Career Strategy Fellowships Study Abroad Summer Session MyYSS

Work-in-Progress Intensive

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Photo by Hannah Parten

This unique ten-day workshop, open to YWW alumni only, is designed for writers working on book-length material: fiction or nonfiction. This cohort of just eight writers will meet and write for ten days next June. (You are in New Haven for both sessions.)

The workshops will be taught by YWW faculty members Kirsten Bakis or Sergio Troncoso

In Session I, writers will critique 7000 words from their fellow writers’ manuscripts. Exercises and readings will be assigned prior to arrival. Session II will be generative, a mini-retreat if you will, with writers developing new material. The cohort will meet to discuss progress, and strategies to completing confident first drafts. Either workshop is appropriate for any writer who has 7,000 words or more of a draft and a desire to turn that draft into a book. In session both workshops we will be doing some intense workshopping, digging deep to look at the strengths, the challenges, the potential. Because the group will be relatively small, we will really have time get to know each other’s projects.

Over ten days writers will complete both generative and revision-based activities. While the session I work will be deep, intense, and slow, the session II generative/revision-based work will be more dynamic, exploratory, and just fun. Writers will talk about structure and how to take that drafted material and shape it. The generative aspect will involve a lot of short exercises to pop writers out of all the ruts we tend to get in and remind people what they can do when they're just playing and having fun. Both instructors like to stimulate a writer's curiosity to prompt new ways of looking at the world.

The intensive work-in-progress workshop was so beneficial! I came to the workshop with approximately 20,000 words of my novel written, and I left with strong revisions and additions as well as a solid plan to keep writing forward. I know it's because of the craft activities and the focused feedback that I was able to keep working on my manuscript after I went home from Yale until I had a completed work of 70,000 words by the end of August. I highly recommend the experience! —Andrea Rinard, 2019 Intensive Participant

Note:Flash Interview with Kirsten and Sergio

Q: What do you find exciting about this new class format?

Kirsten: This will be my eighth year teaching at YWW, but this is the first time I'll get to stay with the same small group of writers through both sessions I and II. I've been amazed at how much growth I've seen in the past even in short workshops. I expect that in this longer, more intense workshop, I'll see even more of that. We'll have time to get down to the sentence level, to stand back and look at the structural level, to experiment, and revise. I love seeing people make progress in their projects by rising to challenges and making discoveries.

Sergio: I love interacting with students and getting them to the next level. I've taught at the YWW for many years, but this will be the first time I can focus on helping the same small group of writers during both sessions I and II. My workshop will be friendly but intense, and we will have exercises that focus on shaping sentences and paragraphs, as well as exercises that ask the writer to reconsider the entire structure of their narrative work. As a dedicated teacher, I love understanding the strengths and weaknesses of each writer, because I know that with the personal attention I will give them we can transform their writing and hone their voice on the page. This class format allows for that lengthy collaborative interaction.

Important Dates

  • Program dates: June 6-16, 2020
  • Application Opens: December 2, 2019
  • Application Deadline: January 6, 2020
  • Decisions Released: January 17, 2020
  • Payment due to secure your spot: January 31, 2020

Costs for 2020

Living on campus Living off campus (tuition and meals only)
June 6 - June 16 $4240 $3520

We expect a high amount of interest in this intensive workshop and a waiting list will be made if necessary. Writers applying for the intensive workshop can list alternative workshops on their application in case they are not selected.