Hampton Roads Writers - Where Characters Connect

First 10-Lines SUBMISSIONS DUE NO LATER THAN OCTOBER 13 Hampton Roads Writers 15th Annual Writers Conference

November 9 – 11, 2023

Holiday Inn VA Beach & Norfolk Hotel & Conference Center
5655 Greenwich Road
Virginia Beach, VA

Basic Conference Rate—Includes 2 plus-day admission (November 9 - 11), daily continental breakfast and lunch, (no outside food permitted), all-day beverages, no-fee writing contests, First 10-Line Critique Sessions, two 10-minute pitches with any of the five agents, 90-minute social, and open mic.
  • Aug 12 - Oct 27, 2023 Member = $329, Nonmember = $369
  • Oct 28 - Nov 9, 2023 = $409
  • 2-day FULL TIME Student = $199
  • 1-day FULL TIME Student = $150
  • 1-day (Friday OR Saturday) member or nonmember = $209 (may attend Thursday evening session for free)
  • Thursday evening only = $59
A few need-based full and partial scholarships for tuition are available; scholarships do NOT cover hotel lodging or transportation to and from the conference. Contact us to inquire and be prepared to show the financial need.

NOTE: Members must be logged in to receive discounts.

Arrive early to scope out everything, get settled, and make friends. It’s incredibly bracing to have someone you can eat with or wave to as you enter a room.

Be on the lookout for faculty hanging around during downtime. Strike up a conversation, not about yourself and your work, but about them, because you’re here to learn. Try questions like, “If you were just starting out today, what would you be writing?” or, “What’s the best attribute an author can have?”

Carry a full-sized notebook for the full-sized ideas you’re going to write—not a tiny one for tiny ideas.

Determine to make up your mind that you won’t be judgmental, easily offended, or needy. Remember, it’s not about you—it’s about your writing.

Even though it might be hard, remain open and receptive to comments if you've submitted your work for critique. Never argue or try to justify anything. Ask for more explanation if possible but don’t take notes—it’ll only distract you. As soon as the critique is over, write full notes.

Focus sharply on what you want. Make a mission statement: “At this conference I intend to learn how to write better suspense / organize my nonfiction project / figure out an ending to my novel.”

Bonus tips:
Take nothing for granted. Speak up and ask a lot of questions.

Cut your losses and leave a session that’s not right for you. Step in late to another one where you might learn something truly useful. If that fails, find a sunny spot outside, open your notebook, and do some writing until lunch. Any writing.

Writing is the only thing that matters. Do it.

Next Zoom Social hour, AKA the Quarantini, is Friday,
October 6, 4:30 - 5:30 PM.

Get your Zoom Link
martini glass

Traveling Pen Series of Writers Workshops for 2024

Do you have an idea for a class you'd like to see in 2024? If so, please let us know. If you know of a professional writer or teacher qualified to teach the class you'd like to see us bring to the Traveling Pen Series of Writers Workshops, please also include the teacher's contact info if you have it.

Thirteenth in a series of essays about steps taken by HRW member Drema Deòraich on her way to indie publication success with her debut novel, Entheóphage.

The first thing people will see in your book, other than the cover, is the front matter. That’s the title pages, the copyright page, and other essentials that the reader needs to be able to find quickly and easily. Front matter can break down into several categories, so let’s look first at the title pages, and the copyright page.

There are usually two title pages in the front of the book.
1. The very first recto (right-hand) page inside the cover should contain only the title on an otherwise blank white page; nothing appears on the back of this page.
2. The next recto page should be more elaborate, and include the title, a bit of imagery from the cover or perhaps some other relevant graphic, your name, and the imprint name. The back of this second title page is the copyright page, which is where the book’s legal info should go.

You can find plenty of sources online for what belongs on the copyright page. Here’s what I included:
1. The book’s title.
2. The copyright date.
3. An “All rights reserved” paragraph—many books have them, and most appeared standard. I picked the one I liked best and used it as a guide.
4. The book’s ISBN number (or other ID number, if you’re using a free one).
5. If the work is fiction, make sure you put a legal notice saying that it is just that: a work of fiction, and that names, places, characters, and incidents are either the product of your imagination, or used fictitiously. This paragraph is also common in novels; find one you like that covers your legal bases and use that.
6. Cover credit and copyright
7. I included “first printing” and the year, but since you are going to be using a print on demand service, that isn’t necessary. I used it to indicate that this was a first version. If I revise it later (there were a few typos in my book! I’ll touch on that later), I’ll change that to “second printing.”
8. A “published by” indication. My imprint is Niveym Arts LLC, so that’s what I used. I also gave the city, state, zip, and URL for the website.

That’s it for now. See you next month!

Author Spotlight

Amy Collins


by: Sandy Robinette
Amy Collins, a well-respected literary agent with Talcott Notch and recognized as someone who gets her authors published, is coming to the HRW Conference. Our Conference in November will be her final appearance on an almost year-long cross-country jaunt of the USA with stops at many interesting places along the way. Speaking and teaching at workshops and conferences every month, and listening to 10-minute author agent pitches, Amy has taken the pulse of the writing and publishing business.

With this countrywide look at the state of writing and publishing, Amy will be ready to educate our conference participants beginning with her Keynote address, followed by her widely anticipated classes and her author/agent pitches. Speaking on the latest trends, making predictions on the next big theme in every genre, she will offer solid information on the publishing and marketing of your work. Our conference also will serve as the last conference of the year for authors to pitch their work to her in hope of literary agent representation.

An author herself, Amy speaks with knowledge and authority. She knows the publishing business inside and out and will be passing on her unique take on the industry.

The lady is “in the know” when it comes to publishing. Don’t miss your chance to learn from her and be ready to take notes!

IF you haven't done so already, sign up now for the Conference and see Amy in person!


By: Heather Brown Barrett

Mike Krentz
  • Her Show of Force, the first book of his Mahoney & Squire Military Women’s Adventure Fiction series, will be available October 3rd on Amazon, Apple, Kobo, and B&N, in both print and e-book formats.
Ken Poyner
  • One poem, “Gift,” published in Mobius, Vol 34, #3.
  • Two drabbles, “Covenant” and “Defined Threat,” published at Gargoyle Magazine.
Heather Brown Barrett
  • New poem, “Blue Moon, October 31, 2020” published at Visual Verse.

Red Lagoe, otherwise known as Leigh Anne Lagoe
  • for the publication of the anthology, Impulses of a Necrotic Heart.


Do you have a recent writing publication or writing award you’d like to share for the Kudos section of the Hampton Roads Writers monthly newsletter? If so, please email your name and publication information to Heather Brown Barrett.

Another learning opportunity

“Strong Women - Strange Worlds,” an all-volunteer group, hosts FREE, twice-monthly online (via Zoom) live author readings featuring authors of science fiction, fantasy, and horror. (Pre-registration is required to get the Zoom link).

The hour-long events feature six authors, who each read for eight minutes, followed by time for Q&A with the authors.

The events occur on the first Friday (12 pm - 1 pm ET) and third Thursday (7 pm - 8 pm ET) of each month.

Every event features books and authors with an eclectic mix of target market age bracket (middle grade, young adult, adult), genres and sub-genres, author geography (we generally have at least one international author at each event; in the past, we’ve had authors from Greece, Hong Kong, Trinidad & Tobago, Ireland, England, Jamaica, South Africa, Canada, Finland, and Norway) , and topic/content (the events are billed as a “tasting menu” or “sampler platter” of stories).
More information can be found at here, including the line up from past events.
The schedule of upcoming events (and to register for upcoming events) can be found on EventBrite
• You can also find recordings of their past events on their YouTube channel (and they also have a PodCast).
• They also have a Goodreads account where the books featured at past events can be found.
facebook twitter youtube instagram pinterest website email 

Thanks for reading. See you soon!