More than 150 people gathered at TCC Northwest in November for the 9th annual Marine Creek Creative Writing Conference. The conference is a celebration of creativity that is free and open to the public and serves the TCC community as well as the greater Fort Worth community. Attendees received a free lunch, attended multiple workshops throughout the day and gained access to TCC faculty and professional writers’ advice and mentoring.
“The Creative Writing Conference is important because it allows our students, and the community at large, to witness all parts of the writing process — from idea to craft to publishing — in an encouraging environment,” said LeeAnn Olivier, (English), a member of the conference planning committee. “It allows many types of writers and creatives to come together in one space and learn from each other.”
Each year, attendees can expect a variety of workshops that offer information and advice, as well as time for open discussion and writing practice. It differs from other conferences in that there is no cost to the attendee for participating and working with successful creative professionals. This year’s conference included speakers from various TCC campuses, local writers’ groups, independent artists and publishers. Presentation topics included creative brainstorming, poetry, fiction, podcasting, screenwriting, writing for horror, writing for video games, publishing, digital media and NaNoWriMo (National Writing Month).
It’s not just the community who benefits, the presenters do as well. Carroll Savant (English) said he gets a lot out of participating and presenting at the conference. “The experience was very rewarding; it was motivating to see the creative procedure at work among so many other people,” he said.
The planning committee for the conference this year included English faculty Olivier, Liz Lounsbury, Wendi Pierce and Zainah Usman.
Usman said she sees the conference as a great resource for the community.
“The Creative Writing Conference is a great opportunity to for writers of all skill levels and interests to learn, network and walk away with resources to help them grow creatively and hone their talent,” she said. “It’s such a positive atmosphere and we have wonderful community support for this event.”