The UND Writers Conference has become increasingly successful over the past decade and now stands as one of the best literary events in the United States. Writers from around the world are honored to be invited to participate because they have heard of our conference and know its stellar reputation. Because of the conference's success, between 500 and 1,000 people attend conference events each day of the conference. Hundreds of these people travel to Grand Forks exclusively to attend the conference, making use of the town's amenities and contributing to its economic growth.
Of course, we are unique because we are free and open to the public. Most conferences of our stature require heavy registration fees and are thus limited to those who can afford such a luxury. We are quite proud of the fact that we have never allowed that to happen with our conference – that we remain completely available to anyone who wants to come. A generous gift from the Alice Carlson Estate does help fund the conference, providing us with about $35,000 of our $70,000 budget. However, as writers' fees and transportation costs increase, so do the expenses of the conference. It takes between $8,000 and $25,000 now to bring in the excellent authors we are used to hosting, and emerging authors require between $3,000 and $5,000 plus expenses.
Given these increases and the conference's goal of offering its audiences the opportunity to hear widely acclaimed authors, we need to raise $25,000- $35,000 annually to supplement the funding from the Alice Carlson Estate and to add to our growing endowment (which also helps fund the conference). It is our hope that those who support the conference and who enjoy the recognition and economic benefits it brings to the community will be willing to help us meet this goal.
By joining others in supporting the UND Writers Conference, you will be investing in an event that has proven its value for over 40 years, and you will be helping to ensure that the conference remains as one of the university's, the city's and the state's major cultural events.
To make a donation, click here. From there, you may specify whether you would like to donate to the "Writers Conference Endowment" (to fund future annual conferences), the "John Little Memorial Fund" (to support bringing in an author each year in the name of our Writers Conference Founder, Dr. John Little), or the "Jackie McElroy-Edwards and Tom Edwards Writers Conference Endowment" (to fund future annual conferences).
If you would like to support this year's UND Writers Conference, you may send your donation to the following address:
UND Writers Conference
c/o Crystal Alberts, Director
276 Centennial Drive
110 Merrifield, Stop 7209
Grand Forks, ND 58202
Or you may contact one of the following: