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  • Workshop
  • Online: Zoom
  • Advanced
  • 9 Weeks

One Great Essay: A Master Course on Revision and Submission

No Longer Enrolling

  • $595.00 Non-Member
  • $570.00 Member

Class Description

The goal of this class is to workshop a single essay—personal, narrative, literary, commercial, or otherwise—twice and make it as good as it can possibly be. When the course is over, you’ll have one great essay ready for submission to magazines, websites, MFA programs, residencies, and other opportunities.

To reach this goal, each student will workshop two versions of the same piece. (Therefore it behooves students to select an essay they’re really willing to rethink.) We will discuss approaches to intensive revision and drill down into elements of craft at an advanced level. We’ll also read exemplary authors—from John Jeremiah Sullivan and Pico Iyer to Peter Hessler, Zadie Smith, and Ander Monson—and complete exercises to practice techniques and add to our toolbox of writing and revising skills.

Discussion will also cover submitting your essays for publication, working with editors, and the best way to take advantage of the Muse and the Marketplace's Manuscript Mart (May 1-3). A professional writer or editor (TBA, depending on availability) will also visit class to answer questions about the writing, submitting, and editorial process, and jumpstart students’ efforts to publish their work.

Only experienced essay writers who have taken previous nonfiction workshops at Grub Street or elsewhere should apply. Space is limited to 9 students in order to foster a closer, more intense and more rigorous learning experience.

The deadline for this class has passed.

Scholarships Format/Location

Thanks to the excellent literary citizenship of our donors, scholarships are available for all GrubStreet classes. To apply, click the gray "APPLY FOR SCHOLARSHIP" button. In order to be considered for a scholarship, you must complete your application at least one week before the start date of a class. Please await our scholarship committee's decision before registering for the class. We cannot hold spots in classes, so the sooner you apply, the better. Scholarships cannot be applied retroactively.

For more detailed information about GrubStreet scholarships, including how to contribute to scholarship funds for other students, click here.

This class will take place using Zoom videoconferencing. Please visit the Resources tab to access the video-conference link.

Zoom Participation:

Students are not required to turn their camera on, but are encouraged to participate any way they feel comfortable through functions such as the live chat, emoji reactions, and unmuting the microphone. Learn more about using Zoom here.

Zoom Accessibility:

We ask that instructors enable closed captioning and send a transcript of the session after class. You can also enable closed captioning at any time during the meeting. If your instructor forgets to send the transcript, just send ’em an email!