Write Mondays

Writing Workshops for Middle and High School Students in Central Vermont

Write Mondays offers writing workshops for middle and high school students in Central Vermont. We believe in nurturing young writers at every level and challenging students to explore the myriad of writing choices available to them. Kid-centered workshops led by master teachers provide a supportive community where generating, sharing, and critiquing work happens at the group level. But most of all, Write Mondays is about fostering creative expression and translating it onto the page. Workshops are held at Local 64 in Montpelier, VT. 

Three New Workshops for April-May

Workshops

Check out our New Spring Saturday Workshops

Register Now

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Nail Your College Essay—grades 11-12   Saturday April 12   10 am-2 pm

Cost $25 Register Now

The college essay means telling your personal story. Whether you traveled to Mongolia or never left the state, did Habitat for Humanity or cleaned your room, ate a cricket or an Oreo, that story, however exotic or mundane, is unique. But how you tell it is critical. This 4-hour workshop is designed to teach students to explore what it means to take risks on the page and to write with economy, skill and authenticity. We will experiment with a variety of forms and narrative strategies using prompts from the Common Application, Ivy League colleges, and Write Mondays’ curriculum.

ClockBeat the Deadline—Multimedia Journalism—grades 9-12  Saturday May 4   10 am-2 pm 

Cost $25 Register Now

Newspapers and magazines in print and online require strong reporting, compelling writing, and familiarity with digital media. In this workshop we'll write a feature story from start to finish using state of the art digital software and the tools of the journalist. We'll explore narrative techniques and story dynamics that grab and hold a reader's attention, integrating original sources and live interviews to forge a publishable feature.

Short StoryHow to Be a Great Liar—Fiction Workshop—grades 9-12   Saturday May, 19   10 am-2 pm

Cost $25 Register Now

Writing a great story means telling lies—making up characters, situations, and events that hook readers and captivate them from start to finish. In this workshop, we’ll use quick prompts to write short stories and novel scenes that are as believable as they are compelling. Best of all, you’ll learn how to apply your new lying skills to ANY type of plot-centered writing, from short stories to novels, movie scripts to memoirs.

Comics Extravaganza! With Slate Magazine Illustrator Rob Donnelly

slate comic RobDo you love graphic novels? Is manga your thing? Have you always wondered what it would be like to draw comics of your own? Or would you like to take your work in comics to a higher level? Now is your chance.

On Saturday, March 15 from 10-2 at Local 64 in Montpelier, we'll be holding the first Write Mondays Comics Extravaganza, featuring Slate Magazine illustrator Rob Donnelly. The workshop will focus on the drawing and writing techniques you'll need to tell a story in comics, from perspective and plot to pacing and dialogue. The four-hour workshop is for ages 12 and up. It costs just $25, and only ten slots are available. Register now and join us for a day of comics fun!

Comics Extravaganza Registration Form

Scholastic Writing Awards

Scholastic awards The Scholastic Art and Writing Awards, one of the most prestigious competitions in the United States, is accepting annual submissions. We encourage all of you to submit your writing, art, and digital work. Awards are given at every level in every category you can think of. It's easy to submit. Just click the link below. You can submit work you did at home, at school, and at Write Mondays. For all students submitting work done at Write Mondays, just type in "Write Mondays" for the program/school and then type "Gary Miller" for the teacher.

Vermont Submissions Page for Scholastic Awards 

New Fall 2013 Workshops for Middle and High School Students—Register Now

WM Generic Write Mondays is pleased to announce two 8-week workshops beginning October, 2013.

The College Essay—a workshop for grades 11-12—8 Mondays, Oct 7-Nov 25, 5-7 pm.

The college application essay is all about telling your story. But how you tell that story is critical. Whether you traveled to Mongolia or never left the state, did Habitat for Humanity or cleaned your room, ate a cricket or an Oreo, that story, however exotic or mundane, is unique. During this workshop we will explore what it means to take risks on the page, and to write with economy, skill, and authenticity.

Prose World—a workshop for grades 7-8—8 Wednesdays, Oct 9-Nov 27, 5-7 pm.

If you're an observer, have an eye for detail, a voice, an opinion, or a style that is all yours, Prose World is the planet for you. You'll experiment with different forms, from flash fiction and fantasy to screenwriting and journalism. Along the way, you'll learn what makes a good story, from plot and voice to point of view, scene, and dialogue.  Click here for a detailed description of the class.

Pre-registration and tuition are required as space is limited. We look forward to seeing you.

WGDR PODCAST — Listen Here

We had a GREAT radio show at WGDR this past Saturday with host Tonio Epstein. The show featured 8 podcasts written and produced by high school students, along with interviews of the kids and Write Mondays teachers. Deb Fleischman and Gary Miller.  Congratulations to all the kids for your hard work and outstanding results.  

Poem City at Local 64

Poem City

The Criminelle

Write Mondays' Poem City Workshop featured the first usage of a new poetic form: The Criminelle. The form was inspired by The Story's radio podcast about Luc Sante's translation of Novels in Three Lines—a collection of newspaper crime reports written in 19th century France by the poet and impresario Felix Feneon.
The Criminelle features the six stanza set-up and line-repetition scheme of the villanelle, except that the repeating lines are taken from the Times Argus' Montpelier newspaper police logs, published each Tuesday. Three brave pioneers took the criminelle challenge—Take 2 lines from the log to form the framework for the repetition and the jumping off point for the poem.  Add original lines to complete the poem and tell a story that links the 2 repeated lines. You will notice that the first and third line of the first stanza are the actual lines from the logs. These lines are repeated in the successive stanzas using the villanelle pattern. Their poetry, still in the draft stage, is presented here. We hope they inspire you to to write criminelles of your own.

 

By George Drew

A silver charm bracelet was found on Main Street.

River Street starts on the end of Main.

A woman with a red jacket was seen on River Street.

 

How are these things things related to one another?

The woman in the red jacket looked just like my missing mother.

A silver charm bracelet was found on Main Street.

 

Was the woman in red looking for the charm?

At any rate she was doing no harm.

A woman with a red jacket was seen on River Street.

 

A powerful light lit up the whole area.

And people said there was nothing scarier.

A silver charm bracelet was found on Main Street.

 

A red jacket was seen rising up in the light

And the charm was glowing brighter than the light.

A woman with a red jacket was seen on River Street

 

The woman with the red jacket was never there.

The silver charm bracelet went up in the air

A silver charm bracelet was found on Main Street.

A woman with a red jacket was seen on River Street.

 

By Newton Baker

Someone saw a deer with an arrow in its thigh on Leap Frog Hollow

On Deerfield Drive gardens grazed to roots were complete

“Threats to kill” were heard on Cummings Street

 

A man stood-stared-and stammered curses toward the sky

The future plan to feed his family filled instead the path of some beasts feet

Someone saw a deer with an arrow in its thigh on Leap Frog Hollow

 

Though strong believer in amendment #2

there was no gun to have the garden’s back

“threats to kill” were heard on Cummings St

 

emotions rage in those aggrieved

with flash mob visions of revenge

someone saw a deer with an arrow in its thigh on Leap Frog Hollow

 

Defensive fences or offense attack?

you eat me, I’ll eat you

“threats to kill were heard on Cummings Street

 

Robin Hood might be the best way to go

where ghostly figures fight dark shadows in the night

Someone saw a deer with an arrow in its thigh on Leap Frog Hollow

“Threats to kill” were heard on Cummings Street

 

By Mary Carmel

A person had no heat in his Main St. apt.

Where did it lie each drop of his pleasure?

Jewelry and diamonds were stolen from the 2600 block.

 

As if those pearls and gems could stoke his tinder,

when lust, love and dreams were his longing true.

A person had no heat in his Main St. apt.

 

When his watch melted into the landscape

and his dreams blew away.

Jewelry and diamonds were stolen from the 2600 Block

 

His hands curled up trying to catch the warmth in the cup

his eyes closed to miss the freezing up.

A person had no heat in his Main St. apt.

 

As the lock broke open and his opals turned to plastic

each tiny swarofski looked fantastic

Jewelry and diamonds were stolen from the 2600 Block.

 

All gone now into the night

Gone to the fence Jackie Frost.

A person had no heat in his Main St. apt.

Jewelry and diamonds were stolen from the 2600 Block.

Write Mondays Kids in The Bridge!

Kids in Bridge http://www.montpelierbridge.com/2013/03/write-mondays-immersion-writing-for-high-school-students/

This week's issue of The Bridge features five amazing works of journalism by Write Mondays students. These hardworking young writers deserve an audience, so please read and share. Thanks so much to Nat Frothingham and Ivan Shadis at The Bridge for making this possible—and thanks to our wonderful interview subjects, who volunteered to let our students write about them! It was a real community effort, and it makes us proud to live and work in such a wonderful place.

The Envelope, Please!

Scholastic Award Write Mondays students Quinn McVeigh and Eli Pandolfo were among those honored at this year’s Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. The awards ceremony, held at the Brattleboro Museum & Arts Center, featured an art exhibit, a poetry reading, and a hilarious and inspirational presentation by cartoonist Hilary Price, creator of “Rhymes with Orange.” Thanks so much to BMAC Education Curator Susan Calabria for coordinating the awards in Vermont, and for making such a dynamite day possible.

Register Now for Winter Workshop—The Digital Word Starts Jan 14, 2013

Podcast Tonio Today, more writing is finding its way into the digital realm—in online literary magazines, radio features, and podcasts. But to create successful digital works, writers need to hone their craft.

In this session, we’ll explore narrative strategies that define digital productions, including pacing, point of view, and voice. We’ll write scripts for digital podcasts and produce them using digital recording and editing tools. The workshop will culminate in a visit to the studios of WGDR radio in Plainfield, for a live airing of our podcasts.

The workshop will run for seven Mondays, from Jan 14-February 18, and March 11 at Local 64 in Montpelier. Additional studio time will be arranged separately, to fit WGDR’s schedule. You will need a laptop and a smart phone for digital recording. If you don't have this equipment, please call us and we will try to provide you with some loaner equipment.

Pre-registration and tuition is required for this workshop as space is limited. Please print the registration form from the "About Write Mondays" drop down menu and mail to the address listed on the form. We look forward to seeing you.

Workshop 5—Golden Shovel Poetry

Ossmann Photo Crop Thanks to visiting poet, April Ossmann, for leading our poetry workshop and introducing us to the “Golden Shovel” prompt. This poetic form was invented by Terrance Hays, in his poem, “The Golden Shovel” (Lighthead, Penguin Books, 2012), an homage to Gwendolyn Brooks, which borrows her poem “We Real Cool,” in its entirety and incorporates it in the new poem. The borrowed poem or line of poetry is laid out vertically on the right margin of the created poem, as you will see from these wonderful examples written on the spot by Write Mondays’ students.

Write Mondays’ Golden Shovel Poems

Summer’s hurricane battered each branch bare.  —from Mark Doty’s poem, “Grosse Fugue”
 Ari 

Warmth of winter contrasts the ice of summer’s Sweet deception. Her subtlety brews a hurricane Of tired souls, consciences submissively battered. Every second whispered sings earnestly of each Perfect strand of music that spurns another’s branch - Twist my words, spin my thoughts till all is laid bare.

Let’s tip over all the trash cans we can find.  —from “How to Like It,” by Stephen Dobyns
Gwendolyn—Nostalgia In the Mitsubishi 

Asked me if we should; I answered “Let’s,” went to a restaurant; left a gracious tip; whirled the car around the rotary over and over; couldn’t stop laughing, didn’t matter at all; didn’t worry about the subtle rattle of trash tumbling about your backseat; soda cans, broken dreams, longing for the 1950s; we can’t go back now, but you pretend we can; you pretend whenever there’s a solution you can’t find.

here is where the world ends every time.—from Brian Turner’s poem, “Here, Bullet”
Eli P.

The geese were here passing quickly, heading away. It is  the same with the other birds;the chickadees, the bluejays; this is  where the fading land meets the sharp edge of the world. Now the bloodred dying sun lays its beaten body in the west, the world is silent, it ends, here and every where, forever. All that's left is the gelid black, ticking gently, time.

Quinn

Trees have broken cement sidewalks here This is where the trees reach the stars, this is Children run wild here, they disappeared, into where? Imaginations have run away too, tangled, brilliant, the Beautiful, aged woods have become the whole world Sunlight weaves through trunks of trees as that universe ends Slowly it falls from tips of leaves to roots, touching every One, only with the setting of the sun has it been noticed, time

Ben
We stumble through the brush to get there, to get here
here is the hot coco, the fire, the warmth it is
all here in the glowing bubble where
we sleep we eat we play it is the
place that was our entire glorious world
but as we age we explore and the bubble pops and ends
and we set out away from the warmth to explore every
possibility within the limits of our naturally allotted time
Ethan

The catalyst is here do we ever know when the catalyst arrives? is  it possible to reference the catalyst in present tense, where there is no was or will be. the catalyst brings what? what the world needs, wants, accepts. what the world refuses, hates, runs from. it ends peace, tranquility, routine. a catalyst is the start of every reaction, every change, every era throughout time

Eli F.
Alone in the gathering darkness, I am standing here.
The frigid wind blows through the broken tree that is
Fallen across the narrow and twisting path where
I must cross to reach the beckoning safety of my home, the
Light in the darkening world.
As what light is left in the night fades, and the day ends
I know that a new day will come every
Morning when it is time.

 

Ari 
Your heart lies here,
Then your mind is...
If so, tell me where
Is its place in the
Fantasy of your world?
He’ll go, she’ll cry, it ends.
With a word it is over, every
Emotion she cherished lost in time.
he sang his didn’t he danced his did.—e.e. cumming’s poem, “anyone lived in a pretty how town”
Sasha
Master of the shadows, that is he
Hero of all the songs nobody has sang
The power of the world, in palm is his 
savior of nothing, care you didn’t
hurtling against an invisible barrier is he
only on the words on the tip of your lips he has danced
only a figment of folly in your mind is his
neglect and ignore is what you did
Gwendolyn—The Cruelty of Feigned Oblivion
It seemed as though he
had no idea that my heart sang
each time it saw those bright eyes of his;
it’s as if he didn’t
even notice the longing and
yearning as he danced
around and around with my heart in his
hands. But he did.
I think it must be lonely to be God—from “the preacher: ruminates behind the sermon,” by Gwendolyn Brooks
Quinn
Stars, planets, asteroids whiz by, whilst I
Floating in space, deep, dark absence, think
The absence surrounds me, that holds everything in it
The star beside me dies, just as everything must
How empty his place seems to be
Planets and stars numerous, isolated and lonely
Always spreading apart, onwards, upwards, where to?
I am sinking, dimming to the presences that be
Here, no one has come, not even God
Sasha

That is I determined and shaped by what I think constantly chasing it whatever was predetermined, do I must whatever shape they want me to become, I must be have my will cut down and believe lies that I am never lonely drive towards whatever they say I am striving to be whatever an exemplary person is to be and ignore the notion of freedom, and a feeling that I will never get the chance to be a god