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Muses & Melanin Fellow Program is now open for applications!




The Muses & Melanin Fellowship application is now open!


Muses & Melanin is a fully funded eight-month cohort-based professional development course for 30 talented San Francisco Bay Area African American, Afro Latina, and multiracial women creative writers who aspire to become professional authors. The fellowship is designed for women who do not yet have a lengthy list of publishing credits, are not under a publishing contract, and don't have literary agent representation. A Bachelor's degree is required. Participants will complete a comprehensive learning and support curriculum that equips them with the strategies they need to transition from creative writing students or hobbyists to professional authors. The fellowship launches attendees into the literary profession with a series of professional development workshops, writing workshops, and co-working sessions. After writing an Op-Ed article, extended personal essay, or paper in professional manuscript format, fellows will submit their work to publications and contests during the last four months of the program. All fellows will learn and apply the MLA citation style.


The fellowship consists of the following components:

  • two in-person Weekend Intensives (July 19-21 and July 26-28; Fridays start at 5pm)
  • five-week in-person weekly writing workshops (Tuesdays, 5pm-7pm, July 23 - August 20)four monthly 3-hour online co-working sessions (one per month from September-December 2024. Time TBD)
  • a public graduation and reading ceremony at the San Francisco Public Library for qualified participants (February 8, 2025, 12:30pm)


Note that all in-person program components occur in San Francisco.


The application deadline is MAY 6TH at 6pm Pacific time. Learn more about the program's scope and apply at https://forms.gle/KeY9P9YGJZzCtmMz6


Good luck!

Applying for Grants, Residencies, & Fellowships on 4/20/24

This seminar is geared for writers who want to apply for literary grants and fellowships to support a creative writing project. The tools you need for this level of monetary support are considerable and critically important. We'll discuss how to locate legitimate funding opportunities, application strategies, and how best to position yourself to land one. Enroll at https://grubstreet.org/seminar/applying-for-grants-residencies-fellowships-undefined

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Artist Statements for Creative Writers on 4/27/24

As a writer in the twenty-first century, you will need some incarnation of an artist statement for grant, fellowship, and other funding applications; your residency applications; and your author website. The statement is your opportunity to demonstrate that you are a thoughtful, deliberate writer who takes their literary career seriously. In this class, we'll read statement examples, learn how vetting committees use them, and then craft, workshop, and revise several drafts of your own statement until it is ready to impress! This workshop is open to writers of all genres, including fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry, prose writing, essays, and graphic novels. Registration is now open!

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Building a Career as a Literary Writer of Color ** SOLD OUT **

** SOLD OUT **


This professional development workshop, especially geared for creative writers of color, is an empowering, vital asset addressing the nuts and bolts of producing a sustainable literary career. Becoming a professional writer requires just as much work outside of the studio as within it. If you are a serious, committed writer of color invested in developing yourself as a professional, this workshop is for you. We will cover how to market yourself as a professional author, how to create industry-standard marketing materials such as your literary resume, author bio, artist statement, and online profiles, where to secure funding to support time off for your projects, how to create and use a literary calendar to open doors of opportunity, and more. You will receive a comprehensive packet of handouts to guide you as you build your career. This class is best suited for digitally savvy participants who maintain a regular writing practice. As we will draft several revisions of the artist statement, as well as write author bios, students should be comfortable sharing work with their classmates.  https://grubstreet.org/findaclass/class/building-a-career-as-a-literary-writer-of-color

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Strategic Submission Workshop begins 2/15/24

In a safe, supportive community, learn how to plan a submissions strategy, create a plan of attack for your work, research markets, and locate the ones that are the best fits for your writing. Begin by learning proper submission etiquette and protocol, avoiding pitfalls that mark you as an amateur and get your submission tossed onto the "No" pile—before editors have even read it. Then we will submit short stories, articles, poems, essays, novel excerpts, and/or creative nonfiction pieces to several markets. It's time to set aside the bevy of excuses about why you're not sending your work out to creative writing journals, magazines, and contests! Register at https://murphywriting.com/workshops/strategic-submission-an-online-workshop

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Write Your Artist Statement starts 2/15/24

This two-week, six-hour writing bootcamp is open to writers of all genres including fiction, creative nonfiction, poetry, songwriting, essays, and graphic novels. As a writer in the 21st century, you will need some incarnation of this statement on your grant, fellowship, and other funding applications, your residency applications, and your author web page. This statement serves as your opportunity to demonstrate that you are a thoughtful, deliberate writer who takes their literary career seriously.


You'll learn how to cast your work in its strongest, most evocative light. You will read several statement examples, learn how vetting committees use them, and then craft, workshop, and revise several drafts of your statement. You will complete a series of writing exercises to generate ideas about how to talk about your work. We'll polish your statement until it is ready for prime time! Reserve your seat at https://wordcrafters.org/craft-your-artist-statement


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Craft a Winning Nonfiction Book Proposal begins 1/16/24

Did you know that it's possible to sell a book on the strength of a book proposal alone—even if you haven't yet finished writing your book? A book proposal is an equation: a business case married with a marketing plan that you submit to publishers. In this six-week workshop, students will learn the full spectrum of writing a first-draft proposal: what to include, what to leave out, faux pas to avoid, structuring your proposal in a professional format, and how to demonstrate to publishers that you're a serious writer who understands the 21st century publishing landscape. Each week, students will write one draft section of their proposal. They will receive weekly critique on their drafts from the instructor, and they will also workshop some sections with one another in small groups or partners. Students should have a completed or in-progress nonfiction manuscript, and be comfortable using Word, Google Docs, or Scrivener.


Reserve your spot at https://grubstreet.org/findaclass/class/craft-a-winning-nonfiction-book-proposal 


Note: Due to conflicts with the AWP Conference, this class does not meet February 6th.

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Get Invited to Read Your Work at Literary Conferences begins 7/19/23

This workshop offers information, guidance, and strategies for writers ready to present their work on a conference panel, whether virtual or in-person. You will learn how to choose the right writers' conferences, prepare polished submissions, create a conference plan, obtain financial support to attend, practice conference etiquette, and avoid common, costly mistakes in your materials that mark you as an amateur. Open to writers who feel ready to present their work at a professional writers' conference. Register at https://hugohouse.org/product/get-invited-to-read-your-work-at-literary-conferences

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Narrative Healing: Writing Our Hair is happening 8/19/23!

This three-hour seminar is geared toward African American, Afro Latina, and multiracial women of the African Diaspora who are interested in a safe, nurturing, intentional space to write, develop, and share their hair stories. For over four hundred years, Black natural hair has been the target of erasure efforts, keeping us in the margins. This workshop explores how writing about one of the still-remaining systemic biases in schools, academia, and corporate America might lead to greater understanding, respect, strength, and a sense of agency.

Poems, essays, short scenes, and hybrid pieces are all welcome. Have your favorite brainstorming materials handy, whether that be that a notebook, journal, sketchbook, or a roll of newsprint or butcher paper. All emotions that surface—anger, sadness, outrage, empowerment—are welcome. Open to all levels of writers from beginning through advanced. Register at https://grubstreet.org/findaclass/class/narrative-healing-writing-our-hair 

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Ace Your MFA Application! starts 10/26/23

This workshop is designed for writers who are thinking of enrolling in a Creative Writing MFA program, but feel intimidated by the application process. Do you fret about how to make your application rise to the top in a stack of fierce competitors? What are the most common pitfalls, and how can you avoid them? You probably know how competitive these programs are and how exacting the admissions requirements can be. Learn to present each aspect of your application in the strongest light, and avoid both the blunders and the omissions that many of your fellow applicants will make. During this workshop, you will complete several drafts of the dreaded "tell us about yourself" statement, compile your literary CV, understand the differences and (often surprising) variations among MFA programs, and consider which program model may be the best fit for you. Though this class is geared for people thinking about or planning to apply to an MFA program in fiction, creative nonfiction, or poetry, playwrights and screenwriters are also welcome. Registration is now open at https://grubstreet.org/findaclass/class/ace-your-mfa-application

Writing Sudden Fiction: WRIT32850

In this class that starts on March 20th, you will birth, nurture, and release one brand-new flash fiction story. You will engage in extensive revisions of your work, and close readings and analysis of ten sudden fiction stories. Students registering for this class should be prepared to create new work from scratch in a concentrated, serious environment. Homework will consist of revisions and exercises to help ensure that your piece is as polished and economically written as possible. Prior fiction or nonfiction writing experience is required. Registration is through The University of Chicago's Graham School of Continuing Liberal and Professional Studies. This is course #WRIT32850.

Prepare to be Professional: Presenting Your Work at Public Events


11am – 3:30pm



This workshop is geared for writers who are planning to participate in open mics, literary festivals, a reading series, or who will be reading their work at a writers' or humanities conference. In this workshop we will cover the myriad ways in which to ensure that reading your work to an audience helps you build your reputation as a writer and share the passion you have for your story, poem, or essay. Reading in public is one of the best ways to propel your literary career forward and get yourself invited to other events.  In this workshop you will learn:

  • the critical but too-often-overloooked preparatory steps to take before you ever set foot in the venue
  • how to notate your excerpt or your piece to guide the pace, inflection, pauses, phrasing, and emphasis of your reading
  • how to harness stage fright and make it work for you
  • how to establish presence at the mic
  • what NOT to do at the microphone!

A laptop, tablet, or notebook computer is required for this class.


Registration closes April 26th. The registration process:

1)       Email AuthorLyzetteWanzer@LyzetteWanzerMFA.com

2)       Mention the workshop(s) for which you wish to register

3)       You will receive a message about whether space remains in the class. If space remains, you will receive online payment instructions. Do not attempt to remit payment until you receive confirmation that a seat is available.

4)      Tuition is non-refundable after April 26th.


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