In lieu of a week-long, in-person conference in 2021, we’re thrilled to announce a three-day virtual Porch Symposium

The Porch Symposium will unfold every evening from June 16-18 with literary readings, master classes, panel discussions, and the kind of conversation that feeds a writer’s mind and soul. Registration is open to all and costs just $50.

2021 Porch Symposium Schedule

Wednesday, June 16, 2021

Time Session
7:00 - 8:00 p.m. Plenary Session: Faculty Readings
8:00 - 8:30 p.m.

Master Classes: Session 1

  • Peter Balakian “Acts of Transformation: Gestural Painting and Poetry”
  • Carrie Brown “The Artful Artlessness of the Great Naturalists, Chekhov and Munro”
  • Michael Punter “The Playwright’s Toolbox: Getting Started with Drama”
8:30 - 9:00 p.m.

Master Classes: Session 2

  • Emily Bernard “Composing the Self through Others: James Baldwin and Vivian Gornick”
  • John Gregory Brown “Aftermath: Narrative in the Photographs of Gregory Crewdson”
  • CJ Hauser “Karen Russell and Michael Cunningham: Reveals v. Tension”
9:00 - 9:30 p.m. Wrap-Up Session

 

Thursday, June 17, 2021

Time Session
7:00 - 8:00 p.m. Plenary Session: Faculty Readings
8:00 - 8:30 p.m.

Master Classes: Session 3

  • Jonathan Dee “The ‘Social Novel,’ from John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath to Imbolo Mbue’s How Beautiful We Were
  • Marie Mutsuki Mockett “Writing Natural Disasters: How to Think about Modernity and Nature and What Happens When It All Goes Wrong”
  • Jennifer E. Smith “Things You Suspect Might Be Boring but Are (Hopefully) Not: The Works of Charles Dickens and This Talk”
8:30 - 9:00 p.m.

Master Classes: Session 4

  • Gbenga Adesina “The Uninterrupted Dreamworld of a Poem: Lyric, Metaphor, and Rapture”
  • Naomi Jackson “Writing the Books I Want to Read: Notes on Writing in the Traditions of Jamaica Kincaid, Paule Marshall, Toni Morrison & Edwidge Danticat”
  • Dana Spiotta “History and Imagination: Mixing the Real and the Fictional in E.L. Doctorow's Ragtime and Viet Thanh Nguyen's The Sympathizer
9:00 - 9:30 p.m. Wrap-Up Session

Friday, June 18, 2021

Time Session
7:00 - 8:00 p.m. Plenary Session: Publishing Panel
8:00 - 9:30 p.m. Open Mic: Participant Readings