the virtual format, we aim to provide the same level of excellence in all of our sessions.

We have added an extra track this year, providing attendees with six dynamic options to choose from each hour. Stick to a track in your favorite genre, or, to diversify, create your own writing conference experienceone tailored to meet your own unique needs! Attendees will be able to attend five sessions plus the keynote, for a total of six sessions during this celebrated one-day conference sure to set you on the writing path. All sessions except the keynote will be held in Zoom breakout rooms. The keynote will be in the main room with no competing sessions.

Once registered, you'll receive a confirmation email. A link to the BTO Zoom conference will be emailed to you 24 hours before it starts, along with a downloadable session grid and instructions on how to move between breakout rooms. We ask if you plan on joining us that you download the latest version of Zoom.
We'll have special tracks for beginning and advanced fiction writers, plus tracks in poetry, the craft of writing, memoir & nonfiction, and of course, publishing & marketing.



Noted poet, song-writer, and editor Truth Thomas will deliver our BTO keynote this year. 
Join us for his needed speech during these unprecedented times, "Vaccinate Against Fear." 

Below is a list of all sessions by category. Click any category title to see session summaries and speaker bios for that track. 

Speaker handouts are available on this schedule-grid page, which also displays the full schedule in a grid format.  

Can't wait?  REGISTER NOW!

BTO Writers Sessions 2021

Keynote Address

ZOOM Location:
The Chesapeake Main Room

Truth Thomas -  Keynote speaker Truth Thomas is a well-known poet, song-writer, editor, and the founder of Cherry Castle Publishing. You loved his session on Skinny Poetry last year!  This year, you'll love his speech, "Vaccinate Against Fear," at 1:30 pm.

See keynote session info and speaker bio here


ZOOM Location:
Delaware Bay Breakout Room

The Intersection of Story & Setting – Ariele Sieling 

How to Write Your First Page  - Wilnona & Jade     

How to Connect Your Readers to Your Characters – Ted Weber                                                                                                         

Quarantined at the Keyboard – Fran Severn    

How Would You Describe That? - Pat Valdata

See beginning fiction session info & speaker bios here


ZOOM Location:
Tangier Sound Breakout Room

Time Capsule  Laura Oliver

It's All About Us: Diversity in Speculative  – Tara Campbell

How to Write a Key Scene  – John DeDakis

More than Details: Working Your Setting – Kris Faatz 

Environmental Storytelling: Place as Narrative – Meg Eden

See advanced fiction session info & speaker bios here


Craft  

ZOOM Location: 
Chester River Breakout Room

Crafting the Setting in Nontraditional Narratives  Katherine Bell

Artifact as Muse: Using the Things We Share to Bring Nonfiction and Poetry to Life!  Ann Quinn

The Spark: Neuroscience, the Senses, and Memory  – Tara A. Elliott 

Getting Readers to your Place without Google Maps – Jane Edna Mohler

Make a Place in your Life for your Writing: Build a Writing Routine that Works!  Melanie Figg  

See craft session info & speaker bios here

Poetry

ZOOM Location: 
Bohemia River Breakout Room

Getting Down Off our Cloud and into the Field: Deepening Our Perspectives in Writing Nature Poetry – Nancy Mitchell

The Poem You Weren't Expecting – James Arthur 

Writing at the Intersections [Panel] -- Marlena Chertock & Taylor Lewis

Hearing Poetry: The Sounds You Don't See  – John A. Nieves

Cherrylog Road: Placing Your Poem to Expand, Evoke & Provoke –  David P. Kozinsky

See poetry session info & speaker bios here


Publishing/Marketing

ZOOM Location:
Wye River Breakout Room

How Reading, Hosting, or Starting Your Own Literary Reading Series Can Boost Your Career [PANEL]  Laura Shovan (facilitator), Ann Bracken, Linda Joy Burke, Faye McCray

Facebook Ads Without Fear – Kenton Kilgore 

 What Do you Mean I Have to Give Interviews?  Robbie Tarpley Raffish 

How to Promote Your Own Book  –  Cherrie Woods

Delmarva Small Press Publishers [Panel] -  S. Scott Whitaker (Facilitator), Nancy (Day) Sakaduski, Ron Sauder, Stephanie L. Fowler, Jamie Brown

See publishing/marketing session info & speaker bios here

 


 Memoir/Nonfiction

ZOOM Location: 
Chincoteague Bay Breakout Room

Playwriting: It Has A Message but It's Not Meh – Lynne Streeter Childress

Writing Historical Content for Modern Relevancy – Dr. Kerri Moseley-Hobbs  

Mapping Memories: A Nostalgic Stroll Through Your Childhood Neighborhood – Lizzy Solovey

Segmented Essays: When the Whole is Greater than the Sum of Its Parts  – Randon Billings Noble

Let's Start an Illusion with Hand and Pen: Writing Music Reviews with Purpose  Michael Mitchell

See memoir/nonfiction session info & speaker bios here


ZOOM Location: 
The Atlantic Breakout Room

A special networking room open all during lunch and after the conference to meet with fellow writers and speakers.

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