2021 Conference

Join our writing community.


All times Eastern.

Saturday, October 23

10:00-11:00 AM

Welcome + Poetry Reading | Affrilachian Poets 30th Anniversary

Featuring Mitchell L.H. Douglas, Dorian Hairston, Joy Priest, Danni Quintos, Frank X Walker

11:15 AM – 12:45 PM

Writing Workshop | The Character of Place: Crafting Three-Dimensional Settings in Poetry

Led by Mitchell L.H. Douglas

Writer Teddy Burkhardt notes that while Lucille Clifton doesn’t mention Baltimore by name, the city’s heart is certainly alive in her debut poetry collection Good Times. How do you avoid writing poems that make setting a two-dimensional afterthought? This generative workshop will focus on the dynamic construction of place in an effort to craft setting with an attitude.

12:45-1:30 PM

NEW! Lunch + Social Hour

Socialize with other conference attendees while you eat.

1:30-2:45 PM

Panel + Reading | Poetry & Research

Featuring Carrie Green, Dorian Hairston, Tina Parker, Frank X Walker

3:00-4:30 PM

Writing Workshop | The Letter Is Not Dead: Writing Epistolary Poems

Led by Britton Shurley

Max Garland was unable to join us this weekend, but Britton Shurley has your poetry workshop covered!

Though most poetry is written with a “general” reader in mind, there’s a magic that comes when we direct our attention toward a more specific audience, a particular someone in our mind. We share more secrets, ask more questions, and have more intimate conversations with both ourselves and our readers. In this session, we’ll explore the epistle and apostrophe, looking at work by poets such as Amy Gerstler, Marcus Wicker, Steve Scafidi, Natalie Diaz, and Ada Limon. We’ll use their work as models to spark our own creativity, and participants will produce first drafts of two to three poems in this generative session.

5:00-6:00 PM

Reception + Social Hour

Socialize with conference attendees at this social hour and keynote reception.

6:00 PM

Keynote: Kiki Petrosino

Free and open to the public.

Sunday, October 24

10:00-11:30 AM

Writing Workshop | Word Work

Led by Savannah Sipple

In this part craft exploration, part generative workshop, we’ll discuss a few examples of the kind of work words do in poetry and look at how we can use those techniques in our own writing. Feel free to bring poems-in-progress, if you want, and come to write!

11:45 AM-1:00 PM

Panel / Q+A | Publishing Your Work

Featuring Marissa Davis, Kristen Renee Miller (Sarabande Books), Robin Rahija (Rabbit Catastrophe Press), and Crystal Wilkinson (Appalachian Futures: Black, Native, and Queer Voices)

1:00-2:00 PM

NEW! Lunch + Social Hour

Socialize with other conference attendees while you eat.

1:30-2:00 PM

Kentucky State Poetry Society Membership Meeting

Open to KSPS Members only.

2:00-3:15 PM

Panel + Reading | Poets Writing the Essay

Featuring Minda Honey, Erin Keane, and Joy Priest

3:30-4:30 PM

Poetry Reading: KSPS Contest Winners

Hear the award-winning poems from the student contest, adult contests, and the conference weekend contest.

4:45-6:00 PM

Poetry Reading + Open Mic

Featuring Robert Campbell and Samuel Hawkins. Sign up to share your own work during open mic after our featured readers!

Reminder: Your registration is not complete until you make your payment. Please make sure you send your $20 registration fee (and/or $35 membership fee), to paypal.me/kystatepoetry, click “Send,” and enter the amount.

Contact us to pay by check.

You will receive your Zoom invite prior to the conference.

Much gratitude to our sponsors! Show them some poetry love.

Bluegrass Writers Studio

Broadstone Books

Sarabande Books

Spalding University School of Creative and Professional Writing

University of Louisville Creative Writing Program

University of Kentucky MFA in Creative Writing Program

University Press of Kentucky

Western Kentucky University MFA in Creative Writing Program

Workhorse Writers

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