Novelist and Delaware-native Christopher Castellani to give keynote address


Using its unique collection as a backdrop, the Delaware Art Museum is hosting a full-day writing conference on Satuday, June 24, 2017. The Wilmington Writers Conference will include a keynote presentation and craft talk by novelist and Wilmington-native Christopher Castellani; eight other sessions taught by area writers; a lunchtime discussion on Delaware’s literary history and tour of the exhibition The Original Mad Man: Illustrations by Mac Conner; and a panel discussion about being a writer. The conference, which is open to individuals of all ages and experience levels–from first-time writers to published authors–is $25 for the general public, $20 for senior citizens and Museum Members, and $15 for students. Tickets are available under the Adult Programs tab on the Museum’s website,

The Wilmington Writers Conference was organized by the Museum in partnership with a group of local professional and aspiring writers. In addition to providing resources for area writers, the goal of the conference is to spark discussion and dialogue about building a stronger writing community in northern Delaware and the surrounding region. Christopher Castellani was selected as the keynote speaker for his notable writing accomplishments (he is the author of three novels and a collection of essays on writing), his deep connection to the state of Delaware, and for his work with GrubStreet, the nation’s largest and leading independent creative writing center.

“Contrary to popular belief, the writer’s life is not a solitary one,” says Mr. Castellani. “Every successful writer I know credits the community of readers and fellow artists who offer guidance, feedback, motivation, and support. I’m proud to be a part of that burgeoning community in Delaware.”

After Mr. Castellani’s kenote address, conference participants will attend a morning and afternoon session they have previously chosen from a list of diverse offerings, which include:

  • Writing in 3D: Creating Landscape, Place, and Setting, taught by Lisa Dill
  • Damsels Not In Distress, taught by Ramona DeFelice-Long
  • The Art of Perspective, taught by Christopher Castellani
  • Worth a Thousand Words: Making Poetry from Art, taught by Lisa Lutwyche
  • Spoken Word Poetry, taught by Nnamdi Chukwuocha and Al Mills, Delaware’s Twin Poets Laureate
  • Novel Inspirations, taught by Ramona DeFelice-Long
  • The 90-Minute MFA in Short Fiction, taught by Dennis Lawson
  • Shattering Time: Alternate Structures for Personal Essay and Memoir, Maribeth Fischer
  • Picture It! Using Collage to Shape Your Story, taught by Jessa Mendez

The day will conclude with a moderated panel discussion about being a writer with Nnamdi Chukwuocha and Al Mills, Delaware’s Twin Poets Laureate, David Teague, middle grade novel and picture book author and University of Delaware literature professor, and Maribeth Fischer, novelist and essayist, and founder and Executive Director of the Rehoboth Beach Writers Guild.

For more information about the Wilmington Writers Conference, including artist biographies, please visit Registration for the conference is open to all on a first-come, first-served basis.

To view large images and caption information, click below.

About Christopher Castellani

Christopher Castellani, a native of Wilmington, Delaware, resides in Boston, where he is the artistic director of GrubStreet, the country’s largest and leading independent creative writing center. He is the author of three critically-acclaimed novels, A Kiss from Maddalena (Algonquin Books, 2003); The Saint of Lost Things, which is set in Wilmington (Algonquin Books, 2005); and All This Talk of Love (Algonquin, 2013). His book The Art of Perspective: Who Tells the Story, a collection of essays on writing, was published in 2016. In addition to his work with GrubStreet, Christopher is on the faculty and academic board of the Warren Wilson MFA program and the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference. Christopher was educated at Swarthmore College, received his Master’s in English Literature from Tufts University and a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from Boston University. He has just completed a new novel, Leading Men, for which he received a Guggenheim Fellowship.


This program is partially funded by a grant from the Delaware Humanities Forum, a state program of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Additional support was provided, in part, by a grant from the Delaware Division of the Arts, a state agency, in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts. The Division promotes Delaware arts events on

About the Delaware Art Museum

Founded in 1912, the Delaware Art Museum is recognized for its cornerstone collection of works by celebrated American artist and illustrator Howard Pyle, a Wilmington native, complemented by hundreds of works by some of the most talented illustrators.

Also renowned for British Pre-Raphaelite art, the Museum is home to the largest and most significant Pre-Raphaelite collection outside of the United Kingdom, assembled by Samuel Bancroft, Jr., a Wilmington textile mill owner with a taste for Dante Gabriel Rossetti and other contemporaries of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood.

The Museum is famous for the preeminent collection of urban landscapes by American painter John Sloan and his circle. The Sloan collection lives alongside an esteemed survey of American art–spanning more than 200 years–from early 19th century through the present, including masterworks by Raphaelle Peale, Frederic Church, Thomas Eakins, Edward Hopper, Robert Motherwell, and Dale Chihuly. Visitors also enjoy the outdoor Copeland Sculpture Garden, featuring large-scale works by Tom Otterness and George Rickey.

For more than 100 years, the Museum has occupied a vibrant place in the life of the Brandywine Valley. More than a collection of beautiful objects, the Museum is a vital source of experiences and discoveries for visitors from around the world.

The Delaware Art Museum is at 2301 Kentmere Parkway, Wilmington, DE 19806. Wednesday: 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m., Thursday: 10:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m., and Friday – Sunday: 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Monday and Tuesday: Closed. Adults (19-59) $12, Seniors (60+) $10, Students (with valid ID) $6, Youth (7-18) $6, and Children (6 and under) free. Admission fees are waived Thursdays 4:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. and Sundays 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. thanks to support from generous individuals. For more information, call 302-571-9590 or 866-232-3714 (toll free), or visit

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For more information, contact:

Jessica Jenkins
Manager of Marketing & Public Relations