Writer's Block Workshops

Fiction, Playwriting, Creative NonfictionPoetry, & Young Adult Fiction

$40  LLA members     $50  nonmembers



Same Time. Different Place:

Writing the Simultaneous Narrative   

Time: 10:00AM-12:00PM

This workshop will confront one of the major limitations of creative writing as a medium/discipline: portraying two or more things happening at the same time. With examples from Gustave Flaubert's Madame Bovary, Valerie Laken's Separate Kingdoms, and David Connerley Nahm's Ancient Oceans of Central Kentucky, we will learn about three techniques for producing the effect of simultaneity. Attendees will generate new work using one of the described techniques to create simultaneous events. Everyone will be invited to share their writing for feedback from the instructor and the group. Discussion will also lead us into a greater understanding of how other artistic media/disciplines handle simultaneity. 


(Open to Teens & Adults)



Play-Set-Free: The One Act Playwriting Marathon     Time: 2:00-4:00PM

schedule change

Your play already lives in your head, but starting and finishing are the two most challenging aspects of the writing journey. In this fast-paced, no nonsense, highly interactive workshop, we will lay down some core fundamentals to unleash your dramatic creativity and get you off to the races. The goal? To walk out with the first draft of a 10-15 minute one act play. Ideal for new-wrights and all-day-wrights alike. 



The Art of Science and Nature Writing

Time: 10:00AM-12:00PM

In this workshop, we’ll look at how literary and artistic devices are being used to awaken the public imagination. We will also practice some writing exercises that invoke the power of a great story and popularize learning about science and nature. Texts will include excerpts from Margaret Renkl’s Late Migrations and J. Drew Lanham’s ”Nine Rules for the Black Birdwatcher” from Orion. Participants will produce one list essay and one reflective personal piece.



Meter Matters / Meters Morph

Time: 10:00-2:00PM

schedule change

There is more to meter than meets the eye (or ear). In this workshop we’ll take a decidedly un-tweedy look at English metrics, asking ourselves to imagine new and unusual ways to measure our lines. We’ll read poems that count their syllables (syllabics), their accents (accentuals), or both (accentual syllabics). We’ll ask whether Twitter coined a meter (made of characters); we’ll see if we can measure letters and words. Can a prose poem, which eschews the line entirely, find meter? Is there a paradoxical freedom in inventing our own forms? Expect to read poems by Marilyn Hacker, Terrance Hayes, Richard Wilbur, Lyn Hejinian, Robert Frost, and others. The workshop will begin with a crash course in traditional metrics, then we’ll expand outward. We’ll write. We’ll count stuff on our fingers. We’ll find our feet.    



Worldbuilding: Creating Pleasing and Believable Worlds

Time: 2:00-4:00PM

This workshop will focus on science fiction but world-building applies to contemporary stories as well! We will look at examples from a variety of sources (adult and young adult) and then start creating a world first as a group, and then individually. We will look at the examples from Octavia Butler's Imago and NK Jemisin's The Fifth Season, and Gabriel Garcia Marquez's One Hundred Years of Solitude. Interactive and accessible to all ages and levels. 

(Open to Teens & Adults)