Print Page   |   Contact Us   |   Sign In   |   Register
The Writing Academy
Share |

The GCLS Writing Academy

Apply here for the 2016/17 Writing Academy Class

The GCLS Writing Academy is a year long intensive program for new or relatively new writers who have at least half of a novel written and who want to learn the critical components of quality writing, plus various related topics such as researching your novel, the writer's life, and the path to getting published. 

Over the course of the year, the students 'begin at the beginning', covering the basics of grammar and writing, and then move on to the foundations of quality writing, research methods and sources, genre specific skills, the life of a writer, preparing to be published, and end with a three month one on one mentoring experience with some of the most established and awarded authors in lesbian fiction.     

The Writing Academy provides a teaching and learning environment that supports the development of a community of learners through regular online interactions, ongoing communications, shared assignments, and teamwork. The program is comprised of 10-15 students and 3 full time faculty plus honorary guest speakers and additional mentors. It is our hope that our students will leave the program with not only a great learning experience, but also with a sense of being a member of a lifelong community of writers.

If you do not find answers to your questions here, please contact us at


Our faculty is selected based on a strict list of criteria, not the least of which is significant experience in teaching writing, being well published, and having an award-winning body of work. 


Our students are generally unpublished or minimally published writers, with a novel at least partly written; however any and all writers are welcome to apply.  Our students are eager to learn, prepared to dedicate significant time to their writing as well as to their course work over the next year, and understand that it is up to them how hard they are willing to work which in turn influences how much they get out of this academy. 

There will be a maximum of 15 students accepted into the Academy each year.  You will be part of a cohesive cohort of students who will have the opportunity to form a lifelong association with each other and with the instructors.  You will work together to improve your writing skills as you work towards completing your first novel. The opening chapter of your novel will have the opportunity to be included in an online Annual Class Anthology that will become a fundraiser to help fund future scholarships for this GCLS educational program.

The level of success that you experience in this program will be based on the amount of time and energy that you are willing and able to put into your writing during the course of the year. The Classes will require homework to be done, but there will be time for you to work on your novel as well, so that you can implement what you learn into your core writing, while continuing to work towards your goal of completing your first novel.

Student Applications:

We are accepting applications until the maximum number of students are accepted.  If the program is filled, you can put your name on a waiting list.  You will be required to submit a sample of your writing at the time of your application.  Notifications of acceptance will start to go out in spring. The program officially starts in July, classes will start in August. 

To apply for the program, click HERE.

You will be asked to email us a writing sample, as part of your application process.  Your writing sample MUST BE:

  1. 10 double spaced pages of your BEST work in a .doc or .docx format.

  2. Include a one paragraph set up for the scene you are submitting. This paragraph should be single spaced and be included at the beginning of the work. Please make it NO LONGER than 15 sentences.

  3. Your writing sample must be formatted correctly. Therefore, it must be:

  • Times New Roman 12 point font 

  • 1 inch margins

  • Proper paragraph indentation

  • Dialogue formatted correctly

  • Spell and grammar checked


Apply here for the 2016/17 Writing Academy Class

When you are Accepted:

In your acceptance packet, you will receive a list of books from which you will be required to select five books to read (you must not have read them in the past). We suggest that you start early on these while waiting for the program to start, so that you are not having to do this while also taking classes, doing assignments AND working on your novel.  You will be required to submit reports on the books that you have read.



The program lasts approximately 1 year, with breaks between courses to allow you time to apply what you have learned to your novel.  There will be a break over the December/January holidays.  

The program ends the end of June and the graduating class will be presented at the GCLS annual conference. Attendance at graduation is recommended but not required (recognizing the expense may be prohibitive for some), however we hope that you will be able to join the rest of your class as the GCLS honors your graduating class.  The conference is a great opportunity to continue with your lifelong learning, meet with fellow authors, pitch your novel to publishers, and thank your mentor in person, if they are able to attend.


The Program:

Starting in August, you will begin attending classes online, participating in online discussions, sharing your writing, reviewing the writing of other students, and more.  

The general curriculum includes classes on:

  • The Foundations of writing

  • The craft of writing

  • Writing Skills/Topics that cross multiple genres

  • Writing Skills/Topics associated with specific genres

  • Research methodologies and sources

  • The writer's life

  • The publishing process  

Once you have completed your coursework in early spring, you will be assigned a mentor who will work with you for up to three months to help you develop good writing habits, and polish your work-in-progress, which will in turn help you build your writing habits as you begin your writing career.


There is a $995 fee associated with this program, to defray the cost for instructors and administrative overhead. Compared to similar programs that are not based in lesbian literature, our program is very cost effective. We hope to be able to offer one or two partial scholarships this year.  If you would like more information about these, please contact Beth Burnett at

Available Payment Plan:

We want to make this program available to as many people as possible, regardless of economic situation. If you are accepted we can set you up with a monthly payment plan to pre-pay your fees.  

If you have any questions, please contact us at

Apply here for the 2016/17 Writing Academy Class


2017 Tee Corinne Nominees

Membership Management Software Powered by®  ::  Legal