Share |

Appalachian Young Writers' Workshop

young writers together

The 6th annual AYWW is June 18-24, 2017 on the campus of Lincoln Memorial University in Harrogate. You can download the application here

The Appalachian Young Writers' Workshop (AYWW) is a seven-day residential writing workshop for rising 10th, 11th, 12th graders, and graduating seniors. 

Students will be encouraged to consider the region and its environment, policies, literature, culture, music, and more. Whether creative writing is your passion or you would like to learn more about creative writing from published authors, this workshop is for you.

Check our Facebook page for news!

Read the 2016 AYWW Student Anthology here

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Who is eligible to attend the Appalachian Young Writers’ Workshop?
    Students in 9-12th grades who have a sincere interest in creative writing and the Appalachian region.

  • When is it?
    The AYWW is June 18-24, 2017.

  • Where is it?
    Lincoln Memorial University in Harrogate, TN, near the Tennessee/Virginia/Kentucky border. All classes will take place on the university campus and students will stay in dorms on campus. 

  • What is the cost?
    Workshop tuition is $450. This includes all costs for the entire week — room and board, all class materials and Workshop T-shirt, and class instruction.

  • Can I apply for scholarship assistance?
    Yes! All scholarship applicants must demonstrate financial need and writing merit. Interested students should send a complete application to include a 1) registration form, 2) a recent writing sample, and 3) a complete copy of the family’s most recently filed 1040 statement that claims the applicant as a dependent. If no 1040 is required by the IRS, then the statement which shows the family's financial standing may be sent in. Scholarship applicants do not need to send a deposit. Students will be notified of their acceptance by early-June. Scholarship assistance varies from $100 to $450.

  • How do I apply to the AYWW?
    Download the AYWW application here. A complete application consists of a registration form along with a recent sample of your writing and a $100 deposit. All fees can be paid by check (made to Humanities Tennessee), money order, MasterCard or Visa. The $100 deposit will be applied to the total fee. Students will be notified of their acceptance as soon as possible following the receipt of a complete application. Should a student not be accepted into the program, the deposit will be refunded. Scholarship applicants do not need to send in a deposit.

  • When are the application and payment deadlines?
    May 13, 2017: postmark deadline for all scholarship applications and materials
    May 30, 2017: postmark and payment deadline for all general applications

  • Where do students stay during the AYWW?
    Residential life at the AYWW is in supervised residence halls with Workshop counselors on the campus of Lincoln Memorial University. This is a good opportunity to experience what college is like before you actually go to college. Roommates are assigned based on gender and age. Roommate requests are honored when possible. Students have access to the university library and computer lab during the week. When possible, recreational facilities are available to students on campus.

  • How many students are in each class?
    The maximum student:teacher ratio at the AYWW is 12:1 to ensure that all students receive personal attention and instruction from the Workshop’s exceptional faculty and staff. Students attend workshop classes in fiction, lyric writing, poetry, and more each day.  

  • What is a typical day like at the AYWW?
    A typical day at the AYWW begins with breakfast in the cafeteria at 8:00 a.m. Morning classes are from 9:00-11:30 a.m. followed by lunch at 12:00 noon. Afternoon classes are from 1:00-3:00 p.m. Afternoon meeting followed by faculty office hours are from 3:00-4:00 p.m. We will have dinner together and then be treated to special evening programs and activities. Dorm check is at 10:00 and lights out is at 10:30 p.m.

  • Who are the AYWW faculty? The 2017 faculty are:

Darnell Arnoult is currently Writer-in-Residence, Assistant Professor of English, and Director of the Mountain Heritage Literary Festival at Lincoln Memorial University in Harrogate, TN. Her most recent publication is Galaxie Wagon: Poems. Her other works include Sufficient Grace and What Travels with Us: Poems which won the 2005 Weatherford Award in Fiction and Poetry, the 2006 SIBA Poetry Book of the Year Award. Darnell's work has been featured on NPR's "The Writer's Almanac" several times. In 2007 Arnoult was named Tennessee Writer of the Year by the Tennessee Writers Alliance. Her work has appeared in numerous journals, including Southern Cultures, Southwest Review, and Asheville Poetry Review. She holds a BA in American Studies with a concentration in Southern Folklore from UNC-Chapel Hill, an MA in English and Creative Writing from NC State University, and an MFA from the University of Memphis. She is a regular faculty member of the Table Rock Writers Workshop, Learning Events, the John C. Campbell Folk School, and the Appalachian Writers Workshop in Hindman, KY. Darnell is co-director and founder of the Appalachian Young Writers' Workshop in Harrogate, TN. Visit her at

Jesse Graves grew up in Sharps Chapel, Tennessee, about 40 miles north of Knoxville, in a community his ancestors settled in the 1780s. He is an Associate Professor of English at East Tennessee State University, where he won the 2012 New Faculty Award from the College of Arts & Sciences. His first poetry collection, Tennessee Landscape with Blighted Pine, won the 2012 Weatherford Award in Poetry from the Appalachian Studies Association, as well as a Book of the Year Award from the Appalachian Writers’ Association. He was given the 2013 Thomas and Lillie D. Chaffin Award for Appalachian Writing. His second collection of poems, Basin Ghosts, was published in the spring of 2014. Graves was awarded the 2014 Philip H. Freund Prize for Creative Writing from Cornell University, and the 2015 James Still Award from the Fellowship of Southern Writers. Graves has been inducted into the East Tennessee Writers Hall of Fame.Visit Jesse at

Christopher Martin is an essayist, poet, and editor from the Allatoona region of northwest Georgia, where he lives with his wife and their two young children. He is author of This Gladdening Light: An Ecology of Fatherhood and Faith, which won the 2015 Will D. Campbell Award in Creative Nonfiction and will be published by Mercer University Press in early 2017He is author of three poetry chapbooks: Marcescence: Poems from Gahneesah (Finishing Line Press, 2014), Everything Turns Away (La Vita Poetica Press, 2014), and A Conference of Birds (New Native Press, 2012). His creative nonfiction has appeared in such publications as Adventum, American Public Media's On Being blog, drafthorse, Loose Change, Revolution House, Still, and Shambhala Sun, and his poetry has appeared in Broad River Review, Pilgrimage, Ruminate, Thrush, Town Creek Poetry, and Waccamaw, among several other journals. A two-time Pushcart Prize nominee and winner of the 2014 George Scarbrough Prize in Poetry, Chris is the founding editor of Flycatcher and a contributing editor at New Southerner, where he writes the blog Kairos and Crisis. He teaches English at Kennesaw State University. You can find Chris online at

Belinda Smith is a Dove Award winning songwriter based in Nashville, TN. She has been a professional songwriter and session singer since 1997 when she moved to Nashville from West Virginia. Belinda is a staff writer at Daywind Publishing, and she has had more than 100 songs recorded by artists ranging from Grammy-nominated Ty Herndon to the Dove Award winning group Ernie Haase and Signature Sound. She has won three BMI Awards, just celebrated her fourth #1 song, and has collected many Dove nominations along with a Bluegrass Song of the Year nod for the Lewis Family. Belinda has been a featured performer and speaker at cool venues and workshops for several years now including the world famous Bluebird Cafe in Nashville, the Southern Festival of Books: A Celebration of the Written Word, NPR's Mountain Stage, and the Mountain Heritage Literary Festival. Belinda also offers personal songwriting mentoring and ongoing creativity classes through Belinda Smith Creative, and her students have gone on to win major song competitions. Belinda';s live album is called, "Time Machine,” and her first Christmas musical, “Once You’ve Seen the Star,” was released in 2014. She is currently entertaining an impressive voice mail phobia. You can visit her at

If you would like more information or have questions about the AYWW, please e-mail

They AYWW is a collaboration between 

with the support of


 and the ETSU Department of
 Literature & Language


AYWW flier & app 2017.pdf405.71 KB