Writing By Writers (WxW) is a 501(c)3 non profit organization whose mission is to create a rigorous and compassionate environment to learn the art of reading and writing from accomplished authors. WxW hosts multi-day writing workshops for people interested in writing fiction, non-fiction, memoir and poetry. The workshops are taught by nationally-known, published authors, who are adept at teaching the craft of writing to all levels of student. In addition, participants learn how to read other’s work critically and apply those lessons to their own writing.
Writing By Writers DRAFT! is an intensive program for 15 writers who are committed to completing a novel, memoir, short story, or essay collection over the course of two years. Whether starting a first draft, or working through a new revision, this program is appropriate for writers who want a rigorous and supportive community throughout their process. If you already have a completed manuscript you want to workshop over a long weekend, check out our Manuscript Boot Camp.
Key Dates: Application Deadline, January 15, 2023; Acceptance Notification, February 1, 2023; Registration Deadline, February 15, 2023; Program Kick Off, March, 2023.
In-Person Retreats: August 24 - 27, 2023 (Boulder, CO), February 22 - 25, 2024 (Mill Valley, CA), August 22 - 25, 2024 (Boulder, CO) and February 20 - 23, 2025 (Mill Valley, CA).
Faculty: Samantha Dunn, Pam Houston and Joshua Mohr.
Curriculum & Format: The heart and soul of Writing By Writers DRAFT are four in-person retreats where writers will workshop their draft-in-progress, as well as attend craft talks, panels and readings. Over the two year program, we will focus consecutively on the three stages of writing, inspiration, execution and revision. Our final retreat will be a pre-publication bootcamp, with agents and editors in house, where your faculty and fellow writers will read your entire draft. At each retreat, five writers will work closely with one faculty member, rotating each retreat so that by the end of a year and a half, all writers will have studied with Sam Dunn, Pam Houston and Josh Mohr. For the final retreat, writers will select who they would like to work with a second time. Before each retreat, writers will submit their cumulative pages to their faculty and four peers to be critiqued at the in-person workshop (up to 75 pages first retreat, 150 pages second retreat, 225 pages third retreat, 300 pages fourth retreat). Whether in person, or writing furiously at home, Draft members will be part of a supportive, encouraging and tight-knit writing community.
What you can expect from the program:
- 4 in-person retreats (lodging and group meals included)
- faculty panels focused on the stages of writing - inspiration, execution and revision
- faculty craft talks specific to elements of writing a book-length manuscript
- faculty one-on-ones to help shape and guide your process
- reading and critique of 750 pages in total of your draft-in-progress by faculty members and four of your peers
- the opportunity to work with three different faculty members who are accomplished novel, memoir and short-story writers
- faculty and student readings
- an agent/editor panel on the ins and outs of the publishing world
- an agent/editor one-on-one
- a monthly on-line book chat focused on the craft of writing
- an on-line forum to connect with fellow program members to share encouragement, inspiration and support
- an intimate and tight-knit community of 15 writers and 3 faculty committed to the same goal
Tuition: Tuition is $6,250 per year (payable $3,125 per retreat) and includes four days of workshop, faculty one-on-ones, agent/editor one-on-one, admittance to all craft talks, panels and readings, group meals and lodging for three nights. There will be an additional fee of $100 for every 25 pages over 300 for the final manuscript draft.
Application Requirements: The application period opens July 15, 2022 and the application submission deadline is January 15, 2023. Acceptance notifications will be made February 1, 2023 and the registration deadline is February 15, 2023. All applicants must submit a writing sample of up to 30 pages (double-spaced, Times New Roman or similar font), ideally from the draft you plan to complete during the program, a project synopsis and a short bio.
Application Fee: If you are accepted to the workshop, your application fee of $25.00 will be applied to your tuition.
The Mont Blanc Workshop is a one or two-week long writing adventure where writers will have the opportunity to generate new work, receive manuscript critique, and hike in stunning French Alps. The workshops are limited to 12 participants to ensure an intimate setting, plus plenty of time to write and explore. Pam Houston will be the faculty member whether you choose the first week, second week or the full two-week session.
When: June 18 - 24, 2023 (first week manuscript workshop only), June 25 - 30, 2023 (residency only), or June 18 - 30, 2023 (full two weeks manuscript workshop + residency) in Chamonix in the French Alps. The workshops will be held at the Chalets des Sapins, 396 Rue du Lyret, 74400 Chamonix-Mont-Blanc, France.
Tuition: $1,500 (for first week), $1200 (for second week) or $2,700 (for full two weeks) Week one includes the four-day workshop, scheduled readings, cocktail parties and dinners. Week two includes writing prompts and a daily residency check-in with Pam Houston.
Lodging: Private rooms are available at Chalets des Sapins and we encourage writers to stay with us in one of three chalets on the property. The chalets have various bedroom/bathroom configurations but all chalets feature private bedrooms, full kitchens, access to laundry, free parking and free WIFI. For shared bathrooms, at most 3 people will share 2 bathrooms per chalet. In order to create a creative space, student chalets are intended for writers only and not for families and guests (unless they too are registered workshop participants). Housing will be provided continuously from June 18 - 30 for writers wishing to stay for the full two-week session. The rates are per week:
- $700 double bed with private bath (shower, sink, toilet)
- $600 double bed with semi-private bath (private shower and sink, shared toilet)
- $500 double or two twin beds bed with shared bathroom
Meals: Other than scheduled events, you’ll be in charge of your own meals. All on-site Chalet des Sapins chalets have kitchens. People here also tend to bond fairly quickly and participants in the program swiftly colonize assorted cafes and restaurants in the valley. In terms of costs, $20 a day will get you the best bread, cheese, and wine of your life. There’s an excellent farmer’s market, a cheese co-op, numerous bakeries, etc. If you want to go deluxe, there are plenty of high-end restaurants, including a few with Michelin stars.
Travel: Because people come from all around the world, we also let participants book their own air and rail. Geneva tends to be the best place to fly into, with easy 1 hour shuttles from the airport to Chamonix. Turin, Milan, and Lyon are also reasonably close and they’re ideal starting points if you want to fit extra travel into your plans.
Format: Part workshop, part residency and all adventure, the Mont Blanc workshop is broken into two, week-long sessions so writers may stay for the first week manuscript workshop only, the second week residency only, or the full two-week session. Sessions are held daily for three hours Monday – Thursday afternoons from 4-7pm.
Week one will feature opportunities for generative writing exercises and manuscript critique by Pam Houston and the other workshop members. Manuscripts for critique will be limited to 5000. Week two will offer writing prompts and a daily check-in with Pam Houston. The program leaves plenty of time for participants to write and hike. The Chamonix Valley is filled with cafes, rock-climber bars, and secluded alpine meadows where you can hide out and lose yourself in your work. It also offers world class hiking, easily accessed from various lifts throughout the valley so you can start your adventure on top of the world.
Faculty: Pam Houston
Fellowships: WxW offers a limited number of fellowships for one week of the Mont Blanc workshop. Fellowship are highly competitive. The WxW Board reviews each fellowship submission and awards are made on the merit of the writing sample alone. Please do not send letters of recommendation. Fellowships cover the cost of tuition for one week, but do not cover transportation or lodging. To apply for a fellowship, please check the “Fellowship Submission” box on the workshop application. The deadline for fellowship consideration is January 1st. We are always seeking funding for additional fellowships. If you would like to sponsor a fellowship, please contact us at email@example.com.
Thank you so much for being a part of our 10th Anniversary celebration and sharing what you love about Writing By Writers! If you need a little help, here are some ideas:
What is your favorite WxW memory?
What do you think WxW does differently than any other workshop?
If you have been with us over time, what have you observed grow and change?
How would the world be different if there was no WxW?
Filming Tips from Ramona of Reel Indian Pictures
1. When filming yourself, turn your phone on its side and film horizontally. When you film vertically, I have to edit your video with these annoying black bars on each side which doesn't look great.
2. Try to film yourself like you would take a selfie. The reason I say this is most phones have a microphone but it's on the phone facing. So if someone films you, we will most likely hear them better than you.
3. Try not to film with a window behind you or a lot of light coming in from behind, then we won't see you - just your outline or we'll assume you're doing a Frosted Flakes commercial.
4. Maybe film outside or in front of a light so we can see your face!