Learn how to write a book proposal that gets a book contract -- starting September 20

Associate Fellow Elizabeth Rusch shares with you her secrets for publishing success -- step by step.

An excellent proposal helps you organize your ideas, understand the competition, and can help you land a publishing contract even before you write the book. This seven-week class will take you step-by-step through the major parts of the nonfiction book proposal: the query letter, overview, competitive analysis, marketing and promotion, author background, outline and sample chapter.

Save your spot by registering now

Review the arts (dance, painting, theater, film) under the tutelage of the best -- sign up by September 20

Adjunct Fellow and former Oregonian art critic Barry Johnson is looking for a few good reviewrs for Arts Watch.

The workshop will consider the basics of preparation and research, structure and writing and attempt to create a "platform" for writing about the arts in an engaging and useful way. Says Barry: "We'll read; we'll write; we'll edit. And we'll think and talk a lot about art."

Save your spot by registering now

Study fiction and nonfiction with one of Portland's master writers starting September 20

Associate Fellow Karen Karbo runs you through her loving, supportive, and kick a** boot camp for writers.

If you've got a novel, memoir, collection of essays or stories you're going to write "someday," (or one halfway done that refuses to catch fire) someday has arrived. This workshop will offer advice, inspiration, motivation and techniques to get you started, keep you going, help you get out of your own way, and make writing a daily part of your life.

 

Save your spot by registering now

Now is the time to write your Young Adult novel -- starting September 20

Adjunct Fellow Kerry Cohen, author of six books, guides you with skill and humor.

This class will be part workshop, part discussion of the unique craft that makes up young adult novels. We will examine what elements make up a novel meant for young adults: characterization, emotional arcs, plotting, form, and crafting scenes.

 

Save your spot by registering now

 

"Ye Olde Poetry Workshop" re-launches on September 22

Adjunct Fellow Matthew Dickman reads and critiques your newest poems.

Like in a wedding, the students in this class will bring something old, something new, and something borrowed. We will bring in a poem that feels stuck, a new poem, and we will be generating writing in class, borrowing from each other, and sharing poems of favorite poets.

 

Save your spot by registering now

 

Beginning October 2, focus on writing great plots and a great novel.

Senior Fellow Merridawn Duckler steers fiction writers and novelists forward.

 
 
 
 
"PLOT 101" STARTS OCT 2: Learn how to develop unique characters, intense plots, and dynamic dialogue. A workshop on the craft of story-telling and bringing your stories into a fictional framework.
 
"NOVEL-IN-PROGRESS WORKSHOP" STARTS OCT 2: The dedication to writing a novel can be a lonely experience. This is a great 8-week experience to kick-start a novel, even if if you only have one chapter or just an idea.
 

Adjunct Fellow Vanessa Veselka wins 2012 PEN/Robert W. Bingham Award in Fiction

Congratulations, Vanessa!

Award goes for her first novel, Zazen, published last year.

"An ambitious encapsulation of our modern times, Zazen tackles counter-culture hipsters, geology, Buddhism, consumerism, terrorism, veganism, family drama, and, above all, love." ~ PEN/Robert W. Bingham Award in Fiction citation

Meet Vanessa Veselka. Keep an eye out for her next workshops at the Attic Institute.

Internationally renowned literary journal becomes the Attic Institute's newest 'magazine-in-residence'

The Portland offices for Rattapallax to be hosted and operated independently at the Attic Institute.

From 2005-2010, Poetry Northwest was the Attic Institute's first 'magazine-in-residence.' Beginning September 1, 2012, Portland-based editor Flavia Rocha will be editing Rattapallax as the Attic Institute's newest 'magazine-in-residence.' Operating independently, Rattapallax is an online journal focusing on litearture, poetry, music, and film.

Learn more about Rattapallax.

Hamline University’s Low-Residency MFA in Writing for Children & Young Adults teams up with the Attic Institute for a special opportunity for writers in Portland

 

ATTENTION ALL PORTLAND AREA WRITERS INTERESTED IN WRITING FOR CHILDREN OR YOUNG ADULT AUDIENCES

The Attic Institute is pleased to host Hamline University’s Low-Residency MFA in Writing for Children & Young Adults’ special opportunity for you to attend a workshop session and have lunch with faculty and the director of the acclaimed program. You’ll get a sneak preview of life inside an accredited MFA program.

Saturday, September 8, 9:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m., at the Attic Institute. Cost: $25.

Award-winning children’s and young adult authors Phyllis Root and Ron Koertge, both professors in Hamline’s MFAC program (based in Saint Paul, Minnesota), will present workshops so you can experience learning just as you would in the MFAC program. Workshops include: 

9:30-10:30: The Heart of Your Story. Using the tools of storyboarding and dummying up, Phyllis Root will show you how to locate the essential heart of your picture book and, once found, how to make that heart beat more strongly. (This is also useful when thinking about novels.)

10:45-11:45: Structuring Your Novel. Ron Koertge will discuss the important differences between a novel and a novel-in-verse, introducing you to the key elements of fiction necessary to structuring a novel: Point of view, character, and plot.

After the second workshop, participants are invited to have lunch with the faculty and the director of The Creative Writing Programs at Hamline. Here you will hear more information about what the MFAC program at Hamline offers.

You can attend both workshops or just one. If you choose to do only The Heart of Your Story, you can meet briefly afterward with the director of The Creative Writing Programs.

You should arrive ten or fifteen minutes early so the first workshop can begin on time.  

To register: Click this link to attend this special session.

Kelly Wallace (Hawthorne Fellow, '12) offers one-day workshop on honing and crafting a query letter for literary agents.

 

Get an agent and sell your idea

A three hour crash course for writers to focus on honing and crafting a query letter for literary agents. When we’re done, you’ll have a query letter to send, ideas where to send it, a network of people to support you and next steps for how to continue the good work.

When: Saturday, September 15 from 9am-noon with a follow-up cocktail party a month later to share our finished query letter and/or success stories. 

Registration: $59.

Price of admission to cocktail party: Your finished query letter. Location of cocktail party TBA. 

This class is led by Kelly Wallace, currently a Hawthorne Fellow at The Attic Institute. She owns and operates the West Coast chapter of Writers Boot Camp and is a Member of the Pinewood Table writer’s group led by Stevan Allred and Joanna Rose. 

To register for the class please visit: http://www.bootcamp4writers.com/register/west-coast-boot-camp-portland/

Pre-order Associate Fellow Wendy Willis' book of poems and get a signed edition.

Blood Sisters of the Republic to be published in the fall.

"Here's a full-out 21st century poet -- wrangler with history, domestic confidante, disrupter of narratives, down-home story teller, linguistic fire breather. "    — Greg Glazner, author of Opening the World

"Wendy Willis is a poet of serious heart. Blood Sisters of the Republic is as much about its local life as it is about national conscience. Plentitude and complexity are the hallmarks of its voice. And love is its signature.”
  — Stanley Plumly, author of Old Heart
 

Pre-order Blood Sisters of the Republic  |  Meet Wendy Willis

Jack Daniel’s gives former Attic Institute writer a shot and chaser of publicity.

Have a look at the cover Jack Daniels wants changed -- and the polite letter the distiller sent to Patrick Wesnick to cease and desist.

Read the New York Times article about Patrick Wensick's novel, Broken Piano for President, and the run in with Jack Daniels.

Meet Patrick Wesnick, a former Attic Institute student in Merridawn Duckler's fiction workshops.

 

Discover fiction, memoir, and nonfiction workshops at the Attic Institute

 

Human beings are born to tell stories.
Tell us yours.
 
 
Flash Fiction  |  Writing Our Queer History Map Your Way to a Published Book  |  Essentials
 
Fiction |  Memoir  |  Nonfiction  |  Personal Essays  |  Book Proposals  |  Young Adult  |  And More

 

Reminder: Classes sometimes fill up fast. It's always best to register early.

Film critic and New York Times best-selling writer Shawn Levy joins the Attic Institute as an Adjunct Fellow in the Fall of 2012

Shawn Levy on reading and writing film.

For enthusiasts, film buffs, and writers.

We're delighted to announce that Oregonian film critic Shawn Levy will join the Attic Institute to teach "Reading Film / Writing Film" during Fall session 2. Look for his course information to be posted in August -- and register then.

Meet Shawn Levy

 

Associate Fellow Greg Robillard has been chosen to lead the Hawthorne Fellows in 2012-2013

G. Xavier Robillard, author of Captain Freedom: A Super Hero's Quest Truth, Justice and the Celebrity He So Richly Deserves, and contributor to "Livewire" will begin working with new fellows in October.

Deadline to apply for October-February Hawthorne Fellows: September 25, 2012.

Learn more about the Hawthorne Fellows

Associate Fellow Wendy Willis's major essay on place has been reprinted in the July/August issue of the Utne Reader.

Where Are You From?

Reconnecting to the places we live by Wendy Willis, from Oregon Humanities 

"Recently, driving home from a soccer game in the pouring rain, I looked into the rearview mirror and asked my two young and very wet daughters, “If someone from another country asked you where you were from, what would you say?”

Without a heartbeat’s hesitation, they responded in unison, “Portland, Oregon.” I drew a sharp breath. For them, it’s not even a question to ponder. When I am asked, I always say, “I live in Portland, but I’m from Springfield, Oregon—from East Lane County.” When my husband is asked, he always answers, “Harris County, Texas,” though he was born in Tulsa, has lived in a dozen states, and has bounced around the same two zip codes in Southeast Portland for more than fifteen years."

David Biespiel and Phil Meehan will read together July 8, 7pm, in the Studio Series at Stonehenge Studios in Southwest Portland

An American Poetry Reading

Four days after Independence Day, poets David Biespiel and Phil Meehan will read their poems on the theme of America and other things. 

Free. Under the tram. Studio Series at Stonehenge Studios, 3508 SW Corbett

If you're working on a novel, you can keep up the momentum in New York Times Bestseller Jennifer Lauck's "Novel Idea" workshops.

Are you working on a novel?

Register for this special ongoing novel-writing experience and go the distance.

Learn more about A Novel Idea with Jennifer Lauck

PLUS: Check out the Special Offer when you register between June 20-26

Associate Fellow Elizabeth Rusch's new book, "The Mighty Mars Rovers: The Incredible Adventures of Spirt and Opportunity," has just been published.

 

A Junior Library Guild Selection

Starred reviews in School Library Journal, Booklist, and in Kirkus who called it "enthralling...stellar...edge-of-your-seat reading."

The Mighty Mars Rovers: The Incredible Adventures of Spirit and Opportunity" (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt) is being published just in time for the landing of the newest Mars rover Curiosity which is due to touch down on the red planet August 5.

Meet Elizabeth Rusch at OMSI on August 5 for Astronomy Day to celebrate the book’s launch and the rover’s landing. And look for Liz's fall workshops at the Attic Institute, as well.

Everyone is talking about 'The Essentials' -- one-night workshops this summer that focus on fundamentals of revision, style, and publishing.

Excellent advice for writers of all kinds

The Essentials workshops at the Attic Institute focus on a single craft issue with the emphasis on proven results.

Three new 'Essentials' workshops take place this July.

Learn more and register

 

Starting in September...The Poets Studio reestablishes the 'old-fashioned' way to study the writing of poetry

Wordle: Untitled

Pour the art into the poet and the poet into the art.

Plumb the depths of the art of writing and publishing new poetry.

Develop, experiment, write, and publish new poems.

Study over an extended period with regular contributor to Poetry magazine, David Biespiel.

Modeled after the famed Actors Studio, the Poets Studio is open to all poets. Learn more and register

The Atheneum class of 2012 celebrates a fabulous retreat and graduation -- while the Atheneum class of 2013 has formed and will begin in September

Congratulations to the outgoing (Class of 2012) and the incoming (Class of 2013) Atheneum Fellows.

[Left] Atheneum class of 2012 fellows gathered the weekend of June 18 for a final retreat the Attic Institute.

Meet the new Atheneum fellows for the class of 2013.

Learn more about the Atheneum and upcoming workshops.

 

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Notes from David Biespiel, President of the Attic Institute

 

Letter announcing the new Attic Institute

"Eleven years have gone by in a blink. But today begins a new era as we renew our dedication both to the word and to the world."

 

Interview about the founding of the Attic Institute

"All sorts of excellent pieces of writing get started and finished here. That's what it means to be a literary studio."

 

Farewell commentary as editor of Poetry Northwest: " A Sense of Form and A Sense of Life"

"I realize now that the divide between Modernist American poetry and, let's call it, Rilkean American poetry is largely unnecessary. Poetry can be both a repository of wisdom and contain revolutionary feeling -- even in the same poem."

 

Essay on poets and democracy in Poetry magazine: "This Land Is Our Land"

"America's poets have a minimal presene in American civic discourse and a miniscule public role in the life of American democracy. I find this condition perplexing and troubling -- both for poetry and for democracy."