Below is the outline of our 2024 week.  All classes and sessions are held at Calvin Theological Seminary.

(3233 Burton St SE, Grand Rapids, MI 49546)


Note below the Advanced Writing (Early Bird) Class offerings for this 2024 Workshop. These have very limited spaces and fill quickly. Register soon if you are eager to add this option to your busy writing week.


Pre-Workshop Task

 

May 20, 2024         Participants submit their workshop submission. (See UPDATES page for details.)


NOTE: Participants who register shortly before or later than May 20 are NOT TOO LATE. Just submit your material for the Workshop Groups as soon as possible, and we'll connect you with the best workshop group for your genre. 

2024 Advanced Writing 

(Early Bird) Classes

Early Bird Sessions are focused, Advanced Writing classes offered Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday mornings from 7:15-8:20 AM. You will be able to register for the workshop and an Advanced Writing (Early Bird) Class at the same time. 

 Yes, that's early! Bring your coffee/tea mug and we will provide "muffins". 

2024 Advanced (Early Bird) Class Options with Scriptoria registration:

1. Gary Schmidt: Writing for Middle School    = $95 (limit 10)

2. Kevin Washburn: Advanced Editing Skills   = $95 (limit 15)

3. Vinita Hampton Wright: Advanced Fiction Craft  = $95 (limit 10)

Workshop Schedule

NOTE: The schedule will be updated often as details finalize. Check back often!

The Workshop Week

 

Lectures through the day serve different purposes:


Monday, June 10

 

7:45 a.m.      Registration Opens/Calvin Seminary 

                     Sign up for scheduled time slots with publishing experts

 

8:30 a.m.      Welcome & Overview with Gary Schmidt/Seminary Chapel

                 Morning Prayers with Aquinas College

 

9:15 a.m.      Coffee Break/The Gathering Place

 

9:30 a.m.      Workshop 1: Peer Review Master Class/Assigned Workshop Rooms

Participants attend assigned workshop class

        

11:00 a.m.    Coffee Break/The Gathering Place

 

11:30 a.m.    The Writer’s Life with Daniel Nayeri /Seminary Auditorium


12:30 p.m.     Lunch Break

 

2:00 p.m.         Craft Applications with Cynthia Beach

  “Crafting Dazzling Dialogue for Fiction and Nonfiction Writers”

Dialogue is our double agent that appears to be doing one thing while really doing another. For dialogue must be hard at work completing other missions like characterization and plot. Learn simple approaches to crafting effective dialogue and practice techniques for creating this important element.

 

Agent Chat with Kathleen Kerr

        

3:00 p.m.        Coffee Break/The Gathering Place

 

3:15-4:15 p.m.       Writing Recess 

                                                                    

4:15 p.m.      Scheduled One-on-Ones

                

5:30 p.m.      Dinner (Participants on own)

 

7:15 p.m.      Reading with Daniel Nayeri

  


Tuesday, June 11

 

7:15 a.m. Early Bird Advanced Workshop/Limited Enrollment

 1. Gary Schmidt: Writing for Middle School  

 2. Kevin Washburn: Advanced Editing Skills 

 3. Vinita Hampton Wright: Advanced Fiction Craft 


8:30 a.m.      Morning Prayers with Cornerstone University/ Seminary Chapel

                 News & Updates

 

9:00 a.m.      Workshop 2: Peer Review Master Class/Assigned Workshop Rooms

        

11:00 a.m.    Coffee Break/The Gathering Place

 

11:30 a.m.    The Writing Life with Dr. Neal Plantinga/Seminary Auditorium

                    

12:30 p.m.     Lunch Break

 

2:00 p.m.       Genre Focus with Jason Stevens

“Tragedy and Comedy: The Foundational Patterns of Story and Life”

What might the classic genres of tragedy and comedy teach us? Explore beyond their literary meaning to the story elements that build a tragic or a comedic plot and how these story patterns interact with each other. Applying timeless insights from Aristotle’s Poetics, this talk will explore foundational dramatic concepts like Imitation (mimesis), Action (praxis), Reversals (peripeteia), Recognition (anagnorisis), and Catharsis. As we explore these fundamental dramatic elements, we will see that the same elements that structure tragic and comic plots—action rooted in choice, aimed at a worthy end, and containing recognition (or lack thereof) of errors in judgement—are the same elements that structure and shape the arc of our lives. The wisdom of tragedy helps our lives end as comedies. Ultimately, tragedy and comedy helps us see that, at its heart, the Gospel offers a comic vision of reality.


                     Craft Applications with Dan Mancilla

  “Show Their Thoughts: Unlocking Your Character’s Inner Life with Gesture”

Learn how to make use of gesture as a scene-based characterization tool in this craft application seminar. We will look at examples of characterization through gesture in literature and cinema, discuss how and why these examples allow us to access a character’s inner life in concrete ways, and practice using gesture in our own writing.

 

 

3:00 p.m.       Coffee Break/The Gathering Place

 

3:15-4:15 p.m.        Writing Recess    


4:15 p.m.       Time to Pause, to Write, to Reflect

  Scheduled One-on-Ones

 

5:30 p.m.       Dinner

                

7:15 p.m.       Readings with Poet Linda Nemec Foster & Friends (Seminary Auditorium)


                     Open Mic for Participant Readings


 

Wednesday, June 12 

 

7:15 a.m. Early Bird Advanced Workshop/Limited Enrollment

  1. Gary Schmidt: Writing for Middle School  

  2. Kevin Washburn: Advanced Editing Skills 

  3. Vinita Hampton Wright: Advanced Fiction Craft 



8:30 a.m.      Morning Prayers with Calvin University/Seminary Chapel

                 News & Updates

 

9:00 a.m.      Workshop 3: Peer Review Master Class/Assigned Classrooms

 

11:00 a.m.    Coffee Break/The Gathering Place

 

11:30 a.m.    The Writing Life with Agent Kathleen Kerr & Author Amanda Hope Haley/Seminary Auditorium

An Agent and Her Author Talk about Writing & the Writing Biz


12:30 p.m.     Lunch Break

 

2:00 p.m.       Genre Focus in Poetry with L.S. Klatt

  “What Flannery O’Connor’s Words Would Say in the Mouth of Another”

Poet L.S. Klatt will read from his forthcoming poetry book, Saint with a Peacock Voice, based on the recycled works of Flannery O’Connor. Each poem harvests language from a particular O’Connor story, essay, or letter, and recasts a subset of these words (unaltered for tense, number, or grammar) into lyric expression. These poems aren’t intended merely to restate what O’Connor has delivered already but to explore what else her diction, in another’s mouth, might say. Klatt also will discuss what he learned about O’Connor and will explore with the audience questions (aesthetic and moral) the project raises, including why anyone would want to compose in another author’s register and how authentic such an exercise can be. 

 

  Craft Application in Nonfiction with Amanda Hope Haley

  “Distinguishing Your Voice in Nonfiction”

 In nonfiction, it isn’t enough to want to be an “author.” You must be passionate about your chosen topic, know what interests your readers, and make yourself an expert on the subject. This often means very little time is actually spent writing new content. This hour focuses on the importance of thoroughly researching primary sources, adopting a tone that makes tough information accessible to all readers, and finding the balance between your voice and your editors’ professional influences.

  

 

3:00 p.m.       Coffee Break/The Gathering Place

 

3:15-4:15 p.m.       Writing Recess

 

4:15 p.m.       Scheduled One-on-Ones

                     Optional: Creative Arts session with Prof. Anna Greidanus        

        

5:30-8:30 p.m. Dinner (Together)/The Gathering Place

  A Man Had Two Daughters, Seminary Chapel

 


 


Thursday, June 13

 

7:15 a.m. Early Bird Advanced Workshop/Limited Enrollment

  1. Gary Schmidt: Writing for Middle School  

  2. Kevin Washburn: Advanced Editing Skills 

  3. Vinita Hampton Wright: Advanced Fiction Craft 



8:30 a.m.      Morning Prayers with Cornerstone University/Seminary Chapel

                 News & Updates

        

9:00 a.m.      Workshop 4: Peer Review Master Class/Assigned Workshop Classrooms

 

11:00 a.m.    Coffee Break/The Gathering Place

 

11:30 a.m.     The Writing Life Panel Discussion/Seminary Auditorium

        

12:30 p.m.     Lunch Break

 

2:00 p.m.       Craft Application with Debra L. Freeberg

  “Embodied Scripture Workshop: To Find Something True, To Understand God's Word & Share It”

 How can Scripture be translated into performances for worship? In small groups, participants will gain knowledge of and then practice “embodying” Scripture, specifically Luke’s parable of The Prodigal Son. Discussion will illuminate how playwright Freeberg translates this parable into the evening performance of A Man Had Two Daughters.


  Genre Focus with Michael Stevens

  “Wendell Berry and the Art of the Introspective Story”

This talk will explore the idiosyncratic style that Wendell Berry often uses in his fiction, with the narrative voices (both first-person and third-person) ruminating for long-stretches, both in real time and across long bounds of time, in the place of the more traditional formula of action and dialogue. Why does Berry offer such disproportionate ruminations at the center of his storytelling? And how does he avoid the pitfall of stories becoming simple philosophical and ideological mouthpieces (a charge that he has weathered over the years)?  By investigating excerpts from the stories and samples of these various voices, we will discover the quiet strength and stirring intimacy of Berry's pondering style. 



3:00 p.m.       Coffee Break/The Gathering Place


3:15-4:15 p.m.        Writing Recess 

                    

4:15 p.m.       Time to Pause, to Write, to Reflect

Scheduled One-on-Ones

 

5:30 p.m.       Dinner 

                    

7:15 p.m.      Reading with Scriptoria Faculty (Seminary Auditorium)


Open Mic for Participant Readings

 

Friday, June 14

 

8:30 a.m.      Morning Prayers with Aquinas University/Seminary Chapel

                     News & Updates      

        

9:00 a.m.      Workshop 5: Final Peer Review Master Class/Assigned Workshop Classrooms

        

11:00 a.m.    Coffee Break/The Gathering Place

 

11:30 a.m.    The Writing Commission with Gary Schmidt/ Seminary Auditorium

  The Scriptoria Awards

  Lunch (Together)/ Gathering Space