Workshops with Kelsey
To inquire further about any of the workshops below, and to reserve your spot in one, please send me an email:
Book Writers' Workshop
This ongoing workshop is for writers working on larger projects. It can be a novel, memoir, collection of essays, or any other manuscript in progress. There will be no work generated in-class. Instead, each writer submits his or her work a week before the workshop date. Everyone reads and critiques each other's work and brings comments, questions, and other insights to workshop for discussion.
The facilitated conversation surrounding your work serves to guide your revision process. We seek to empower as well as refine.
1 – 4pm; every other Monday (six sessions total)
September 18th – December 11th
9/18; 10/2; 10/16; 10/30; 11/13; 11/27
(*price includes in-depth written analysis and a half-hour discussion of 10 pages of your MS each workshop)
- Two spots open
CREATIVE WRITING INTENSIVES
In the Creative Writing Intensives, we explore the elements of composing prose (fiction and nonfiction). Each 3-hour session focuses on a different narrative technique. The workshop is purely generative, meaning no one will bring preexisting work to be read and critiqued. Maybe you'll come with a story idea in mind, or maybe you'll come open to discovering what your next work in progress may be. Maybe you'll come with the simple desire to create without constraint.
In any case, we'll free-write to prompts, share what we wrote, and discuss each person's writing in turn. The shared objective is to learn and gather inspiration in a supportive community. We aim to foster a deeper understanding of writing as practice and craft, and to acquire new tools and perspectives for dynamic stories and essays. You'll return home with new material, a handout explaining the core concept, and your peers' comments and questions to help you continue on your path as a writer.
6-9pm; Wednesday nights, once/month
September 20th: Character Development
October 18th: Narrative Point of View
November 15th: Story Design
$50 per session
- Six spots available
KELSEY ON HER TEACHING
In the workshops I facilitate at Thunderhead, my goal is to lead an exploration into how story brings us closer to understanding our selves, "others", and the worlds we live within. I teach to share what I have learned, and to continue learning. The technical aspects of my workshops focus on narrative design, style and tone, place development, character and relationship complexity, generating material, and the process of revision. While we dive into detail about how we make art and meaning with words, I find that the workshop experience is most about gathering inspiration and gaining new perspective on our craft, and possibly our lives.
I received Creative Writing and Environmental Studies degrees from the University of Montana, graduating with high honors and the Davidson Honors College Scholar Distinction. For my graduate studies, I attended the University of Utah on fellowship, earning a Master of Arts in Environmental Humanities in 2013. I taught writing at the University of Utah and Montana State University before co-founding the Thunderhead in fall of 2014. Throughout my collegiate studies I had the opportunity to learn from remarkable author-teachers such as Terry Tempest Williams, Melanie Rae Thon, Debra Magpie Earling, Judy Blunt, Gregory Pape, and Robert Stubblefield. The greatest teacher in my craft, though, has proven to be practice, not always pure and not always simple practice.
Kelsey's Creative Writing Intensive has been the best and most helpful workshop for the serious adult writer of the half-dozen I have attended. The excellent balance of discussion, reading our writing, feedback from Kelsey and the group (both oral and written) and the timing of writing "due dates" provided opportunity for writers to improve on one specific piece of work, honing it to professional quality. I would recommend this workshop to anyone serious about preparing for publication.
I have always been a nonfictioneer and never thought I could write fiction. The Creative Writing Intensive provided the encouragement I needed in a supportive, low-risk environment to try out fiction. As a result, I am happy to say I have a long fiction project under way. Brook
In the Stories of Ecology workshop Kelsey helped me reconnect with my creative voice after years of academic writing in the sciences. Since this was my first workshop I was intimidated, but Kelsey provided a warm and inviting atmosphere that rekindled my desire to put pen to paper. Being in the presence of others working towards the same goal was inspiring. Without the Stories of Ecology workshop I would not have written two pieces that I plan on finishing and submitting for publication. Kelsey’s insightful comments will help me do that. I highly recommend taking one of Kelsey’s workshops whether you hope to publish or are simply interested in the creative writing process. I can’t wait to take another workshop!
Lisa Baril, wildlife biologist
I can't express how much I enjoyed Kelsey's workshop. She has an amazing insight and ability to encourage and inspire - without a sense of personal judgment, she sill provides searching and articulate critique. Even though we only met six times, I find I miss everyone who took the course. I think that's a tribute to Kelsey's care at pulling diverse people together. Thanks for a great experience! Margaret
I enjoyed most and learned the most from the time we spent workshopping our pieces. I think that (Kelsey) gave really useful and thoughtful feedback and encouraged excellent feedback from the rest of the class.
Kelsey…puts a lot of work into preparation every week. Her feedback was generous, kind and truthful. I was really impressed with her ability to keep it positive and guide us towards better writing.
I had so much fun in the creative writing workshop. It was new and refreshing, and I looked forward to class each week. Special thanks to Kelsey for sharing her knowledge of and enthusiasm for writing.