EXPLORE OUR SIGNATURE PROGRAMS
Weekday WorkshopsEVERY TUESDAY AND THURSDAY EVENING
Every Tuesday and Thursday evening, JCW brings together writers of mixed genres and styles for alternating workshops and prompts meetings.
During workshops, writers read and review submitted works, including short stories, excerpts, scripts, poems, and more. We provide positive and constructive feedback on these pieces in a supportive and social environment. Writers are eligible to submit pieces to workshop after attending one previous workshop. Pieces must be submitted at least three days in advance.
Weekday PromptsEVERY TUESDAY NIGHT
Tuesday prompt nights feature three focused writing prompts. These are designed around a specific writing subject, such as character development or plot. The goal of Tuesday prompts is to learn new techniques, develop your writing skills, and, most of all, to get words on the page.
Thursday prompts follows a similar format, but uses calls for submissions as the creative launching pads. Actual submission encouraged! Bring a notebook and pen or a laptop, and your imagination.
Jersey Plums Poetry GroupEVERY SATURDAY MORNING
The Jersey Plums meet on Saturday mornings for workshops and skillbuilding.
Poetry workshops feature critiques of two poems submitted ahead of time. The workshops often end with one 10-15 minute writing prompt.
The Plums also meet for regular skill sessions. In these sessions, we present an instructional segment on an aspect of poetry, and then complete a series of exercises exploring that feature. Prior skill sessions have focused on topics such as sound and rhythm, form, voice, and language.
Nonfiction WorkshopEVERY SECOND AND FOURTH MONDAY OF THE MONTH
Every second and fourth Monday of the month, JCW hosts a nonfiction workshop. During this workshop, we critique members’ essays, op-eds, memoirs, creative nonfiction, and book proposals. We discuss two or three works each night, which writers submit in advance. Participants must register on Meetup in advance of the workshop in order to receive the discussion guidelines, which are designed specifically for nonfiction critique.See events page on Meetup for additional details.
The Full Story
The Jersey City Writers Full Story workshop is one of our most unique programs. Full Story meetings involve a two-hour discussion and critique of a single writer’s complete book-length manuscript. The writer must submit their manuscript a month in advance, so that readers can take their time to read the piece from start to finish.
The meetings are divided into two parts. The first part is much like a book club, with the writer acting as a fly on the wall, listening to the group discuss their book. The second part includes the writer in the discussion, giving them the opportunity to answer questions about their work and ask any questions of their own.
If you’re interested in submitting to The Full Story, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
JCW Crash Courses allow writers to follow the path of a manuscript. These special workshops examine each step in the process of writing a novel or other lengthy piece. We start with the first spark of an idea. Then we move through building plot and character, drafting and editing, revision, and, finally, seeking publication. Come to a specific workshop for the guidance you’re searching for, or come to all of them and see your book through from start to finish.
The works of local writers come to life at our quarterly reading events. On the first Friday of each quarter, artists, performers, and writers come together across Jersey City for JC Fridays. During this time, JCW hosts reading events centered on a single theme or genre. A few weeks before each event, JCW announces a call for submissions with guidelines. A panel of judges reads the submitted works and selects top pieces. Performers then read the selected pieces at a gathering of food, wine, art, and local fellowship.
JCW is always looking for new ways to inspire and expand our reach in the community. We occasionally hold special events outside our regular programming. Previous events have included holiday parties, writers’ retreats, NaNoWriMo mixers and marathons, a poetry festival in partnership with the Jersey City Literary Arts Council, a residency at Hudson County Community College, and more. Keep an eye on the JCW calendar for these special events!