Weekend With Your Novel: Event details

Thank you to everyone who joined us for Weekend With Your Novel 2014. We are already looking forward to next year.

New information will become available in the summer of 2015. In the meantime we leave all 2014 information here for your reference.


  • Option 1: Saturday workshops + 1 critique group—$185
  • Option 2: Saturday workshops only, no critique group—$145
  • Option 3: Attend Lauie Scheer's Friday evening workshop only—$35
  • Add Saturday luncheon and presentation to Options 1 or 2—$12.50
  • Additional critique groups: $60 each

Choose any combination of options. You may attend as many critique groups as you wish for $60 apiece.

How to register

  1. Review what you want to do. What days? Critiques or not? Lunch?
  2. You don’t have to decide now on what Saturday workshops (1 through 12) you’re attending or tell the registration people. Saturday workshops are numbered for your convenience only.
  3. REGISTER ONLINE» or by calling 608-262-2451. Credit cards and checks are both accepted. You will be asked for your email address. It will be shared only with your critique group (if you choose that option) for the purposes of sharing manuscript material.
  4. If attending a critique group session, please email your pages to Laura Kahl by Oct 17. Late registrations for critique groups will be accepted as space allows.

Cancellation/refund policy

If you cancel your registration up to 72 hours before the conference, you will be refunded everything but the $50 administration fee; no refunds are made after that time.

Location & lodging information

This 3-day event is held in 2 buildings, the Pyle Center and Lowell Center. Lowell Center also has lodging, which is where we have a block of rooms reserved for Weekend With Your Novel attendees. Please use the group number/name "NOVEL". Lodging costs are your own.

Lowell Center (map)
610 Langdon St
Madison, WI 53703
Phone: 608-256-2621 or toll free 1-866-301-1753
Online reservations»

Pyle Center (map)
702 Langdon St
Madison, WI 53715
Phone: 608-262-1122


It can be tight. We recommend Lake Street Ramp at 415 N Lake Street, all day for just $5. Map and information»


We recommend Green Cab, 608-255-1234 or book your ride online»

Food & restaurants

You will find an affordable, diverse, and delicious selection of options including food carts both on the Terrace at the Memorial Union overlooking Lake Mendota and at lots of great eating establishments within a very short walk.

The following links will take you to visitor information pages from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Writing books we recommend

No textbook on writing is required reading for this retreat. Many of you have asked us for recommendations of books that can enhance your learning experience and maybe speed you on your way toward publication.

Dwight Swain, Techniques of the Selling Writer (particularly for Track 1 attendees)
Noah Lukeman, The First Five Pages and The Plot Thickens (and his free download, How to Write a Great Query Letter)
Donald Maass, Writing the Breakout Novel, Writing the Breakout Novel Workbook, and The Fire In Fiction: Passion, Purpose and Techniques to Make Your Novel Great
Robert McKee, Story
Christopher Vogler, The Writer’s Journey
Laurel Yourke, Take Your Characters to Dinner

If you're attending Laurie Scheer's Friday night workshop, Identifying Compelling Elements in a Novel, we recommend reading Jess Walter's Beautiful Ruins beforehand.

Other suggested books or authors may be listed or implied within workshop descriptions.

Continuing education credit

1.3 CEUs


Do you need guidance about critique groups or which workshops to attend? Email Christine DeSmet at cdesmet@dcs.wisc.edu» or call 608-262-3447.