Not Your Average Workshops!

These aren’t your average workshops!

Coming up in September, we’ve got some eclectic offerings, all of which are free. Feel free to sign up at for these or any of our creative writing workshops.

Saturday Book Discussion: The History of Love by Nicole Krauss (September 6, 2 p.m.)

Introducing the new BWW book discussion group! Every first Saturday at 2 p.m. we’ll discuss a book. For this meeting, let’s discuss The History of Love by Nicole Krauss.  Just like college, you’ll have to buy your own text.  Unlike college, you will not be graded.

Betty Smith-Mastaler, VPR's commentary producer, will share her insight into the art of the radio commentary.
Betty Smith-Mastaler, VPR’s commentary producer.

Writing Commentaries for Vermont Public Radio (September 9, 6:30 p.m.)

The VPR commentary is a staple in shows like Morning Edition and All Things Considered. A good commentary can make you laugh, move you to tears, and (perhaps most importantly) make you think.

For this workshop, VPR’s commentary producer Betty Smith-Mastaler will read a few of your drafts and comment on what VPR looks for in a good commentary.

You may be familiar with BWW members Bill Schubart and Anne Averyt, both of whom are regular commentators on VPR. Perhaps you’ll be the next BWW member to become a regular voice on VT’s airwaves!

Stories Told Live: An Oral Storytelling Workshop (September 11, 6:30 p.m.)

Gin Ferrara, oral storyteller extraordinaire!
Gin Ferrara, oral storyteller extraordinaire!

Extemporaneous storytelling is unique genre for sharing true, personal stories with a live audience, and a great tool for developing work. In the last few years, storytelling events have sprung up all over the country, from the public radio darling “The Moth” to local events right here in Vermont. This workshop will introduce the basics of oral storytelling (with no notes or scripts), and give participants a chance to develop a personal story of their own. Time permitting, we’ll also hold an impromptu storytelling circle.

This workshop will be led by Gin Ferrara. Gin is an artist, writer, and educator, who began her live storytelling practice in 2010. She recently won top honors at the April 2014 extempo storytelling event for her story,”Yard Work.” She is co-founder of Storytelling VT, a monthly event at the Monkey House in Winooski. Ferrara is the founder of Wide Angle Youth Media in Baltimore, MD, and is currently the multimediator for her company, Spindle & Widget, where she teaches, writes, and designs tools and strategies for getting people talking and working together.

Overcoming Writers Block (September 23, 6:30 p.m.)

Suffering from writer’s block? This workshop, hosted by author Luc Reid, is for anyone running into productivity problems. We’ll cover topics such as the nature of writer’s block (for instance, examining the difference between unable to write and unable to write anything I think is good); the role of a writing schedule in productivity; dealing with internal and external distractions; and a variety of other issues.

Laban Carrick Hill (portrait by Kate Donnelly)
Laban Carrick Hill (portrait by Kate Donnelly)

Writing for Young Adults with Laban Carrick Hill (September 25, 6:30 p.m.)

Laban Carrick Hill, author of several books for young adults, will join us for a YA writing workshop. This is the beginning of a series of workshops with Laban. Each workshop will build on the last. To make the most of this opportunity, please consider “saving the date” for the others (dates listed below). Here are the dates (all Thursdays at 6:30 p.m.): October 9 , October 23 , November 6,  November 20, December 4, December 18.

Digital Storytelling with StoryhackVT (September 30, 6:30 p.m.)

Join Nate Herzog of StoryhackVT for another insightful look into the world of digital storytelling. If you have a digital story you’d like us to take a look at, great! Let us know in advance. Otherwise, we’ll learn more about digital storytelling and get a sense of some of the platforms we can use.  Take a look at the notes from a few previous meetings. This PDF serves as a primer for digital storytelling. This workshop is made possible by the generous support of the Vermont Community Foundation.

We also have our usual creative writing workshops on Monday and Wednesday evenings as well as Tuesday, Friday, and Saturday mornings, so please take a look at our calendar and save your spot!