[NOTE: Our membership is currently closed. New applications will be waitlisted until a spot opens.]
Writers workshops are useful, but sometimes it's helpful to take a book apart with other writers and really examine it, figure out what pulls different parts together, talk about what makes the dialogue or the description work or makes the scene whole. What was really the driving force behind the book and what made the characters interesting? How did this book rise above others and stand out? If we can talk about that and notice the choices the writer makes, our own writing becomes more informed.
The goal of this group is to make good writers better.
Think Elizabeth Strout, Marilynne Robinson, Mohsin Hamid, Karen Russell, William Maxwell, Christine Schutt, Paul Harding, Celeste Ng, Paul Beatty, Kate Atkinson, Kazuo Ishiguro, Randall Kenan, Alice Hoffman, John Irving, Lauren Groff, Brady Udall (these are the books hanging around the desk as I write this)... Think of writers from the late 20th century to now that take risks, that take us someplace, that elevate us or their story to a new vision. Think those books, and then consider if that's what you want to write. That's what we'll read and discuss.
This is not a workshop. It is not a traditional book club either. It's a discussion about craft--what works and what doesn't, what is possible and what is desired.
This group is for writers of literary fiction who want to learn from the experts (writers of fantastic books we love!) and want to be a part of a close literary community. It will revolve around a monthly reading and discussion, chosen by consensus, and will give us all the opportunity to take on a leadership role.
Our group will remain small and will focus on discussing works of literary fiction for the craft, for what the writer has done that we can learn from, that we can use in our own work or not use. We will post questions on the discussion board so that we are prepared to talk about specific aspects of the book and we will be required to read the whole book.
It will require each of us to nominate and vote on books to read, and for each of us to take turns in leading the discussion of the book presented. If you are not up for leading discussion, do not apply for this group. You may not have to do it right away, but leading a discussion once or twice a year will be required.
If a member agrees to this and does not follow through, that member will be dropped.
If it is not yet clear, this is not for casual writers and the expectation is that we take this group as a serious part of our writing lives.
Requirements of Membership:
• Member will attend groups regularly (at least 1 in 2) & will RSVP in advance when attending
• Member will let group know if they will not attend (no-shows will be dropped from the group)
• Member agrees to read the book before attending the discussion
• Member will participate in discussion board, offering at least 1 question or comment for each book
• Member agrees to lead at least one discussion per year
• Member will take an active role in nominating/choosing books for discussion
There is a monthly fee of $3.00 for this group to cover meetup fees.
• Potential members must agree to the above requirements.
• Answer the application question in entirety.
Group members will review and approve applications based on available spaces, adherence to the idea of "literary fiction" (where we choose to draw a line between literary and other genres is subjective, so it is solely up to the group members), and how well we feel the writer will fit into our dynamic.
**Monthly dues of $3.00 will show up under "Writing without Workshops."