Writing

Helping writers everywhere, aspiring and experienced, to improve their craft and achieve their goals

UW-Madison Continuing Studies’ Writing program offers writing classes and workshops in-person and online, manuscript critiques, two annual writing retreats, and the Midwest’s premiere writing conference, Writers’ Institute. Our instructors are world-class experts—published authors, accomplished instructors, agents, publishers, and editors.

Writer's success story

Podcaster honored at 2017 Writers’ Institute
Do you know somebody who thinks he or she is too old to write stories or that their writing wouldn’t matter to others? Have them listen to the new podcast from the Retiree Rebels called “Writing, Creativity, and Aging.” It’s a lively and often poignant discussion featuring authors Jerry Apps, Peggy Williams, and RJ McKnight. The Retiree Rebels podcasts are produced by fiction writer and journalist Carol Larson and life coach Mary Helen Conroy. Carol Larson was honored for Retiree Rebels on the “Success Panel” at the 2017 UW-Madison Writers’ Institute. Peggy Williams and Jerry Apps have taught writing at UW-Madison Continuing Studies events.

For more helpful advice, check out the new blog post by Write-by-the-Lake and Writers' Institute alum Jabe Stafford about steps to take to get the writing done despite all of life’s distractions. Jabe is currently marketing a science fiction novel manuscript and also writes a fantasy & science fiction blog that’s a lot of fun.

More success stories»

Writing instructor, mentor, and faculty associate Laurie Scheer sits down with Widen Enterprises to share tips on storytelling.

Upcoming writing classes and workshops
(Click class title for details and to register)
4 weeks; Fri, May 5-26, 1:30-3:30pm  •  $160
4 weeks; Tue, Jun 13-Jul 18, 6:30-8pm (no class Jul 4, Jul 11)  •  $65
Mon-Fri, June 26-30, 9:30am-12:30pm  •  $385 until May 16, $435 after
6 weeks: Wed, Sep 20-Nov 15, 2-4pm (no class Oct 4, Oct 18, Nov 1)  •  $575
Online writing classes
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  $135
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  1-6 units; Unit: 0.6 CEUs, $85 | All 6 units: 3.6 CEUs, $430 (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 CEUs, $165 | Option 2: 3.0 CEUs, $195
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  $175
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: 2.0 CEUs, $135 | Option 2: 3.0 CEUs, $175
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: 1.0 CEUs, $135 | Option 2: 2.0 CEUs, $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  •  $125
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: 1.0 CEUs, $135 | Option 2: 1.3 CEUs, $175
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  $195
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  $125
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  $125
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  $125
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: 1.0 CEU, $125 | Option 2: 1.5 CEUs, $145
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  $395
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  $165
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  $165
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  $165
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: 1.2 CEUs, $225 | Option 2: 9.0 CEUs, $425
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: 1.0 CEUs, $135 | Option 2: 2.0 CEUs, $175
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: 2.0 CEUs, $135 | Option 2: 3.0 CEUs, $175
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: 1.0 CEU, $105 | Option 2: 1.3 CEUs, $145
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 CEUs, $245 | Option 2: 9.0 CEUs, $490
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: 3.0 CEUs, $245 | Option 2: 18.0 CEUs, $525
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: 1.0 CEU, $150 | Option 2: 2.0 CEUs, $175
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Option 1: 1.0 CEU, $150 | Option 2: 2.0 CEUs, $175
Start anytime, complete within 1 year  •  Unit 1: 3.0 CEUs, $195 | Unit 2: 5.0 CEUs, $195 | Both units: 8.0 CEUs, $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.
Innovative instruction in teaching scientists to communicate clearly and effectively with a wide range of audiences. Classes have both for-credit and non-credit options.
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.
The novel-writing conference, providing professional instruction for all novelists, from aspiring to experienced. This annual fall conference is small, intensive, supportive, and all about the novel.
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.

Summer programs for young writers (as well as teachers) through the UW-Madison School of Education’s Greater Madison Writing Project.