PERFECTING THE MANUSCRIPT
Powerful Online Conferences For Poets
preparing manuscripts for submission
We have been offering our manuscript conferences for ten years.
Seventy books of poetry have been published by conference participants, many in the last three years!
2023 Manuscript Conference Dates
October 6th – 9th, 2023
Our Wildly Popular Zoom-Based Poetry Manuscript Conference from Tupelo Press
Tupelo’s online conference model offers an intimate group of poets the chance to meet with faculty in small groups and build a writing community with one another.
During each conference, faculty Jeffrey Levine and Kristina Marie Darling lead the manuscript sections and offer additional craft talks.
Your faculty are two of the most experienced editors, mentors, poets, publisher, and spirit guides in the country: Jeffrey Levine, Publisher & Artistic Director of Tupelo Press, Kristina Marie Darling, Editor-in-Chief of Tupelo Press and Tupelo Quarterly. (See bios below.)
Together, we will generate real-time, immediately applicable feedback on your manuscript, including comments on individual poems and substantive guidance toward final revision, poem ordering, and manuscript titling. You will be guided through both the art and craft of making your manuscript not just cohere, but sing.
Using Zoom (no app need, just click a link), we will meet as a group for Q&A sessions, poetry readings, and “happy hours” to socialize, in addition to the important, daily, break-out sessions where manuscript reviews will take place. Unlike the process at other manuscript conferences, the Tupelo faculty will have read your entire manuscript and annotated the first ten pages in advance of our meeting. Over the four days of the conference, we will make individually tailored suggestions about where to send your manuscript, as well as the placement of individual poems in magazines and journals. We will also share strategies for how to build an audience before formally submitting your book to publishers.
FAQs and Detailed Schedule Below
Fee $950 (includes the short-version, pre-conference ms review).
Who are these conferences for?
- Poets who have published a significant number of individual poems and/or chapbook(s), but who have not yet assembled their work into a full-length manuscript; AND/OR
- Poets who have already assembled a full-length manuscript of individual poems, a number of which have been published;
- Poets who have published books, and who have a new manuscript;
- Poets who have submitted their manuscript a number of times, and who want to learn new ways to improve the work and increase the likelihood of publication.
What will happen in advance of the conference?
- Soon after registering, you will receive a set of expertly designed, pre-conference exercises geared toward deepening your understanding of what goes into the making – and remaking – of your poetry manuscript;
- Upon receipt, each manuscript will receive a thorough reading by Jeffrey Levine and Kristina Marie Darling, along with detailed annotation of the first ten pages;
- Poets choosing to purchase a full manuscript review at a reduced cost (details below) will have their manuscript reviewed by Jeffrey Levine.
- Your annotated manuscript will be returned to you shortly before the conference begins, if you wish, poets paying for the full manuscript review (at the reduced conference rate) can have their full ms review delivered either (just) before the conference, or they can use what they learn at the conference and submit a manuscript up to three months after the conference.
- All poems and manuscripts will be submitted and shared electronically, as WordDocs;
What will happen during the conference?
- We will meet online, but face-to-face via Zoom, an easy-to-use platform that’s gotten a lot of positive attention and use during our months of sheltering and teaching from home. There’s nothing to install. Just click on the emailed link you get from us five minutes before each meeting;
- You will need a good WiFi connection and a dependable computer;
- For some sessions, we will meet as a full group: the Friday introduction and social hour; daily introductory remarks; participant and faculty poetry readings; panels and Q&A sessions; and the final wrap-up: real world strategizing about how, when and where to send not only your manuscripts, but packets of poems.
- On Saturday and Sunday, you will also meet in small groups for intensive conferencing with each faculty; every participant will have time with each of the three faculty.
- See detailed, four-day schedule below.
DETAILED SCHEDULE OF CONFERENCE
(NOTE: All times are EST, geared toward accommodating most time zones; all meetings are synchronous, via Zoom):
Friday: 3 pm introduction, with BYO wine and cheese, and a full orientation and overview of what’s in store for the weekend.
Friday: 5 pm optional poetry reading by faculty and participants
Saturday and Sunday: Morning sessions will run from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm, and afternoon sessions will run from 3:00 pm to 5:30 pm.
NOTE: There will be several built-in breaks, including generous time for lunch and snacks. You will have assignments to work on in the off-hours.
Monday morning:10 am: overview of publishing nuts and bolts with tailored advice on where, when, and how to submit individual packets of poems and entire manuscripts, along with proprietary information about how to “improve the odds.” 11:30 am: Farewell.
Enrollment and Logistics
Each four-day conference will:
Convene Friday at 3pm,
Meet daily Saturday and Sunday for workshops from10:00 to 1pm, and from 3pm to 5:30 pm.
Conclude Monday at 11:30am.
Limited to 12 participants, divided into two, intimate groups.
August 18th – 24th, 2023 (Full)
October 6th – 9th, 2023
Editorial Reviews of Full-Length or Chapbook Manuscripts
Participants may sign up separately (in advance) with Jeffrey Levine for an intensive, poem by poem review and annotation of your full-length or chapbook manuscript. All manuscripts will be returned, fully edited, in advance of the conference. Those who opt for a manuscript review will have a half-hour, one on one, Zoom discussion of their work with Jeffrey Levine. Cost: $400 for chapbook-length manuscripts, (up to 26 pages) $800 for full-length manuscripts, (up to 54 pages) manuscripts.
Work Plan & Pre-conference Assignment
Please download the following documents:
“I wanted to thank Kristina for the enormous wealth of knowledge you provided during the workshop, your inspiring take on the poetic genre, and your generosity of vision. It’s been long since I’ve felt as boldly creative as this and I am really grateful to you, Jeffrey, and Kirsten for making the conference possible.” —Abigail Zammit
“This was not a typical writers’ conference. It required and created presence. It invoked communing, a profoundly old school learning in new-fangled ways that creatively brought outcomes that made my work new– and in this format, a humbling, exciting new accountability.
The elegance of the design of the conference layers conversation and in-depth analysis of individual poems. The structure of meetings enable a dozen serious and distinguished writers and teachers of writing from across the U.S. to meet over four days with two editor/publishers whose fingers are on the pulse of literature in our day. From their vantage as working poets themselves, Jeffrey’s and Kristina’s commitment to supporting creative writing has led them to give of their own energies and time and resources to hundreds of writers in a daily devotion and practice. And now, their full attention is close-reading our work.” —Barbara Mossberg
“Since the seminar in September I have spent many meaningful hours revising poems and seeing them thru new eyes. The time I invested with you, Jeffrey, Kristina, and Veronica was the best time spent in many years, opening doors and feeding my creative spirit! My “revision-self” is suddenly so much surer of how to help a poem’s skeleton out into the open after our sessions.” — Karen Arnold
Jeffrey Levine is the author of three books of poetry: At the Kinnegad Home for the Bewildered, (Salmon Press, 2019), Rumor of Cortez, nominated for a 2006 Los Angeles Times Literary Award in Poetry, Mortal, Everlasting, which won the 2002 Transcontinental Poetry Prize, and most recently, Levine’s many poetry prizes include the Larry Levis Prize from the Missouri Review, the James Hearst Poetry Prize from North American Review, the Mississippi Review Poetry Prize, the Ekphrasis Poetry Prize, and the American Literary Review poetry prize. His poems have garnered 21 Pushcart nominations. In addition to his own writing, he is principal translator of Canto General, Pablo Neruda’s epic work of poetry. A graduate of the Warren Wilson MFA Program for Writers, Levine is founder, Artistic Director and Publisher of Tupelo
Press, an award-winning independent literary press located in the historic Berkshire Mountains of Western Massachusetts, and he also serves as Director of the esteemed Tupelo Press Writing Conferences. Also an accomplished musician, Levine is a concert clarinetist, jazz guitarist and pianist.
Kristina Marie Darling is the author of thirty-nine books, which include Stylistic Innovation, Conscious Experience, and the Self in Modernist Women’s Poetry, available from Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group; Daylight Has Already Come: Selected Poems 2014 – 2020, which was published by Black Lawrence Press; Silent Refusal: Essays on Contemporary Feminist Writing, newly available from Black Ocean; Angel of the North, which is forthcoming from Salmon Poetry; and X Marks the Dress: A Registry (co-written with Carol Guess), which was just launched by Persea Books in the United States. Penguin Random House Canada has also published a Canadian edition.
An expert consultant with the U.S. Fulbright Commission, and a twice-awarded Fulbright Scholar, Dr. Darling’s work has also been recognized with three residencies at Yaddo, where she has held the Martha Walsh Pulver Residency for a Poet and the Howard Moss Residency in Poetry; eight residencies at the American Academy in Rome, where she has also served as an ambassador for recruitment; grants from the Elizabeth George Foundation and Harvard University’s Kittredge Fund; a Fundación Valparaíso fellowship to live and work in Spain; a Hawthornden Castle Fellowship, funded by the Heinz Foundation; an artist-in-residence position at Cité Internationale des Arts in Paris; two grants from the Whiting Foundation; a Faber Residency in the Arts, Sciences, and Humanities; an artist-in-residence position with the Andorran Ministry of Culture; an artist-in-residence position at the Florence School of Fine Arts; and an appointment at Scuola Internazionale de Grafica in Venice, among many other awards and honors. She has taught at Yale University, the American University in Rome, the New School, and elsewhere. Dr. Darling serves as Editor-in-Chief of Tupelo Press & Tupelo Quarterly. Born and raised in the American Midwest, she now divides her time between the United States, Greece, and the Amalfi Coast.
Refund Policy: Refund up to 4 weeks prior each conference, less 15% processing fee.