The University of Iowa

Registration is OPEN for the 2019 Iowa Summer Writing Festival

We’re delighted to announce the opening of registration for the 33rd Iowa Summer Writing Festival!

Visit the festival webpage -- -- for a complete picture of the 2019 program, including schedules, course descriptions, instructor biographies, fees, and registration procedures.

Since 1987, the Festival has welcomed to the campus of The University of Iowa writers from 18 to 98 years of age, from all 50 states, and from every continent. Most of the participants come to the workshop table from other areas of expertise, other lives. These include the armed forces, business, diplomacy, education, farming, homemaking, journalism, law, law enforcement, medicine, parenting, pastoral care, the performing arts, social services, and more. 

The Festival provides a wide range of workshops, including courses onn the novel, the short story, the novel-in-stories, the essay, the memoir, writing the body, writing the family, writing the Chimera, writing America, writing about nowhere, hybrid forms, flash fiction, short poems, lyric poems, prose poems, spiritual writing, writing romance, writing resistance, writing humor, playwriting, writing picture books, writing for young adults, and writing beyond genre.

The Festival is proud to belong to Iowa City—a UNESCO City of Literature in the Creative Cities Network. Iowa City has long been a haven for writers, and The University of Iowa our ancestral home. The rich literary legacy that belongs to this place abides today in the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, the Nonfiction Writing Program, the Playwrights Workshop, the International Writing Program, the Spanish Creative Writing Program, the Translation Workshop, the undergraduate Major in English and Creative Writing, The Certificate in Writing, the Iowa Young Writers’ Studio, The Iowa Youth Writing Project, Between the Lines: The Writing Experience, the Irish Writing Program, the Iowa Center for the Book and more.

If you would like to register electronically, you may do so via the webpage. You may also register by phone with the Center for Conferences between 7:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. (Central Standard Time), Monday through Friday. The phone number is 319-335-4141.

The Iowa Summer Writing Festival will also have a print catalogue available in late February. The information in it will be identical to their webpage. Still, with 125 workshops, many participants prefer it. If you’ve requested a catalogue or participated in the Festival in the last four years, you will receive your copy in February. If you’ve recently moved, or if you’d like to be added to the catalogue mailing list, please call the conference center at 319-335-4141 or write

Workshops in the Festival are limited to twelve participants. Though we begin with a great many choices, sooner or later most fill, and it’s impossible to judge when. If you have your heart set on something in particular, it’s best not to dawdle.

See you this summer!