WOTS History - Write on the Sound
WOTS History

1st WOTS logoFirst WOTS poster

In 1985, Write on the Sound writers' conference was created by the City of Edmonds Arts Commission, under the guidance of commissioner and author Ann Saling. Approximately 100 people attended the first conference, a one-day event featuring a keynote speaker and 13 workshops. The first planning committee established that the conference's primary focus be on the craft of writing, offering writing workshops and speakers rather than agent/editor appointments. As the conference grew, informational sessions regarding the publishing industry and the business of writing were added to the schedule, but the focus remains on the art of writing.

1991 - A graphic illustration featuring the silhouette of a Washington State Ferry atop a wave and set between an arch of a pencil and pen was adopted as the official WOTS logo.

1992 - The WOTS writing contest was introduced.

1993 - Inaugural on-site book shop, featuring publications by conference presenters and speakers, offered by Edmonds Bookshop.

1994 - The conference expanded to 1.5 days.

1995- The 10th Anniversary marked the first full-weekend conference, and manuscript critique appointments were added to the conference offerings. 

2000 – In partnership with the Edmonds Arts Festival Foundation Gallery, located within the Frances Anderson Center, a special exhibit and artist presentation highlighting the connection between the literary and visual arts was added to the Sunday schedule. 

2003 - Half-day pre-conference small group critique sessions were introduced in partnership with Edmonds Community College (2003-2014).

2007 - A half-day workshop was added to the Friday schedule.

2010 - The 25th Anniversary honored conference founders, and online registration was introduced.

2011 - A second half-day session was added to the Friday schedule.

2013 - A third half-day Friday workshop was added to the schedule.

2014 - A full-day workshop was added to the Friday schedule.

2015 - 30th Anniversary and new brochure design.

2016 - Poetry manuscript critique appointments added.

2017 - After Hours activities lead by EPIC Group Writers, including "Dine Around Edmonds," writing and critique groups, and open mic night.


Keynote and Featured Speakers

1986-Cliff Lenz

1987-Knute Berger, Ruth Kirk

1988-Stella Cameron, Dennis Stovall

1989-Henriette Klauser

1990-J A Jance

1991-Jonathan Raban

1992-Sheila Bender, Christi Killien

1993-Ann Rule

1994-Aaron Elkins

1995-Anne Lamott

1996-David Guterson

1997-Robert Ferrigno

1998-Colleen McElroy

1999-Katherine Stone

2000-Henriette Klauser

2001-Dale Furutani

2002-Craig Lesley

2003-Robert Michael Pyle

2004-Diana Abu-Jaber

2005-Greg Bear

2006-Elizabeth George

2007-Timothy Egan

2008-Samuel Green

2009-Brian McDonald

2010-Natalie Goldberg

2011-John Daniel

2012-Carla Neggers

2013-Benjamin Percy

2014-Robert J. Sawyer

2015-Stella Cameron and Rick Steves

2016-John Moe

2017-Kristin Hannah in conversation with Megan Chance

2018-Cara Black






Write on the Sound
Frances Anderson Center
700 Main St
Edmonds WA 98020
wotsat symbol mdedmondswablack dotgov

 34th annual conference
October 4, 5 & 6, 2019


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Write on the Sound is a program of the City of Edmonds Arts Commission

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Contact Information

Write on the Sound

City of Edmonds Arts Commission

700 Main St.

Edmonds, WA 98020

425-771-0228 | wotsat symbol mdedmondswablack dotgov

Office Hours: Mon-Fri, 8:30AM-5:00PM (PT)

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