Behind the Scenes: Fall 2015 Writing Workshop Prep


I’m in New York for much of June with one of the best people in the whole world and we’re cooking up a special treat just for you, dear readers.

We spent some time in McNally Jackson Books last night for inspiration and a few treats…

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… and this morning we drank iced coffee, ate croissant and a fruit bowl, and brainstormed what will be the scaffolding for a thorough, thought-provoking, and inspiring craft workshop this fall.

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There’s much more to come, but we wanted to give you a sneak peak into our notebooks so you can get excited with us.

Next week, we’ll be at a magical, undisclosed location by a lake in New Hampshire hatching more details. Stay tuned!

Spring Writing Workshop Reflections and Praise


These workshops are getting sweeter and sweeter.

This time around, it was all about play. There was collaging, found prose and poems, and we even used dreams and this special book as writing prompts. In four three-hour sessions, these writers produced one complete first draft and/or up to four beginnings for new stories and essays. They presented their work at a final reading at the Prichard Art Gallery, and it was inspiring to hear these diverse styles and stories one after another.

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Here’s what some of these talented young writers had to say about the workshop:

The exercise where we choose important elements of our dream, picked it out in the book of symbols, and then gained inspiration from there was the best part for me. I am extremely happy I took this course. I know I now want to actively pursue writing. Thank you so much! — Mass Market Fiction Writer

I loved the exercises we did involving collage because they help me think in a different way. It feels like an escape but it actually taps into parts of me and my writing that are more intimate and harder to find. I also really loved the exercise we did on the last day, jumping from dreams to images to symbols. I need more workshops, I need more workshops! — Journalist, Poet, and Essayist

The most useful exercise was collaging. Being able to physically manipulate images to reflect your writing and characters brought my story to a new level (it even brought about a story I had no intention of writing). I am absolutely grateful that you shared this with the class and that not only was it a challenge but that it was fun. Great class. You are a great teacher. — Literary Short Fiction Writer

The overwhelming request at the end of the class–and what I feel inspired to tackle next–was to cover more technique, craft, style, form, voice. The scaffolding that makes a piece of writing stand.

Who am I to deny the people what they want? So it’s time to get down and dirty.

I’ll be teaching an online craft workshop online this Fall, and I can’t wait to get you more details. Look out for those coming soon!