This is a workshop for anyone interested in writing with the intention of submitting their work for publication; flash (F/CNF), short stories, and/or essay (lyric, personal, memoir, travel) are all welcome forms.
While we can never guarantee our own publication, this workshop is about fostering the shared intention of being published. If you dream of being published in literary magazine’s like Brevity or The Master’s Review, this workshop is for you!
In short, we will discuss “outside” readings, followed by critique, and then write to prompts. An interest and/or experience with both literary fiction and creative nonfiction is ideal.
Workshops will take place every other Tuesday and last 2 hours. We will start with a 45 minute discussion about a specific piece of published writing, which I will share links to in the forum.
Reading and discussing published work is motivating and inspiring. It also engages us with the work we wish to be published alongside, stories by both new and established writers. That being said, “outside” reading will be kept on the shorter side to give us ample time to focus on reading the critiqued work.
This discussion will be followed by critique, where we have a full hour to discuss the submitting writer’s work. Submissions should not exceed 5,000 words.
As the submitting writer, you will be asked to bring a hard copy of your submission for each member of the group to the meeting prior your scheduled critique date. This way, the submitting writer has the chance to receive all their copies returned to them with handwritten or attached notes to take home after their critique.
(While not everyone has a home printer, the local library makes this an affordable option. Also, while it may seem like a lot of printing at once, I find this a better alternative to printing every other week. If printing is still a barrier for you in some way, let me know and we will figure something out.)
With our last 30 minutes, there will be optional time to write to a prompt and share. Why not use this scheduled time to also generate new ideas for future writing?
All of this will be placed into a schedule, (reading material links, dates, etc.,) in the colloquium forum.
On workshop forms: I think this link describes well the successful flow of a workshop, one that is mutually beneficial for the group as a whole. https://lithub.com/unsilencing-the-writing-workshop/
While an argument for unsilencing the traditional workshop format, this essay argues how a critique can/ should be a discussion, and the writer should be able to use their critique to fit their specific needs, without having to defend/argue. As long as we stay focused on the text itself and how to make it better, the workshop itself can be a dialogue for the writer’s larger questions/concerns.
We all share the desire to tell our stories; this workshop, ideally, will be honest, respectful, and motivating/constructive for everyone in our attempts to grow and (fingers crossed) publish!
What to expect: For our first meeting, we’ll give introductions, talk about the group format, and schedule our upcoming critiques and readings.
To sign up: Email me (Lily) at email@example.com. Please send me a brief description of your writing, your writerly intentions, and what you hope to get out of this critique group. Also, a list of your favorite authors!
Lily Blackburn is a writer and editor living in Portland, Oregon. She studied English and Creative Writing at Portland State University and graduated with her BA in 2017. She writes memoir, flash, and book reviews and has been editing at Typehouse Literary Magazine since 2016. You can find her work at or forthcoming in Big Truths, Night Music Journal, *82 Review and Write or Die Tribe.