FREE YAWP Saturdays

Join GrubStreet’s Young Adult Writers Program (YAWP), a FREE creative writing workshop for Boston-area high schoolers. Our students come from a wide variety of high schools in the Boston area. We come together to geek out on writing/reading while mingling with fellow teen writers over snacks. There's an open mic at the end when reading is optional, and snaps and claps are always welcome. 

YAWP FREE Saturday Session Information

All students MUST register in advance. 

ALL YAWP Saturdays in Fall 2020/Spring 2021 are free and will be remotely held on Zoom. 

These classes will be remote and take place from 12:00 to 3:00pm.

**SPECIAL EVENT** January 21st

Attend an author talk with Desmond Hall on Thursday, January 21st from 4:00pm to 5:00pm!  He'll be taking questions from teens, and copies of his forthcoming book, Your Corner Dark, will be given away at random to selected attendees! Registration through the Boston Public Library website HERE

This event is presented by the Roxbury, Mattapan, and Grove Hall branches of the Boston Public Library. 

January 23rd

**Start your January YAWP Saturday off a little earlier with a quick info session about GrubStreet’s Teen Writing Fellowship with Dharani Persaud! We’ll walk you through all the components of the application and answer any questions you may have about the process. No question is too small!**

Telling Your Story: Writing What You Know with EB Bartels

Writing Suspense with Katie Bayerl

Writing About Place with JR Mahung

February 27th

Making People From Scratch: The Art of Characterization with Maria Pinto

Releasing Your Powerful Inner Writer with Dzidzor

Using Imaginary Creatures in Your Writing with Sophie Powell

March 20th

Horror Generator with Peter Medeiros

Writing Flash Fiction with Nihal Mubarak

Writing a Bingeworthy Streaming Series with Mariona Lloreta

April 10th

Beautiful Compression: Turning Drafts into Sparkling Gems with Maria Pinto

Building Conflict in Your Scene with Paloma Valenzuela

Write Yourself Out Of That Rut: Poet's Edition with Kayla Degala-Paraiso

May 15th

Defying Genre: Exploring Experimental Writing with Kayla Degala-Paraiso

Settings That Stun with Tina Tocco

Writing to Music with JR Mahung

Frequently Asked Questions: 

Who are YAWPers?
Our students come from schools all over the Greater Boston area, and we all have one thing in common: we love to read and write creatively. Our program gets teens writing and the results speak for themselves. Our alumni have gone onto enroll college-level creative writing programs at such schools as Sarah Lawrence College and Brandeis University. YAWPers have also earned publication in various literary magazines and blogs like The Marble Collection.  YAWPers have also gone on to establish writing clubs at their schools and neighborhoods to help strengthen arts programs locally. 

What’s expected of me?
We ask that you come to YAWP ready to participate, think creatively, and work hard. We ask that you also respect your peers’ and instructors’ ideas. If you’re shy, that’s okay — we don’t make students read work they don’t want to. But we do encourage all YAWPers to stretch outside their comfort zone and make room for discovery! You may attend all of our events or just one of them, though we have plenty of students who come every month for an entire school year.

What do I need to bring? (Pencils? Paper?)
We’ll give you notebooks and pens. No homework. No need to bring a writing sample. Parents and guardians are always welcome to visit, though we ask them not to be in the classroom during writing. 

I’m in the 8th grade, but I really want to be a part of YAWP. Am I definitely excluded?
Generally, YAWP is intended for high school students. If you are just about to enter high school and would like to be a part of YAWP, please contact us directly by emailing [email protected], and we will see if an accommodation can be made. No guarantees, but let's chat about it.

Do I need to choose one genre to write for the entire year?
Absolutely not! We actually encourage our writers to try all the different genres offered throughout the year; we promise that it will make you a more well-rounded artist. Novelists interested in their narrator’s prose and characters’ dialogue have everything to gain from workshops in poetry or screenwriting or narrative nonfiction. We only ask that students remain in a single genre for their afternoon at Grub—in other words, please don't switch genres mid-workshop.

Is YAWP any fun?
Don't ask us...ask our young writers.

“I learned that a whole story can be written in one sentence … and that there are teens like me who love writing as much as I do, which is cool.” 
— Jacqui G.
“Poetry can be anything.” 
— Anonymous
“Hearing other people’s works = inspiring” 
— Theresa K.
“I enjoy the whole experience – camaraderie, comedy, etc.” 
— Carter H.
“I wanted to write a memoir before I came here, and I found a great way to start it!” 
— Mia O.

YAWP Saturday Sessions are made possible, in part, thanks to the Barr Foundation, the Boston Cultural Council, Esther B. Kahn Charitable Foundation, the Calderwood Foundation, the Highland Street Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Massachusetts Cultural Council, The Boston Foundation, and donors like you.

We are moving!

Did you know GrubStreet will be moving
to a brand new space in 2020?

Learn More