Clarksville, Tennessee, was a pivotal center of the Southern Renaissance of the 1920s and '30s. Writers of the era living in Clarksville included Robert Penn Warren, Evelyn Scott, Caroline Gordon and Allen Tate. Additional writers, including Cleanth Brooks, Ford Madox Ford, Donald Davidson, Katherine Ann Porter, Robert Lowell, Andrew Lytle, Malcolm Cowley, Frances and Brainard Cheney and others gathered to write and discuss their work at "Benfolly," Tate and Gordon's home overlooking the banks of the Cumberland River. Their Clarksville home became a Mecca for writers of the Southern Renaissance, and from that site poured literature which enriched the American scene. In that great tradition, we offer you the Sixteenth Annual Clarksville Writers Conference.


The Clarksville-Montgomery County Arts & Heritage Development Council, in partnership with Austin Peay State University and the Tennessee Arts Commission, is pleased to present the Sixteenth Annual Clarksville Writers Conference on August 12 and 13, 2021.

Join us for this fun, affordable and talent-laden conference featuring two days of writing workshops and presentations, a keynote banquet with the authors, professional editing consultations (virtual) and more! This year we are honored to host:

  • Joshilyn Jackson - New York Times and USA Today bestselling novelist of ten novels, including gods in Alabama, Never Have I Ever and Mother May I, recipient of the Sixth Annual "Patricia Winn Award for Southern Literature"
  • Dana Chamblee Carpenter - author of the award-winning Bohemian Trilogy, including the books Bohemian Gospel, The Devil's Bible and Book of the Just
  • Kiezha Smith Ferrell - founder of Librum Artis Editorial Services and professional print media editor with over 25 years of experience
  • Debra Coleman Jeter - Selah Award-nominated author of The Ticket and co-writer of the screenplay for Jess + Moss, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival
  • Joy Jordan-Lake - author of the bestselling novels Under a Gilded Moon and A Tangled Mercy, as well as the Christy Award-winning Blue Hole Back Home
  • Bobby Keel - multi-gold and platinum-selling songwriter for such artists as Hank Williams, Jr., Confederate Railroad, David Allan Coe, The Carter Family and other major recording acts
  • Robert Mangeot - short story writer whose work has been published in Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine, The Forge Literary Magazine and Lowestoft Chronicle, among others
  • James Nihan - award-winning songwriter, poet, author of ReVisions: Seeing Old Stories with New Eyes and contributor to the musical Nanyehi, Beloved Woman of the Cherokee
  • Renea Winchester - critically acclaimed author of nonfiction book Farming, Friends & Fried Bologna Sandwiches and novels Outbound Train and The Mountains Remember

Authors Kelly J. Beard and S.M. Williams will be unable to attend this year's conference because of family health concerns. We hope to see them next June at the 17th annual Clarksville Writers Conference.