The ANWA Writers Conference is for writers of all levels, from beginner to best-selling author. We offer world-class workshops and writing classes by professionals in the industry, pitch sessions with national and local agents/editors, networking opportunities, inspiration, and fun with your tribe.

Conference Keynote


Tyler Whitesides decided he wanted to be an author by age seven. He spent his teenage years hunched over an old word processor, dreaming up stories. His first book, JANITORS, was published in 2011, leading to a five part series. He went on to write THE WISHMAKERS, and it's sequel, THE WISHBREAKER. His latest endeavor is an adult epic fantasy trilogy, starting with THE THOUSAND DEATHS OF ARDOR BENN. Tyler has visited 26 states, presenting at over 700 schools to share his love of reading and creativity. He lives in northern Utah with his wife and two boys. In addition to writing, Tyler loves fly fishing and hiking in the mountains, playing games, and performing on stage in musical theatre.

Conference Faculty

The ANWA Writers Conference offers outstanding workshops and writing classes by professionals in the industry.

Thursday Workshop

Join us for an extra day at conference, featuring first-page critique groups, a presentation by our guest speaker, and evening breakout options.

  • Our schedule is Critique Groups from 1:00-4:00 pm (only available LIVE, these sessions won't be recorded), Julie Wright's Keynote from 6:00-7:00 pm, Sprints and Mentor Mingle/Breakouts from 7:00-8:00 pm, and a talent show from 8:00-9:00 pm. All for a mere $35!

    You'll be able to choose from the following critique groups: Women's Fiction, General Fiction, Romance, Historical Romance, Mystery/Suspense, Science Fiction, Fantasy, YA Fantasy, YA Contemporary/Historical, Memoir, Poetry/Short Story, Non-Fiction, Children's, or Middle Grade.

  • BOB Contest

    Every year, ANWA hosts a Beginning of Book (BOB) Contest for all ANWA Conference attendees, published or unpublished. Participants enter the first 500 words of a manuscript. All entries must be original and not previously accepted for publication or production at the time of submission.

    Registration for the BOB Contest is a separate event and NOT included on the conference registration form.


    ANWA offers several class sessions during each time slot to provide plenty of choices. All classes are free of charge.

    Pitch Sessions

    Our agents and editors are offering a mixture of pitch sessions for $20, on-the-spot query critiques for $25, and manuscript consultations for $50. Reserve a face-to-face at the Conference and get immediate feedback. Register for a pitch/critique/consult session on our Pitch/Critique/Consult registration form.
    Pitch Sessions are also available with our Gold Sponsor - Lawley Publishing - on September 14-15, 2020.


    All conference faculty and current ANWA members who are registered for the conference are eligible to sell their books at the bookstore. If there are spots remaining, other conference attendees will be given an opportunity to participate.

    You can sign up for the bookstore on our online Bookstore registration form with conference registration.

    Operation Paperback

    Operation Paperback began in 1999, sending its first shipments of books to U.S. soldiers in Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. They have since shipped 2.2 million books to over 30 locations overseas.

    In addition to overseas locations, Operation Paperback provides books to wounded warrior programs and veterans’ hospitals located within the United States, as well as USO centers at US Airport transit points. In 2012, they also added a new program that offers a free shipment of books to any military family.

    Over the years, Operation Paperback has earned commendations from the President of the United States, the governor of Maryland, the mayor of Baltimore, and the United States Junior Chamber of Commerce. They have also been featured on television and in print media. While all the praise and attention is valued and appreciated, the words that mean the most are those that come directly from the soldiers and families they serve.

    The organization has several ongoing special projects, but the project ANWA wishes to support is supplying children's books to deployed soldiers who read to their children via webcam or on DVDs.

    As an ANWA Writers Conference community, please join us in supporting our military families by donating gently used or new children’s books. Books or monetary donations may be dropped off at the 2018 ANWA Writers Conference Bookstore. For those unable to make the conference, donations may be mailed to:

    ANWA Past-President, Rebecca Irvine, 1840 N. Oracle, Mesa, AZ 85203.

    Operation Paperback is a non-profit, tax exempt 501 (c)(3) organization.

    Virtual Gala

    "You Can Fly!" ANWA presents the Annual Conference Gala Friday night from 8:30-10 p.m. Come dressed as your favorite movie/book/mythical character that has WINGS (costumes encouraged). Come enjoy an evening of casual fun while rubbing shoulders with other authors and our special guests. The Gala is an attendee favorite!

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