The workshop for humor writing, human interest writing, networking and getting published

Erma Bombeck Wrighters' Workshop Banner


speakers background2The 2016 Erma Bombeck Writers’ Workshop sold out in record time — just under six hours. (Actually, five hours and 41 minutes, but who’s keeping track?).

In the first 20 minutes alone, 200 people registered. One person quickly pulled over on the highway and registered for the workshop from her phone. Another shared a Willy Wonka “I’ve got the Golden Ticket” video clip after she received her confirmation. That speaks to the popularity of this workshop that honors Erma’s legacy and continues to support writers at every experience level.

If you’d like to add your name to our wait list, click here. The workshop runs March 31-April 2 at the University of Dayton.

Writers are flocking to Dayton from 35 states, a couple provinces in Canada, and Madrid (yes, the one in Spain). We have big contingents from Ohio, California, New York and Florida.

We asked attendees what they did to ensure that their names were on the confirmation list. Some of their responses:

• “Simply vigilance, an eye on the clock and weeks of planning.”

• “I just woke up from a dream where we were all fighting over the same computer in a cubicle. Just so you know, I got there first — at 8 a.m. PST. I turned on the light, then went down for coffee. So back off. It’s mine. EVERYone knows that turning on the light is all that’s required to stake your claim.”

• “Stayed in my jammies all morning, my laptop with me at all times. What did I think it was going to do, sprint away when I wasn’t looking? But the Erma workshop has us all doing irrational things, I guess. Refreshed a zillion times starting at noon. Couldn’t get in at first, then when I did the link took me to a post about fishing. Amusing, I’m sure, but not what I was going for. After about 10 tries I was in! And then I drank a bottle of bourbon. Okay, Just kidding about that last part. But it was quite a day!”

• “Had to speed walk my aging dogs to get online, fingers ready, at 9:01 a.m. (PST).  They’re still pissed.”

• “Easy-peasy! A few sacrificial goats and one chicken, and I was in!”

• “I had to reset my password (did I have a password before?)… and wait to be redirected to reset my password, fretting the entire time.. and then reset my password three times because I didn’t actually read the instructions on how to reset my password. Longest. 30. Minutes. Of My Life.”

• “This is my first one, and I’m so excited I’ve been jumping up and down, nonstop squealing to Hubs about what it is and who’s going and why it’s so freakin’ cool. He said all he could understand was something about Ohio and needing a plane ticket. He did mention that it would be nice if I acted that excited to see him every day.”

• “I’ve wanted to go for years but never registered in time. This year I set the alarm on my phone and walked out of a meeting (“oops, nature calls”) to register. I’m so excited!”

• “Yahoo!! I’m in!! I attended Erma in 2004, 2006 and 2008 and the conference changed my writing (and real life). I missed the next few, but I’m thrilled to be able to attend again with some new friends, will get to see some old friends and will renew, refresh and recharge my humor batteries!!!”

• “I’m in!!! My gosh … Pulled over on the side of the highway … Stressing out trying to register on my phone … The things I will do to hang with my tribe!!!! Merry Christmas to ME!!!!!!! See you all soon! XOXOXO”

• “Maybe reg should be a bit later in the day; toasting you all w my Erma glass at noon on a Tuesday? Oh, WTF!!! CHEERS!”

• “In. BOO YA!”

• “Last week I went to Bath and Body Works and learned that on that day, the store accepted as many coupons as you had on you (instead of one coupon per visit like normal). I keep coupons in my purse at all times, along with 4,000 other things I usually don’t need. But on that day, I hit the jackpot and got $80 worth of stuff for just $8.That felt good but today felt better because today I registered for my all-time favorite writer’s workshop — a workshop that is so popular it sold out in under six hours. So this is actually the day I hit the jackpot. [Insert squeal here.] The only thing that would make me happier is if ALL my writing friends were able to attend. You know who you are. Xoxoxo”

Welcome to the 2016 Erma Bombeck Writers’ Workshop.

— Teri Rizvi

Teri Rizvi is the founder of the Erma Bombeck Writers’ Workshop. By day, she works as the executive director of strategic communications at the University of Dayton.

Reflections of Erma