Emerging Writers Institute 7th-9th
Emerging Writers Institute is a unique opportunity for rising 7th - 9th graders to explore creative writing. From day one, students are challenged through small group seminars focused on fiction, poetry, and creative non-fiction. In these seminars, and at daily writing workshops, students investigate the fundamentals of storytelling and discover how to read like writers. Diverse afternoon electives may include sci-fi writing, screenwriting, graphic novels, and travel writing and are used to let students try out new genres in a safe, exploratory environment. Scheduled writing time and one-on-one instructor evaluations help students develop good writing habits that will serve them year round. Students will also get inspired by off-campus instructor-led activities designed to introduce them to the literary culture of Berkeley or Los Angeles. By the end of the week, students will share polished pieces for publication in their own literary magazine and present their work in an informal reading for family and friends.
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Specific Skill Development
This creative writing summer program encourages students to challenge themselves technically and artistically through guided daily writing workshops, one-on-one instructor evaluations, group editing sessions, and creative presentations of their work. Emphasis is placed in expressive writing as a process rather than in rules or formulas. Instructors consistently encourage students to discover and refine their own unique voices. We know that successful writers are also critical and voracious readers; as a result, the inclusion of reading exercises and analysis are woven into the program as an essential tool for growth.
Curriculum & Environment
EWI is conducted in a seminar-style environment were students improve their craft through regular feedback from peers and instructors. Students will also receive inspiration from off-campus, instructor-led activities designed to introduce them to the literary culture surrounding their college campus.
In EWI, Students select a major focus area called a Writer’s Block. In each Writer’s Block, students read classic and contemporary examples of the genre, craft and hone their writing composition, and prepare to present their piece to an audience of readers and listeners.
This year’s Writer’s Blocks may include:
- Short and Sweet: Short Story Seminar
- Well-Versed: Poetry Seminar
- The ‘Wright Stuff: Playwright’s Seminar
- The Real Word: Nonfiction Seminar
Highlights & Deliverables
Participants in the program will be uniquely positioned to profit from the literary culture of the San Francisco Bay Area. One benefit of these seminars is to ready students' work for professional submission to youth publications, such as the Claremont Review, The Writer's Slate, Stone Soup, and Teen Ink. By the program’s conclusion, students will produce and refine quality pieces suitable for publication in their own literary magazine and professional teen publications.
By the end of the week, students will share polished pieces for publication in their own literary magazine and present their work in an informal reading for on the final day of camp. At the conclusion of the summer season, their piece will be published in an impressive anthology that will be mailed home to families.
Grade Level Specifics
Rising 7th-9th Graders
From day one, EWI students are challenged through small group seminars focused on fiction, poetry, and creative non-fiction. In these seminars and at daily writing workshops, students investigate the fundamentals of storytelling and discover how to read critically to support their writing development. Diverse afternoon electives may include sci-fi writing, screenwriting, graphic novels, and travel writing and are used to let students try out new genres in a safe, exploratory environment. Scheduled writing time and one-on-one instructor evaluations help students develop strong writing habits that will serve them in all facets of their schooling and beyond.
NOTE: The offering of majors is based upon enrollment and student needs, which varies substantially. Our diverse afternoon workshops have included nontraditional writing genres, such as speech writing, ‘zine creation, graphic novels, journalism, nature writing, and advertising copy. These courses seek to engage students with diverse material. Furthermore, the program recruits guest speakers from the publishing industry and Bay Area authors to give readings and answer questions about literary life and labor.
Camps for rising 7th - 9th graders have three price options:
- Day Camper: Day Campers check in Sunday with dinner provided after check-in and then enjoy curriculum Monday - Saturday from 9am to 5pm. Meals are not provided with Day Camp Tuition - campers can bring a sack lunch or can purchase our optional Lunch package for $40 (includes lunch in the dining hall Monday-Friday).
- Extended Day: Extended Day Campers check in Sunday with dinner provided after check-in and then enjoy curriculum and recreation Monday - Saturday from 9am to 9pm, with lunch and dinner provided in the dining hall.
- Overnight: Overnight campers check in before dinner on Sunday and check out at 12pm on Saturday. All meals and shared dorm accommodations are provided.
|Program||Grades||Location||Start Date||End Date||Price Options||Register|
Sample 7th-9th Grade Schedule
|8:00 am||Breakfast in the dining hall (overnight campers)|
|9-9:15 am||Extended day camper check-in|
|9:15 am||Morning class (fiction, non-fiction, poetry, or play-writing)|
|12:30 pm||Lunch in the dining hall (included for all campers)|
|1:45 pm||Afternoon class|
|5:30 pm||Dinner in the dining hall (included for all campers)|
|6:30 pm||Evening writing time/Camper downtime|
|8:00 pm||Evening recreation activities|
|9:00 pm||Extended day camper check-out|
|10:00 pm||Floor check|
|10:30 pm||Room check|
Education Unlimited believes in small-group, immersive learning with subject matter experts and experienced teachers. We strive to provide industry-leading instruction to all of our students and hold all staff to the highest possible standards. Staff assignments vary by program and location. Some of our recent staff members for this program include:
Elizabeth Bull, MFA - Camp Director
Elizabeth Bull is a writer and filmmaker. Her writing has been published in various journals, including the Los Angeles Review of Books, H.O.W. Journal, Third Coast Magazine, and Gulf Coast; her work has been nominated for two Pushcart Prizes. Her involvement in television and film began at AMC Networks, where she worked in original series development during the creation of “Mad Men” and “Breaking Bad.” In addition to writing and directing several short films, she co-wrote the feature film “Song of Sway Lake,” released in the fall of 2017. Elizabeth has also co-produced two feature films and a television series for Fuse.
Elizabeth received her Bachelor’s degree from the School of Theater, Film, and Television at the University of California Los Angeles. She also holds a Master in Fine Arts degree in Creative Writing (Fiction) from The New School in New York City. In addition, she has studied directing at the Dun Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design, and Technology in Dublin, Ireland on a Rotary International Fellowship. She has taught writing at the University of Zadar in Croatia on a Fulbright Fellowship. Elizabeth has been with Education Unlimited since 2010.
Ploy Pirapokin, MFA - Instructor
Ploy Pirapokin is a writer and instructor currently teaching Nonfiction for the Creative Nonfiction Foundation. She is also an adjunct instructor for the University of Los Angeles Extension program and does freelance training for The Writer, a global brand language agency. Ploy has a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from San Francisco State University and a Bachelor’s degree in Communication Studies and English from the University of San Diego. During her time at SFSU, Ploy lectured in Creative Writing and also worked as a Creative Writing Admissions Reader for the MFA and MA program.
Ploy’s own work has been featured in Tor.com, Apogee Journal, Entropy Magazine, the Bellingham Review, HYPHEN Magazine and more. She has received multiple Pushcart Prize nominations for her work. She is a Writing by Writers Workshop at Tomales Bay fellow, a Community of Writers at Squaw Valley scholar, and was a Visiting Writer at the New York Mills Regional Cultural Center. She has been the recipient of grants and fellowships from the San Francisco Arts Commission, the Ragdale Foundation, the Anderson Center, the Brush Creek Foundation for the Arts, Kundiman and others.
Brett Shanley, MFA - Instructor
Brett Shanley is a writer and English lecturer currently pursuing a PhD at Columbia University in New York City. Prior to his doctoral work, Brett received his Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing - Nonfiction from The New School in NYC. In addition to his dissertation research, which looks at methods of promoting sincere engagement between undergraduate writers and the work that they produce, Brett lectures in advanced writing at Pace University. Brett has been teaching in the classroom and at academic camps since 2012, and it was these experiences that inspired his dissertation topic. He has been an instructor with Education Unlimited since 2014, teaching both creative and academic writing.
In addition to his advanced degrees, Brett also has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Anthropology and German from University of Oregon. In the rare moments that Brett is not working on his research or teaching, his favorite thing to do is enjoy time in New York City’s famed Central Park with his fiance and their dog Huxley.