You’ve got a most or all of your manuscript’s first draft completed or you’re working on revising a full draft but you’re stuck. Or you need new perspective, encouragement, skill building to go the distance and finally finish. Most of all, you need uninterrupted time and space to do your work. If you’re a writer with substantial writing already done on your book, you’re a great candidate for our Master Class: Independent Study week.
Before the week begins, you’ll meet with Mary to determine best goals and what support you need most. You’ll get her feedback on your overall plan and suggestions for taking the next step with your manuscript. You can opt for either in-person coaching during the week or feedback on manuscript pages or some of both. Each evening, you’ll check in with Mary via email to report progress, plan the next day’s writing, and ask questions.
You also have the option of sitting in on any of the regular workshop activities—if you need a creativity boost or a chance to learn and practice new skills—or the evening freewriting, image board, or sharing for feedback.
Join our intimate, creative community as you wish—for meals, walks, writing conversations—or spend time alone getting deeper into your writing.
Alumnae are often amazed at how much writing they can get done, how much support they receive, and how many leaps they take into stronger craft skills and better understanding of their book project.
Note: like all Master Classes, the IS week assumes a certain amount of writing experience and skill in the genre of your book. You must have a substantial amount already written to qualify. It’s not for those just starting out. If you’re just beginning, or have less than 30,000 words written, please opt for the regular workshop week where you can get more ongoing guidance from Mary.
"Mary gave me what I needed--encouragement, honesty, accountability, and clear direction--to move through major revisions. She pinpointed what worked and (gently) shared what didn't. Her explicit assignments helped me build structure and address my writing weaknesses. I viewed our work together as my 1:1 MFA."
—Kathleen West, author of forthcoming novel, Detention
"Mary’s edit of Turn Here Sweet Corn taught me how to make the written word vulnerable and life changing on the page. She showed me how to create containers of emotions and to structure a story line that pulls the reader in. She has acuity for what to keep, to cut, or to shape, and how. Mary is a gem of a teacher, editor, and human being. I would not have published an award-winning book without her."
—Atina Diffley, author of Turn Here Sweet Corn, Minnesota Book Award winner