Winter 2014 Writing Workshop

It’s a go!

Abigail Thomas and Bar Scott
an intimate and creative 5-day writing weekend 

January 8 – 12, 2014 at Abby’s house in Woodstock, New York.

Winter in Woodstock

Our extra long-weekend together will include morning workshops with either Abigail Thomas or Bar Scott. Attendees will work closely with their teacher on writing they have submitted in advance of the workshop, as well as exercises done during our time together. Afternoons will include lectures and discussions for the whole group, time for writing and reflection, student and faculty readings, and one-on-one sessions for each student with their teacher. Students will enjoy close community with both teachers, as well as a small group of other writers who are lucky enough to join us. We hope you will be one of them.

Abigail’s class is intended for writers with workshop or publishing experience. Bar’s will focus writers who are new to workshops, or, for writers who want to go from writing for themselves to writing for others.

  • Four-day intensive writing workshops
  • Small class size – 8 students maximum in each of two classes
  • One-on-one scheduled time for each student with their teacher
  • Opportunities for students to read their work to the group
  • Public reading and performances by Abby and Bar, as well as a public reading for students in Woodstock (optional, but encouraged)
  • Hosted by Bar Scott, Brent Bruser, and Abigail Thomas at her home in Woodstock, New York.
  • Excellent, privately catered meals enjoyed in a communal setting
  • One evening out for dinner in the town of Woodstock. Students will order from the menu. This is meal is not included in the meal plan for the workshop.
  • If you would like more information about this unique and intimate workshop, please contact us at

Our Writers

Abigail Thomas

In this workshop, we will talk in detail about each other’s work, offering suggestions and encouragement on pages submitted to the class before the workshop begins. We will talk about the meaning of memoir, what goes in and why; what stays out and why.

We will also do odd little assignments every day, the first of which (mandatory) is to take any ten years of your life, reduce them to two pages, and every sentence must be three words long. We are going to have a very good time.

“Abby was everything I had hoped for – a phenomenal teacher who is also a phenomenal person.”
- Annie Scholl, Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Working with Abby was a critical step in my journey as a writer. Her belief in my story being one that needs to be told was important, but even more essential was her belief in me and my voice–that I have what it takes to bring my story to life. As a woman who only started writing midlife, her own example in this regard is inspiring, but it’s this confidence and belief in me that keeps me going during what is the long and difficult process of writing and shaping a book-length memoir. – Leah Hanes, NYC

Bar Scott

Bar Scott

This workshop is offered to beginning and/or seasoned writers. My focus is always on the voice and style of the student I’m working with. I like to help writers discover what it is they want to say, and how. This workshop will give  students an opportunity to bring new writing or a work in progress to the group for feedback, ideas, and encouragement. We’ll ask each writer questions about what they’re writing and why, what they want to achieve, and who they are writing for. We’ll also talk about the rhythm, the content and how the form can support the writer’s purpose. Writing exercises will be offered daily to be done in the afternoons and shared the following morning with the group. These are generally fun and meant to inspire and challenge the student to try new things.

“Bar’s workshop was a fantastic experience for me…it gave me some fundamental skills to connect with my thoughts, and learn to shape them into words!”
- Todd Young, Rhinebeck, NY

“Dear Bar, you’re everything a writing coach should be — patient, gentle, honest, and understanding. Your encouragement and suggestions were just what I needed to dig deep inside my soul and become a better writer. Thank you for keeping me motivated and for awakening the muse in me!”
- Jacqueline Whitmore, author of Poised for Succes (St. Martin’s Press, Nov. 2011)

“Bar Scott is an enthusiastic, inventive, and capable teacher.  She makes learning fun and chases away our fears and inhibitions with processes that tap us into new rhythms,  deeper listening and freer expression.  Bar is a gem.  Multi-faceted and talented, she also possesses a down-to-earth friendliness that makes learning from her a pleasure.”
- Esther Frances, Santa Cruz, CA

Winter Workshop Schedule

Winter Workshop fees and registration