Writing

Helping writers across the world improve their craft and achieve their professional goals

UW-Madison Continuing Studies’ Writing program is the premier resource for writers in the Midwest. We help writers improve their craft and achieve their professional goals. Our instructors are world-class experts—published authors, accomplished instructors, agents, publishers—who lead, facilitate, and teach face-to-face workshops, online classes, conferences, retreats, critique services and more.

Writer's success story

Kristin Oakley’s novel takes top prize!
Carpe Diem, Illinois, the debut novel by Kristin Oakley, Madison, has won the Chicago Writers Association 2014 Book of the Year Award for Non-traditionally Published Fiction. In Carpe Diem, Illinois, the first in a planned series with journalist Leo Townsend, a small town's embrace of “unschooling” reveals massive government corruption and personal battles. Kristin worked on her novel at the our Write-by-the-Lake Writer’s Workshop and Retreat in a section for first-time novelists led by Christine DeSmet. Kristin now teaches writing online and in person at conferences for UW-Madison Continuing Studies. Congratulations, Kristin!
More success stories»

Writing instructor Laurie Scheer surveys today’s TV-industry landscape for writers.

Upcoming programs
(Click class title for details and to register)
Sa, Jan 24, 9am-noon  •  $55
Sa, Jan 31, 1-4:30pm  •  $65
Sa, Feb 21, 9am-noon  •  $55
Sa, Feb 28, 1-4:30pm  •  $65
Th, Mar 26, 9am-4pm  •  $150
F-Su, Mar 27-29  •  Fees vary
M-F, June 15-19, 9:30am-12:30pm  •  $365 until May 19; $415 after
Online
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  $135
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Unit: 0.6 CEU, $85 | All 5 units: 3.0 CEU, $345 (save $80) |
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  $175
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  $195
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: 2.0 CEU, $160 | Option 2: 3.0 CEU, $195 |
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  $165
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: 2.0 CEU, $125 | Option 2: 3.0 CEU, $155
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: 1.0 CEU, $135 | Option 2: 2.0 CEU, $175
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: 2.0 CEUs, $125 | Option 2: 3.0 CEUs, $150
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  $95
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  $175
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: 1.0 CEU, $135 | Option 2: 1.3 CEU, $175
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  $95
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  $95
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  $95
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: | 1.0 CEU, $95 | Option 2: | 1.5 CEU, $125
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  $395
Start anytime after January 2, 2015, complete within 1 year  •  $160
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  $160
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  $160
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: 1.2 CEU, $195 | Option 2: 9.0 CEU, $395
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: 1.0 CEU, $135 | Option 2: 2.0 CEU, $175
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: 2.0 CEU, $115 | Option 2: 3.0 CEU, $165
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: 1.0 CEU, $95 | Option 2: 1.3 CEU, $135
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Unit 1: 1.0 CEU, $85 | Unit 2: 1.0 CEU, $85 | Unit 3: 3.0 CEU, $85 | All 3 Units: 5.0 CEU, $230 (save $25)
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  $175
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: 3.0 CEUs, $245 | Option 2: 9.0 CEUs, $490 |
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: 3.0 CEU, $245 | Option 2: 9.0 CEU, $490 |
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: 3.0 CEU, $245 | Option 2: 18.0 CEU, $525 |
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Unit 1: 3.0 CEU, $195 | Unit 2: 5.0 CEU, $195 | Both units: 8.0 CEU, $375 (save $15)
Conferences, retreats, more
An anthology featuring the works of writers and artists tied to the unique environs of Wisconsin’s rolling hills and other Midwest prairies.
We help all types of writers hone their skills and overcome roadblocks on the way to publication, successful freelance writing, or writing for pure enjoyment. We critique fiction and nonfiction, including nonfiction book proposals.
Our annual June retreat features sessions for beginners and advanced writers (including Master Classes), and offers optional graduate credits in English.
Going beyond visual art, SOA Rhinelander also features workshops on all kinds of writing, including poetry, memoirs, playwriting, and character development. Held every July.
New every year, this annual fall weekend offers pro-level revision tips and checklists to polish your novel and make it ready to pitch.
A place for sharing your news and views on writing and publishing. Each newsletter is filled with tips, funny stuff, wisdom, and camaraderie.
Held every spring, it's the Midwest's premier writers' conference, filled with 3 days of education, entertainment, and writing inspiration.