2018 Writer in Residence:

Sarah L. Johnson

Come play in the

Literary Playground

March 1, 2018 – May 31, 2018

Rediscover the madcap fun of writing with 2018 writer in residence, Sarah L. Johnson. Whether you prefer to dig in the sandbox or dangle from the monkey bars, we’ve got lots of activities to choose from. See-saw with Sarah in a one-on-one writing consultation. Hop on the workshop merry-go-round that’ll spin you about until you fly off giddy and inspired. Or, if you’re down for an unstructured recess from life, join us for a Playdate, an evening of wordy game centres, belly laughs, and of course, snack time.

Sarah L. Johnson lives in Calgary with her noisy family and two slightly bewildered cats. She runs ultra marathons, has a filthy mouth, and does daily battle with curly hair. She also writes fiction in a variety of genres: literary, sci-fi, fantasy, noir, horror, and once a romantic comedy that was so very terrible and shall be blasted from the obelisks of recorded history. Her short stories have appeared in a number of journals and anthologies including Room Magazine, Plenitude Magazine, the Bram Stoker nominated Dark Visions 1: A Collection of Modern Horror (Grey Matter Press), and Year’s Best Hardcore Horror Volume 2 (Comet Press) . Her short story collection Suicide Stitch was released in 2016 by EMP Publishing, and her first novel, Infractus, will be released in April 2018 by Coffin Hop Press.

One on One Manuscript Consultations

AWCS members are entitled to ONE FREE manuscript consultation. Additional consultations may be available for $50 per consultation. Non-members can receive a consultation for $50 per consultation.

How to Book a Consultation

All consultations must be booked through the online booking link below. Simply put in your name next to the available time slot and the spot is yours. Then, at least one week prior to consultation time submit your manuscript for review. Please follow the submission guidelines as outlined below. Book a Manuscript Consultation. 

If this is a second consultation or you are a non-member please Pay Your Consultation Fee. Under Writer in Residence Workshops

Manuscript Submission Guidelines

  • Max. 3000 words prose, typed, double-spaced, in a normal 12-pt font. (Times New Roman, Calibri, Arial, Georgia), .doc or .docx formats only.
  • All genres welcome.
  • Poetry max. 3 poems. Single-spaced, one poem per page. (while poems are welcome, please note Sarah is not a poet. She can give impressions, emotion, feelings towards the work, but anything specifically to structure, verse, form is a little out of her realm of expertise.)
  • Submit manuscripts to writerinresidence@alexandrawriters.org no later than one week prior to consultation.

Workshops for Everyone

Creative Collaboration for Introverts | March 17, 2018 | 10-3:30pm

From multiple stories in a shared world to a single multi-authored story, how does collaboration work anyway? Find out in this fun hands-on workshop where we’ll throw off the shackles of solitude, put our heads together, and build a story from the ground up.

In the spirit of introverted collaboration, this workshop is structured to give students time to work alone undisturbed, and time to come together and form a hive mind. Each exercise will build on the last and in between we’ll exchange ideas, explore different directions, and formulate our collective vision for moving forward.

Block Busters | April 14, 2018 | 10-3:30pm

The dreaded writer’s block. What is it? How does it happen? And most importantly how do we get past it? Be prepared to demolish some obstacles in a workshop that will provide you with the tools for tearing down and tunneling through. Hardhat and steel-toed boots optional.

This workshop is exercise heavy, but they’re not all writing exercises. We’ll write, but we’ll also read, converse, confess, play games, go outside, move our bodies, and meditate. Not every technique will work for every student, but the hope is that everyone will walk away with their own personal sledgehammer, ready to reduce that wall to rubble.

Light in the Darkness | May 12, 2018 | 10-3:30pm

Whether you’re writing truth or fiction, our work often ventures into dark corners of the heart. Childhood trauma, grief, disease, heartbreak, war, abuse etc. It’s not easy staying healthy and happy while in the trenches of those projects. In this workshop we’ll have discussion and exercises that tackle difficult subjects, interspersed with fun activities, music, and tasty nibbles. As creatives, it’s vital that we develop the ability to shut the door on our work when we need to. Life is beautiful and enjoying it builds an emotional resilience that makes us better writers.