***UPDATE: 5/17 Write it- Edit- Submit it with
Saundra Mitchell has been postponed due to illness. Workshop
session 1 will be Fri 5/24 and session 2 will be Fri 5/31,
both 6:30-7:30 PM***
***UPDATE: 5/25 "This Story Does Not Look Like a Story" with
Bryan Furuness has been cancelled. ***
Butler Bridge Program
Writing the Butler Way
We are pleased to offer the Butler Bridge Program to students in
grades 3-12. The program draws on Butler's remarkable resources to
build a bridge between Butler and its community, as well as between
students who aspire to higher education and the professors,
professional writers, teachers, and college mentors who are
eager to share what they know.
Butler Bridge programs are designed to develop the writing
skills of pre-college students. Participation in such an
individualized writing workshop program will help students prepare
for college while also nurturing their talents and
us on Facebook!
Please note that registration is limited for many Butler Bridge
programs, as specified. See registration details below.
Writing Club: Second Saturdays
Our "Second Saturday" writing club meets monthly at the
Efroymson Center for Creative Writing. Each Saturday session
includes Poetry, Fiction, and/or Creative Nonfiction lessons.
Students meet with peers and a college mentor who leads the
workshop, engaging the students in thoughtful discussion about
writing. These workshops also allow young writers the opportunity
to bring in writing and have it reviewed by both the college mentor
and by peers. Note: This is not class! Workshops will offer a fun,
energetic environment for growing creative writers. Second Saturday
sessions and open workshops will be split up by three different age
divisions: elementary, middle, and high school.
Saturday, January 12th
Saturday, February 9th
Saturday, March 9th
Saturday, April 13th
Cost: $10 per session. Open to all age
The Bridge program offers single-day and multiple-session
workshops for students. These workshops are led by Butler faculty
and YA authors from the central Indiana community.
"Screenwriting Exposed" with Saundra Mitchell
Saturday, January 19th 1-3PM
Grades 9-12, seat limit of 15 students.
Learn the secrets of screenwriting: what goes into a
screenplay, what's completely forbidden, and everything between.
Learn the rules, regs and best ways to break them and break out
with an incredible story ready for screen. Then use that knowledge
to write a short 4-minute screenplay, all in one day.
Poetry with Rebecca Dotlich
Saturday, February 23rd 1-3PM
Grades 3-5, seat limit of 25 students
Students who write poetry, or want to work on the craft of
poetry, come gather together to listen, write from prompts, revise
and work on your own writing. There will be plenty of time for
sharing and group discussion for those who would like to. Be
prepared to be immersed in poetry and get tips from a nationally
published poet as you write your own. We'll work on the craft and
poetic elements, and we'll have a lot of fun doing
"Write It- Edit- Submit It" with Saundra Mitchell
3 Fridays in April: 12th, 19th,
26th 6:30-8:30 PM.
Grades 6-12, seat limit of 20 students.
Move past workshop and into publication with this
three-session workshop. In the first session, students will learn
how to search for appropriate markets for their work, with an
emphasis on finding and choosing markets, making good copyright
decisions and writing for a specific publication. The second
session focuses on real revision: not just polishing, but
demolishing. Breaking a story all the way down, so it can be
rebuilt, better than ever. The third session will deal with final
looks, what to expect on submission and dealing with rejection. The
workshop culminates with each student submitting a story to a
Take TWO: "Write It- Edit- Submit It" with Saundra
2 Fridays in May: 17th, 24th. 6:30-7:30
Grades 3-6, seat limit of 15 students.
By popular request, a version of the
Write-Edit-Submit workshop for younger students!
Move past workshop and into publication with this three-session
workshop. In the first session, students will learn how to search
for appropriate markets for their work, with an emphasis on finding
and choosing markets, making good copyright decisions and writing
for a specific publication. The second session focuses on real
revision: not just polishing, but demolishing. Breaking a story all
the way down, so it can be rebuilt, better than ever. The third
session will deal with final looks, what to expect on submission
and dealing with rejection. The workshop culminates with each
student submitting a story to a paying market
"This Story Does Not Look Like a Story" with Bryan
Saturday, May 25th 1-3PM
Grades 7-12. Seat limit of 20 students.
Ever write a story in the form of a product review? A job
application? A crime report? How about a story as a series of text
messages? Join Bryan Furuness on May 25 to play around with forms,
and to explore how the form of a story can affect its
More Exciting Programs
We are also thrilled to offer the following new Bridge
Meet the Author Book Club:
Pool Boy, by Michael Simmons
Saturday, April 27th 1 -2
Cost: $30, book included & mailed to home address.
Read the book and meet the author!
Brett, 15, had it all: good looks, a winning personality,
and a lot of money. That is, until the police busted his dad for
money laundering and insider trading. Now the teen's posh
lifestyle-like his dad-has gone to the dogs, and Brett, his mom,
and sister move into their great-aunt's humble two-story on the
other side of the tracks. Forced to help out in making ends meet,
the teen takes a job cleaning pools in his old upscale
neighborhood. Dubbed "pool boy" by the new owners of the house that
his own family lost, Brett stubbornly comes to terms with forgiving
his father for being a criminal and losing the family fortune. What
results from Simmons's dead-on characterization in this well-told
first-person account is a humorous yet thought-provoking journey
through the life and mind of a self-centered young man who must now
reconsider his own sense of responsibility to rebuild the life torn
apart by his father's crimes.
Spring Break Word Game
Saturday, March 23rd 7-9
Calling all wordsmiths! Staying
home for spring break and need something fun to do? Put your
vocabulary to the test on our tournament-style word game night.
Call up all your friends and challenge them to a game of
Bananagrams, Last Word, Apples to Apples and more. You're sure to
walk away with some prize-worthy words that you can use in your
stories and poems. Treats included.
If you are interested in getting more focused attention for your
student, one-on-one or small group mentoring is available on an
appointment only basis. Students may bring in writing assignments,
college essays, or a creative piece to work on with their mentor.
Mentors can provide praise, constructive criticism, editing and
writing advice. Consider signing up with a friend or two to defray
Mentoring sessions can be arranged by contacting coordinator
Mindy Dunn with specific requests. Requests and fees will be
considered at the discretion of the proposed mentor, professor or
Cost: Varies, minimum $30 per hour.
If you are interested in signing up for any (or all!) of these
Butler Bridge programs, please fill out our new online registration
form here, including the option
for secure online credit card payments. Please fill out one form
per student. If you choose to pay by cash or check, checks should
be made out to Butler University and mail your payment to:
Butler Bridge Program
4600 Sunset Ave.
Indianapolis, IN 46208
Meet the Faculty and Staff:
Second Saturday Mentors
This year's mentors all have previous experience working at
Butler's Creative Writing Camp. Mentors are graduate students in
Butler's Masters of Fine Arts in Creative Writing program and also
advanced students in Butler's undergraduate English writing
Farhad Anwarzai, HS mentor: a graduate student in
Butler's MFA program in creative writing.
Doug Manuel, MS mentor: a graduate student in
Butler's Master of Fine Arts program in creative writing.
Katie Arnt, elementary mentor: a Butler graduate
and substitute teacher.
Andrew Elrandson, "floating" mentor: an
upperclassman in Butler's English department.
Writer's Workshop Teachers
Workshop teachers are all professional writers: either Butler
writing professors or publishing YA authors from the Indianapolis
Mitchell is a YA author whose novels include SHADOWED
SUMMER, THE VESPERTINE, THE SPRINGSWEET and the forthcoming THE
ELEMENTALS and MISTWALKER. She's also the editor of the forthcoming
YA anthology, DEFY THE DARK. For almost fifteen years, she was the
sole screenwriter for the Book of Stories, On the Road, Fresh Films
and Girls in
the Director's Chair short film series. In 2008, she
headed and instructed the first Fresh Films Emerging Screenwriters
program, and she was the Head Writer and an Executive Producer for
Fresh Films and Sprite Refreshing Films. Her debut novel, SHADOWED
SUMMER, was the 2010 winner of The Society of Midland Authors Book
Award for Children's Fiction and a 2010 Edgar® Award Nominee. It
was chosen as a Junior Library Guild selection and an ALAN Pick in
2009. Her short story "Ready to Wear" was nominated for a 2007
Pushcart Prize after appearing in Vestal Review Issue 27. Her short
fiction and non-fiction has appeared in anthologies TRUTH &
DARE, FORETOLD, DEAR TEEN ME and DEAR BULLY.
Rebecca Kai Dotlich grew up in the Midwest
exploring trails by the creek, reading comic books, making paper
dolls and building snowmen. She is a children's poet and picture
book author of titles such as Bella and Bean (an SCBWI
Golden Kite Honor) and What Is Science? (Subaru SB&F
finalist and Bank Street's Best Book of the year.) She has
published numerous poetry titles such as When Riddles Come
Rumbling, Castles, and Lemonade Sun. Her
forthcoming book, Grumbles From The Forest, Fairy Tale
Voices with a Twist (co-authored with Jane Yolen) will be
released in the spring. Rebecca gives poetry workshops, visits
classrooms across the country, and speaks at conferences, retreats,
libraries and schools to teachers, aspiring writers and students of
all ages. Her books have received the Gold Oppenheim Toy Portfolio
Award as well as an IRA Children's Choice and her work has been
featured on Reading Rainbow and the PBS children's show Between the
Lions. Her newest picture book, WHAT CAN A CRANE PICK UP?
(Illustrated by Mike Lowery) received a *starred* review from
Furuness is the author of the novel, The Lost
Episodes of Revie Bryson. His stories and essays have appeared
in Ninth Letter, Southeast Review,
Hobart, and elsewhere, including New Stories from the
Midwest and Best American Non-required Reading. He teaches at
Butler University, where he serves as the Editor in Chief of the
small press, Pressgang.
Geoffrey Sharpless, holds a B.A. in English
from Princeton University and a Ph.D. in English Language and
Literature from the University of Pennsylvania. He has taught
literature, creative and academic writing at Park Tudor for
fourteen years, and has directed Butler's summer creative writing
camps for 12 years.
Coordinator Mindy Dunn has a B.A. in English
from Butler University and an M.F.A in Creative Writing from Purdue
University, with a specialty in poetry. Mindy is the Administrative
Specialist for the Efroymson Center for Creative Writing and has
taught at Butler in the English, First Year Seminar, and Honors
departments for five years. She has also worked as a teacher and
mentor at Butler's creative writing camp for 8 years.
If you have any additional questions about the Butler Bridge
Program or its programs, please email Mindy at
Second Annual Writing Contest:
2013 Booth Tarkington Prize for Young Writers
This year's contest is closed. We thank all of the students who
submitted their work, as well as all the parents and teachers that
encouraged them to do so. This year we had over 60 submissions-
triple that of last year! We encourage all of our participants to
continue in your writing efforts. Your continued participation is
the lifeblood of the contest, so please submit again next year!
We are pleased to announce this year's winners:
High School Poetry: Sarah Panfil "In the Kitchen"
High School Fiction: Carley Drake "Practice and Apologies"
Middle School Poetry: Samantha Downton "Façade"
Middle School Fiction: Hannah Plunkett "Just Run"
Middle School "Other Genre": Valerie Kraft "Sunset and Stars
Over the Ocean"
Elementary Poetry: Samantha Lewis "The Eagle"
Elementary Fiction: Siriphin Vonphrachanh "Black Rabbit's
Elementary "Other Genre" : Kyriana Bures "Walking in a Winter
We look forward to reading your creative work!