Building a Novel: From Paragraphs to Pages

Open Seats


Regular $262.50
Member $236.25
August 8, 2022 - August 12, 2022
9 a.m. - Noon
Grades 10-12
Macalester College—Janet Wallace Theater and Dance Building
Number of Sessions
Day of the Week
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
Week-Long (Youth or Intensive)
Summer Youth at Mac

Welcome back to in-person writing with Summer Youth @ Mac! Join us for a week of writing and creativity with the Loft at Macalester College! We'll spend the week writing, reading, and building community.

Writing a novel can seem daunting, but “Building a Novel” breaks it down into manageable steps. From the opening class, you will be writing your novel, first by generating a plot summary and then a story arc with tension and conflict. Next, you’ll imagine complex characters with flaws and virtues and consider point of view strategies. Finally, you’ll write specific scenes and deepen them with dialogue, tension and conflict, and descriptions of settings. The latter is also known as scene building and the steps can be followed over and over to create complete chapters and ultimately a finished novel. We will also talk about how to develop writing as a daily practice that keeps you generating paragraphs and pages.

We will discuss short excerpts of published writings from a diverse group of published authors revealing how they build captivating scenes. In addition, you will share your writings, receive feedback, and engage in free-writing exercises that jump-start and deepen your thinking. For the first class, plan on bringing a plot summary and descriptions of major characters.

Note that proof of vaccination is required, and students are required to wear masks while indoors. This session is for students entering grades 10-12 in the fall!