Conference Fever: Meet our Conference Committee

The James River Writers Conference Committee starts working in January to make sure all the details are in place by October. They do it for one reason: They love the conference. We asked our committee members to share their favorite part of the James River Writers Conference.

Lana Krumwiede

Lana Krumwiede


“Attending a writers conference was the first time I felt like a ‘real’ writer. The same thing happens every year—the conference is an affirming statement to myself that says, ‘This is who you are.’ I want every conference-goer to feel that way!”

Emyl Jenkins Award Accepting Nominations

Emyl Jenkins 1941-2010








To honor the memory of Emyl Jenkins, who died in 2010, James River Writers presents an award to an organization or person who, as Emyl did, inspires a love of writing and writing education in Virginia.

An advocate for writers and their readers, Emyl had a knack for connecting both people and organizations. She shared her time and expertise with everyone she encountered. She encouraged writers at all levels, especially fledglings trying to get those first words down on the page. Her generous spirit and her enthusiasm rubbed off on everyone she touched, and her actions widened the circle of writing encouragement.

Award Details

Any Virginia individual or organization is eligible, except for members of the JRW board of directors or the advisory board.

June Writing Show: Put Your Characters on the Couch: Psychoanalyze Your Fiction

Writing Show Logo

Does your protagonist have multiple personalities when you only meant for them to have one? Is your novel full of cardboard cutouts being yanked around by a plot? Perhaps your villain is merely neurotic but you were trying for a sociopath. No matter your genre, your understanding of the human psyche is crucial to writing compelling fiction. Learn the art of writing authentic, complex characters that come alive for your reader with authors Jon Sealy and Cleve Lamison and psychoanalyst Ted Petrocci.

June 26, 2014 6:30-8:30 p.m., with complimentary hors d’oeuvres The Broadberry, 2729 W. Broad St., Richmond Ample parking available in the Children’s Museum parking lot across the street, on street, and in the lot adjacent to the Broadberry $10 in advance, $12 at the door, $5 students




Learning To See: A Master Class for Writers in the Art and Practice of Looking

Award-winning authors Carrie Brown and John Gregory Brown offer a shared presentation on writing and art: how art informs and inspires the writer, and how learning to “see” shapes and enriches writing. Participants will see how these two writers learn from the world of visual art. Short writing exercises and shared reading of those exercises will follow the presentations.

Friday, April 25, 2014
10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m., with an hour break for lunch, not included

St. John’s Church Parish Hall
2401 East Broad Street
Richmond, VA 23223
Ample free on-street parking is available

$60 for JRW members
$100 for non-members


May Writing Show: Book Trailers 101: Find the Hook for your Book

Whether you are traditionally published, self-published or waiting to be published, a book trailer can bring your book to life using the same channels as established authors and publishers. But what kind of book trailer? What are the pros and cons of each type? And should you do it yourself or call the experts?

The producers at Fraga Studios will give you the information you need to navigate this powerful marketing tool and reach your intended audience in a new way.

Writing Show Logo

Book Trailers 101: Find the Hook for Your Book
Thursday, May 29, 2014
6:30-8:30 p.m., with complimentary hors d’oeuvres
The Broadberry, 2729 W. Broad St., Richmond
Ample parking available in the Children’s Museum parking lot across the street, on street, and in the lot adjacent to the Broadberry

$10 in advance, $12 at the door, $5 students



Twitter Chat with Lana Krumwiede: James River Writers Essential Guide to Writers Conference

Please join James River Writers on Tuesday, June 24, 2014 at 7:00 p.m. ET to participate in a Twitter chat with Lana Krumwiede to talk about getting the most out of a writers conference.

Here is how it will work:

  • You will need a Twitter account to talk with Lana during the Twitter chat.
  • Follow James River Writers (@JamesRvrWriters) and Lana Krumwiede (@LanaKrumwiede) before the Twitter chat so that you don’t miss anything.
  • Log into Twitter a few minutes before the chat and enter a search for #JRW14.
  • To start the chat, @JamesRvrWriters will post two or three questions for Lana to answer. At any time you can join the conversation and ask your own question; just be sure to include #JRW14 so your Tweets can be tracked and Lana can respond.
  • You may submit questions by starting them with @LanaKrumwiede, or simply ask your question as a status update in Twitter and include the hashtag #JRW14
Lana Krumwiede

Lana Krumwiede

More About Lana Krumwiede:

Lana Krumwiede serves as the Vice-Chair of James River Writers and is the Conference Chair for the 12th Annual James River Writers Conference. Lana began her writing career by creating stories and poems for publications such as Highlights, High Five, Spider, Babybug, The Friend, and Chicken Soup for the Child’s Soul. Her series The Psi Chronicles (Candlewick Press) tells the story of a boy who lives in a place where everyone has telekinetic powers. Lana has attempted telekinesis many times, particularly when it comes to household chores, but she could never make it work.



February Writing Show — Behind the Screen: Storytelling through Filmmaking

Stories transcend time and place. Rina Goldberg, who passed away two weeks after her fifteenth birthday from Mitochondrial Disease, knew the truth behind the truism. Some of her final words to her mother were “promise to take care of my film.” Whether you want to sell a script or write a novel, you can draw inspiration from Rina and some of the most tenacious artists on the planet: filmmakers.

The latest in James River Writer’s Writing Show series, Behind the Screen: Storytelling through Filmmaking, on Thursday, February 27, at the Camel, brings together a selection of award-winning directors and screenwriters from the Richmond International Film Festival. Moderator Julie Geen, writer and teacher, will guide the discussion about navigating the changing industry, what makes a good story, and how to stay motivated. (more…)

River of Dust: The Gritty Truth About Editing

The Writing Show

Thursday, May 30, 2013


Pencil by Kevin Yuan


Have you reached the point when you can’t look at your manuscript a moment longer? It may be time for a fresh pair of eyes—and not just anyone’s. But what does working with a professional editor entail, and how will you feel about the result?

The latest in James River Writer’s Writing Show series delves deep into the editing process that resulted in the publication of Virginia Pye’s debut novel. River of Dustselected as an Indie Next Pick and to be released on May 14, has been hailed by Annie Dillard as “terrific, tremendous, wonderful…a strong, beautiful, deep book.”

Pye, local to Richmond, and her editor, visiting award-winning author Nancy Zafris, a manuscript consultant and series editor for the Flannery O’Connor award for short fiction, will share the details of their successful collaboration. Patty Smith, a short fiction and nonfiction writer and teacher, will moderate the discussion about what had to change and Pye’s 20-year writing journey.


Road to Publication: Meet Debut Novelist Rhonda Riley

Wednesday, May 1, 2013
11:00-12:00 p.m.
Free admission, please register
The University of Richmond Downtown

James River Writers is proud to partner with The Junior League of Richmond to present debut novelist Rhonda Riley to discuss her work, The Enchanted Life of Adam Hope: A Novel, to be published by Harper Collins on April 23, 2013. Author and JRW Chair Bill Blume will moderate a discussion about how Riley sold the novel, the process of finding an agent, and her work with her editor.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch calls The Enchanted Life of Adam Hope an “unforgettable novel… filled with memorable characters and passages of startling beauty” (see review). (more…)