In July, a group of writers spent 10 days at the Collegeville Institute in an advanced writing workshop led by Lauren Winner. The workshop was geared for those “in the thick of” writing a book, and participants had the opportunity to share their full manuscripts in small groups for feedback and critique. Mornings were set aside for writing, while afternoons were devoted to in-class writing exercises, craft lectures, and workshop sessions. In the evenings, participants engaged in a variety of activities including: a murder mystery game night, visio divina with the Saint John’s Bible led by Jessie Bazan, and guest lectures by Bryan Bliss and Kate St. Vincent Vogl.
When asked to evaluate the workshop facilitator, one participant wrote: “Lauren is an excellent facilitator and instructor. I came to Collegeville with the skeleton of a book; she gave me so many ideas for ways to make it take on new flesh.” Another remarked: “Lauren Winner is erudite, approachable, and generous. We got a world-class, paid-for, week of MFA instruction from a master craftswoman. The one-on-one meetings were minute-by-minute gold. I couldn’t have imagined better.”
In their reflection on the week, a writer commented: “One of my biggest barriers to writing is distractions (house, work, social/family, etc.). It was so lovely and wonderful to not have to take care of things, to be tucked up here just to write and workshop. Thank you Collegeville Institute staff for your care and attention to details. I feel rested and ready to reintegrate creative writing into my daily life.” Another wrote that the “fruit of this time will feed me for years.”