Writopians!

Writopia Lab is a national community of young writers and storytellers.

We are committed to cultivating a safe and intellectual space for student-focused, joy-inducing instruction in creative writing and more. In order to help you explore our wide range of programs, this guide is designed to help you find a program that suits your needs.

Support Writopia Lab

Your donations help us change lives... the lives of exceptional low-income children and teens who yearn to be included and empowered by a creative and intellectual community. And it's not just about creative writing. Your donation ensures that we may help low income, lower literacy teens with their academic essays, their college essays, and with preparing for the SATs.

Read about 2017-2018 Writopia Lab Funding Opportunities

WriCampia 2018

Join Writopia Lab for twelve days at our creative, fun, and productive sleepaway camp in the Poconos from August 13th through August 24th!

At WriCampia, writers will spend their mornings in intimate writing workshops led by published authors and produced playwrights, their afternoons participating in their choice of over 20 artistic and active electives, and their evenings at campfires, scavenger hunts, and readings. Photos from WriCampia can be viewed on our Facebook page.

Registration is now open!

Register for WriCampia

See a Typical Camp Day Schedule.

Review our Frequently Asked Questions.

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Location

We will be returning to IHC in Honesdale, Pennsylvania.

Girls on Fence at camp

Dates

August 13th, 2018 to August 24th, 2018

Ages

We welcome rising 3rd graders through rising 12th graders. Bunks and workshops will be organized by grade.

  • rising 3rd and 4th Graders: WriCampia Jr, from August 19th through August 24th
  • rising 5th through 11th Graders: WriCampia, from August 13th through August 24th
  • rising 12th graders: WriCampia, from August 13th through August 24th, as CITs (Counselors-In-Training). CITs receive additional leadership opportunities that prepare them for professional experiences in the future.

Transportation

We will provide buses to and from WriCampia for all campers. Buses will be leaving from and returning to Manhattan, Washington, DC, and Westchester County, NY.

Cost

$3,550 ($1,750 for WriCampiaJr). Limited financial aid will be available.

A Typical Camp Day

  • 7:15 AM Wake Up Call
  • 8:00 AM to 8:45 AM Breakfast
  • 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM Writing Workshop (led by published author or produced playwright)
  • 12:00 PM to 12:45 PM Lunch
  • 12:45 PM to 1:25 PM Free time (at bunk & main line)
  • 1:25 PM to 2:50 PM Electives period 1
  • 2:50 PM to 4:15 PM Electives period 2
  • 4:15 to 4:25 PM Group gathering & snack
  • 4:25 PM to 5:40 PM Electives period 3
  • 5:45 PM to 6:30 PM Dinner
  • 6:30 PM to 7:30 PM Shower hour and free time
  • 7:30 PM to 9:00 PM Evening activity
  • 9:00 PM Lower Camp curfew (lights out 9:30 PM)
  • 9:00 PM to 10:00 PM Middle Camp Evening Electives
  • 9:00 PM to 10:30 PM Upper Camp Evening Electives
  • 10:00 PM Middle Camp curfew (lights out 10:30 PM)
  • 10:30 PM Upper Camp curfew (lights out 11:00 PM)

Electives include: Filmmaking, zine making, spoken word, poetry hikes, illustration, roleplaying games, graphic novels, playwriting, ceramics, woodworking, musical theater, jewelry making, tie-dye, waterslide, songwriting, dungeons & dragons, literary sports, gymnastics, spin, step, dance, memoir, novel writing, swimming, boating, ropes course, zip-lining, photography, and more.

Evening Activities include: Scavenger Hunts, Escape the Room, Improv, Campfires, Spoken Word, Dance Party, and more!


WriCampia 2018 FAQs

What are the dates?
  • August 13th through August 24th
  • How do I apply?
    We use CampDoc, a purpose-built camp registration system. Registration is now open!
    I’m having trouble with the application process. Can you help me?
    If you are having any technical trouble with the website, you can use any of these options:
  • click on the life preserver in the upper right area of the browser window,
  • email support@campdoc.com, or
  • call 734-636-1000.
  • They have trained staff on hand who will be able to help you get past that page!
    When is payment due?
    A non-refundable deposit of $500 is due upon registration (unless you are applying for financial aid). Payment is due in full by 3/31.
    What is your refund policy?
    If you withdraw from WriCampia before May 1st, and if we can fill the spot with another camper the same age as your camper, then we can refund the fee minus the deposit. There are no refunds after May 1st.
    Is financial aid available?
    Yes, we have limited financial aid available.
    How do I apply for financial aid?
    This all happens on CampDoc. To apply, fill out your WriCampia application, indicate that you are applying for financial aid, and submit your complete financials via CampDoc. If you are applying for financial aid, you will not be required to pay a deposit, however we will only be able to hold your spot for two weeks if you have not submitted your financials. Please do not email financial data to sleepaway@writopialab.org.
    Will Writopia provide transportation?
    Yes. All campers will travel to and from WriCampia on buses that will leave from Washington, DC, Manhattan, and Westchester County, NY.
    When does enrollment close?
    When camp fills up—which will be soon! We will accept registrations onto a waiting list, but we cannot make any guarantee about a spot opening up.
    How many writers are attending?
    We will host 180 writers.
    How can I see what my child is working on?
    We will be sending home a video featuring each camper.
    Where will camp be held?
    IHC, about ten miles north of Honesdale, PA. Their website has tons of great information.
    Where are most of the campers from?
    The majority of our campers come from New York City and its NY, CT, and NJ suburbs and from the greater Washington, DC area. Other campers come from all over the east coast, and from as far away as Texas and California.
    What is the camper to adult ratio?
    Three to one. Plus kitchen, grounds, and support staff!
    How many campers will be sleeping in each bunk?
    There will be 8 to 14 campers and two counselors in each bunk.
    Can I send my camper a package?

    No. WriCampia is a no-package camp. Letters and cards will be delivered to campers. Other items will be held at the camp office.

    If your camper forgot something he or she needs, please reach out to the camp directors and we will make arrangements to help you get things to your camper.

    Can my child bring his or her own food?
    The kitchen staff on campus is very accommodating, always providing vegetarian and gluten free options. If your child needs (because of allergies or dietary restrictions) to bring her or his own meals or snacks, please let us know ahead of time. All food must be stored in the kitchen. No food may be kept in the bunks.
    How are the workshops organized? What is the atmosphere of the workshops?
    Morning workshops will have a ratio of eight writers to one instructor. All workshop leaders are published writers or produced playwrights who are experts in helping young writers understand and implement elements of plot and key literary tools. Sessions are peppered with original and fun writing exercises, but focus primarily on writing—and completing—creative pieces.
    Are the campers allowed phones or other electronics?
    Every writer will be given a Writopia laptop for workshop and writing. No personal laptops will be allowed at camp. Personal devices that can play music are allowed but not if they are capable of playing video.
    Will I be able to speak with my child during camp?
    Writers can, and are encouraged to, email home every day. Campers will be calling home on Sunday, August 19th. They will call the phone numbers you supply when you register for camp.
    Will there be swimming?
    There is optional swimming every day except the first and last day of camp. In addition to a brand new swimming pool, IHC also offers boating activities on the lake and a waterslide. Pool and lake activities are only permitted when lifeguards are on duty.
    Does my child have to bring his or her own bedding?
    Yes. Campers must bring their own sleeping bags, blankets, sheets, pillows, pillowcases, and towels.
    Is there air conditioning?
    The bunks have fans but not air conditioners. Most workshop spaces have air conditioning.

    I want to express my appreciation for all the work, love, learning and fun that you poured into the hearts and minds of your campers during this wonderful summer camp. My daughter had a wonderful experience. She will cherish the memories of this camp for many years to come!!!

    Nadine, WriCampia parent

    Thank you WriCampia. I want to let you know that my camper returned back home happier and more confident. His self-esteem has improved as well. It is unbelievable how two weeks has changed his personality

    Parent of first-time WriCampian

    I can not express my gratitude. I haven't seen this boy look so filled with joy, love and security. WriCampia allowed my son to find his voice, face his demons and commune with some of the kindest, open-hearted and talented people he may ever meet. He finally felt a part of something wonderful.

    Parent of a three-year WriCampia veteran

    Writopia sleepaway camp was the best experience of my daughter's life. It changed her. She had never done sleepaway camp before, so we didn't know if she would like being away from home for a week. She said had never been with a group of kids where she felt like she could be completely herself.

    S.E., WriCampia Parent

    I would like to thank you for what was probably the best week of my summer. I had such an amazing time working and creating with my fellow writers, young and old, male and female... I loved the amount of professionalism among the staff, but also the positive and loving attitudes of all the counselors. Thank you, especially my workshop leader, for helping me so much with writing a story with an extremely mature topic that I was hesitant to explore. You exude a vibe that lets all campers know how okay it is to write from the heart, and to not hold back. So, once again, thanks to everyone for an awesome experience.

    Ben R., age 16, Camper

    This week has been one of the best weeks of my life. Wricampia is amazing not just because of all the writing and the awesome location, the churros and the cool electives mostly because of my fellow campers and counselors. My fellow campmates are some of the coolest, smartest, nicest people I have ever met in my life. It's a well-known fact that writers, nerds and geeks are fabulous people to be around, but upon coming to this camp, I was astounded at how friendly and accepting everyone was and still is .... I've made more friends than I have in well, ever. Not just my new sisters in Cabin 27 other campers: young or old, boy or girl very the counselors too. Everyone here is unfailingly sweet and caring. They are all so friendly to me and I couldn't be happier that I signed up for this camp one lazy June morning.

    Caroline V., Five-Year Camper

    Make a Payment

    Thank you so much for choosing to enroll in a Writopia program. This page will allow you to pay for a Writopia program at a pro-rated amount.

     

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    Past Winners

    This year we received more than twice as many submissions as last year and a team of theatre, TV, and film professionals read your plays! Final-round judges this year include the writers of Late Show With David Letterman, Dutch filmmaker Finbarr Wilbrink, and Karl Gajdusek, who wrote the screenplay of Hollywood blockbuster Oblivion.

    The 2014 Winners

    Elementary School

    FIRST PLACE

    Funniest Play: The Chocolate Thief by Alejandro Salas
    Best Dramatic Play: tie between P.O.V. by Arjun Mazumdar and The Drill by Sierra Blanco

    SECOND PLACE

    Time Travel Twist by Vivienne Soares and Melanie Santana

    THIRD PLACE

    The Homework from H-E-Double Hockey Sticks by Ella Mare
    The Upstander by Bella Rosenblatt
    Chloe by Zoe Wohlman

    Middle School

    FIRST PLACE

    Funniest Play: Zombie Grandma by Everett Moore
    Best Dramatic Play: KABOOM by Abigail Sylvor-Greenberg

    SECOND PLACE

    Bird Girl by Kate Pamplin
    Bad Dreams by Henry Green

    THIRD PLACE

    Before Barnaby by Leo Lion

    High School

    FIRST PLACE

    Funniest Play: Set Back by Peter Chipman and Victoria Stiely
    Best Dramatic Play: A Social Experiment by Kai Williams

    SECOND PLACE

    Three Cats in a Box by Will Hegecock
    Thoughts by Kristjan Tomasson

    THIRD PLACE

    For the Sake of the Lizard by Emma Paquette
    Nathan and Amelia by Sarah Fisher
    Ticking by Luis Bermudez

    Scholarship Opportunities

    The winning playwrights will be awarded scholarships: $1,000 for the high school winners, $500 for middle school winners, and $250 for the elementary school winners. These plays will be produced as part of our Worldwide Plays Festival, funded by David Letterman's production company, Worldwide Pants, will run May 17th through May 22nd at the Abingdon Theatre in New York City.

    Second- and third-place winners will receive a free video chat session with a Writopia Lab Instructor!

    The winner of the middle school drama award will be the recipient of the $500 Playscripts Scholarship, sponsored by Playscripts, Inc, an independent publisher of new plays and musicals. Playscripts, Inc. will also offer a 25% discount on all book orders to members of the Writopia community! Enter the promocode WRITE234 at checkout to use the discount.

    About the Festival

    Writopia Lab’s Worldwide Plays Festival is an annual off-broadway festival of plays written by playwrights ages 6 to 18 and produced, designed, directed, and acted by New York theater professionals.

    Thanks to the support of David Letterman's production house, Worldwide Pants and the Mellam Family Foundation, Writopia Lab's Worldside Plays Festival is now in its fifth year, and is open to more writers than ever before.

    The festival includes plays written in workshops at Writopia’s labs across the country and plays submitted to our competition from playwrights around the world! You’ll see comedies, musicals, monologues, historical dramas, tear jerkers, thought pieces — all written by playwrights not yet old enough to vote.

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    Submit Your Play!

    Please make sure your play meets the following guidelines:

    1. Plays should be no longer than 10 pages.
    2. Plays should be written in standard play formatting.
    3. There should be no more than two collaborators per play. Each collaborator should fill out the submission form.
    4. Your name and contact information CANNOT be on the play that you upload below. Please make sure that there is no cover page or contact info anywhere.

    If you have any questions regarding your submission, please email submissions@writopialab.org.

    Worldwide Plays Festival 2018

    Immersive Theater
    Immersive Theater

    Following the great success of the immersive production of WPF’s 2018 Home plays, where every play took place in a different room in a home, this year, playwrights must set their plays at a school, where there is so much more to learn than what’s on the board.

    School is where people come to learn and come to teach, but it’s also where people fall in love, come out, protest, and pray. It’s where friendships are formed, where trust is broken, where people make the team and get cut from the play, where teachers are fired and heroes are made.

    Plays can be any genre—comedy, drama, horror, polemic, tragedy, historical, docu-drama, solo-play, interactive, sci-fi, or any other you dream up.

    One challenge is that all plays must take place in ONE of the following places in a school:

    • School Classroom (can be any type of classroom--science lab, English classroom, kindergarten class, etc.)
    • School Office (can be any type of school office--teachers’ lounge, principal’s office, guidance counselor’s office, etc.)
    • School Auditorium, Gym, or Sports Field

    What’s the deadline?

    The deadline for the competition is February 1st, 2018.

    Who can submit?

    The competition is open to playwrights in 1st through 12th grade around the world. There are two different categories of competition: internal and external.

    Entering the Competition

    Current Writopia Workshoppers

    If you are currently enrolled in a Writopia workshop, please do not submit your play to the competition. Your workshop instructor will help you submit your play.

    All Other Playwrights

    You can submit your play by filling out the online form and sending a PDF of your play to submissions@writopialab.org. Judging is completely blind, so please make sure that your name and contact information do NOT appear in your submission document.

    What are the prizes?

    Off-Broadway Production

    The competition is divided into the Elementary School division, the Middle School division, and the High School division. In all divisions, Off-Broadway productions will be awarded in the following categories:

    • Best Play/Musical Set in a Classroom
    • Best Play/Musical Set in a School Office
    • Best Play/Musical Set in a School Auditorium/Gym/Sports Field

    Scholarships

    The top play in each division will be awarded the following scholarships:

    • High School: $1,000
    • Middle School: $500
    • Elementary School: $250

    What are the Guidelines?

    • Plays must be no more than eight minutes long (this is roughly eight pages, but all plays must be eight minutes or shorter, no matter the page count).
    • The play must contain no more than three characters.
    • While there is no standard playwriting format, we encourage you to use Writopia Lab’s Playwriting Format, which you can find online here.
    • The action of your play must take place entirely inside ONE space in a school. The space can be ONE of the following:
      • School Classroom
        • can be any type of classroom (science lab, English classroom, kindergarten class, etc.)
      • School Office
        • can be any type of school office (teachers’ lounge, principal’s office, guidance counselor’s office, etc.)
      • School Auditorium, Gym, or Sports Field
    • There can be NO set changes. The entirety of the play must take place in ONE of the rooms listed above.
    • There can be NO narrator in the play who is not emotionally invested in the story (i.e. Ramona can tell her story to the audience, but an unnamed narrator cannot tell the audience the story of Ramona)

    Writers may submit more than one piece.

    Writers are enrolled on an ongoing basis for trimester-long workshops.

    Registration is not confirmed without payment.
    We will hold a spot for your child for one week. If we do not receive payment in that time, we will make that spot available to others.

    AFTER you have clicked the "Submit" button above...

    Please follow this link to pay for your program:

    Hudson-to-Housatonic Region

    The 2018 Hudson-to-Housatonic Scholastic Awards have been announced, and the results are in!

    The 2018 Scholastic Writing Awards accepted submissions from September 15, through December 15, 2017. Guidelines, deadlines, and coverage area for the Hudson-to-Housatonic Region are available now. Submissions to the 2019 Awards will be accepted beginning in September, 2018.

    The 2018 Hudson-to-Housatonic Region Scholastic Awards

    • 2,009 writing works submitted
    • 420 Honorable Mentions awarded to promising works
    • 272 Silver Keys awarded to distinguished works
    • 168 Gold Keys awarded to the most accomplished works
    • 5 American Voice Nominees selected as the strongest regional works

    Gold Keys are automatically forwarded for consideration at the national level of the Scholastic Writing Awards.

    View Results from Previous Years

    Regional Ceremony

    Sunday, March 4th, 2018
    2:00 PM to 4:00 PM
    Manhattanville College in Purchase, NY

    To recognize their outstanding work, this year's Gold Key, Silver Key, and Honorable Mention recipients are invited, along with their guests, teachers, and our esteemed jurors, to the 2018 Awards Ceremony for the Hudson-to-Housatonic Writing Region of the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards! This year's keynote speaker will be author Sarah Darer Littman.

    RSVP now for seating and further details!

    Contact Info

    Email: rob@writopialab.org
    Phone: (914) 401-4159

    Program Partners

    Since 2013, The Crosswicks Foundation has generously provided the annual Madeleine L'Engle Scholarship for $1000, presented each year to the H2H Region's top Senior Portfolio. Mrs. L'Engle's literary legacy of more than 60 published works included the Newbery Medal winning A Wrinkle in Time.

    For 2018, The Village Bookstore of Pleasantville, NY once again presents six prizes for middle school writers! These $100 prizes aim to empower and embolden 7th and 8th grade writers who demonstrate exemplary skill and promise in their writing abilities, and to encourage their interest in and love for the craft.

    Through its MFA in Creative Writing program, Manhattanville College partners with Writopia Lab to help adjudicate the H2H Regional Awards and to help host the annual Awards Ceremony at Manhattanville's O'Byrne Chapel.

    The Writing Graduate Program at Sarah Lawrence College partners with Writopia Lab to help adjudicate the H2H Regional Awards.

    Support the Hudson-to-Housatonic Region

    Please support our work in getting the word out, organizing the submissions, coordinating the judging, and running the ceremony.

  • $1000 — Truman Capote Sponsor
  • $500 — Sylvia Plath Sponsor
  • $250 — Joyce Carol Oates Sponsor
  • $100 — Friend of The Awards
  • Paying Online

    Please follow one of these links to pay for your workshop or private session(s):


    Five-Day Half-Day Workshop

    These workshops meet five days in a row, generally Monday through Friday (some holiday weeks may vary).

    Fee
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    Start Date
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    Private Sessions

    These one-hour sessions are usually requested by a) high school seniors developing their college essays; b) writers who wish to work on fiction, memoirs, or scripts individually before joining a workshop; c) writers who enjoy one-on-one editing and development; d) students struggling with expository writing (school essays).

    Rate
    Location
    Student Name
    Parent/Guardian Name

    Cancellation Policy

    If a child withdraws two weeks (or more) prior to the workshop start date, payment can be credited toward a future workshop at no cost, or refunded with a $50 cancellation fee. If withdrawal is requested within two weeks of the workshop start date, the same policy applies, as long as we are able to fill the spot. However, if we are unable to fill the spot, we cannot refund or credit the workshop. Missed days can be made up during another week in the summer, provided that there is space available.

    Browse by Program Type


    Writopia offers instruction in a variety of narrative art forms and mediums.

    Browse by Schedule LINK

    We're in session all year round—school year, summer and holiday breaks!

    Browse our Off-Site Workshops LINK

    Learn about Writopia’s programs offered beyond our Labs—in public and private schools, at our partner organizations, and more!

    Learn more about additional enrichment opportunities for young writers, e.g. fellowships, internships, submission and production opportunities, personalized events.

    View a complete list of Upcoming Events.

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