A two-month workshop for writers seeking story-level feedback on their YA or YA-crossover projects to take their work to the next level.
In this workshop, you will work with literary agent Ellen Goff and a small group of writers (up to 3 others) on the first 12,500 words of your novels in process, over two rounds. The workshop includes written feedback from Ellen and your peers, live calls to debrief each round, and a group discussion board where Ellen will answer questions.
The workshop begins with an introductory group call to meet the other members and discuss workshop expectations. Then you will submit the first 7,500 words of your project for feedback, plus a short summary (this is for your readers and will not be critiqued). You have three weeks to read and post your written critiques of participants work. Round 1 critiques are followed by a group debrief call where you can dig into questions about the notes and/or brainstorm with Ellen about revisions. You will then submit your next 5000 words for peer and professional feedback. The group concludes with a one-on-one call. On Mondays, Ellen will answer questions in the group’s workspace.
Participants may opt to share a third submission for critique from Ellen and optional peer critique. This is an additional charge and you will be able to make this choice at the end of the workshop. Additional submissions may be either the next section of your project or revised material that you have submitted.
What to expect from your written critiques: Ellen will provide a detailed critique on your pages addressing character development, plot development, pacing, and sentence-level writing tips to take your story to the next level.
*This workshop has a zero tolerance policy against racist, sexist, harassing, or otherwise offensive behavior. Writers who engage in this behavior against the instructor or fellow writers, or present material that promotes this behavior, will be removed from the workshop without a refund.
Who this workshop is for: This workshop welcomes writers working on YA fiction and narrative nonfiction stories, as well as Adult fiction and narrative nonfiction stories with college-aged protagonists, which would be marketed as “YA crossover” projects. Ellen is excited to read submissions in prose, as well as graphic novels (GN) and verse novels (VN). For GN and VN, submission word counts are lower; see the “submissions” heading below for guidance.
Focus: Adult - Novels - Literary - Adult - Novels - Upmarket - Adult - Novel…
Group size: 4 writers
Submissions: Prose - Round 1: first 7500 words plus a story summary; Round 2: 5000 words. Verse Novels- Round 1: 5000 words, Round 2: 3330 words. Graphic Novels- Round 1: 30 pages script; Round 2: 20 pages script.
Members: $300; Non-members: $360
Ellen (she/her) graduated from The University of Chicago with a BA in English, a minor in Cinema and Media Studies, and a focus in Creative Writing. Ellen has worked everywhere from The White House under the Obama administration to The Metropolitan Museum of Art. At HG Literary, she assists partner and agent Carrie Hannigan on all children's titles from picture books to middle grade to young adult. Ellen's own list consists of YA writers and illustrators, as well as middle grade and picture book writers and illustrators. She is also a member of HG Literary's foreign rights team. Ellen is interested in all genres and formats of YA, especially anything spooky, historical fiction, food-themed, graphic novels, and novels-in-verse. She has a soft spot for Shakespeare as well as southern stories that remind her of her home state of Kentucky. Ellen runs a YA critique group and writing workshop in NYC. www.hgliterary.com/ellen.
About Ellen's critique style:
"As an agent, my critique style focuses on first impressions, especially for YA. Since agents often just have the time to read five or ten pages, I take a close look at voice and the clarity of the world building, and stakes and motivation. I'm a big believer that a lot can be accomplished in a small number of words (yes, even five pages!), and so I encourage being economical with language. I'm also a very editorially focused agent with my clients, so I love to suggest line edits around specific word choice---but as with how I run my own YA workshop and critique group, I won't offer up concerns without also suggesting a way to implement that critique."
Mon, Apr 25th, 7-7:30pm ET - Intro Call
Wed, Apr 27th - Submissions due (7500 words); writers, please also share a summary of your project to accompany your initial submission.
Wed, May 18th- Critiques due
Sun, May 22nd, 4-5:30pm ET- Debrief Call
Wed, June 8th - Submissions due (5000 words)
Wed, June 22nd- Critiques due
June 30th – Workshop closes
20-minute individual wrap up calls - schedule June 25th-June 30th or July 6-10th