Registration Open for Clockhouse Writers’ Conference & Retreat

Wondering what to expect if you decide to attend?  Read on!
Each year’s Conference & Retreat opens with a Plenary Panel featuring essay presentations on a theme chosen by consensus the previous year, and this Plenary Panel presentation is followed by a question, answer, and discussion session.   During the days that follow, there are quiet times for writing, as well as times to choose to gather together as writers:  Works-in-Progress sessions provide opportunities for informal readings and feedback,  “Impromptu Hours,” allow participants to share a variety of writing prompts, “Stations of the Word” brings morning’s first writing to the outdoors, and workshops led by conference attendees cover a broad range of topics, from elements of craft to the writer’s relationship to society and social issues.  The nationally-dispersed CWC Board of Stewards and CLOCKHOUSE editorial staff are also able to hold their annual in-person meetings during this time as well, and their discussions are brought back to the MFAW alumni community for input at the Conference & Retreat’s closing meeting.  Evenings are filled with formal readings—and often, informal gatherings and writings games.

Photo:  Joe DuPont
Photo: Joe DuPont

At the same time, the Clockhouse Conference & Retreat makes MFAW alumni available to the program’s current students as mentors, and it supports the program with such activities as its annual hosting of the closing party of the summer residency in Vermont.  The new issue of  the literary journal CLOCKHOUSE is also presented for the first time at the Conference & Retreat.
We recognize that writing requires space and time in order to remain central in our lives, but that finding that space and time in writing retreats and conferences can be prohibitively expensive.  Part of the mission of CWC is to offer a truly professional and truly affordable writing Conference and Retreat.  To make this possible, each of the conference’s participants contributes to its success.  Everyone signs up for a task during the conference (such as moderating a reading, leading a workshop or a works-in-progress session, or helping to decorate for the MFAW closing party). In short, the Clockhouse Writers’ Conference & Retreat provides MFAW alumni with a continuing presence on campus, offering a vibrant and sustained community that can be part of a graduate’s life long after the two-year program is over.
If you’re an alum of Goddard’s MFAW program–from either Plainfield or Port Townsend–please consider joining us!   Registration materials are available at

Important Announcement

The Board of Directors for Goddard College have made the difficult decision to close the college at the end of the 2024 Spring term.  


Current Goddard students will have the opportunity to complete their degrees at the same tuition rate through a teach-out with like-minded institution, Prescott College. Updates and scholarship funds will be available in the coming weeks and months. Information will be posted to

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