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 Real writing in the real Paris

The Real Paris Workshop for Writers: October 17-22, 2022

Authentic, affordable, in-depth

  • Workshop meets in neighborhoods frequented by local artists and writers rather than by tourists

  • Participants receive close attention to their work in progress, both in workshop and one-on-one

  • Registration fees are 30 to 60 percent lower than existing writing workshops in Paris

Writers submit their work in advance--fiction, nonfiction, autofiction, memoir; maximum 5,000 words--for rigorous group discussion. The Real Paris Workshop is limited to 10 participants.

Your retreat host and workshop facilitator is Shannon Cain, a writer, editor and activist living in France since 2014. Shannon taught creative writing for 15 years at a variety of institutions, including to undergraduates the University of Arizona, as a visiting professor at Leipzig University, and as MFA faculty with the Bennington Writing Seminars. Her short stories have been recognized with the Drue Heinz Literature Prize, a fellowship from the U.S, National Endowment for the Arts, the O. Henry Prize, and twice the Pushcart Prize. Books edited by Shannon have won The Next Generation Indie Book Award in Short Fiction, The Iowa Short Fiction Prize, the Elixir Press Fiction Award and a nomination for the Goodreads Choice Award. She is the Interim Director at La Maison Baldwin, a writers' residency in the south of France.

Admission to the Real Paris Retreat is by application. To apply, send five double-spaced pages of your best prose to  Admissions are made on a rolling basis, so it's best to apply early.

A teaching fellowship is available for a writer of color.  The fellow will co-facilitate daily cross-genre prose workshop sessions, participate in individual manuscript consultations, and teach a craft class. In addition to waived registration ($995), the fellow will receive a $1,000 cash stipend. To apply, send a full chapter, essay or short story (5,000 words max), your bio, and a cover letter no later than August 15th.

Suggested reading:

The Anti-Racist Writing Workshop: How to Decolonize the Creative Classroom by Felicia Rose Chavez

Craft in the Real World: Rethinking Fiction Writing and Workshopping by Matthew Salesses

The Real Paris Workshop for Writers

A socially-engaged writing intensive

Oct. 17 to 22, 2022

Registration: $995

Registration plus shared accommodations$1495
Registration plus private hotel accommodations: $1995

(Five nights' accommodation at a locally owned boutique hotel such as the Paris France Hotel or equivalent)

Workshops meet in an inspiring variety of cafés, community art centers, and coworking spaces. The schedule incorporates downtime for exploration and writing.

Registration includes:

Five full work days: a 3-hour morning session plus optional afternoon activities 


Daily critique workshop with craft discussions

Guest lectures and craft classes

Private meeting with Shannon and the Retreat Fellow to discuss your work and publishing career

Optional events:

  • Tour of Paris literary sites and bookshops

  • Café writing afternoons

  • An open mic evening with Paris Lit Up at Culture Rapide, birthplace of French slam poetry

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