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Youth Studio: Level Up with the Pros

  • The Black Labrador Pub 4100 Montrose Boulevard Houston, TX, 77006 United States (map)

Youth Studio: Level Up with the Pros

A 5-day Generative Writing Program


This summer, begin to forge your path as a writer. Break past rules and develop your own voice

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Mon-Fri, August 6-10, 2018
9:30 am - 3:30 pm daily

Morning sessions

During 5 days of break-through writing, participants will work with 5 professional authors to experiment with their creative process to develop new work.

Young creative writers receive a lot of instruction in the craft of writing. This Youth Studio will be their opportunity to delve into the art of writing, and explore their own voices. The writer-faciltators leading the writing portion of each day will inspire with their unique strong voices and bold work.

Daily 2-hour writing sessions will be generative work time that allows the participants to tap into their own creativity. Each writer-faciltator will lead the participants with their unique approach—an experience that goes beyond usual creative writing instruction at school. Participants will leave with many starting points for new work, or new insights into, and ways to evolve their current work.

Afternoon sessions

5 journal and press editors open up windows into the path to publication. Participants will work with the FuenteCo team to submit work to journals and to a FuenteCo group publication.

Editors will discuss the kind of work that is interesting to their journal, and share enlightening stories about writers or pieces that were particularly successful. Participants will hear advice on persistence, on working with editors, and other techniques to help a writer progress. Our participating press will discuss the role of small presses and share insights and stories about writers or book submissions that stood out to the editors. 

The FuenteCo team will follow the editorial conversations with hands-on practice in deciding which journals are a good fit for your writing, polishing work for submission, understanding submissions guidelines and conventions, and practicing public reading.

Capstone Reading & Publication

The week will be capped by a curated public reading by participants. The program will also produce a curated publication with work from each participant, edited by FuenteCo.

To enable creativity and untethered self-expression, FuenteCo programs are generative, and not critique-based. Sharing your work is always optional. Facilitation will be in English, but you should feel free to write in any language. 

Participating Journals & Presses

  Youth Studio Location:  The Black Labrador in the Montrose  Program Dates:  Monday, August 6 - Friday August 10  Program Hours:  9:30 am - 3:30 pm daily  Capstone Reading:  7 pm, Friday August 10

Youth Studio Location: The Black Labrador in the Montrose
Program Dates: Monday, August 6 - Friday August 10
Program Hours: 9:30 am - 3:30 pm daily
Capstone Reading: 7 pm, Friday August 10


AGE GROUP: 14 - 18
COST: $395 early bird | $435 after May 31

Writer Facilitators

Analicia Sotelo is the author of Virgin (Milkweed Editions, 2018), the inaugural winner of the Jake Adam York Prize, selected by Ross Gay. She is also the author of the chapbook Nonstop Godhead, selected by Rigoberto González for the 2016 Poetry Society of America Chapbook Fellowship 30 and Under and her poem “I’m Trying to Write a Poem About a Virgin and It’s Awful” was selected for Best New Poets 2015 by Tracy K. Smith. Her poems have also appeared or are forthcoming in the New Yorker, Boston Review, Kenyon Review, New England ReviewIowa Review, and The Antioch Review. She is the 2016 DISQUIET International Literary Prize winner in poetry and is the recipient of scholarships from the Community of Writers at Squaw Valley and the Image Text Ithaca Symposium. She holds a BA in English literature from Trinity University and an MFA in poetry from the University of Houston. She works for Writers in the Schools in Houston.

Daniel Peña is a Pushcart Prize winning writer and author of the novel, BANG (Arte Publico Press, 2018). Daniel is an Assistant Professor in the Department of English at the University of Houston-Downtown.  Formerly, he was based out of the UNAM in Mexico City where he worked as a writer, blogger, book reviewer and journalist.  He is a Fulbright-Garcia Robles Scholar and a graduate of Cornell University.  His fiction has appeared in Ploughshares, The Rumpus, the Kenyon Review Online, Callaloo, and Huizache among other venues. He’s currently a regular contributor to the Guardian and the Ploughshares blog.

Jiyoon Lee round.png

Jiyoon Lee is a poet and translator. She translated Korean feminist poet Kim Yideum's poetry with Don mee Choi and Johannes Göransson, the collection of which was published as Cheer Up, Femme Fatale (Action Books, 2015). She is also the author of Foreigner’s Folly (Coconut Books, 2014). She was born in South Korea, and immigrated to a small town in East Texas alone as a teen. She received her MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Notre Dame, and is currently pursuing PhD in Creative Writing at the University of Houston. Her new book of translation Bloodsisters, a novel by Kim Yideum, is forthcoming from Deep Vellum Press (2019).

Joy Preble is the author of several young adult novels including the DREAMING ANASTASIA series; the SWEET DEAD LIFE series; and a contemporary road trip/family drama, FINDING PARIS. Her newest novel, IT WASN’T ALWAYS LIKE THIS, was called “epic and addictive” by Beautiful Creatures’ author Kami Garcia and “a suspenseful treat with a gooey romantic center” by the Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books. In no particular order, Joy is fond of her family, her basset-boxer, clever cocktails and people who don’t whine. She’s also the Children’s Specialist at Houston’s Brazos Bookstore and on faculty at Writespace Houston. Visit Joy at or follow her on Twitter @joypreble

Renee Rivon is an NAACP-nominated  playwright  for her first stage play Deal Breakers which premiered in Los Angeles, California. Following Deal Breakers,  Renee  went on to write two national touring plays Cheaper to Keep Her starring  Vivica  Fox and Brian McKnight, and Marriage Material starring Allen Payne and R&B singers Tank and  Tionne  “T-Boz” Watkins, from the group TLC. She was also a series regular on three  cartoon shows Strawberry Shortcake (as Raspberry Torte),  The  Bratz (as Sasha)  and The Care Bears  (as Cheer Bear).  At University of Houston,  Renee  was the Assistant Director for  Topdog/Underdog in the Fall of 2017. She is a Playwriting & Dramaturgy Major at the University of Houston. 

The FuenteCo Youth Studio Team

 Layla Al-Bedawi

Layla Al-Bedawi

 Tayyba Maya Kanwal

Tayyba Maya Kanwal

Earlier Event: May 12
Write Wild: A Generative Retreat