join the board

January 18, 2023

In 2017, Seattle was designated a UNESCO City of Literature. Seattle City of Literature is a nonprofit organization that was founded in the run-up to that designation and helps manage the designation, including local programming and relationship-building with other Cities of Literature and Creative Cities around the world.

Seattle City of Literature builds relationships and community partnerships to help creative potential meet opportunity. We connect and strengthen the local and global storytelling ecosystem and center stories rooted in traditionally marginalized communities. In our work, we integrate UNESCO Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to foster an exchange of knowledge, resources, and lived experience.

Seattle City of Literature is currently adding five at-large seats to its board of directors. This is a volunteer, one-year position that will help guide Seattle’s UNESCO City of Literature designation. If you live in Seattle, support the goals of Seattle City of Literature, and would like to be considered for one of these positions, read and complete the Seattle City of Literature Community Seats Application (a Google form) by Sunday, January 31, 2023.

planning for spring

October 13, 2022

This just in from Josh Fomon, Board President for Seattle City of Literature:

Hi! My name is Josh Fomon and I’m the Board President for Seattle City of Literature. I’m reaching out today because the Seattle literary community has an incredible opportunity to show the rest of the country why our city is a UNESCO City of Literature.

As you may know, Seattle will host the annual Association of Writers and Writing Programs (AWP) Conference March 8-11, 2023, at the Seattle Convention Center. For those who may not be familiar, AWP is a conference that hosts literary panels, readings, and a gigantic book fair, while organizations, magazines, and presses typically host over 100 off-site readings and parties.

Last time AWP was held in Seattle, in 2014, over 14,000 people attended. I’m hoping with your help, we can make next year even better. That’s why I’m reaching out with a few questions, opportunities, and requests for you. Please reach out if you have any questions or ideas, too!

Is your organization holding any off-site events during AWP?

Seattle City of Literature is creating a printed and digital schedule and map for Seattle-specific events to be dispersed throughout the city ahead of AWP for our community. Please let us know if you are holding any off-site events as soon as you are able. I know a lot of places have already started to book, so if you would like to do something, I’d suggest starting to plan now. If you want to do something, but don’t know where to start, please reach out!

Is your organization tabling at the AWP book fair?

If you haven’t already secured your table for the AWP book fair, Hugo House’s Rob Arnold had a great idea: Trying to coordinate all of the Seattle organizations in a bloc together to show how strong our literary community is. Let me know if you are interested in trying to make this happen! Early registration discounts tables at $650 until Nov. 22, and on Nov. 23 the price rises to $800. Booths are available as well, but are more expensive. Both options include two passes to the full AWP conference. We highly recommend Seattle orgs to partner and split costs!

Free Saturday book fair opportunity:

Earlier this year, we chatted with AWP and they let us know that they have a free opportunity for smaller organizations to table at the book fair on Saturday. If your “organization grosses less than $20,000 per fiscal year, is a registered non-profit, and is local to the Seattle area” you should apply for this opportunity! No AWP conference has ever maxed out on all of the available tabling spots, so please take advantage of this opportunity before December 8, 2022, if you qualify!

AWP Community Scholarship and Work Exchange Programs for attendees

If you or someone you might know are interested in attending the AWP conference for free or in exchange for volunteer work, AWP has two options.

The first is the AWP Conference Scholarship Program, which has a deadline of December 8, 2022: “anyone may apply, AWP encourages those who identify as people of color, disabled, LGBTQIA+, and/or low-income to apply. Membership is not required to apply. This year, 75% of conference scholarships will be awarded to local Seattle residents.” In our call with AWP, this was another area where historically they have never maxed out on providing scholarships, so please share widely!

The second option is AWP’s Work-Exchange Program, which is intended for “current students, adjunct professors, or someone in need of assistance to cover the cost of the conference.” In exchange for training and four hours of volunteering, AWP will provide you a waived conference registration. The deadline to apply is January 27, 2023.

Furthermore, here is a link to register for the conference with the associated fees. I’d like to point out there is a Saturday-only attendance option for $25 if the cost is prohibitive for the entire conference! [Also note that Early-Bird rates end November 22 and there is a virtual-only option.]


Seattle City of Literature is so excited to celebrate Seattle’s literary community this spring and look forward to championing everything you all are doing!

Do be in touch about any questions, opportunities to share, and anything else you might have on your radar! Looking forward to connecting and thank you so much for everything you do in our community!

All the best,
Josh Fomon
President of the Board
Seattle City of Literature

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