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Graduates' Experiences


Various Odyssey students have recorded their experiences at the workshop and their writing efforts since graduation. If you want to know what it's like to attend Odyssey and what effect the workshop has had on those who have attended, you can access their accounts below.

Julian K. Jarboe, class of 2018, explains how to know when the time is right to attend the Odyssey Writing Workshop.

Rebecca Kuang, of the class of 2016, explains how Odyssey overturned some of her major assumptions about writing, filled her head with mind-blowing revelations, and gave her the tools to improve her writing.

Richard Errington, 2016 graduate, describes the experience of "writing out of our comfort zones, hitting deadlines, and bringing a new critical eye on each other's pieces" and urges other writers to "Come to Odyssey and discover the writer that you've always known you could be."

B. Lynch describes the Odyssey 2015 experience-the hard work, progress, inside jokes, and camaraderie: "In these kind, funny, humble, caring writers, I found kindred spirits who spoke my hidden language."

Odyssey Writing Workshop graduate Arley Sorg, class of 2014, describes how skepticism over whether he'd actually learn anything at the workshop quickly turned to surprise: "I was shocked by how much I had learned. I was disturbed by how much I hadn't actually known. I was upended!"

Katherine Hall van der Vliet describes the "revolutionary" experience of attending Odyssey 2013, how it taught her more than she learned in her university studies, energized her writing, and helped her reconnect with the craft.

Meagan Spooner, class of 2009, describes how she overcame her fear to make the most of her Odyssey experience and went on to sell six books in the two years following the workshop.

Zoe Zygmunt, class of 2010, describes her epic quest to improve her writing, including the call to action, meeting the mentor, tests and trials, gathering allies, and returning with the elixir in "How I spent my summer vacation or how Odyssey changed my life."

Martin Larsson describes the full impact of The Discovery that he made at Odyssey in "They Kept on to Their Journey's End, Or Random Thoughts from an OdFellow, Class of 2011."

Erin Hoffman, class of 2005, describes the power of learning "What You Don't Know" and how the lessons learned at Odyssey continue to help her years later.

Gerald Warfield, class of 2010, relates some of the details of living, surviving, and thriving at Odyssey in "What It Was Like."

Rhiannon Held, class of 2006, explains how "Learning to Learn" at Odyssey made all the difference.

Peter Simonson, class of 2009, explains how he learned answers to questions he didn't know he needed to ask in "Moments of Odyssey."

Sherry Peters, class of 2005, describes how Odyssey helped her overcome her biggest challenge: procrastination.

Jason S. Ridler, class of 2005, describes his efforts to put everything he learned at Odyssey into one story, in "To Experiment is to Grow."

Rebecca Shelley, class of 2001, explains how lectures, guests, and critiques all combined to help in her goal of "Getting the Vision onto the Paper."

Lane Robins, class of '99, relates her experiences in college creative writing workshops and compares what she learned in them to what she learned at Odyssey.

Barbara Campbell, class of 2000, describes her struggle to get her first novel into publishable shape and how Odyssey helped, in "Odyssey: A Never-Ending Experience."

Novelist Elaine Isaak, who attended Odyssey in 1997, describes how she learned to write short stories at Odyssey, and how the feedback she received eventually led to the publication of her first novel, in "Sculpting with Words: My Odyssey Experience."

David J. Schwartz, class of 1996, describes the workshopping process at Odyssey, to give prospective students a sense of what to expect. If you are applying to Odyssey, you should read this article, whether you have participated in other workshops or not.

James Hall, who attended Odyssey 2001, gives an account of the workshop in a weekly series of articles written for Blue Ear Books.

Laurie Lanzdorf, class of 2000, describes the structure and workload of the workshop in "Odyssey 2000: Experience of a Workshop."

Carl Frederick, class of 2000, describes what he learned from Odyssey, and how his workshop experience helped him become a first-place winner in The Writers of the Future contest.

Carrie Vaughn, Odyssey 1998, reveals the most important thing she learned at the workshop, and how that insight has led to a string of fiction sales.

Morgan Hua, who attended Odyssey 1998 and previously attended the Clarion Writing Workshop, compares the two workshops in an article, "Clarion versus Odyssey," written for Speculations magazine.

Stephen Chambers, class of 1998, describes his experience of the workshop (at the age of 17) and how it helped lead to his two-book deal with Tor (at 18).

Julia Duncan wrote an in-depth article about attending Odyssey in 1998, being critiqued by writer-in-residence Harlan Ellison, and what she learned from it, in "Harlan's Week at Odyssey."

Lynda Rucker, who attended Odyssey's first session in 1996, tells of her progress at the workshop and since then, in both short and long fiction.

Thanks for dropping by!...

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Updated Sep 18, 2018
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