Writers in Paradise is a workshop-based conference. Application materials are required from all who wish to attend. Acceptance is based on a writing sample and a statement detailing your writing background. If you have previously attended the Eckerd College Writers’ Conference, your statement should describe what you learned and what you hope to accomplish by attending again.
While admission is selective, we accept writers with early potential, as well as those with strong backgrounds in writing. See below for details on how to apply (via Submittable only).
For specific manuscript and application guidelines to each workshop, please visit our Submittable page.
All correspondence regarding receipt of application, notifications, updates, etc., will occur via emails from the Conference Coordinator, Marina Pruna.
August 1, 2023
November 1, 2023
(Apply online by 11:59pm Eastern Standard Time)
November 15, 2023
On or by this date: Applicants will be notified of their standing, workshops assigned, fellowship and scholarship awards announced, hotel reslink sent to accepted participants
Final Due Dates
November 25, 2023
Due this day: balance of payment, participant registration, and final manuscript to be discussed in workshop
Whether applying to a full week workshop or a 3-day workshop, the cost to apply to the conference is $25 upon completion of the online application via Submittable only. This application fee is non-refundable and will count toward the conference cost if accepted. If accepted, the remaining balance is due 10 days after acceptance. A secure payment link will be sent. Payment by check will also be accepted (to the attention of “Writers in Paradise” and payable to Eckerd College).
For those who are not accepted or who withdraw from the conference, the application fee is nonetheless non-refundable. NOTE: if you are applying to multiple workshops, you will be charged the $25-app fee for each application. Please contact the Conference Coordinator for guidance should you have any questions at 727-241-2802 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
($25 non-refundable app fee + $875 balance.
If attending a 3-day workshop, the cost is $495 [$25 non-refundable app fee + $470 balance])
Writers in Paradise offers a limited number of fellowships on a competitive basis.
All fellowships are awarded based on the strength of the writing sample and statement of intent, and with consideration of published works in reputable magazines and journals, where applicable. The Sterling Watson MFA Fellowships are awarded to applicants who are currently enrolled in or have graduated from an MFA program within the past five years. The McCartt, Carlson, Standiford and Pruitt-Meinke Fellowships are open to all applicants.
To apply for funding, please go to our Submittable page, choose a workshop and begin applying. The funding options are embedded within the application.
The Larry and Marcia McCartt Fellowship is awarded annually to a woman who has overcome personal hardships and shows talent and a strong commitment to the craft of writing and its ability to heal the human spirit. This fellowship covers the entire cost of the conference tuition ($875) plus a travel stipend ($250).
This James R. Carlson Fellowship honors the spirit of creativity and innovation of the founder of the Eckerd College Theatre Department and is awarded annually. This fellowship covers the entire cost of the conference tuition ($875) plus a travel stipend ($250).
The Standiford Fellowships are named in honor of noted author, teacher, and Co-Director of the conference, Les Standiford. The consummate professional writer, Les Standiford always strives not only to improve his own craft but to help the next generation of writers. These fellowships will be awarded to two applicants who show great promise in their craft (one fiction writer and one nonfiction writer). These fellowships will cover the entire cost of the conference tuition ($875) plus a travel stipend ($250).
The Sterling Watson MFA Fellowships are named in honor of noted author, teacher, and Co-Founder of the conference, Sterling Watson. These 10 fellowships are intended to help support current MFA students as well as recently graduated MFAs (graduation date of 2019-2023) attend Writers in Paradise at minimal costs. These fellowships will be awarded to those who show great promise in the genre to which they apply and will cover the entire cost of the conference tuition ($875).
Named in honor of Eckerd Professor Emeritus and 2016-2020 Poet Laureate of Florida, Peter Meinke, and the late Dr. Crayton Pruitt, the aim of the Pruitt-Meinke Fellowship is to make the conference accessible to as broad an array of writers as possible, paying special attention to applications from members of historically underserved populations as well as those who’ve overcome substantial socioeconomic obstacles. The Pruitt-Meinke Fellowship will cover full conference tuition ($875), 8 nights at the conference hotel, and provide a stipend for travel and meals.
Writers in Paradise offers a limited number of scholarships on a competitive basis.
Scholarships are awarded to applicants who show great promise in the genre to which they apply.
The Alumni Scholarship will be awarded to one alum of Writers in Paradise to help support the cost of attendance. This scholarship will be awarded to an alum who shows great promise in the genre to which they apply and will cover half of the conference tuition ($450).
The AWP Members-Only Scholarships will be awarded to five current AWP (Association of Writers and Writing Programs) members to help support the cost of attendance. These scholarships will be awarded to those AWP members who show great promise in their craft and will cover half of the conference tuition ($450).
General scholarship funds will be awarded in $100 increments. Awards will be based on need and merit, as determined by the conference director.
Please see our refund policy here. Applicants who cancel must do so via email to the conference coordinator. An administrative fee of $55 will apply for all cancellations and the following policies apply: those who cancel 30 days before the start of the conference will receive a full refund. Those who cancel between 15-29 days prior to the start of the conference will receive a 50% refund. No refunds will be issued within 15 days of the conference, or if the participant chooses to leave the conference early.
All courses, speakers, and faculty are subject to change. In order to ensure the safety and comfort of faculty and participants, the right to continued participation in Eckerd College Writers’ Conference is at the sole discretion of the co-directors. A participant who fails to adhere to ordinary standards of collegiality may be required to forfeit one’s place at the conference.
Eckerd College students pay no extra fees and do not apply via Submittable.
A select number of Eckerd College residential students may participate in Writers in Paradise for course credit. One of two courses is usually offered, Intro and Advanced. The Intro course is an enriching experience for any student regardless of major. The Advanced course has a prerequisite of CW100/any CW200 (or above). Both courses expose students to some of America’s finest authors.
Students who’d like to attend Writers in Paradise for credit must contact Professor Jon Chopan in the Creative Writing Department.
Students with general questions about the conference are encouraged to contact the Conference Coordinator, Marina Pruna.