ONLINE CLASSES AND WORKSHOPS
1. Write more words, submit your work, and improve your craft with two, free weekly Zoom writing workshops with Q&A’s, submission parties and micro lessons.
Zoom Workshop times: Tuesdays 12 – 1.30 PM ET and Wednesdays 7 – 8.30 PM ET.
Sign up to receive the Zoom links via email HERE. The emails will arrive in your inbox 1 hour prior to each sprint (so please look for an email from Tessa at Bloom Writers’ Studio at 11am ET Tuesday and 6pm ET Wednesday)
These workshops are on Zoom, sponsored by the Westport Library and free to all writers, no matter where you live.
Here’s how the first hour of the workshop goes: We chat for the first few minutes and then I’ll share some prompts and first lines which people can use, tweak or ignore. The writing time can be spent on new words or world-building, revising – anything at all – doesn’t even have to be creative writing. We write for 30-40 minutes.
Then during the first and third weeks, in the last fifteen minutes of the workshop, we’ll submit our writing for publication. Bring the stories or essays you want to submit and we’ll walk through the process together. You’ll leave the session with a list of appropriate markets for your work. Writers have had multiple pieces accepted for publication using this system.
On the second and fourth Tuesdays, we’ll have a micro lesson on the art and craft of writing. In the last 5 mins of every workshop, we discuss goals and obstacles (and tips to overcome them) for the coming week.
In each workshop, we apply the principles of loving kindness meditation to our creative process. Loving kindness meditation has many proven benefits including better focus, improved memory and increased productivity.
When? Every Tuesday from 12 pm – 1.30 pm ET and every Wednesday from 7 – 8.30 pm ET
Where? On Zoom
Who? With Tessa Smith McGovern
How Much? FREE! (sponsored by the Westport Library in CT, USA, but open to all, whatever town or country you live in.)
I would love to see you at one or both sprints!
Questions? Please email tessasmithmcgovern @ gmail.com
Please note: I email the Zoom links an hour before each workshop so it’s top of your in-box. The email will come from Tessa at Bloom Writers’ Studio.
2. ‘Learn How to Link Your Short Stories and Memoirs into a Collection with Tessa Smith McGovern’ (ONLINE/ZOOM) for The Writing Institute, Sarah Lawrence College (NY): PLEASE NOTE: FALL 2021 IS SOLD OUT.
NEXT SESSION BEGINS 2/8/2022 – 4/12/2022 PLEASE CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP: https://apply.slc.edu/
Tuesday, September 28, 2021 at 6:30 PM EST until Tuesday, December 7, 2021 at 8:30 PM EST (no class on November 23) SOLD OUT. Next session begins 2/8/2022 SEE LINK ABOVE TO SIGN UP.
Ten Two hour VIRTUAL sessions on Tuesday
6:30pm to 8:30pm EST
Workshop is limited to 12 participants
Students who are interested in taking Learn How to Link Your Short Stories or Memoirs into a Collection as a twenty-week yearlong class may register for the Spring 2022 session here (this is a link to the WI SLC website) in addition to the Fall 2021 session. Spring 2022 details TBA.
A rising trend in publishing is novels-in-stories, otherwise known as linked short stories. If you have short stories or memoirs languishing in a drawer, consider joining this workshop to learn how to link and shape them into a collection. What is a linked short story collection, and how do you write one? Is it the same process as novel-writing, or different? What are the writer’s choices for linking short stories? Is one choice simpler than another? Which method of linking short stories would work best for your writing?
There are many joyous and creative ways to compile a satisfying collection. In this workshop, you will learn to identify how your stories – published or unpublished, typed or handwritten – fit together and how to enhance and deepen the book’s themes. Each class will include in-class exercises to produce new work, time to talk with the teacher about your own work, and prompts for optional at-home assignments.
You will finish these ten-weeks knowing how to combine shorter works into a collection that is greater than the sum of its parts. This process can be repeated with new work as you continue to write your stories in the coming months and years. It is a way to track your own development as a writer and illuminate who you are – and who you can be – as an artist. Individual advice will be given on submitting your finished result for publication or publishing independently. No homework or reading.
Who Should Take This Class?
Anyone with five or more short stories or memoirs who’d like to know how to link them into a collection. Advice will be given as appropriate on writing new stories to shape your collection and we will also discuss elements of craft.
Tessa Smith McGovern is an award-winning writer whose linked short story collection, LONDON ROAD: LINKED STORIES, received a ‘Featured’ review from Kirkus, is an Amazon best-seller, and a gold medal winner in the 2012 eLit Awards. Her non-fiction book, COCKTAILS FOR BOOK LOVERS (Sourcebooks), is also an Amazon best-seller. Her many publication credits include the Connecticut Review and Equinox, a UK poetry journal archived by the English Arts Council at the Southbank Centre, London. She’s currently writing a contemporary fantasy novel inspired by British mythology and pursuing her MFA in Writing at the Vermont College of Fine Arts.
She is founder and editor of eChook Digital Publishing. eChook won a silver medal in the 2012 eLit Awards and its stories have been read by thousands of readers in 100+ countries.
Tessa is also host, writer and producer of BookGirlTV (BGTV), an award-winning digital channel that promotes books and reading. BGTV has 6 million+ minutes viewed on YouTube and 10,000+ likes on Facebook.”
“The topic of Tessa’s class [How to Link Your Short Stories and Memoirs into a Collection] had always puzzled me. I had written a series of short-but-true stories, but was entirely stuck on how to put them together. That is, until I studied with Tessa. She brought fresh energy, inspiration, and creative ideas to her workshop. The impossible no longer feels impossible, thanks to Tessa. I am 300% glad to have studied with her.” – Ellen Luborsky, Ph.D., The Writing Institute, Sarah Lawrence College, NY
“Tessa was a remarkable teacher, not just of writing in the digital age, but of the art and craft of writing in general. Her vision was timeless and inspired, and her course was truly life changing for me.” – Jeanne Chinard, The Writing Institute, Sarah Lawrence College, NY
“If you are planning to write for digital media, you must meet Tessa Smith McGovern…Her knowledge of the internet, the publishing world, and the steps to successful digital publishing is current and extensive. She has valuable insight into the psychology of writing and writers.” – Jeanette Gould, The Writing Institute, Sarah Lawrence College, NY
“Tessa Smith McGovern’s class ‘Writing for Digital Media’ is one of the best writing classes I have ever taken…Tessa’s advice and critique of our writing was unfailingly helpful and supportive. Tessa individualized our assignments so that each student made progress in her work. I cannot recommend this class highly enough.” – Florence Reiss Kraut, Author, How to Make a Life (Oct 2020), a novel in stories. The Writing Institute, Sarah Lawrence College, NY
To sign up, please visit THE WRITING INSTITUTE SARAH LAWRENCE COLLEGE NY
A LITTLE MORE ABOUT TESSA
Tessa is founder of award-winning eChook Digital Publishing which won a gold and a silver in the 2012 eLit Book Awards. She was also host/producer of BookGirlTV (BGTV) from 2014-2016 when a health issue forced a (thankfully temporary) break. BGTV interviews feature popular authors such as Dani Shapiro, Jane Green and Pulitzer prize-winner Anna Quindlen.
Tessa was born in England, moved to the United States in 1993, and published her first short story in 1996. She’s currently working on a contemporary fantasy novel with talking animals that’s inspired by British folklore. She lives in CT with her family, a black lab called Rocky, a Ragamuffin/Persian mix called Rosie (Ru-Ru), and a black and white Maine Coon called Hamish.
Her books include two Amazon best-sellers: the short story collection London Road: Linked Stories eChook Digital Publishing (British Short Stories category), and Cocktails for Book Lovers, Sourcebooks, Inc (Cocktails/mixed drinks category).
SHORT STORIES: CellStories.net, Connecticut Review, Crack the Spine Literary Journal, Evening Street Review, The Dirty Goat, RiverSedge, Studio One, The Distillery, BCtheMagazine, Happy, Georgia State University Review, Portland Magazine, Verdad
SHORT STORIES: First Offense, Carillon, Lucid Moon, Equinox Poetry Magazine (archived by the English Arts Council, Southbank Center, London)
2011 – Silver Medal (Editor), eLit Book Awards, ‘Memoir, Vol. 1’, eChook Digital Publishing
2011 – Gold Medal, eLit Book Awards, ‘London Road: Linked Stories, eChook Digital Publishing
2009 – Winner, Connecticut Press Club Creative Writing, ‘When Janice Bailey Walked’
2005-2008 – Honored Writer, the Annual Ultra-Short Competition of the Binnacle (University of Maine at Machias)
1996 – Honorable Mention, the Abiko Quarterly with James Joyce Studies, ‘Night of Glass’
For more information, please email tessasmithmcgovern @ gmail.com