Founded in 1975, the Maine Writers & Publishers Alliance is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit membership organization that works to enrich the literary life and culture of Maine. We are the only statewide organization solely devoted to supporting and promoting Maine’s writers, publishers, booksellers, and literary professionals. The MWPA has a membership of more than 1,200.
Our goals include: promoting an appreciation of Maine literature; creating a network of writers, readers, and publishers; creating opportunities for writers to improve writing and marketing skills; and informing members and the public of Maine literary and publishing news.
Throughout the year, the MWPA offers workshops and seminars at locations across Maine, which includes two annual writing and craft retreats. We host two professional marketing events—a conference on the business of writing and pitch session with literary agents. In addition, the MWPA co-sponors and facilitates literary events across the state, including the Belfast Poetry Festival and the Bangor Book Festival.
In October 2010, the MWPA received PEN New England’s prestigious Friend to Writers Award, which is given annually to just one individual and one organization.
Thanks to the continued support of the University of the Southern Maine, the MWPA’s offices are housed within the Glickman Family Library on USM’s Portland Campus.
Joshua Bodwell, Executive Director
Joshua Bodwell is the executive director of the Maine Writers & Publishers Alliance. He is a regular contributor to Poets & Writers Magazine where his author profiles have included Ann Beattie, John Casey, Andre Dubus III, Richard Ford, and Richard Russo. He is a contributing editor at the online journal Fiction Writers Review. His fiction and nonfiction have appeared in magazines and quarterlies such as Ambit (London), Glimmer Train’s Writer’s Ask, Threepenny Review, and Slice. His journalism has garnered awards from the Maine and New England press associations. He was awarded the 2015 Marianne Russo Award for emerging authors from the Key West Literary Seminar.
Joshua is the co-founder of the community arts nonprofit Engine in Biddeford, where he lives today with Tammy Ackerman and his daughter, Elona. Visit his website to learn more about his work. Joshua keeps track of his reading life with his annual reading list Bodwell’s Baker’s Dozen.
→ director [at] mainewriters.org
Stephen E. Abbott, Assistant Director
Stephen Abbott is the assistant director of the Maine Writers & Publishers Alliance and editor of Find Maine Writers. Stephen has worked as a writer, magazine editor, speaker, and communications professional for more than a decade. He is also the director of communications for the Great Schools Partnership and the New England Secondary School Consortium, and the editor of the Glossary of Education Reform.
→ abbott [at] mainewriters.org
Hannah Perry, Projects & Programs Coordinator
Hannah studied philosophy and fiction writing with Meg Wolitzer and Nellie Hermann at Barnard College, where she also wrote for the Columbia Daily Spectator. She began interning for the MWPA in 2011 and immediately impressed executive director Joshua Bodwell by creating a guide to forging his signature for future interns. After her first stint at the MWPA, she pursued a variety of experiences, including maintaining hiking trails in the Berkshires, bartending, scoring the written sections of standardized tests, and teaching English in Peru and Chile for a year and a half. In early 2014 she began working as poet Richard Blanco’s assistant and became the MWPA’s Projects & Programs Coordinator.
→ perry [at] mainewriters.org
Photographs: Curt Richter (Bodwell); Michael Bowker (Abbott)