Revision Boot Camp

Build Your Writer’s Toolbox

Revision Boot Camp

Writing classes often emphasize the significance of revision to the writing process, but what does that actually mean?

In this intensive workshop, you’ll study examples of revised essays from published writers and participate in weekly discussions of the revision process, with the goal of better understanding how revision happens and how to keep your work moving forward. Between sessions, you’ll implement changes to an already-drafted essay using the many revision prompts we’ll explore together.

During this 2-week workshop you will:

  • ACQUIRE concrete, hands-on revision strategies;
  • EMPLOY new skills;
  • SHARE your work with your instructor and peers for feedback; and significantly
  • DEVELOP a work in progress.

Writers of all skill levels are welcome to attend this workshop. Complete week-by-week descriptions below.

Saturday, February 23 & March 2, 2019
1:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Advance registration strongly recommended.
The workshop is limited to 12 students.

$190 if registered by 2/11/2019
$225 if registered after 2/11/2019


Week 1 // Practicing Re-Vision & Circuit Training

To revise literally means to re-see our work. When you’ve grown emotionally attached to a piece, how do you step back far enough to see it anew? Using examples from published authors, we will begin to examine how revision happens across multiple drafts, and will learn a few strategies to globally assess our work in progress. We’ll share some advice and best practices for revision, and learn how to document our process using revision notes.

Then, we’ll practice concrete, hands-on exercises for revision using a “circuit training” approach, where we move rapidly from station to station, trying a different prompt for a limited amount of time. Then, we’ll move from macro to micro, turning our attention from the big picture of our drafts to sentence-level craft issues. We'll study the kinds of changes a few well-known authors made to their sentences, and will learn several exercises for small-scale revisions. You’ll leave with lots of ideas and beginnings to put into practice on your draft before our next session.

Week 2 // Workshopping Revision

This week, we’ll perform two different approaches to workshopping revision. First, you’ll each workshop a single page of your essays-in-progress with a few peers to receive more localized feedback and to assess the success of the changes you’ve made to your work between sessions. Our time together will culminate with each author sharing an excerpt of their project and their revision notes thus far with the whole group. Rather than simply providing feedback on the writing itself, we’ll discuss where the author has spent their time and ask where they may venture next, giving us the chance to workshop both our works-in-progress and our revision process. Authors will participate fully in this conversation, and will seek our ideas for exercises to help them make additional changes to their draft. We’ll wrap up by asking “what’s next” for your revised work. If writing is a process, and all work can be revised, then how do you know when you’re actually done with a piece?

Location // 5119 Coral Street, Pittsburgh, PA 15224

The lower level of our workshop and gallery space is wheelchair accessible. Free on-street parking is available.
Coffee, tea, water and light refreshments will be provided each week.

Marissa Landrigan is the author of The Vegetarian's Guide to Eating Meat (Greystone Books, 2017), and her essays have appeared in numerous publications, including Creative Nonfiction, Orion, Guernica, The Atlantic, The Rumpus, and others. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing and Environment from Iowa State University, and is currently an Assistant Professor at the University of Pittsburgh Johnstown, where she teaches creative, professional, and digital writing courses.

Questions? Please call us at 412-404-2975 or email our Events Manager, Hannah Waltz at