Mary Nilsen will be challenging participants to learn new sentence skills and practice them in daily exercises. In addition, metaphor will be probed, braided, extended and treasured. Those assembled will encourage and challenge each other, pressing for greater individual excellence.
Your days will be spent in class sessions learning new writing skills, in privacy writing mini-essays using that skill, and then gathering again to workshop all the essays. The assumption is that everything can be better and others can catch problems in our writing that we could never see.
This course builds upon skills learned in Words that Sing I but is open to all pastor-writers who wish to deepen their writing skills. If you have not taken that initial course, you will need the text book, Words that Sing: Composing Lyrical Prose, in advance of the course and work through the first two chapters on your own.
The program is limited to 12 participants who can commit to stay the full length of the workshop. It will be held at the Warren Center in Ashland, Massachusetts, 25 miles east of downtown Boston. Accommodations include private rooms with baths, and all meals and snacks. Transportation to and from the facility are the responsibility of participants. For more information about the Warren Center, please visit: www.warrencenter.com.
The registration fee is $400, payable upon acceptance. All other expenses are covered by the Pastoral Excellence Program of the Massachusetts Conference, UCC in partnership with the Collegeville Institute and the Lilly Endowment.
Leading the workshop is Mary Ylvisaker Nilsen (M.A.W., The University of Iowa; M.T.S., Harvard Divinity School). Mary has taught creative writing courses since 1982, first at The University of Iowa and then in the Iowa Summer Writing Festival. She also teaches prose style and metaphor classes in Des Moines, where she lives and owns a small publishing company. Her complete publishing resume can be found on her website: www.zionpublishing.org.
Mary’s teaching style worked very well for me. She was challenging, thoughtful, and skilled in working with the subject matter. She is an excellent teacher. I learned many valuable writing tools and techniques from Mary, and I appreciated her use of hands-on exercises to get her points across.
–participant in “Words that Sing,” Summer 2013
Application deadline has passed. We are no longer accepting applications for this workshop.
After the workshop concludes, each participant is encouraged to submit an original 500-word essay on a topic of his/her choice, intended for a general audience. Participants’ essays may be used as blog entries on the Collegeville Institute’s website or featured in other Collegeville Institute publications. Workshop participants should submit their essays to the Collegeville Institute within three months after the conclusion of the writing workshop.