creative writing workshops for children and adults

2016 Summer Intensive Recap

These are REAL TEEN CREATIVE  WRITERS. (just trapped in kids’ bodies – but not for long!)
See what a bunch of passionate young teen writers got up to at The Writers Circle’s
2016 Summer Creative Writing Intensives.

INSPIRING INTRODUCTIONS
Every day began with mind-bending and laughter-inducing prompts.

Introducing ourselves Introducing ourselves
We wrote 8-word bios to introduce ourselves – a Summer Intensive tradition!
surreal image prompt
Surreal images sparked imaginations on the first morning of each week.

arguments on purpose
We started arguments – on purpose – via notebook and text!

Poetry strips
We followed the inspiration of lyrics scattered on the floor.

And then there was Wiffle-ball Words:

wiffle ball
First, throw!

wiffle ball
Second, catch and compose.

wiffle ball
Third, wait while our interns write it all down as fast as they can!

wiffle ball
Fourth, share the wacky results of our stories!

WRITING WORKSHOPS
Inside and OUT!
Each morning we broke out for our three genre workshops:

Fiction with Christina Kapp, Jennifer Walkup, Judith Lindbergh and Michelle Cameron,
Sci-fi/Fantasy with Paul Witcover (Week 1), Creative Nonfiction with Lisa Romeo (Week 2),
Poetry with Catherine Doty (Week 3), Screenwriting with Carol Forbes (Week 3),
and our brand new Creative Writing Samplers – three genres in one –
with Lisa Romeo and Laurie Albanese (Weeks 1 and 2).

And don’t think we sat inside at desks all day. That’s not The Writers Circle way!

 class

images in class

class

class

outdoor class

outdoor class

Monday speaker

 

 

Food, Friends, and FRISBEE!

Time for lunch, socializing and some running around! Does the brain and body good. And, hey, no matter how talented, they’re still kids!

frisbee

 

fun funfun
fun fun

 Time for AFTERNOON FREE-WRITE

Our afternoon free-write is the most valued and beloved part of our program. Imagine 30-40 kids spread out on the grass, under trees, tucked on benches in the shade or on a comfy couch inside, tapping or scratching away at their words for a full hour. If it sounds like writer’s heaven, then you truly understand what the Summer Intensives are all about!

free write

free write

free write

free write

free write

GUEST SPEAKERS

Monday afternoons we welcomed three terrific guest speakers:

Monday guest speaker
Blogger Stacey Gill explained how blogs give us a platform to speak our minds.

Monday guest speaker
Journalist Joseph Amditis challenged students to question real world events and dig into reporting.
Monday guest speaker
Novelist Mia Siegert talked about “raw writing” and the value of not shying away from subjects that move you.

WEDNESDAY SPECIAL EVENTS

On Wednesdays, we shook things up with special off-campus excursions and all-day group projects guided by some very special guest artists.

Week 1: Return to the Deserted Village of Feltville
The subject was “MURDER!” and it was happening – or happened – somewhere in the woods.

Deserted Village

We explored the ruins, from broken down porches to a mysterious cemetery.

Deserted Village Deserted Village
We jotted down notes on everything we witnessed, then started to piece together the “evidence.”
Deserted Village Deserted Village
Finally we broke into groups and got writing. At the end, we shared our murder mysteries and mysterious murders, including a little bit of set design and acting!

Week 2: All Day Poetry Extravaganza with award-winning poet BJ Ward.

Poetry Extravaganza

BJ started the day with wild words that opened up our minds to possibilities of language.

 

Poetry Extravaganza
Simon Says became a lesson in really listening, as all poets must.

Poetry Extravaganza
Blindfolds helped us pay attention to our senses beyond sight.
Poetry Extravaganza Poetry Extravaganza

Finally, we took our notebooks to Drew University’s Arboretum to breathe our thoughts onto the page.

 Week 3: The Cloisters Museum – our first visit to New York City
where we slipped into the medieval past or the dystopian future, depending on how we chose to interpret this incredible setting!

Cloisters
We explored.
Cloisters
notated
Cloisters
and absorbed.
Cloisters
and wrote

Cloisters
conferred
Cloisters
wandered
Cloisters
Then we wrote,

Cloisters
and wrote some more

And at every step of the way, every single day, there was LISTENING and SHARING.

sharing

sharing

sharing

sharing

sharing

sharing

FRIDAY READINGS

On Thursdays, we rehearsed. And on Fridays, we celebrated each week’s hard work with a reading for invited family and friends.

Friday reading
Ready for a crowd
Friday reading Friday reading
Each student shared a short piece, then introduced the next reader using our 8-word bios from the first day
 

Friday reading

 

Friday reading

 

OUR AUTHOR-INSTRUCTORS

The Summer Intensive wouldn’t be intense without our truly awesome and inspiring instructors:

Chris
Chris Kapp – Fiction

Cat
Catherine Doty – Poetry

Paul
Paul Witcover – Sci-Fi/Fantasy

Lisa
Lisa Romeo – Creative Nonfiction and Sampler

Carol
Carol Forbes – Screenwriting

Jenn
Jennifer Walkup – Fiction

Laurie
Laurie Lico Albanese

Judith
Judith Lindbergh – Fiction

Michelle
Michelle Cameron – Fiction

Group Shots

Week 1

Week 1 Group

Week 2

Week 2 Group

Week 3

Week 2 Group

Everything ran smoothly, thanks to our fantastic staff:

Chantal

Chantal – our INCOMPARABLE Program Coordinator!

and our multi-talented, up-for-anything interns:

Jaris
Jaris

Abbie
Abbie

Adam
Adam

Bhoop
Bhoop

April
April

William
William

Charlie
Charlie

Maddy
Maddy

Be sure to read some of these young writers’ work at
The Writers Circle Journal Online.

Please join us next summer!
For more information,join our email list, contact us or call (973) 900-0415.