The Bread Loaf Writers' Conferences


Frequently Asked Questions

I am a writer but I don't have any publications, is the Conference right for me?

Publication is not a requirement except for those applying for a fellowship or tuition scholarship. Please see the Admissions page for more details on these two types of financial aid.

 What is the average age of those who attend the Conference?

Past Conferences have included a wide range of ages, generally from 20 to 90, with most attendees in their 30s and 40s.

If I am accepted, when will I be assigned to a workshop?

After acceptance notes have been sent and we receive deposit/confirmation forms from those who will attend, we sort participants into workshops. Decisions are based on the faculty workshop leader choices noted on those forms. We do our best to give attendees one of their top choices.

 Do I need a letter of recommendation?

We ask only those applying for the Middlebury College Student Scholarship (for current Middlebury College undergrads) to send a letter of recommendation, from a creative writing instructor. Often we receive nomination letters for fellowship and tuition scholarship applicants, but these are note required.

I'm having technical difficulties with Submittable. Who should I contact to get some help with this?

Please contact Submittable directly:
phone: 855-467-8264 (ext. 2)

I am not very good with computers. Is it okay for me to apply by regular mail?

Please contact Noreen Cargill at or 802-443-5286 to discuss this question.

Can I apply in more than one genre?

Yes, it is possible to apply in more than one genre. Please fill out a separate application for each.  

I would like to be considered for a spot as a general contributor should financial aid not work out. How do I do that?

To apply for financial aid and as a general contributor, please fill out an application in each category.

When applying in fiction or nonfiction, is it okay to submit more than one piece or do I have to submit only one piece that is up to 6,000 words?

It is okay to submit one or more shorter pieces as long as the overall word count is 6,000.  It is possible to upload only one document to the online submissions program, so though it's possible to send separate shorter pieces, all must be included in the same electronic document.

What if my piece of fiction or nonfiction is longer than 6,000 words, can I still send it?

If your piece is about 200 words over, that's okay. Going over by 300 or more words is not acceptable.

I know I should send my best unpublished work with my application.  If I'm accepted, will I have a chance to send a replacement manuscript that I really want feedback on during the Conference?

Yes, you will have a chance to send a replacement manuscript for workshop critique. We include more information about that in the acceptance materials.

When will notification letters be sent? Are early decisions possible?

Notification letters will be sent via e-mail in late May. Early notification is not possible as the admissions board members read and evaluate ALL applications before making final admissions decisions.

 I will be moving before notification letters go out, should I still note a street address on my online application or is it okay to leave that blank and just use an e-mail address?

We will send notificaiton letters by email, so it's the email address that is most important on the application.

Can I apply for two different types of financial aid?

Yes, it is possible to apply in more than one category.

If I'm awarded a work-study scholarship, when will I receive my payment for the hours worked?

Work-study scholars receive their check for hours worked following the Conference (last year checks were mailed to work-study scholars about a week or so after the session ended).  The balance on accounts is due before the start of the Conference, but this fee is somewhat offset by the payment received later.