The Workshop Workshop is both a workshop for work and a workshop for workshop. Students will give and receive feedback on up to ten pages of prose writing. Each week we will explore a different workshop format and analyze not only student writing, but the process of each kind of workshop. What are the strengths and drawbacks of each? Students will end the course by building their own ideal workshop and writing a one-page teaching statement on their workshop philosophy.
This course is perfect for anyone looking to develop their own workshopping style, learn to work with those who have differing feedback styles, and explode the idea of the traditional “what’s not working” MFA-style workshop.This course is especially intended for those writers who are also workshop leaders, but it’s also a good fit for those new to workshopping writing, those who are running their own peer writing groups, and students of more traditional workshop models who want to shake up their classroom participation.
Students should be ready to submit up to ten pages of their own writing by the start of class.
Class meetings will be held over video chat, using Zoom accessed from your private class page. While you can use Zoom from your browser, we recommend downloading the Zoom desktop client so you have access to all platform features.
- Peer feedback on ten pages of prose writing
- Both an intellectual and emotional analysis of one's own workshopping style, preferences and needs
- A teaching statement reflective of their own workshop pedagogy
- 10% discount on all future Catapult classes
Students will be required to:
+ submit up to ten pages of their own prose for workshop (those workshopping on day one must submit one week before workshop begins)
+ read up to forty pages (enrollment dependent) of student submissions per week and provide specific feedback
+ complete a weekly craft assignment focused on analyzing the strengths and drawbacks of each type of workshop we explore
+ complete an occasional reading from either or both listed texts, to be determined by the workshop reading load
Week One: Introductions, Group Agreement, Traditional Workshop
Week Two: Literary Analysis, Praise-Only
Week Three: Two Selected Workshop Alternatives from Craft in the Real World
Week Four: Partner Workshop and Teaching Statement
A. E. Osworth is part-time Faculty at The New School, where they teach undergraduates the art of digital storytelling. Their novel, We Are Watching Eliza Bright, about a game developer dealing with harassment (and narrated collectively by a fictional subreddit), is available now. They have an eight-year freelancing career and you can find their work on Autostraddle, Guernica, Quartz, Electric Lit, Paper Darts, Mashable, and drDoctor, among others.
"Austen is an amazing professor! Incredibly engaging and passionate for each topics taught. Austen always provides really helpful feedback and advice for each project we have done. Austen is one of the few professors you KNOW cares and loves what they are doing; teaching and inspiring students."
"Austen is FANTASTIC. They provided great readings, wonderful resources, and created a real community in the classroom. I always felt respected and excited to work on the discussion questions in this class. Austen always made sure to keep us updated and on task, offered resources, and pushed everyone to be their most creative self. I also loved their cat in the background of some of the lecture videos!!"
"Austen’s writing is smart, funny, inclusive, and accessible. I know that when I’m done reading something they have written I will have learned something, I will have laughed, I will feel part of the community they are committed to building, and most of all — I will feel like I understand better."
"WE ARE WATCHING ELIZA BRIGHT is a novel that takes on our techy zeitgeist at its silicon core. This is a novel vital for our time. It is about race and gender within white masculine worlds--particularly the gaming world. The characters are complex—the heroines are flawed, the villains are redeemable. The novel questions the entire ideological base of the hero/villain model in gaming and in the “meat” world outside of games. The prose is clean and expert; fun and smart. It is a fast read, but always deeply insightful. A book that will have cross-over appeal from literary types to pulp readers."