WriterHouse

           

Writing Classes

Class Size

Our workshops and seminars are capped at 12 students, and the minimum to hold a class is 5. We've been in workshops elsewhere that had 16 or more students, so we feel 12 is a reasonable size. A few of our classes are designed to have smaller groups and that number is specified in the description. The prices of these are increased accordingly. 

Inclement Weather

If the weather is questionable, we will send an email to your class list. We will also change our outgoing voicemail message, put a notice on our home page, and post messages to Facebook and Twitter. Here is the complete policy from our FAQ.

If you have other questions about our class policies, please see our FAQ.

We have a limited amount of funding to help those who want to take a class or seminar but can't afford it. In order to apply, please download and fill out our Scholarship/Subsidy Form and send it to us with your class registration and partial payment. We ask that anyone who receives subsidies please remember us with a donation when you are able.

In addition to our regular 6 and 8-week classes, we have half-day, one-day, and two-day seminars. See the current list below.

Alison Penning

Instructor: Alison Penning
Cost: $60 Members | $65 Non-Members
Sunday, May 11, 2014 | 9:00 AM-1:00 PM

Limited to 12 students.

When you submit a story or essay to a journal, what happens to it? How many pages will editors read before making a decision, and how can you get them to keep reading? Learn where to send your work, how to write strong cover letters, how to interpret rejection letters, and more. Bring one story or essay you want to submit to journals.

Read more: Seminar: On Submission: Understanding Your First Readers

Mary-Sherman Willis Instructor: Mary-Sherman Willis
Cost: $60 Members | $65 Non-Members
1 Saturday, April 26, 2014 | 1:00 PM-5:00 PM

Limited to 12 students.

A poem sequence can be as short as a pair of linked poems, or as long as book. What makes a sequence different from a single poem or a collection? Learn what binds a sequence together and keeps it going. We’ll explore the craft elements of time and place, character and voice, language, form, plot, image, and metaphor in sequences by Seamus Heaney, Anne Carson, C.D. Wright, Martha Collins, and others.

Read more: Seminar: Stringing the Pearls: The Poetry Sequence

Kathryn Erskine Instructor: Kathryn Erskine
Cost: $90 Members | $100 Non-Members
Saturday, May 10, 2014 | 9:00 AM-4:00 PM

Limited to 12 students.

Do you want to write for kids? We'll analyze the rules and formulae for writing picture books, chapter books, and middle grade and young adult novels. We'll talk about how to start—and complete—your manuscript, common problems in each art form, and what editors are looking for. Most importantly, we'll talk about the difference between a good manuscript and a great one: research, revision, resolve, and writing from the heart.

Read more: Seminar: Writing Children's Books

We offer a variety of six and eight-week classes, daytime and evening. Our workshops are limited to 12 students, except where otherwise specified. See the current list below.

Robert WrayInstructor: Robert Wray
Cost: $189 Members | $210 Non-Members
8 Mondays, April 7-June 2, 2014 | 6:30 PM-9:00 PM

Limited to 12 students.

Part survey seminar and part writer's workshop, this course will examine the dramaturgy of William Shakespeare, with an emphasis on the four tragedies: Hamlet, Macbeth, Othello, and King Lear. With these works, we'll look at how Shakespeare created character, developed story, and used language to fabricate entire worlds. In addition, we'll ask ourselves what these plays teach us about the writer's craft, and we'll fashion exercises based on his techniques in order to sharpen and broaden our "tools."

Read more: Shakespeare's Toolbox: The Bard's Best Writing Tips and Tricks

Christa Romanosky

SPACE STILL AVAILABLE--COME AND REGISTER AT THE FIRST CLASS MEETING

Instructor: Christa Romanosky
Cost: $189 Members | $210 Non-Members
8 Thursdays, April 17-June 5, 2014 | 10:00 AM-12:30 PM

Limited to 12 students.

What makes poetry move us? In this workshop, we'll take a look at some of our favorite poems to figure out why they resound with us and what techniques we can take away from them to use in our own poetry. Every week, we'll share and critique one another's work, while also exploring the basic elements of poetry, including image, metaphor, sound, and the line. Poets at any stage are welcome.

Read more: Poetry Workshop (Daytime)

Roselyn Elliott Instructor: Roselyn Elliott
Cost: $189 Members | $210 Non-Members
8 Mondays, April 14-June 9, 2014 | 6:30 PM-9:00 PM

POSTPONED UNTIL WINTER SESSION

Write in any genre: poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, or memoir in this discussion/workshop designed to draw out stories and issues of caregiving. This class is for anyone who cares for the needs of another: health care professionals, home attendants, family members, animal owners, etc. Students will read work by published caregivers and will be given the opportunity to critique one another's work.

Read more: Creative Writing for Caregivers

Sharon Harrigan Instructor: Sharon Harrigan
Cost: $189 Members | $210 Non-Members
8 Thursdays, April 17-June 5, 2014 | 9:00 AM-11:30 AM

THIS CLASS IS FULL
Check out Brendan Wolfe's Creative Nonfiction Workshop instead, which still has space available!

Learn how to turn your true story into a memoir that is as engaging as a novel, using vivid sensory detail, evocative settings, and fully-rounded characters. All writers are welcome, whether you're starting with a personal essay or two you’d like to turn into a book, you already have a book manuscript, or you're just starting with an idea. We'll talk about the differences between memoir and autobiography and how choosing what not to tell is as important as choosing what to tell. We will do in-class writing prompts and read short passages from memoir masters to illustrate how to solve tricky problems. Each participant will have memoir excerpts workshopped twice, with an option to meet individually after class with the instructor on the day of workshop. Required text: To Show and To Tell: The Art of Literary Nonfiction by Philip Lopate (available for purchase at WriterHouse). 

Read more: Your Life as a Story: Writing the Book-length Memoir

Brendan Wolfe

SPACE STILL AVAILABLE--COME AND REGISTER AT THE FIRST CLASS MEETING

Instructor: Brendan Wolfe
Cost: $189 Members | $210 Non-Members
8 Wednesdays, April 16-June 4, 2014 | 6:30 PM-9:00 PM

Limited to 12 students.

In this workshop, we'll critique student writing in addition to considering a few published selections. The goal will be to move from the chin-strokingly philosophical—"What is a true story?" "Is it memoir or mem-wah?"—to the more practical: "How should this story be told?" "How do I convince my readers to share my passions?" "What parts am I allowed to make up?" All levels are welcome, but be prepared to write!

Read more: Creative Nonfiction Workshop

Douglas Nordfors SQ Instructor: Douglas Nordfors
Cost: $189 Members | $210 Non-Members
8 Tuesdays, April 15-June 3, 2014 | 6:30 PM-9:00 PM

ONLY ONE SPOT LEFT

This class will be a “user-friendly” workshop for beginning or experienced poets. We'll use two classic approaches to discuss our own work: poems in which style, content, and form (free verse or otherwise) "click into place," and poems that work upon the reader in a more mysterious way. The class will be free to evolve in any way the writers as a group deem important, and weekly poem assignments will be optional.

Read more: Poetry Workshop (Evening)

Jay Kauffman resize

SPACE STILL AVAILABLE--COME AND REGISTER AT THE FIRST CLASS MEETING

Instructor: Jay Kauffmann
Cost: $189 Members | $210 Non-Members
8 Wednesdays, April 16-June 4, 2014 | 6:30 PM-9:00 PM

Limited to 12 students.

Taking to heart Norman Mailer’s notion that “writers are readers inspired to emulation,” this workshop will stress both reading and writing. There will be weekly exercises to jumpstart creativity and work on specific areas of technique—point-of-view, dialogue, prose style, characterization, structure, theme, metaphor, fictional time and place, and revision.

Read more: Fiction Workshop

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Creative Writing Camp for Kids

Session I: Monday-Friday, July 14-July 18, 2014 | 1:00 - 5:00pm
Session II: Monday-Friday, July 21-July 25, 2014 | 1:00 -5:00pm

->Download Printable Flyer

Grades 3-5: Story Camp
Session 1 Instructor: TBA
Session 2 Instructor: Robin Albertson-Wren, St. Anne's Belfield School

Put your story ideas on paper, or discover new ideas with the help of other writers.

Grades 6-8: Writing Circle
Session 1 Instructor: Erin James, Henley Middle School
Session 2 Instructor: Jen Wilson, Field School THIS CLASS IS NOW FULL

Spend the week playing with different plots and prompts, creating characters, and responding to fellow writers' work.

Grades 9-12 and 2013 High School Graduates: Writing Workshop
Session 1 Instructor: Charlotte S. Wood, Albemarle High School
Session 2 Instructor: Jordan Taylor, St. Anne's-Belfield 

Create new work and polish existing pieces (poetry, fiction, movie scripts, etc.) with supportive feedback from the group.

Read more: Write On!: Grades 3-12 Creative Writing Summer Program