Workshop 2014

The Zurich Writers Workshop will be held May 23-25, 2014, in Zurich, Switzerland. It is divided into two sections: From Hobby to Career: How to Make a Living as a Writer; and Fiction, From Beginning to End. The workshop is conducted in English.

From Hobby to Career: How to Make a Living as a Writer
The From Hobby to Career section is ideally suited for those just getting started with writing or for those who already do creative writing but would like to break into freelance writing. The section is limited to 15 participants.

Instructor: Chantal Panozzo
Are you ready to transform your writing from a hobby into a career? Would you like to explore different ways to make a living as a writer but don’t know where to start? Then this beginner’s course, taught by Chantal Panozzo, is for you. During the two-day workshop, we’ll look at ways to find work as a writer as well as strategies to get you started. By the end of the course you’ll know how to write both a pitch letter and a personal essay that will help you break into magazines and newspapers, how to develop a successful blog or writing website, what it takes to write good ad copy, and how all of these things will help you build that ever-necessary writing platform should you decide to become an author.

While not required, participants are invited to submit one of the following for critique from Chantal: one pitch letter, one personal essay, one blog post, or one page of ad copy. All texts should be 1,000 words or less. Additional details will be provided in the registration confirmation e-mail.

Chantal Panozzo is an award-winning writer, copywriter, and blogger (One Big Yodel & Writer Abroad). She’s written essays for publications like The Christian Science Monitor; Brain, Child Magazine; and Swiss News, and several of her pieces have also appeared in best-selling anthologies. A travel writer specializing in Switzerland, Chantal spent six months as a National Geographic Glimpse Correspondent and now writes for many inflight magazines. She also has over 10 years of experience as a copywriter, writing television commercials and advertisements for clients on two continents including NASCAR, GEICO Insurance, Swiss International Air Lines, Credit Suisse, and more. The author of Swiss Life: 30 Things I Wish I’d Known, she’d like to remind everyone that really, it’s okay to live in Canton Aargau.

Fiction, From Beginning to End
The Fiction, From Beginning to End section is designed for novel or short story writers of any experience level. This section is limited to 12 participants.

Instructor: Anne Korkeakivi
Well-written fiction is not like a snake that, losing its head or tail, can still keep going. Nor is its middle simply a bridge. In this workshop, suitable for short and long fiction writers of all levels of experience, we will focus on what makes an effective opening—especially for today’s readers, the interactivity between different sections of a manuscript, and some practical suggestions on how to get from a manuscript’s first to last words. We will consider selections from both long and short fiction, and also undertake a brief writing exercise.

Participants are invited to submit either up to 10 pages of a novel and a query letter (if you have one already) or a short story of up to 12 pages, for a one-on-one critique with Anne. Additional details will be included in the registration confirmation e-mail.

Anne Korkeakivi is the author of the novel An Unexpected Guest. Her short fiction has been published by the Atlantic, the Yale Review, Consequence magazine, the Bellevue Literary Review, the Brooklyn Review, and other magazines, and in 2011 she was made a Hawthornden Fellow. Her nonfiction has appeared in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Times (UK), the Village Voice, Gourmet, Travel & Leisure, Ms., and many other periodicals in the US and the UK.

Panel discussion: Today’s Publishing World

Instructors Chantal Panozzo and Anne Korkeakivi, along with Richard Harvell and J.J. Marsh, will discuss the latest news and trends in the traditional and independent publishing worlds. They’ll talk about the advantages and disadvantages of both approaches, as well as if and how the rules of writing and publishing are changing as independent publishing becomes mainstream.

Richard Harvell is the author of the historical novel The Bells (Crown USA, 2010), which has been translated into over a dozen languages. He was born in New Hampshire, USA, and has lived in Switzerland since 2003. He is commissioning editor at Bergli Books, an imprint of Schwabe Verlag, the world’s oldest publishing house.

J.J. Marsh is author of the Beatrice Stubbs series of crime novels. She works as a language trainer, forms part of the Nuance Words project and is a regular columnist for Words with JAM magazine. She is also a founding member of the Triskele Books writers’ collective.

The workshop will be held at the Volkshaus, Stauffacherstrasse 60, 8004 Zürich.

Friday, May 23
19:00 – 21:00 Author reading and reception at Orell Füssli The Bookshop (optional; This event is also open to the public.)

Saturday, May 24
9:00 – 10:30 Session 1
10:30 – 11:00 Break
11:00 – 12:30 Session 2
12:30 – 14:00 Lunch
14:00 – 15:30 Session 3
15:30 – 16:00 Break
16:00 – 17:30 Session 4/Critiques
18:00 – 20:00 Literary dinner at Haus Hiltl (optional)

Sunday, May 25
9:00 – 10:30 Session 5
10:30 – 11:00 Break
11:00 – 12:30 Session 6/Critiques
12:30 – 14:00 Lunch
14:00 – 16.00 Panel discussion: Today’s Publishing World
16:00 – 17:00 Critiques/Networking