Frequently Asked Questions
National Black Writers Conference (NBWC)
Last updated July 2019
- How often is the National Black Writers Conference (NBWC)? The four (4) day conference is every even year, i.e. 2018. It generally takes place the last full weekend in the month of MARCH. The Biennial Symposium is for one (1) day only, usually on a Saturday. The date(s) may be influenced by the Easter/ mid-term break.
- Do I have to be a professional writer or a person of color to attend the National Black Writers Conference? Anyone with an interest in literature may attend. The conference is open to all.
- If I am a vendor, do I have to pay to attend the conference? Applies only to the multi-day conference: No. Check to see if there are openings on our site and for deadlines. There generally is no Vendor Pavilion for the biennial symposium.
- Are the conference sites handicap accessible? The majority of the conference events are held at Medgar Evers College, CUNY, which is handicap accessible at all locations. Most of the conference partner spaces and pre-conference events are at venues that are also accessible. We advise that you call in advance to partner venues for direct confirmation. Partner venues can be located on this site with the listed event(s).
- What is the age for Senior/ Elder Registration? The age is 62 years of age with valid ID presented in person.
- Can students register individually or as a group? There is a student rate available for the full conference and a daily rate. Valid ID will be required on site. Medgar Evers College, CUNY students attend gratis for events held on the MEC campus where there is not a separate donation required, i.e. Talkshops or fundraising events. (See details on this on the Registration page). The scheduled Youth Audience Day programming (usually the first day of the conference, but please check the program for accuracy) is generally gratis to New York City and Tri-State Area elementary, middle, and high schools.
School administrators and teachers: To find out how your class can participate in “Youth Day” activities, please contact the Center for Black Literature at 718-804-8883 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Programming is generally for 3rd Grade – 12th Grade. Check each conference schedule respectively.
Pre-booked Classes are allowed gratis entry inclusive of chaperones, as per DOE requirements, for THAT DAY ONLY unless other arrangements have been agreed upon prior to attendance.
- Parents bringing children to MEC conference location: Children 13 and under will be granted gratis entry with a paid adult admission; limit two  children per adult, all children after will require entry at the student rate. Children 14 and over will be required to donate at the student rate(s). The exception to this being the “Youth Day” programming.
- How can I register? Individuals are able to register online on this site or Eventbrite.com, via mail, and/or through Registration Coordinator (credit or debit card required) or download a printable form to mail in with their payment IF available for a particular event.
- There is a registration form in the conference brochure that can be mailed or used on-site (this applies to 3-4 day conference, not the biennial symposium). Please DO NOT send cash through the mail. To request that a brochure be mailed to you, please call the Center for Black Literature at 718-804-8883 and leave a message if no one is available to answer your call or e-mail email@example.com. You can join our mailing list here.
- When is the last day to register? Please see applicable dates and deadlines on the Registration link for the most current information. Individuals: Do not bring registration forms or payment in-person prior to the first day of the conference.
- When can I register? Individuals can pre-register anytime before the aforementioned dates re: link to Registration. On-site Registration will begin at 9 a.m. on most conference days and remain open until the first 30 minutes of the last panel or event for that conference day unless otherwise indicated. Payment by check will not be accepted on-site.
- Is the VIP Reception & Award Ceremony Donation separate from the Conference Donation? Applies only to the multi-day conference: Yes. These items can be paid separately; you do not have to pay the conference admission to attend the VIP reception and awards ceremony. This is a separate donation.
- Are the “talkshops” a separate donation from the conference admission? Applies only to the multi-day conference: Yes. “Talkshops” are ticketed and are limited to 25 attendees for each workshop unless otherwise indicated. We advise all to purchase these tickets in advance.
- If I volunteer, can I “attend” the conference? Volunteers who donate a minimum of eight  hours over the four days of the conference may attend any non-ticketed event without the required monetary donation. Any events that require a separate entry donation are not included, i.e. the VIP Reception and Talkshops.
- How can I register a group? Groups can register online with a debit, credit card, virtual check or through the Registration Coordinator. The required form will be forwarded to you upon request. The Registration Coordinator will advise your organization on the logistics of arrival, and reception of your group as required. Payment must be submitted at least two weeks in advance, BEFORE arrival to the conference.
- Can individual students register for talkshops/workshops? Applies only to the multi-day conference: Students at the upper level of high school and above can register for these workshops. If in high school, they should be exceptional in the genre of writing for which they are registering.
- Will lunch be served to conference attendees? Lunch is on your own. A list of local restaurants and neighborhood vendors will be provided to all attendees.
- How can I become a presenter or panelist? In general, panelists and honorees are selected by a committee that includes authors, writing instructors, and other qualified individuals for the genres and subject matter presented. All recommendations for potential panelists and sample writings are reviewed for consideration. Submission does not secure selection. No responses will be issued to submitted materials received by this office. Materials will not be returned and may be included in the Center for Black Literature’s Reference Library. No submissions will be accepted that are postmarked after listed submission dates as applicable.
Hard copy, books, DVDs mail to:
National Black Writers Conference
c/o Center for Black Literature at Medgar Evers College, CUNY
1650 Bedford Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11225
If you have additional questions please contact the Center for Black Literature at 718-804-8883. Thank you.