Summer Conference

July 17th–24th

Application Fee: $20

Price: $1,200

Member Price: $1,125

Applications are now closed. Thanks to all who applied.

About the Conference

This summer, One Story will offer our annual conference for fiction writers online. Twenty-four conference participants will be divided into three intimate eight-student workshop cohorts, each of which will be led by one of our workshop instructors. Over the course of eight days, conference attendees will:

  • Take part in four intensive writing workshop sessions
  • Participate in and attend student readings
  • Meet for a half-hour, one-on-one conference with their workshop instructor
  • Attend craft lectures led by established writers and editors, exploring fiction’s most important elements
  • Learn the ins and outs of the publishing industry at interactive panel discussions with agents, editors, and industry professionals
  • Connect with peers and have exclusive access to resources on our online learning platform
  • Work toward completing a publishable manuscript, create new work, and build long-lasting ties with the literary community and with each other

Read what previous conference attendees have said about the Summer Writers’ Conference:

The One Story Summer Writers’ Conference fostered a tremendous sense of community and propelled the writers in my workshop to new levels of enthusiasm and confidence about their work. Jules Chung, Summer Writers’ Conference, 2021
“It felt that every moment I was at the conference, I was continually affirmed as a writer.” Hannah Gregory, Summer Writers’ Conference, 2021
“What made this workshop special was the sense of purpose the folks running the workshop had, how much they cared about the writing life and seeing us grow in that direction.” Aaron Cohen, Summer Writers’ Conference, 2019
“The advanced lectures made it apparent that I was in a group of working writers who already possessed a foundational knowledge of craft. I left the conference knowing that the One Story editors and staff truly care about my writing career, which gives me the confidence and energy to work hard.” Laura Green, Summer Writers’ Conference, 2018

Conference Instructors

Manuel Gonzales

Contributing Editor

Manuel Gonzales is the author of The Miniature Wife and Other Stories (Riverhead, 2012), winner of the Sue Kaufmann Prize for First Fiction and the John Gardner Prize for Fiction, and the novel, The Regional Office is Under Attack! (Riverhead, 2016), winner of an Alex Award from the YALSA, and he remembers with great excitement, even fourteen years later, the day Hannah Tinti reached out to tell him the editors at One Story would like to publish his story. He currently teaches creative writing and literature at Bennington College and is a core faculty member of the Bennington Writing Seminars.

Maaza Mengiste

Contributing Editor

Maaza Mengiste is the author of The Shadow King, shortlisted for the 2020 Booker Prize, an LA Times Books Prize finalist, and a Best Book of 2019 by New York Times, NPR, Time, Elle, and other publications. Beneath the Lion’s Gaze, her debut novel, was selected by the Guardian as one of the ten best contemporary African books.

Hannah Tinti

Co-Founder & Executive Editor

Hannah Tinti is the co-founder and executive editor of One Story magazine. She is the author of the bestselling novel The Good Thief, which won The Center for Fiction’s first novel prize, and the story collection Animal Crackers, a runner-up for the PEN/Hemingway Award. Her most recent novel, The Twelve Lives of Samuel Hawley, is a national bestseller and is in development for television with Netflix. She co-founded the Sirenland Writers Conference in Italy and has taught writing at New York University’s Graduate Creative Writing Program, Columbia University’s MFA program, CUNY, and at the Museum of Natural History in New York City.  For more information please visit

Application Guidelines:

The One Story Summer Writers Conference is open to fiction writers 21 years of age and older.

The deadline to apply for the conference is 11:59pm ET April 11th. There is a $20 nonrefundable application fee. All applications must be sent through Submittable. All applicants will be notified of acceptance by late May 2021.

We are seeking applicants who are excited about a career in fiction writing and ready for a fun and productive conference. Applicants will be chosen based on the strength of their writing sample and their personal statement.

Complete application guidelines are available on the application. Please note that you will need to create a Submittable account in order to complete the application.



Application Fee: $20 (non-refundable)
Conference Fee: $1,200 (Member Price: $1,125)

The cost of the conference includes:

  • Workshops (no more than 8 people) where you’ll receive focused feedback on your work
  • Craft lectures by visiting authors and instructors to improve your skills
  • Panels of publishing professionals to connect you with the business side of writing
  • A thirty-minute private conference with your workshop instructor
  • Exclusive access to recordings of craft lectures and panels for a year after the conference concludes
  • Opportunities to connect with peers, share work, and access resources on One Story’s online learning platform

Sample Conference Schedule:

(All times are in ET. Times are tentative. The schedule will vary from day to day.)

9:30am – 10:30am

Generative Writing Session:
Start the day with a guided generative writing session.

11:00am – 1:30pm

Manuel Gonzales, Maaza Mengiste, and Hannah Tinti will each lead an eight-person workshop focused on constructive feedback and teaching students how to make good writing great.

4:30pm – 5:30pm

Student Reading
Student readings are a chance for conference attendees in different workshop groups to connect and hear each other’s work in a low-pressure, supportive environment.

6:00pm – 7:15pm

Craft lecture
Craft lectures will be given by guest authors and editors. Past craft lecturers have included Rakesh Satyal, Dantiel W. Moniz, Myla Goldberg, Victor LaValle, and Julie Buntin.