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How to Get Into the Iowa Young Writers' Studio

What is the Iowa Young Writers' Studio?



Are you a young aspiring writer eager to hone your craft and immerse yourself in a vibrant community of literary enthusiasts? Look no further than the Iowa Young Writers' Studio Summer Residential Program! This transformative two-week experience offers a dynamic environment where budding writers can unleash their creativity, explore diverse literary genres, and forge lifelong connections with peers who share their passion for storytelling.

Hosted by the University of Iowa's prestigious International Writing Program, this residential program provides a unique opportunity for high school students to dive deep into the world of writing under the guidance of accomplished mentors and instructors. Here's what you need to know about this enriching experience:

  1. Immersive Workshops: Participants engage in intensive workshops led by experienced writers, delving into various aspects of fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction, and more. These sessions are designed to nurture individual voices, refine writing skills, and encourage experimentation with different literary forms.

  2. Creative Exploration: From brainstorming sessions to peer critiques, the program fosters an atmosphere of creativity and collaboration. Students have the freedom to explore their interests and push the boundaries of their imagination while receiving constructive feedback from instructors and fellow writers.

  3. Inspiring Environment: Set on the picturesque campus of the University of Iowa in Iowa City, often referred to as the "Writing City," participants are surrounded by a rich literary heritage and a supportive community of writers. The vibrant cultural scene and literary events further enhance the immersive experience, providing endless inspiration for budding wordsmiths.

  4. Personalized Guidance: With small class sizes and individualized attention, students receive personalized feedback and guidance from instructors who are passionate about nurturing young talent. Whether you're a beginner or a seasoned writer, there's something for everyone in this inclusive and supportive learning environment.

  5. Community Building: Beyond the classroom, the program offers ample opportunities for students to connect with like-minded peers from diverse backgrounds. Through informal gatherings, open mic nights, and literary outings, participants build lasting friendships and become part of a vibrant network of aspiring writers.

  6. Life-Changing Experience: For many participants, the Iowa Young Writers' Studio Summer Residential Program is not just a summer camp—it's a life-changing experience that ignites a lifelong love for writing and storytelling. Alumni often credit the program with helping them gain confidence, develop their voice, and pursue their dreams in the literary world.


Application Requirements


  1. Writing Sample: If applying to the Poetry, Fiction, or Creative Writing Core Courses, not more than ten pages of fiction, poetry, creative nonfiction/essay, or any combination. If applying to the TV Writing/Writers' Room Course, 1) a piece of dramatic writing (part of a script or play) not more than 5 pages; 2) the answer to the question, What is your favorite TV series and why? (not more than 2 pages); 3) the answer to the question, What is your favorite episode of that TV series and why? (not more than 3 pages). If applying to the Playwriting Course, 1) a piece of dramatic writing (part of a play) not more than 5 pages; 2) the answer to the question, What is your favorite play and why? (not more than 2 pages); 3) the answer to the question, What is your favorite act or scene of that play and why? (not more than 3 pages).

  2. 1-2 page Statement of Purpose

  3. Letter of Recommendation from an English teacher or other writing instructor/tutor/mentor who is familiar with your writing and with you as a person.

  4. Deadline: February 4


Interested in attending? Get help applying from past successful attendees and award-winning writers!





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