Well, whaddya know? CCLaP is doing its very first summer writing camp! Just like our coming New York trip at the end of the month, this has also been a long-time dream of mine for the center that is finally reaching fruition for the first time this year; and as always, there's lots to say about it all, so strap in...
It seems natural, of course, that a creative community center like CCLaP take on something like classes and workshops; and after thinking about the various things that we could do as far as an initial public educational offering, what I thought would be best would be a series of small classes that led a person through the entirety of the storytelling process. I wanted each course to have a specific theme, like plot or character development, so that all you existing writers might find it useful to take just one or two of them to brush up on a specific skill; but I also wanted the whole thing to work together as a program, as something a teen could do over one busy summer month, both to become a better writer and as something legitimately impressive to put on a college application. And because of this desire for academic credibility, I also knew that I wanted it to be designed and run by a group of actual academes here in Chicago.
So I went out and recruited some actual Chicago academes, college-level teachers Jesse Darnay and Jacob Singer; and roughly four months or so after we all began to talk about it, we're finally ready to announce the entire eight-course series to the public, and start accepting enrollments via Paypal. Basically it will take place every Tuesday through Friday in August, the 7th through 31st, as a series of one-week courses that meet either from 12 noon to 2 pm or from 2:30 to 4:30 pm; all classes take place in the back room of Logan Square's Uncharted Books, at 2630 North Milwaukee Avenue. I encourage you to check out the main webpage for full descriptions of each course and bios of the instructors; but basically there's eight of them altogether, each of them one week long, each of which cost $100 to attend, or with enrollment for the entire series at just $500, a 37-percent discount.
Ah, but then on Saturdays in August, we'll also be sponsoring an unstructured salon-type get-together for free, open to the general public, for basically anyone in the city who's working on a long-form project and would like to meet up with others to workshop, critique, share readings, engage in creative games, etc. So this basically gives people a chance to actually work on something like a novella or novel from start to finish over the course of the Summer School program if they want, with individualized attention from the teaching staff to anyone who does indeed choose to do such a thing; but since that's not required of any individual course, you can also just take one of these classes if you want, do a series of short intense exercises just that week, and then be done with it all. It's because of these things that I hope that this series will end up appealing to a wide range of people here in the city for a wide range of reasons, and make this first experimental poke into the educational field a successful one for the center. I hope you'll have a chance to tell all your Chicago friends about it, and of course please stop by the main webpage to learn a lot more, and to enroll right this minute.