About the Workshop

The 2023 Workshop Took Place July 8-15.

Published, unpublished, and talented beginning writers are all welcome to attend Wildacres Writers Workshop. 

The Wildacres North Lodge is bathed in soft light from the lobby at night.

Our “working” classes provide both Master Class-level faculty instruction and workshopping of each attendee’s work; your manuscript is critiqued — and given the full attention it deserves — from your instructor and fellow writers. Workshop sessions run approximately two and a half hours per day, and class size is capped at 10 attendees. You can only enroll in one class, but you’re welcome to audit others during your free time.  

Your experience doesn’t end when your workshop is finished for the day.
A variety of evening activities ensures that your creative inspiration and writerly camaraderie continue.  

Between your workshop and dinner there’s time to rest in your room or sit out on the porches in the rocking chairs as you chat with your fellow writers about the day. After dinner each evening, we host activities such as faculty readings, student readings, music on the patio, dancing, a theme party, and the best comedy skit show this side of Broadway.  

Two men dressed in Scottish garb perform a skit in front of the Wildacres “Gong Show” banner.

This combination of work and play creates a unique experience designed to strengthen your skills as an author, keep you inspired, and provide you with a network of writers that is also a family of friends. There’s a good reason most of our attendees return year after year: Wildacres Writers Workshop is truly an experience like no other. 

For more details, see our Workshop schedule and fees.  

Retreat for Workshop attendees and their guests

If you have been accepted for the Workshop, you may also attend the Wildacres Retreat. There are no writing classes during Retreat, so you can use your extra week in this beautiful setting as you like. If you’re bringing a non-writing guest as your roommate to the Workshop, they may also attend the Retreat for the same price. 

You’ll also have the opportunity to meet other Retreat attendees. During this unstructured week, Wildacres hosts a variety of creative groups such as astronomers, potters, musicians, and more. Space is limited, so apply now for both Workshop and Retreat weeks.

About Our Directors

Amy Willoughby-Burle, Director

Headshot of Amy Willoughby-Burle, Wildacres Writers Workshop Director.

Amy has been attending Wildacres Writers Workshop since 1994 and has been serving as its director since 2020. Many of her stories and novels have been started, finished, or workshopped at Wildacres. Over a dozen of her short stories have been published in literary journals far and wide and her collection of stories, Out Across the Nowhere, was published in 2012. She is the author of the novels, The Lemonade Year (2018), The Year of Thorns and Honey (2020), and The Other Side of Certain (2022).  

Amy teaches creative writing and literature to the hardest audience of all, middle, and high schoolers. She lives in Asheville, NC with her husband and five children. She and her husband met in 1995 on the patio at Wildacres. She credits most of the true joys in her life to having attended Wildacres Writers Workshop all these years and she is honored to serve now as director. There is no other workshop she’d rather call “home.” 

Judi Hill, Founder and Director Emeritus 

Headshot of Judi Hill, Wildacres Writers Workshop Founder and Director Emeritus.

Judi Hill has spent more than 30 years crafting an experience that is unparalleled among writing workshops. National Geographic named Wildacres Writers Workshop as one of the 100 places in the world that will change your life — and change your life it will. Some 30 years ago, she began bringing a small group of writers to Wildacres. That group quickly doubled and doubled again, and it wasn’t long before she had 100 writers on the mountain every summer. 

She hand-picked the best of the best in faculty, structured the classes to be small and intimate so attendees became comfortable with fellow writers and teachers, instilled an inclusive, no-hierarchy atmosphere, and encouraged attendance at evening activities such as readings, music on the patio, a theme party, and one of our favorite traditions, the “Gong Show.”  

Her vision has culminated in an experience like no other. Writers hone their skills, give and receive insightful critiques, create new work, learn from master-level instructors, recharge their creative souls, and make lasting friendships during the week that bring them back home to Wildacres every year. Wildacres Writers Workshop is the experience of a lifetime. Thank you for that, Judi, from all of us. 

“I hope you can join us at Wildacres. I promise it will be an excellent learning experience with fun and laughter. More importantly, you’ll be part of a community of writers and make friendships that will last long after this wonderful summer week. We have one of the highest retention rates of any writing workshop in the country. Almost half the attendees have been to Wildacres before.
Join our Wildacres family. Come and experience the magic on the mountain!”   

Judi Hill