Where is Squaw Valley? Squaw Valley is a four-hour drive from the Bay Area, and a one-hour drive from the Reno/Lake Tahoe Airport. Squaw Valley is the site of the 1960 Winter Olympics. Squaw Valley USA, is owned and operated by Squaw Valley Ski Corporation which graciously hosts our workshops each summer. Many of our events take place in the Olympic Plaza, the lodge at the foot of the ski area, and the Olympic Village Lodge, just a short walk from there.
Where do participants stay in Squaw Valley?The Community of Writers rents condominiums at the Village in Squaw Valley and a few houses in the valley for participants to live in during the week of the conference. If, when you are accepted, you would like us to arrange your accommodations, you can choose among several types of rooms. To help us place you in an appropriate condo or house, indicate if you have any special needs, concerns or physical requirements. There may be men and women in the same unit. Some of the houses are within walking distance; some require a short drive, so please indicate whether you will have a car with you in the valley. Every unit will have a kitchen and will be supplied with linens, but we ask you to bring your own towel. You may check in after you register and receive your housing assignment on registration day.
If you want to arrange your own housing, (this does not apply to Screenwriters) call (800) 731-8021 or or visit the gotahoenorth.com. We highly recommend the Village at Squaw Valley, theSquaw Valley Lodge: (530) 583-5500; and The Olympic Village Inn. Make sure they know you are with the Community of Writers when you inquire about rates. (Rates on the website may not reflect off-season pricing.) We do not recommend camping unless you have a camper.
How much will housing cost for the week?
The Community of Writers rents houses and condominiums in the Valley for participants to live in during the week of the conference. If, when you are accepted, you would like us to arrange your accommodations, you can choose between Single, Twin and Bargain Bunk rooms within a condo unit or your own private One Room Condo. Please refer to the Logistics Page for details.
Is camping available?
We do not recommend camping unless you have a camper. For camping, call this reservation number: (877) 444-6777. This telephone number is for a reservation operation called Parknet/ReserveUSA, which handles reservations for the three main campgrounds nearest Squaw Valley. Granite Flats, Goose Meadows and Silver Creek sites are all on Highway 89 South of Truckee along the Truckee River. They're good sites: safe and beautiful, and all within 15 minute easy drive to Squaw Valley. If you choose to stay in a campground, a camper with bathing facilities will be necessary; camping and participating in the conference are too challenging without one.
Are there grocery stores in Squaw Valley?
There are major supermarkets in Tahoe City and Truckee, ten miles from Squaw Valley. The Community Market or the 7-11 in Squaw Valley should have everything you need. You may prepare your breakfasts and lunches in your house, or visit one of the cafes in the valley.
I plan to fly. Which airport should I use? We will have shuttle vans picking up participants at the Reno/Lake Tahoe International Airport baggage claim area on registration day. Reno is almost an hour from Squaw Valley. We must have your flight information early in order to schedule our vans. We schedule the pick-ups after we have received most participants' flight arrival times. We cannot pick up anyone arriving after 3:00 PM. There will be a round-trip shuttle charge of $80.00* due at registration. There will be no pick-ups at the South Lake Tahoe Airport. There is an inexpensive public bus from Truckee to Squaw Valley.
*Price subject to change slightly without notice.
When Should I Arrive in Squaw Valley?
Unless you are a Screenwriter, try to plan your trip to arrive in Squaw Valley no later than 3:00 PM, on the opening (registration) day. Screenwriters should plan on arriving by 1pm.
When Should I Plan to depart from Squaw Valley?
Plan your departure from Squaw Valley for early afternoon on the last day of the workshop:
Poetry: June 29
Writers Workshops: July 15
Screenwriting: July 15
Will I need a car?
About half of our participants bring cars, the other half walk or get rides to and from their houses to the conference center. Squaw Valley also has a Valley Shuttle, which runs every twenty minutes and takes participants up or down the length of the valley. This service is free of charge. If you have any physical disabilities, or have a problem with high elevation, a car would be a good idea. So, a car is not necessary, but can make your week easier and afford you the ability to visit Lake Tahoe and surrounding sights.
Can I choose which staff member to work with in workshop? Each Poetry participant will have an opportunity to work with each of the staff members at least once. Writers Workshops (Fiction/Nonfiction) may request to work with a particular staff memeber; however, we do not guarantee being able to make the match. Screenwriting participants will be assigned to particular staff mentor based on our assessment of the screenplay.
What is the size of the program?
Poetry: 60 (5 workshops of 12 participants) Writers Workshops: 120 (10 workshops of 12-13 participants) Fiction - 96 Nonfiction/Memoir - 24-25 Screenwriting: 25
Will I work with the same staff member all week?
No. You will have an opportunity to work with several staff members. In Poetry you will work with each if the five staff poets. In the Writers Workshops (Fiction/Nonfiction), you will stay with the same workshop group of twelve all week, but you will have a different staff leader each day.
Will I have my Fiction or Nonfiction manuscript critiqued during the week? Yes. Each participant will have his or her manuscript (up to 5000 words) treated in workshop. Each day two participants' manuscripts will be treated. Then, the manuscripts for the following day's workshop will be passed out.
Will I get written critiques?
Not as a rule. The workshops are structured to allow each participant to comment on the work, and then the workshop leader will comment. Written critiques are not required.
What is the schedule like?
In general, each program has "regular morning workshops" each morning. In Poetry, the afternoons and evening are kept open for writing, except for daily craft talks, and an opportunity each day for very brief individual conferences. Because no new writing is expected of Writing Workshops participants, the schedule is quite full. Each afternoon and evening the schedule is filled with informal craft talks, panel discussions, staff readings and other presentations.
In Screenwriting, the morning workshops are arranged by the staff, each directed by a different staff member. As the program focuses on individual attention, afternoons are devoted to conferences with assigned mentors. Your mentor will have contacted you before you arrive.
I have finished my novel. Can I find an agent or an editor at Squaw Valley? If you want to improve your writing by attending this workshop, we recommend that you apply. If you see Squaw Valley only as means to find an agent or an editor, we recommend that you do not. Although such contacts have been known to happen in Squaw Valley, it is rare.
What is an Individual Conference?
Each Writers Workshop participant is eligible to have a 20-minute one-on-one conference with a SVCW staff member. Unless a substitution is provided, the manuscript submitted for acceptance is the manuscript to be discussed in this conference. In Screenwriting, participants will be assigned a mentor on arrival and will work with that mentor all week.
I am a past participant in Poetry. Can I come again?
Yes, but you must take a year off, and then you must enter the Past Participant Lottery. Please contact Brett Hall Jones for the Lottery Procedures.
I am a past participant in the Writer Workshops. Can I come again? Yes, but you must reapply. Due to the high number of submissions, remember to submit your best work for application. You may bring a different manuscript with you to Squaw Valley for discussion in workshop. We ask that if you have attended the past two years, that you take a year off.
Roughly how many people usually apply to the program?
Poetry: 225 -300
Writers Workshops: 300 -375
Screenwriting: 70 -85
Is the Application Deadline firm? This is not a "post-marked by" deadline; we must have the submission in hand by the deadline.
Can I enroll in Finding the Story without enrolling in the Writers Workshops? No.
Will Finding the Story allow me to participate in the Regular Morning Workshop? Yes.
Will we need a manuscript for Finding the Story? No.
Is Finding the Story included in my tuition? No, the extra fee for 6 days of workshops in Finding the Story is $175.
More questions about the Workshops? E-Mail Writers Workshops Co-Directors Lisa Alvarez or Louis B. Jones:
lisa @squawvallewriters .org
louisbjones @sbcglobal .net
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How much is the Tuition?
Writers Workshops: $840 *
Screenwriting: $825 *
*Prices subject to change without notice.
Does the Tuition include Housing?
No. See Housing & Meals.
Does the Tuition include meals? Six dinners are included in the tuition; you are on your own for breakfast and lunch. See Housing & Meals.
Is the Non-Refundable Deposit in addition to the tuition? No, it is part of the tuition, a payment toward the full tuition.
How do I apply for Financial Aid? Simply request Financial Aid on your cover sheet with your submission. Financial Aid is granted out of funds donated by our past-participants, staff and friends. It takes the form of partial tuition waivers. Please indicate on your application form the minimum amount of financial aid would make it possible for you to attend. If you are admitted, we will do our best to help needy writers to attend.
More questions? E-mail Executive Director, Ms. Brett Hall Jones: E-mail Executive Director, brett "at" squawvalleywriters "dot" org
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The Community is a 501(c)3 nonprofit corporation. We depend on the generosity of friends, former participants and staff to fund the scholarship and tuition waivers we grant to our talented participants. Donations of any amount are appreciated.
Checks can be made out to The Community of Writers and mailed to PO Box 1416, Nevada City, CA 95959.
We hope participants who receive a tuition waiver or scholarship later, when and if financial matters improve in their lives, to help make the same thing possible for another writer. Donors may consider sending a Full Scholarship, which may be granted in their name, or the name of a loved one ($740); a Partial Scholarship for $250-$600; or may give $10, $20 or $100 or any amount they feel they can afford. If each and every former participant who has ever received financial aid gave $50 we would have more than enough money to fund our financial aid program.
Donors may also give donations to the Community of Writers for general support. Any and all contributions are needed and greatly appreciated.
Tax ID: 23-7179177