There is a case to be made for absolute power. Imagine being the emperor. You’ve conquered the civilized world, the aqueduct is a hit, and people feed you grapes. Just for fun, you decide to add a month to the calendar named after you. Now THAT’s power. Julius did it, and so did Augustus. I bet the third guy who tried that maneuver got the multiple-stabbing treatment. You can only mess with the people’s schedules so many times.
As we approach Augustus’s month, we may lack the emperor’s ability to mold time, but we can plan accordingly as we learn of the opportunities for self-published authors at book fairs near and far.
Get Away to Write-Scotland: A Getaway for Poets and Writers (July 28–August 5)
If you’re looking for an artistic retreat and a vacation in Scotland, book this trip! Seems like an excuse to scribble and shop, with some morning workshop sessions.
Horror Writers Workshop (August 7-14)
Simon Village, Bran, Transylvania, Romania
I wonder if the people of Transylvania hate horror tourists. Maybe they murder them gruesomely. Regardless, this is a retreat workshop under the guidance of award-winning scaremeister Brian Evenson, in a hotel overlooking Dracula’s castle, natch.
Travel Writers & Photographers Conference (August 11–14)
Corte Madera, CA
Ever gone somewhere? Taken a photo? Then you’re well on your way to being a travel writer/photographer. This is the 25th anniversary of this conference. It features two contests: an essay for the writers, and a series of snapshots for the photographers, each with the theme “My Most Unforgettable Travel Encounter.”
Writer’s Digest Conference (August 12–14)
NY, New York
This conference is heavy on craft and business. The WDC boasts a triple shot of keynote speaker: bestselling authors Kwame Alexander, David Baldacci. and Emily St. John Mandel. Unfortunately, the pitch slams are all already sold out. Find a way to sneak yourself in?
Willamette Writers Conference (August 12–14)
In direct competition time-wise, but closer for those of you on the West Coast, this conference promises learning opportunities from sixty different instructors and keynote addresses from speakers such as author and graphic novelist Chelsea Cain and author/screenwriter/songwriter John Shirley. There will also be pitch sessions to industry pros.
Writers at Woody Point (August 16–21)
Woody Point, Newfoundland, Canada
Sure, there will be plenty of published writers reading and talking, but there’s also plenty of live music. Ron Sexsmith kicks things off with performances the first two nights. The first annual Comedy at Woody Point festival is on the agenda, so funny stuff too. The festival features “Short Waves, Short Stories” in which a fiction is given a dramatic radio-play theatrical performance with musical accompaniment.
Historical Writers of America Conference (August 19–21)
Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia
Writers of factual histories and historical fictions will meet their contemporaries in this quaint town in August. Get hungry for Libby O’Connell’s keynote: she is the author of The American Plate: A Culinary History in 100 Bites. It’s an edible history!
The Lost Art of Personal Writing (August 20–21)
The Grand Marais Art Colony, Minnesota
This looks to be another one of those personal retreats where you write on your own with some workshop sessions thrown in, for those of you who can’t make it to Scotland or Romania.
Beijing International Book Fair (August 24–28)
Writers around the world make appearances at this massive fair. Among them: children’s book author Cao Wenxuan, who has an audience of millions in China; award winning meta-fictional trickster Enrique Vila-Matas of Spain; illustrator and film concept designer (worked on Lord of the Rings) Alan Lee; and novelist and philosopher Simon Van Booy, who has a cool name.
Remember, wherever you are, chances are there’s a book fair. We’re only touching on key events in a swirling universe of writing. You can chart your own course. Be the emperor of your own August!