Classes at the Attic

APPLY BY: MAY 31: The Atheneum: Master Writing Program

Portland's groundbreaking master writing program.

The Atheneum melds independent study under close faculty supervision, student receptions, public readings, and other special Atheneum events created around good food and great conversation, dialogue, and literary community.

Running for just under a year, the Atheneum is designed to advance your writing in fiction, nonfiction, or poetry and to seed literary life in the city. Atheneum Fellows form a special community of literary artists and citizens. Many fellows have completed manuscripts for publication and have furthered their goals as writers.

Apply by midnight, May 31, 2017.

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Time: 
September 2017 - June 2018

FREE: Consult about Your Writing

Call us. Let us help you with your writing.

You're invited to schedule a free 15-minute conference call consult to describe your writing situation and focus. During the call, we listen to your writing situation and help you out -- sometimes writers will register for an upcoming workshop. Other times, after a consult, writers will initiate a formal Introductory Consult through our Individual Consult Group to find a writing coach selected specifically for your project.

To initiate a Free Consult, e-mail us -- and when you do, please let us know specifically what you're working on and want to discuss. Then we'll get back in touch and begin to talk together about your writing.

Register for a free consult

 

Time: 
By appointment only.
Location: 
Telephone Conference Call
Total Fee: 
Free.

NEW: Kelley Baker's Screenwriting Workshop | June 5 - June 26

“Now, what is it which makes a scene interesting? If you see a man coming through a doorway, it means nothing. If you see him coming through a window - that is at once interesting.” ~ Billy Wilder

We all have ideas that we think, “would make a great movie." We tell our friends and family all about it, but we never get around to writing it. This class will help you put your ideas on paper.  Writing a good screenplay can be intimidating. What are the rules?  How do you the format a script?  What is the three-act structure that everyone is always talking about? How do you write visually and how come my dialog never sounds like real people talk? This workshop will walk you through the writing process and give you the advice and tips you need to write your story. Through books, classic screenplays and writing exercises you’ll learn the craft behind screen writing.  Kelley emphasizes the importance of the idea, character development, dialogue, and conflict and resolution. You will pitch an idea and work on it during this class. Beginning & Intermediate Screenwriters are welcome. | Maximum: 12 writers

Register for this workshop

Teacher: 
Time: 
Mondays, 7:30 - 9:30pm, June 5 - June 26, 4 weeks
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Early Registration and Tuition Deadline is seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Early Registration: $166 (cash/check); $172 (Paypal). | Late Registration: $181 (cash/check); $187 (PayPal).

NEW: Brian Benson's Craft of Creative Nonfiction Workshop | Jun 6 - June 27

The explosion of creative nonfiction has opened writers to new ways to share your stories and insight. Are you interested in writing memoir or personal essay? Literary journalism or travelogue? In this workshop, you'll learn to craft these and other styles of creative nonfiction. We'll (respectfully) pillage the works of contemporary writers and discuss form and voice, scene and structure, as we explore how to apply literary technique to real-life narratives. You'll get to try your hand at a wide range of creative nonfiction, and you'll receive in-depth feedback on your work in progress so that you can practice a range of paths. Open to writers of all levels. | Maximum: 12 writers

Register for this workshop

 

Teacher: 
Time: 
Tuesdays, 5:15 - 7:15pm, June 6 - June 27, 4 weeks
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Early Registration and Tuition Deadline is seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Early Registration: $166 (cash/check); $172 (Paypal). | Late Registration: $181 (cash/check); $187 (PayPal).

NEW: Natalie Serber's Craft Series Workshop | June 6 - June 27

“It's the writing that teaches you.” - Isaac Asimov

In this multi-genre workshop we’ll spend each session digging deep into craft decisions and strategies to make all our work stronger and more vibrant. Concerned about point of view/persona, scene vs. summary, developing complex characters and writing realistic dialog? This is the perfect summer booster shot for your work. We’ll develop our writers’ toolbox through reading great excerpts from wonderful writers, conversations and prompts. Each participant will have the opportunity to bring in pages and for the class to discuss. | Maximum: 12 writers

Register for this workshop

Teacher: 
Time: 
Tuesdays, June 6 - June 27, 7:30 - 9:30pm, 4 weeks
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Early Registration and Tuition Deadline is seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Early Registration: $166 (cash/check); $172 (Paypal). | Late Registration: $181 (cash/check); $187 (PayPal).

NEW: David Ciminello's Building Character Fiction Workshop | June 7 - June 28

“Until a character becomes a personality it cannot be believed. And without personality, a story cannot ring true to the audience.” – Walt Disney

This workshop will concern the people that populate our stories. Through a series of in-workshop prompts, exercises, and take-home assignments participants will create a series of flash pieces (snapshots) that will flesh out the complete life cycle of a character. Significant focus on radically imaginative explorations of form (monologue, biography, autobiography, etc.), point of view, scene, action, and dialogue will help bring our creations to life. Supportive in-workshop sharing and revision will be a strong part of the process. | Maximum 12 writers

Register for this workshop

Workshop Day: 
Time: 
Wednesdays, June 7 - June 28, 7:30 - 9:30pm (4 weeks)
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Early Registration and Tuition Deadline is seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Early Registration: $166 (cash/check); $172 (Paypal). | Late Registration: $181 (cash/check); $187 (PayPal).

NEW: David Ciminello's Writing Our Queer History Workshop | June 7 - June 28

“Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken.” - Oscar Wilde

Queer here is defined as the strange or the odd from a conventional viewpoint; the unusually different; certainly the singular. This workshop will give participants the opportunity to develop the practice of creative non-fiction and fiction writing about queer personal and family histories. The main goal will be a written exploration of our queer selves. What is strange or different about us? Students will be encouraged to write memoir and/or fact-based fiction. Writings will be advanced with the help of in-workshop exercises, at-home assignments, and assigned readings. Supportive workshop critique and revision will be a strong part of the process. | Maximum: 12 writers

Register for this workshop

 

Time: 
Wednesdays, 5:15 - 7:15, June 7 - June 28, 4 weeks
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Early Registration and Tuition Deadline is seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Early Registration: $166 (cash/check); $172 (Paypal). | Late Registration: $181 (cash/check); $187 (PayPal).

NEW: Poets Studio Summer Session with David Biespiel | July 5 - July 26

The Attic Institute's groundbreaking way to study writing poetry.

A poet's lifetime of experiences is the basis to develop poetic art, method, and practice — culminating in the creation and even publication of new poetry. The Poets Studio approach to writing and revising your poems inspires accountability, and it teaches you to experiment and learn more about your subjects, your style, and your capacity for growth as a poet. The Poets Studio special summer session provides an introduction to the steady, supportive, and comprehensive study of poetry among poets that characterizes the Poets Studio experience. Summer session is open to all poets. The summer session runs two hours each night. There is no application process. All participants take the summer class as "members." | Maximum: 12 students.

Learn more about the Poets Studio Oct - May program.

Register for Summer Poets Studio

Teacher: 
Time: 
Wednesdays: July 5 - July 26, 5:30-7:30pm, 4 weeks
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Early Registration and Tuition Deadline is seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Early Registration: $166 (cash/check); $172 (Paypal). | Late Registration: $181 (cash/check); $187 (PayPal).

NEW: Whitney Otto's Mixed Genre Workshop | July 6 - July 27

"The process of writing has something infinite about it. Even though it is interrupted each night, it is one single notation." ~Elias Canetti

This workshop is a mix of memoir and fiction, working with their similarities and differences. The special focus of this workshop is that you'll have the opportunity to write a nonfiction/memoir piece that you will then be asked to fictionalize. This workshop could help you understand if your story needs to be told factually, or fictionally, and what makes the difference (or similarity) between the two. In addition to writing a nonfiction piece, then a fictionalizing it, you will also be given a weekly prompt to be read and shared with the workshop. It's a great workshop for those writers interested in learning about the varieties of story and how changing from nonfiction to fiction, and back again, can crack open your best work. | Maximum 12 writers

Register for this workshop

Teacher: 
Time: 
Thursdays, July 6 - July 27, 5:15 - 7:15pm, 4 weeks
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Early Registration and Tuition Deadline is seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Early Registration: $166 (cash/check); $172 (Paypal). | Late Registration: $181 (cash/check); $187 (PayPal).

NEW: David Ciminello's Flash Fiction Workshop | July 10 - July 31

"It is with words as with sunbeams. The more they are condensed, the deeper they burn." - Robert Southey

How can economy be used to a writer’s advantage? This workshop will explore the art of flash fiction: how to propel a story forward with as few words as possible. Writers will create a series of flash fiction pieces with the help of in-workshop exercises, at-home assignments, and assigned readings. Supportive workshop critique and revision will be a strong part of the process. Focus will be on radically imaginative explorations of form, plot, point of view, and dialogue as innovative means to a fast “The End." | Maximum: 12 writers

Register for this worksop

Time: 
Mondays, 5:15 - 7:15, July 10 - July 31, 4 weeks
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Early Registration and Tuition Deadline is seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Early Registration: $166 (cash/check); $172 (Paypal). | Late Registration: $181 (cash/check); $187 (PayPal).

NEW: Zahir Janmohamed's Personal Essay Writing Workshop | July 10 - July 29

“The problem, you realize, is that while you have been raised to speak quietly and little, the notions of where you come from and who you are need a maximal approach.” Chang-rae Lee

Are you frustrated by the lack of diversity in today’s media landscape? Yeah me too. The good news is media outlets are increasingly becoming aware of this lack of diversity and today they are actively seeking new voices to write about race, religion, sexuality, gender, disability, abuse, trauma, mental illness, and class. In this class about writing from the margins, you will learn how to write personal essays that are vulnerable, nuanced, sensitive, and challenging. I know from my own struggles with this genre that part of the blockage many of us have in writing about ourselves is actually off the page. To address this, we will focus on writing prompts and readings to help you think about issues of identity/trauma/pain in new ways. We will then apply these craft tools to our own work and review each other's essays. Finally, we discuss how you can write email pitches to editors to get your piece published. | Maximum 12 students

Register for this workshop

 

Time: 
Mondays, July 10 - July 29, 7:30-9:30pm, 4 weeks | NOTE: The workshop meets Mondays, July 10, 17, 24, and concludes on Saturday, July 29, 10am-12pm
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Early Registration and Tuition Deadline is seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Early Registration: $166 (cash/check); $172 (Paypal). | Late Registration: $181 (cash/check); $187 (PayPal).

NEW: Brian Benson's Craft of Memoir Workshop | July 11 - Aug 1

“For who will testify, who will accurately describe our lives if we do not do it ourselves?” ~ Faye Moskowitz

Whether you're just getting started or looking to improve your work-in-progress, this new workshop will help you translate your personal experiences into a vivid, absorbing memoir. Through a mix of discussion, guided exercises and peer critique, we'll explore the many ways to pull compelling, relatable stories from one's life story, and we'll read and discuss a wide variety of memoir for inspiration and insight. Students will leave the workshop with many reading recommendations and writing resources. | Maximum 12 students

Register for this workshop

Teacher: 
Time: 
Tuesdays, July 11 - Aug 1, 5:15-7:15pm, 4 weeks
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Early Registration and Tuition Deadline is seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Early Registration: $166 (cash/check); $172 (Paypal). | Late Registration: $181 (cash/check); $187 (PayPal).

NEW: Wayne Gregory's So You Wanna Be A Writer Workshop | July 11 - Aug 1

You know you have a story to tell and you want to tell it, but you’re not sure how to get started. You write but it never feels like you’re getting where you want to go. Or, you want to write, but you find that life seems to get in the way. There are a lot of obstacles to interfere with emerging writers. But, it’s not lack of time, lack of skill, nor lack of things to write about. The biggest problem is lack of self-confidence. This workshop is designed for those who want to be writers, but are not sure they can be. If you have never published anything or even successfully completed a work of fiction or non-fiction, this class will help you gain the confidence you need to enter the community of writers. When you leave the class, you will know better your writing strengths and how to build on them; you will have a sense of direction about where to go with your writing; and, you will discover what is about you that makes your stories worth telling and makes you the only writer who can tell them. | Maximum: 12 writers

Register for this workshop

Teacher: 
Time: 
Tuesdays, 7:30 - 9:30pm, July 11 - Aug 1, 4 weeks
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Early Registration and Tuition Deadline is seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Early Registration: $166 (cash/check); $172 (Paypal). | Late Registration: $181 (cash/check); $187 (PayPal).

NEW: Wayne Gregory's Writer's Toolbox: Essentials of the Craft | July 13 - Aug 3

“Learn the rules like a pro so you can break them like an artist.” ~ Pablo Picasso

Sizzling plot ideas. Dynamic characters. Your inspiration is bubbling overyou’re your story is begging to be written. Time now to learn the nuts and bolts of the craft so your creativity can find it’s way into a story that grabs and holds your readers. This workshop will help you learn some of the basic conventions for good writing that successful writers use. You will learn how to avoid common errors, how to show rather than tell, and how to develop writing strategies to organize your ideas into an engaging narrative that keeps your readers turning the pages. You will learn by doing in-class writing exercises that will focus on writing tools and resources that will help you hone your craft long after the workshop is over. Come learn the rules and discover the tools that will strengthen your writing and help you be intentional and effective when you tell your stories.  | Maximum 12 students

Register for this workshop

Teacher: 
Time: 
Thursdays, July 13 - Aug 3, 7:30-9:30pm, 4 weeks
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Early Registration and Tuition Deadline is seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Early Registration: $166 (cash/check); $172 (Paypal). | Late Registration: $181 (cash/check); $187 (PayPal).

Middle Grade Writing Camp July 17 -29 

Summer Writing Camp is led by Dave Jarecki

The middle grade writing camp will help young writers (grades 6 – 8) re-engage with the written word during the summer. We'll focus on craft and voice, and delve deeper into the wonderful world of revision and peer review. $215 for all six sessions (prorated discounts are available for students who will miss sessions due to scheduling conflicts)

Register Here: Use the Middle Grades writing workshop online enrollment form 

Learn more

Teacher: 
Time: 
July 17 -July 29, 10am -1pm, 6 sessions over two weeks, on Mon, Wed, Fri)
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
$215.

WEEKEND: Kate Carroll de Gutes' Breaking Down the Walls Workshop | July 22

We all have periods when we feel stuck, and the best way to bust down the walls of our self-imposed cells is through prompts, walking in the world and taking notice, and even pulling from other writers. In this day-long workshop, we'll work from prompts, walk through the Hawthorne neighborhood and eavesdrop on conversations, and also pull random lines from The Attic's extensive library--and drop the latter two into our work. This technique works for any genre, but is particularly suited to prose writers.

Register for this workshop

Time: 
Saturday, July 22, 10am - 6pm, 8 hours
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Early Registration and Tuition Deadline is seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Early Registration: $166 (cash/check); $172 (Paypal). | Late Registration: $181 (cash/check); $187 (PayPal).

Deep-Dive Writing Workshop for High Schoolers | July 24 - Aug 18

For writers at the end of their high school careers, into college or gap years.  

The Deep Dive Writing Workshop balances theory, critical exploration, craft and workshopping, to give young writers the time, space and support to commit to their writing during the summer. Each week, we'll focus on different aspects of craft across genres: fiction, personal essay, biography, poetry and more.   

Register here: Use the Deep Dive enrollment form here

Teacher: 
Time: 
July 24 - Aug 18, 1:30 - 4:30pm, 12 sessions over four weeks on Mon, Wed, Fri
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Blvd.
Total Fee: 
$350 for all twelve sessions. Weekly tuition is $100 for writers who wish to enroll week-by-week.  Writers also enrolled in the high school writing workshop receive a 10% discount on total tuition costs.  

High School Writing Camp | July 31 - Aug 18

Summer Writing Camp is led by Dave Jarecki

High school writers will explore passages from different pieces of literature, work on generative prompts and revisions, and will create space for high-level critique and review of their work. 

Learn more

Register Here: Use the High School/College Prep writing workshop online enrollment form 

 

Teacher: 
Time: 
July 31 - Aug 18, 10am - 1pm, 9 sessions over three weeks, every Mon, Wed, Fri
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
$275 for all nine sessions (prorated discounts are available for students who will miss sessions due to scheduling conflicts)