• Massachusetts Writing Resources

    Posted Posted by David Duhr in Writing Resources     Comments No comments

    Boston RainbowUp next in our series of State Writing Resources is the great state commonwealth of Massachusetts, also known as the Bay State, though shouldn’t it be known as the Bay Commonwealth, amirite? (Did I lose you at “amirite”? I definitely lost myself.)

    Residents of Massachusetts are known as Bay Staters, Massachusites and/or Massachusettsians! But shouldn’t Bay Stater be Bay Commonwealther? I’m so confused.

    One thing I’m not confused about is the richness of Massachusetts writing, past and present. It’s just too much to even summarize. Wikipedia needs two pages to list writers from Massachusetts, and another page for writers from Boston. Shall we pretend for even a moment that Wikipedia is comprehensive? Many of the nation’s top lit mags and writing programs call Boston home, including Ploughshares (#12 below) and Redivider at Emerson College, alma mater of WBN’s co-founders, and Fringe Magazine, which has closed but will stay online for as long as we can keep it up. And later this week, our classmate and pal Nico Vreeland of Chamber Four (#4 below) will share with us his experiences at the Writers’ Room (#3 below).

    But for now, let’s get to the resources. Presented in no particular order, here are twelve Massachusetts writing resources, from conferences to local critique groups to literary magazines. If you live in the Bay State or are planning a move there, these are some organizations you might want to take a peek at.

    1) Grub Street

    The second largest independent center for creative writing in the United States, its mission is to be an innovative, rigorous and welcoming community for writers who together create their best work, find audience and elevate the literary arts for all.

    2) Amherst Writers and Artists

    The Amherst Writers and Artists’ philosophy is simple: every person is a writer, and every writer deserves a safe environment in which to experiment, learn and develop craft.

    3) The Writers’ Room of Boston

    A nonprofit organization committed to supporting the creation of new literature by providing a secure, affordable workspace and an engaged community to emerging and established writers in downtown Boston.

    4) Chamber Four

    A resource for readers, dedicated to making reading more enjoyable and more rewarding. Chamber Four filters the stream of published work; highlights great reads in any medium and any genre; and features essays about books and reading, posts about the publishing industry, and information about ereader technology.

    5) Four Stories

    A literary series bridging Greater Boston’s nightlife and arts community. Each event is held in a club, bar or lounge, and features appearances from some of the most acclaimed authors in the nation, all reading their work under a unified theme.

    6) Barred Owl Retreat

    A Massachusetts writers workshop and retreat center.

    7) Cape Cod Writers Center

    Workshops and a nationally-recognized writers conference which takes place annually during the third week in August at the charming Craigville Conference Center in Centerville on Nantucket Sound.

    8) Fine Arts Work Center

    A nonprofit devoted to encouraging the growth and development of emerging visual artists and writers through residency programs, to the propagation of aesthetic values and experience, and to the restoration of the year-round vitality of the historic art colony of Provincetown.

    9) North Shore Writers Group

    Based in Salem, Massachusetts (but welcoming all writers living on the North Shore), NSWG nurtures writers at all levels by providing supportive feedback to their work.

    10) The New England Writing Workshop

    Offers expert small-group and individual guidance amid the austere beauty of the coast north of Boston.

    11) Anomalous Press

    A literary magazine and chapbook publisher, Anomalous “has its sights set on publishing literary text, advancing audio forms and creation, and supporting all sorts of alternative realities of the near future.”

    12) Ploughshares

    Founded in 1971, Ploughshares is an award-winning literary magazine at Emerson College publishing poetry, fiction, essay and memoir.

    Help us add to this list, Bay Commonwealthers! Do you run a local writing group or a lit journal we should be aware of? Feel free to share info and links in the comments section below.

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