The Writers' Loft--Sherborn, MA

Because writing doesn't have to be a solitary pursuit.

Welcome to The Writers' Loft

A community dedicated to providing writers with what they need to get their careers to the next level. We have a quiet, drop-in writing loft and a community room for hanging out and special events. Come write with us!

Upcoming Programs, Events, Classes, & More

The Whole Book Approach Workshop with editor Yolanda Scott of Charlesbridge Publishing

Saturday, 2/6, 10am-12pm

Whole Book Approach Flyer

In a world of rapid digital change, the picture book is a powerful reminder of why traditional bookmaking matters. There’s something important in a book’s very physicality and the way it brings together adults and children in a shared reading experience. This workshop teaches proper picture-book terminology and will help you become comfortable discussing a book’s visual elements such as trim size, orientation, jacket, cover, and endpapers as you come to understand how these components enhance, underscore, and otherwise interact with the text. You’ll learn how to speak the same language as publishing professionals as well as discover an exciting, interactive new alternative to traditional story time: The Whole Book Approach.

Annual & Quarterly Members: $35 Non-Members: $50

Registration Required. Register Here.

Snow date: Saturday, 3/5

Gaining Perspective Illustration Workshop Series with author/illustrator Sarah S. Brannen

Saturdays, 2/6 & 2/13, 2-4pm

Sarah S. Brannen Workshops Flyer

Many illustrators wrestle with perspective in their art, probably because they don’t have a basic understanding of what it is. In this two-part workshop, Sarah will share some insight and tips on how to handle perspective in children’s book illustration.

Rather than teaching a course in classic architectural perspective construction, Sarah will explain the basics of how perspective works. In the first two-hour workshop, she will introduce attendees to one-point and two-point perspective, starting with exteriors and moving to interiors. She’ll show how to use perspective for different viewpoints: wormseye, aerial, etc. Attendees should bring drawing materials and a straight-edge for some hands-on work.

In the second workshop, Sarah will discuss three-point perspective and talk about more advanced tips and tricks, including foreshortening. Attendees should bring some work to share, either done after the first workshop or prior; Sarah will help them solve problems in their own work, so everyone can see the underlying perspective issues.

Annual & Quarterly Members: $30 per workshop Non-Members: $45 per workshop

Registration Required. Register Here.

Snow dates: The following Sundays (2/7 & 2/14)

The Voice: Writers' Loft Style (*Plus Critique*) (Where Nobody Gets Sent Home and Everyone Wins) Workshop with editor Karen Boss of Charlesbridge Publishing

For Picture Books: Sunday, 3/6, 10am-12pm For Middle Grade: Saturday, 3/12, 10am-12pm

Karen Boss Workshop and Critique Flyer (2)

Do you sometimes struggle with voice in your writing? Do you have an idea for a book about a topic that includes a lesson or moral? Do you see a hole in the market for a book about a specific topic but are stuck on how to write about it authentically? Have you struggled to figure out how to keep nostalgia out of your writing and to fully connect with the kid voice in the first- or third-person? YOU ARE NOT ALONE. These challenges are ones faced by many children’s-book writers. Join Charlesbridge editor Karen Boss to interrogate how didacticism might be holding you back and how to identify nostalgia or when the adult voice is encroaching on your writing. Look at specific examples and consider how to recast manuscripts to strengthen them. Participate in exercises to get your writing muscles moving.

BONUS: Every participant will be invited to submit a current manuscript and will get a written critique within one month. (That manuscript doesn’t need to be relevant to the workshop. It can be any completed work you have.)

For Picture Books: 1 Completed Manuscript

For Middle Grade: Up to 3 Chapters or 30 pages (whichever is shorter)

Annual & Quarterly Members: $80 Non-Members: $110

(Workshop without Critique) Annual & Quarterly Members: $35 Non-Members: $50

Registration Required. Register Here.

Snow dates Picture Books: Sunday, 4/3 Middle Grade: Saturday, 4/9

Agent & Art Director Critiques & Brunch - For Illustrators

with Judy Sue Goodwin Sturges, Agent, Author, Professor of Illustration at RISD and Former Art Director along with Scott Magoon, Illustrator and Former Art Director

Saturday, 3/26, 10am

Illustrator Brunch Flyer

Are you preparing your portfolio for an upcoming conference? Need an expert in the field to help give you some feedback? Please join us for a personal critique of your portfolio!

Judy Sue Goodwin Sturges and Scott Magoon will be at offering one-on-one critiques with immediate feedback of your work. Each critique will be 15 minutes in length, with a maximum number of 10-12 pieces per portfolio, so please be sure to choose your pieces wisely. If you decide to bring original artwork, please know that it is at your own risk.

Half way through the morning, Judy Sue and Scott will give a presentation on what makes a strong portfolio, with time for participant questions.

Annual & Quarterly Members: $65  Non-Members: $85

Registration Required. Register Here.

Snow date: Saturday, 4/2

Scribe & Snack Write-In

Friday, February 12 at 10am

Up your word count during our Scribe & Snack Write-In. Drop in for all or part of the day to write. Take a break at noon to chat over bagged lunches (we’ll provide the tea and coffee). This month we will feature the Valentine's Special (strawberries stuffed with cream cheese and walnuts or whip cream and almonds) with Nancer Ballard.

2033859 This write-in is open to all. $5 donation; Members $Free$.

Writing Intimate Moments (from first kiss to dirty deed)

A Panel with authors Judith Arnold, Marissa Doyle, Rachel Kenley, and Kathryn Sparrow

Saturday, February 20, 1:30-3:30pm

Romance Panel Flyer

Seeking to capture the innocence of that first kiss or the excitement of a teenage fumble in the back seat? Maybe you’re penning a steamy, no-holds-barred sexual encounter between adults?

Join writers Judith Arnold, Marissa Doyle, Rachel Kenley, and Kathryn Sparrow as they discuss the particular challenges of writing intimate moments and explicit scenes, and share their tips and tricks for bringing romantic moments to life.

Books by the authors will be available for purchase and signing after the event.

Snow date: Sunday, February 21

This panel is open to all. $5 donation; Members $Free$.

Scribe & Snack Write-In

Friday, February 26 at 10am

Up your word count during our Scribe & Snack Write-In. Drop in for all or part of the day to write. Take a break at noon to chat over bagged lunches (we’ll provide the tea and coffee). This month we will feature the Here Comes the Valentine Cat Heart-Shaped Cookies with Hayley Barrett.

Frosted Hearts (1) This write-in is open to all. $5 donation; Members $Free$.

How to Finish Your Damn Novel: A Craft Chat with Anna Staniszewski

Tuesday, March 15, 7:30pm

Do you love starting projects but can't seem to finish them? Have you revised your manuscript so many times that you'd rather clip your dog's toenails than read through it again? Instead of torturing your pooch, come join Anna Staniszewski, author of nearly a dozen books, for a craft chat on how to take control of your novel so that you can finally type "The End."

finishyournovelcraftchatflyer This craft chat is $Free$ and open to all. Snow date: Wednesday, March 16

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