Tent: Free Creative Writing Workshop

Interested in a week-long creative writing residency this May at the Yiddish Book Center, in Amherst, Massachusetts?

Tent: Creative Writing is a free week of workshops, literary seminars, and conversations for twenty writers of fiction, creative non-fiction, and poetry, between the ages of 21 and 30, who are interested in connections between Jewishness and contemporary culture. It will take place from May 25 to June 1. The program is entirely free, including meals and housing. The only expense is transportation to and from the seminar.

Workshop leaders this year will be Ehud Havazelet (fiction), Eileen Pollack (nonfiction), and Don Share (poetry), and guest speakers include editors and literary agents.  Last year’s guests were W. W. Norton editor Matt Weiland and literary agent Henry Dunow, and this year’s guests will include Sasha Weiss, the literary editor of newyorker.com, among others.

Tent: Creative Writing is interested in exploring the legacy of modern Jewish literature, but not in any parochial or exclusive way; the writers who come to us don’t have to be interested in writing overtly “Jewish material.” There’s no catch or covert agenda: we’re an organization devoted to recovering and translating Yiddish books and exploring and studying modern Jewish culture, and we have no political or religious agenda. In the literary seminars, we read Isaac Babel and Grace Paley, as well as Yiddish poets like Celia Dropkin and Yankev Glatshteyn.

In our inaugural year, in 2013, we had a wonderful group of participants including very recent graduates of Hampshire College, Harvard, and the University of Oregon; for many of these participants, the week was a very valuable chance to get a taste of what an MFA program in Creative Writing might be like. I would be delighted if we could include one of your editors or contributors in 2014.

More information and the application are available at http://www.tentsite.org/2014/creative-writing, and questions can be forwarded to Josh Lamber (jlambert@bikher.org) from anyone who is interested. Applications are due on February 2.

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