Now that it’s October, I thought I’d post once more about my Djerassi Writes YA novel workshop and retreat this coming February in the mountains of Woodside, California… and remind anyone who might be considering that applications are due next week, October 18! (Quick link: APPLY ONLINE.)
What will the week be like? (Spoiler: I think it’s going to be awesome.) This is the first time the Djerassi Resident Artists Program—an artists’ colony not just for writers but for visual artists and composers and choreographers, too—is hosting a weeklong workshop and retreat, so we are creating the week from scratch, envisioning mornings of workshopping your writing and afternoons free to write new work in your private studio or wander the beautiful sculpture trails or talk with me about books and words and building a career. In the evenings we will do readings from our work or discuss issues in the industry or books we love or, if we’re so inclined, excuse ourselves to write some more. All meals will be provided, and you’ll be housed in the rooms and studios where Djerassi Fellows are housed during the residency season, giving you a little taste of the artists’-colony experience.
You’ll also have a private consultation with me about your novel-in-progress, in addition to the workshop feedback you’ll get from the group discussion.
On a personal note, I was an artist in residence at Djerassi in 2012 (that’s where these photos are from), and found myself really struck by the beautiful place in the mountains of Woodside, California. I see it as the ideal place to dig in to a draft and create new words. When the opportunity to lead a workshop and retreat here came to me, how could I possibly pass this up?
I should say that though the title of the workshop specifies young adult novels, middle-grade writers are also welcome and encouraged to apply. (I have written one, myself, and I do love middle-grade!)
One of my favorite things about teaching writing—aside from the celebratory moments that keep coming when I learn one of my former students has signed with an agent or secured a book deal!—is the opportunity to dig deep into a novel and help the writer make it the best it can be, all the while always respecting that writer’s vision for the book. I’d be honored to have the chance to do that with yours.