Youth Programs

New: Teen Fiction Workshop

Youth Programs is excited to launch our first live creative writing class series for teens.


Teen Fiction Workshop

Students will be guided through fun and generative writing exercises, learn new craft techniques, and receive feedback on their work from their peers and instructor. Limited to 16 students.

Thursdays from 12 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. on May 14, May 21, and May 28; $15-30 suggested donation


About the Workshop

Last month, Literary Arts debuted our first online creative writing workshop for teens with great success. It was a 90-minute session taught by Literary Arts staff member and writer, Jules Ohman, and was attended by writers from high schools all across Oregon and the Pacific Northwest.

For one free write, teen writers explored a moment in time or object they had recently found beautiful, emphasizing its sensory details.

Gracie Carpenter, a writer and high school student from Idaho, shared the following piece:

“Last night I moved to let my cat out the back door and I was taken aback. When I was usually met by a cold bite on my cheek and a harsh Idaho wind through my clothes and hair sending a chill from my toes to my spine, a sort of peaceful warmth met by bare feet on the threshold. A lazy breeze turned my cheeks pink in the most pleasant sort of way and my mind felt suddenly clear. I looked up and saw the ranch covered in light that reminded me of that sleepy feeling after the best of days. To the left cows were wandering contentedly and to the right horses were enjoying their dinner. What struck me was the green under their feet instead of crunchy snow. I must have stood for five minutes at least, overwhelmed by the perfect image in which neither the clouds, nor the animals, nor the breeze seemed to have anywhere to be at present. The wood deck was warm under my feet and my whole body felt a little lighter as my lungs filled with the fresh air. So many colors were greeting my eyes. Blue barn, green grass, soft yellow-pink light, dark brown wood. The only way I can describe what I felt is that spring was hugging me after a long winter.”

About the Instructor

Jules Ohman is a WITS Program Specialist at Literary Arts, and writer for Literary Arts’ Writers in the Schools program. She co-founded the nonprofit Free Verse, which teaches creative writing in juvenile halls, and works as a grant writer. Jules writes novels, walks a lot, and lives with her partner in Portland. She earned her MFA in Fiction from the University of Montana.