Announcing new travel programs

September 1, 2022 § 1 Comment

In the works are several new small-group trips abroad:

November 30 – December 7, 2022: Informal “Family & Friends” trip to Cuba (Havana, Cienfuegos, Playa Larga – contact by email for more info)

January 7 – 15, 2023: Newport MFA Writing Workshop in Cuba (Havana & Playa Larga: open to non-MFA writers on a first-come, first served basis)

April 10 – 17, 2023: Art & Cuisine of Oaxaca, Mexico (further details will be posted here when they’re available)

If you’re interested in learning more about any of these travel programs, just shoot me an email or use the contact page .

If none of these work with your schedule but this kind of trip IS of interest and you don’t want to wait another year (more or less) for one of these update emails to hit your inbox, please feel free bookmark the frequently updated “Upcoming” page.

To explore ideas about creating custom trips for small groups of family, friends, educational institutions, etc, again, just reply to this email or send me a note through the “Contact” page.

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National Geographic Student Expeditions in Cuba

July 1, 2016 § 2 Comments

DSC04327Very excited to be participating in the first ever NatGeo student programs to Cuba. I’ll be starting out with the first group toward the end of their program in the province of Santa Clara, a few hours east of the capital, and then joining the second group for the beginning of their program in Havana. Traveling to Cuba, by now, feels something akin to going home for me. It’s been a few months, so I’m looking forward to checking in on the evolving situation!

IMG_8931I’m also excited to be traveling with student groups, because leading student groups is how I spent most of my early career in educational travel. I relish the sense of adventure that usually arises within such groups—and in my experience NatGeo students are an exceptionally positive, creative, and intellectually curious bunch. It will be hot this time of year, but that’s nothing to worry about, as we’ll be on an island surrounded by crystalline blue water!

Young writers program in Prague and Southern Bohemia

July 16, 2015 § Leave a comment

CEPRG_BridgetLanigan-522-600x400Very much looking forward to joining a group of young American writers in just a few days as the guest novelist on this exciting international writing program. We’ll begin in Prague and then head down to southern Bohemia, where an historic castle will be the staging ground for field exercises, craft talks, hiking, stimulating conversation about books and literature, and miscellaneous fun.

Putney Student Travel is the same group that has taken me to Dublin and the small island of Inishbofin for the last two summers, and it’s a great experience. Travel and writing go so well together, and it’s always inspiring to work alongside young women and men who are passionate about writing and literature. I’ll post some pics on my FB author page . . .

Summer writing seminars at GrubStreet

May 12, 2015 § Leave a comment

grubstreet-logoLooking forward to teaching three intensive one-day seminars on critical aspects of the fiction writing craft this summer: descriptive writing, the novel opening, and point of view/psychic distance. I’m very much enjoying my association with GrubStreet, a Boston-based organization run by kind and wonderful people and frequented by many talented aspiring and established writers. If you’re within striking distance of downtown Boston, come join us!

Here’s a link to all of my upcoming GrubStreet workshops.

Upcoming talks and appearances

March 20, 2015 § Leave a comment

10653394_10152466045124682_4593457784593993577_nLooking forward to a busy spring and summer of talks and appearances! If you’re attending any of these events, I look forward to meeting you there. If you can’t make any of them but are interested in similar content, there are still openings in these wonderful, intensive writing seminars at GrubStreet in Boston.

April 24 – 26, 2015: Talks on the Jungian Shadow in YA Fiction and Image Systems in Fiction. New England Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators Conference, Springfield, MA

May 1 – 3, 2015: “Voice and Dialog in Historical Fiction.” GrubStreet’s Muse & The Marketplace Conference, Boston, MA IMG_3926

July 12 – 17, 2015: “Life Stories: Creative Adventurers, Adventurous Creators” (5-part lecture series). All-Star 2 Family Conference. Star Island, Isles of Shoals, NH July

18 – 24, 2015: Guest author, Writing in Prague program (Putney Student Travel)

Spring novel writing classes at GrubStreet

March 13, 2015 § Leave a comment

grubstreet-logoIt’s been a great experience working with seven talented aspiring novelists in my 10 week Novel in Progress course this winter. I find that focusing in on particular aspects of craft of fiction is immediately beneficial in terms of one’s own work, and even more so in the long term, because it leads to greater fluency and range as a writer.

For these reasons, and because I very much enjoy teaching, I’ve agreed to offer yet another 10 week Novel in Progress course on Thursday evenings beginning April 9th. If you’re near Boston and working on a novel, join us! We have a lot of fun. And if my current students are any indication, you will make great strides on your project.

If you’re interested but can’t commit to 10 weeks, your can join one these intensive, one-off classes:

Voice and Dialog in Historical Fiction (Saturday, March 28, 10-5)

Crafting the Killer Novel Opening (Saturday, April 11, 10-5)

The Lost World: Harnessing the Power of Descriptive Prose in the Novel (Wednesday, June 17, 6-9 PM)

Click here for the full details on all my GrubStreet courses.

Winter writing courses at GrubStreet

December 8, 2014 § Leave a comment

Well, I must say I had fun this fall teaching several day-long classes on the writing craft at GrubStreet. It’s nice to have an excuse to spend more time in Boston, and GrubStreet students tend to be well educated, well read, open-minded, serious about writing, and eager to learn their craft. In this environment the learning experience definitely runs both ways. There’s something wonderfully inspiring about spending a stretch of time geeking out about craft with a bunch of other literary-minded introverts, and I believe it’s essential for a practicing novelist to keep educating himself in the analytical aspects of the craft. That’s exactly what teaching these classes does for me — and if I can help other aspiring writers get closer to their goals in the process, that’s certainly an excellent bonus.

grubstreet-logoI’m very much looking to teaching two more GrubStreet classes this winter. The first is a ten-week novel-writing class, in which we’ll be discussing many different aspects of the craft, including structure, scenes, dialog, characters, language, voice, point of view, image systems, backstory, the opening, and more, in addition to generating quite a bit of in-class work of either the first draft or the revised variety. The second class is a day-long affair focused on voice and dialog in historical fiction. So, Boston area writers, if any of this intrigues you, I urge you to take the leap! (And feel free to contact me if you have questions or doubts.)

Writing in Ireland Program

July 6, 2014 § Leave a comment

IMG_1758This week I am once again privileged to joining a group of young American writers on Putney Student Travel’s Writing in Ireland program. We’ll be spending time in Dublin and on the stunning, mystical isle of Inishbofin off the Connemara coast. Very excited!

As anyone who’s been following this blog knows, in my day job I travel a great deal — mostly to Spanish-speaking countries with wonderful organizations like National Geographic Expeditions and the Brattleboro Museum and Art Center — but I have to say this is a special trip, one of my favorites. There’s nothing like working and adventuring with a group of passionate young writers who are up for anything and enjoy spending all day and night geeking out about literature and craft.

IMG_1816We’ll do field exercises to generate new work, have some feedback sessions leading to revision, and of course mount a final reading, which will take place this year on July 12th, 2014, from 5 p.m. – 7 p.m., at the Irish Writer’s Centre, located at 19 Parnell Square, Dublin.

If you’re interested to see what we’re up to and what an international travel program for young writers looks like, take a look at the program blog.

Dublin bound, and Inishbofin!

July 4, 2013 § Leave a comment

IMG_0397Very much looking forward to joining a group of talented young writers in Dublin, Ireland, from July 5 – 12. I’ll be giving a talk on the Jungian Shadow in fiction (see this post for a preview), and we’ll all be heading off to the small island of Inishbofin near Galway. There we’ll have a chance to share our work, create some new work, explore the stark Irish landscapes with journals in hand, and no doubt participate in many lively discussions about life, love, and the writing craft. Sláinte mhaith!

Heartsong post featured at Grub Daily

April 8, 2013 § Leave a comment

A craft analysis I wrote several years ago on James Welch’s great novel The Heartsong of Charging Elk is featured at Grub Street Daily, a blog for writers produced by the wonderful people at Grub Street, a popular Boston-based organization for writers. Check it out here!

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