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The Literary Life

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About Algonkian

   Novel and Fiction Workshops and ConferencesPhone: 1-800-250-8290
   For New and Established Writers
 The Algonkian "Literary Life and How To Live It"

Something different for our readers and students. Algonkian explores the literary life. Controversial at times? As often as possible, but enlightenment takes precedence.

Patry Francis - "No Kick!"
"Strangely, I don't read many mysteries; nor do I follow crime stories with particular avidity. However, I'm very interested in what people do when they're pushed to extremes—and why they do it. I enjoy creating suspense for the reader—and for myself—but my real interest lies in exploring the complex reasons why a crime is committed, rather than simply "whodunit."." [more]

Kate Gale - "All Over The Lit Map"
"To live in Los Angeles is to be part of a dynamic swirl of cultures that invites writers to reach outside the conventional boundaries of self into a surreal place where the self is mutable. I see this literature continuing. It's a vision for us here. We can be anything. In literature. In life. In our community. Los Angeles literature might be the model for American literature. Inviting a stripping away of boundaries. We are here at the edge of the world. We live in a city transformed from desert. The light pours through us." [more]

Jenna Blum
Ms. Blum's evolution as a writer underscores the actuality that there is no such thing as an overnight success story for a serious novelist. While her readers will have cause to celebrate the fact that a unique and talented voice will not remain unnoticed for long, her quest for publication reinforces the notion that tenacity and unwavering resolution are integral components of any writer's arsenal. [more]
Matt Bondurant
"There are those who claim that creative writing within the academy is ridiculous, a waste of time, or worse, a destructive force in American letters. I strongly disagree with the last bit, as at worst it may produce people writing so-called "workshop stories" - but that is just a current style that will come and go and all that has really been done is some average writers have been taught how to do this style fairly well. Despite the academies influence, so many amazing and brilliant authors keep showing up." [more]
Christopher Coake
It seems safe to predict that Chris Coake is a writer to watch out for. With his first book, a collection of short stories entitled WE'RE IN TROUBLE coming out in spring 05, and several projects in the works, there should be ample opportunity for readers to become familiar with him. [more]
Stephen Goodwin
Stephen Goodwin is one of the very rare and precious forces that anyone who appreciates exceptional writing would do well to celebrate. Whether you know him, have read him, or even heard of him, it is very possible that you've felt his influence. A respected writer of fiction and nonfiction, and a popular and well-regarded writing teacher, Goodwin has also made his mark-albeit in his unassuming and quietly confident fashion-as an eloquent advocate for the arts. [more]
Adrienne Miller
"Well, in terms of the actual writing of the book, my experience was absolutely no different from that of any other first-time author: I had a job, I had a life, and I had a book to write. There is no public expectation for anyone's first book -- there is an audience of precisely zero awaiting your arrival – and there was certainly no audience waiting for me. When I finished The Coast of Akron, after about five years of work, I had very little confidence ..." [more]
Jen Noon - "Putting David Foster Wallace on Hold"
Time to learn something about the copyediting world. Jen Noon has been a copyeditor and proofreader for more than ten years. She began her career in educational publishing, with Heinemann and Educators Publishing Service, but currently works as a copyeditor for Little, Brown. Authors she has worked with include Carolyn Parkhurst, Robert Hellenga, and Denise Mina. [more]
Todd Pierce
Writer, teacher, advocate for unpublished writers. Too good to be true? Nope. Todd Pierce epitomizes the literary life, and should stand as a role model for any aspiring fiction writer. Versatile enough to publish short stories while simultaneously setting his sights on novels, he brings a passion and erudition to his work, as well as the classroom, where he teaches fiction writing. [more]
Charles Salzberg
"It's not easy to talk about the evaluation process, because it changes with each manuscript I receive. I can tell you how I go about it, though. The first thing I do is note the competency of the writing. No matter how good a story might be, if the writer can't tell it well, it's not going to travel ... But overall, it's just a matter of having done much too much reading over the years and getting a "gut" feeling about a book. It's kind of like one of the Supreme Court Justice's comment on pornography--I know it when I see it. " [more]
Carolyn See
Carolyn See is the author of several novels, including THE HANDYMAN, DREAMING; MAKING HISTORY; GOLDEN DAYS; RHINE MAIDENS, BLUE MONEY, THE REST IS DONE WITH MIRRORS, and MOTHERS AND DAUGHTERS. She is a book reviewer for "The Washington Post" and is on the board of PEN Center USA West. [more]
Tim Tomlinson - "The Portable MFA Debut"
"The most recalcitrant MFA's don't last long. They leave nurturing the sense that the philistines will never understand their precious vision. In some cases that's what they sign on for in MFA programs – validation of their precious vision, because if you get nothing else from the "writing can't be taught" saw, you get that – if nothing can be taught, nothing can be wrong." [more]


Web del Sol/Algonkian Workshops
2020 Pennsylvania Ave., NW
Suite 443
Washington, D.C. 20006
Phone: 1-800-250-8290