Writing Playground

A playful, improvisational workshop for food writers and other creatives

Writing Playground is a generative workshop that brings together creative, playful nonfiction writing with tangible skill-building to support you in creating a fun writing practice that is fulfilling, productive, and sustainable.

And, most importantly, that creates and protects space for you to craft the work that matters most to you. 

This workshop is facilitated by award-winning nonfiction author and professional writing coach Dr. Julia Skinner.

Over the years she has worked with academics, journalists, and many other writers to build sustainable, productive writing practices, to infuse joy back into the writing process, and to support each writer in sharing the work that matters most to them.

She can do the same for you, too!

In Writing Playground, we’ll combine freewriting around different prompts in a low-pressure, relaxed space, plus engage in skill building to help you make and maintain space for a sustainable, fun writing practice.
The goal is to help you reconnect with the fun, playful side of your work that helps your writing voice shine.

The workshop is loosely based around food writing, but you don’t need to be a food writer, or a full-time professional writer at all, to join us.

We’ll meet online each Saturday in October from 11-1 EST, recordings will be available! Discounted pricing is available through August 15th.

What is a Writing Playground?

A Writing Playground is a place where you’re free to create as you are: To expand your practice, engage your curiosity, and reflect on how each new prompt you write around informs or influences the work that matters to you.

A Writing Playground, is, in other words, a space to find the power of your writing voice through play and exploration.

Writing Playground is a generative writing workshop, focused on tapping into writing as process, rather than product, and into creating space in our days to center our joyful writing in our lives.

Rather than the traditional workshop structure, we use our time together to shift perspectives and open into possibility, exploring writing prompts that ask us to notice and describe the world in new ways, or just to put words to page even if we can’t see the end of the narrative when we begin.

You can share your creations, or keep them to yourself, but if you come with an open mind and a blank journal, you’ll leave with some new ways to approach your writing, a handful of writing samples, and hopefully a renewed creative well to draw from. 

Each week, we’ll add another structure to your own Playground in the form of practical skills: Ones that protect your writing time and help you center your most important work in your own life.

You’ll also leave with practical tools for building and nourishing a regular writing practice, plus other resources, from writing prompts to a playlist of background sounds and music, to support you in your work.

Who is Writing Playground for?

Writing Playground is for writers at any level, whether you’re just starting out and eager to put your first words out in the world, or you’re a seasoned author with dozens of bylines under your belt, there’s space for you here.

Since we focus on creation and skill-building, rather than critiquing drafts, the pressure to have a “good” draft to share (a subjective measure at the best of times!) is released, and instead we can focus on the act of creation as process, and on creating a space in our days that centers the work we most want to put out in the world.

Writing Playground is for all writers who want to build a sustainable practice and have fun while doing it. Whether you’re:

*A full-time, professional writer looking to create space for your own work beyond writing to spec
*A writer who writes occasionally, but is eager to create more space for a regular writing practice
*A writer who has big ideas but feels ‘stuck’ when it comes to creating momentum and seeing writing goals come to fruition
*An academic writer who wants to add some pleasure back into their work, or refocus on the writing that got them into academia in the first place
*Someone who just wants to explore a fun, playful writing practice and see where it takes them

Then this workshop is for you!
Still wondering if you’re a good fit? Email me at julia@root-kitchens.com and let’s chat!

How the workshop is structured:

The workshop includes asynchronous online resources as well as synchronous sessions to build the strong foundation for your new, more joyful writing practice.

Both our resource section and our live sessions bring together the practical with the generative.

Our sessions include:

*A brief discussion and celebrations of our writing wins
*two short freewriting sessions around different prompts
*A wrap-up focused on practical guidance for building a sustainable, regular writing practice that you can implement right away.

Our writing prompts:

Instead of sharing and critiquing drafts, we’ll be exploring two different prompts each week. The goal is to simply free write around each prompt, playing with style, with perspective, or taking the writing in whatever direction it calls you. 
After each prompt, we’ll come together and talk a bit about process, reflect on how it might serve our writing practices (or not!) and for those who want to, share some of what we wrote. 

Practical guidance:

Each week, we’ll focus on a new skill for establishing a regular, sustainable writing routine: You’ll leave with a clear set of tools for creating space in your day for your writing practice, whether you’re just writing occasionally or are a professional writer looking to create space for the work that matters most to you.

The goal is for this to be a very friendly, engaging, and curious writing space where we all create and learn together without pressure. 

By exploring different perspectives and styles, we can step outside our writing comfort zone, and give ourself the freedom to explore new forms. In so doing, we open ourselves up to be stronger writers, more confident in our own voices as writers because we have taken the time to explore the different ways that voice might sound. 

This experience is made with food writing as a loose focus, but you don’t need to be a food writer to join us (or a professional writer at all!)
This space is perfect for curious creatives, fellow professional writers from whatever background (journalism, creative writing, academia, etc.) and amateur writers who are interested in growing and refining their craft, or who are just looking for some new ways to approach their writing.

What’s included:

*4 weekly virtual workshop sessions:
These include space for discussion, reflection, and writing around prompts, plus practical skill-building activities for creating a sustainable writing practice that fits into your life and schedule. 

*A shared resource drive. 

*A Slack channel for sharing questions, inspiration, and resources throughout the month.

*Additional writing prompts and journaling ideas.

*Practical guidance on building a writing practice including crafting a writing routine and protecting the time you set aside for writing (plus whatever else we might come up with together!)

*Lifetime access to resources and recordings.

*Discussions and tools to help you hone your voices as a writer through play, and connect your writing to your other creative practices.

*A fun and engaging writing workshop alongside fellow writers eager to grow and refine their craft!

What to bring:

-A blank journal or your favorite writing tool (tablet, computer, whatever)

-An open mind and a love of writing!

What you’ll leave with:

-A journal with up to 8 pieces of writing.

-Resources for nurturing your writing practice by creating space for regular writing, staying focused, and protecting that time.

-A community of fellow writers dedicated to growing a curious, creative practice. 

-Ideas for bringing play and curiosity into your writing practice, whatever your schedule or lifestyle.

-Additional writing prompts to explore at home.

-Reading resources connect to each week’s theme.

-Lifetime access to all our workshop’s resources and recordings.

-And hopefully, lots of inspiration to continue writing!

Workshop live sessions are on 4 Saturdays, October 7-28, 11 AM-1 PM EST.
Recordings will be available after each session.

Early bird pricing is $395 for folks who sign up before August 15th

The workshop is $500 after August 15thwith applications and waitlist spots accepted until the workshop begins. 

There are two scholarships available, one 100% scholarship and one 50% scholarship. Scholarship applications are open until July 31st. Please follow the directions on this form to apply!