Lighthouse Writers Workshop is a literary nonprofit center in Denver since 1997.

The Lighthouse Young Writers Camp is led by published and award-winning writers, and each workshop is designed to foster creativity, self-expression, and excitement about writing. Our camp is held at Lighthouse, 1515 Race Street, Denver CO, 80206.

During each camp, young writers will work at length with a number of published instructors in a variety of genres and will leave camp with at least one completed piece of work and enthusiasm about pieces-to-come! Our full day camps include a lunch hour for eating (please bring your lunch), free writing, hanging out with new friends, and lawn-cartwheeling. The camp culminates each year in a public reading, where students have the opportunity to showcase their work.

Each participant also receives a professionally published anthology featuring the best work each young writer completed during camp. Our hope is that each participant will leave the camp with a new awareness of the writing craft and increased confidence in their writing and in themselves—not to mention a lot of new writer friends!

ADMISSIONS POLICY

Lighthouse staff and faculty review each application, looking particularly at a student's expressed interest in writing and writing sample. Beginning in mid-March, we will review and accept applications on a rolling basis. Applicants will be notified of their acceptance status within two weeks of submitting their application.

If a camp fills, we will create a waitlist. If any student declines or cancels their acceptance, we will contact the next student on the waitlist. 

If a camp is full, we will post that information on our website. Currently, space is available in all camps.

WHAT WE’RE LOOKING FOR

We strive to fill our camp with students who show a passion for writing, a creative spark, a desire to explore new topics, and openness to discovering new things. Group dynamics are especially important in a camp as small as ours, so we expect that all applicants will be respectful of instructors and their peers, and motivated to write. We also welcome a diverse range of interests in our students—some are experienced writers with hundreds of pages under their belts, while others excel at sports, music, math, or science, but want to gain more experience in writing. We do not discriminate based on the need for financial aid.

PAYMENT POLICY

The cost of the camp is $375. This cost includes a copy of a professionally published book after the camp weeks are completed. Payment is required to secure a spot once you have received an acceptance. After you’ve received an acceptance letter, please register online, call with payment, or send us a check. For cancellations and refunds, see our cancellation policy

FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE

Lighthouse believes that all young people should have an opportunity to explore the world through creative writing. Therefore, we offer a sliding scale to families who need financial aid. Funding support is provided by Grace US Foundation and individual patrons. To request financial assistance, please fill out the appropriate sections of the application form. We will contact you about financial aid at the time of your acceptance to our camp.

The Lighthouse Beacon Award was created and initially funded by Lighthouse students to honor a Lighthouse faculty member whose teaching evidences a profound and lasting commitment to student writers and to the craft of writing. It's funded entirely by donations, and you're welcome to make a donation, if you so choose. Whether you make a donation or not does not affect this nomination. All nominations are kept confidential.

Past recipients include:

2017: Rachel Weaver
2016: Victoria Hanley
2015: Benjamin Whitmer
2014: Erika Krouse
2013: Chris Ransick
2012: David Rothman
2011: Shari Caudron
2010: Paula Younger
2009: Alexandre Philippe
2008: William Haywood Henderson

Past winners of the award are eligible after a one year grace period. The Beacon Award Committee meets annually to consider these nominations and gives priority to an instructor’s dedication to student writers and the craft of writing. The Beacon Award guidelines allow the committee to consider, among others, the number of classes taught for Lighthouse; the quality and depth of the Instructor’s own writing; and the Instructor’s commitment to Lighthouse Writers. In keeping with Lighthouse’s values, culture, and tradition of creative excellence, the balance of this form may consist of poetry, prose, fiction, non-fiction, screenplay, or any other variant of the written word.

The Young Authors Collective, or YAC, is a group of talented, word-obsessed high school writers dedicated to experimenting with new creative forms, collaborating with other arts organizations, and writing a ton. We meet once a week at Lighthouse to generate new pieces, give friendly feedback, and work towards publication. YAC members work with some of Lighthouse’s best faculty and have the opportunity to meet visiting authors. And YAC members attend Lighthouse’s literary events throughout the year. 

YAC meets at Lighthouse on Wednesdays from 4:00 to 6:00 PM and has a maximum of 12 students. For fall 2018, we'll begin on Sertember 5 and end on December 19 with no meeting on November 21. Spring 2019 will begin on January 30 and end on May 22. Tuition is $450 per semester; financial aid is available. 

Participating in the YAC is a great way for teens to hone their craft, demonstrate leadership in the literary community, learn about the process of becoming published, and make new writer friends.

Apply here for the 2018-2019 school year. 

Lighthouse Writers Workshop