Summer Writing Intensive

Marlboro College was founded in 1946 by veterans returning from the Second World War who wanted to create a new kind of educational experience, one centered in independent thought, community engagement, and clear writing. This summer, in collaboration with Words After War, Marlboro will honor its founders and its founding principles in the Summer Writing Intensive, whose theme this year will be Service and Active Citizenship.

While the summer intensive is open to anyone 18 or older interested in writing, programming will be geared toward beginners exploring the craft for the first time and people returning to writing, or to college, after time away. We particularly encourage military veterans and their family members to apply. Anyone eligible for our Veteran's Writing Grant will be able to attend the intensive at no cost.

Apply Now!

Applications will be accepted through July 15 or when the program fills.

About the Intensive

Over the course of five days (Sun, Aug 3 - Fri, Aug 8, 2014), you will join a group of writers – professional writers, professors and other students interested in honing their craft – on the Marlboro Campus. You will participate in workshops during the day, and in the evenings you will write, talk and have fun with other writers. You will live in a dorm on Marlboro’s beautiful southern Vermont campus in the company of other program participants. Meals are included and served in the dormitory.

Workshops will include:

  • discussions of literature;
  • readings and workshops with visiting writers of fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry (see bios below);
  • workshops to develop critiques of your own work;
  • sessions on drafting and editing with college faculty and other program participants.

The blend of solo and group activities will ensure that the workshop is relevant for both experienced writers and those just beginning their writing journey! 

Visiting Writers

Jen Percy is the author of the nonfiction book Demon Camp (Scribner) which was a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers Pick. Winner of a Pushcart Prize, Percy is also the recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts grant, an Iowa Arts Fellowship at the University of Iowa's Nonfiction Writing Program, and a Truman Capote Fellowship at the Iowa Writers' Workshop. She writes for The New York Times, Harper's, The Oxford American, and The New Republic.

Matt Gallagher grew up in Nevada and was educated at Wake Forest and Columbia. A former U.S. Army cavalry officer, he is the author of the memoir Kaboom, and a co-editor of and contributor to Fire & Forget: Short Stories From the Long War, both published by Da Capo Press. His work has appeared in The AtlanticBoston Review and The New York Times, among other places. He lives in Brooklyn.



Brian Castner is the author of The Long Walk, an Amazon Best Book of 2012 and Chautauqua Scientific & Literary Circle selection for 2013. Previously, he served as an explosive ordnance disposal officer in the US Air Force from 1999 to 2007, deploying to Iraq to command bomb disposal units in Balad and Kirkuk in 2005 and 2006. After leaving the active military, he became a consultant and contractor, training soldiers and Marines prior to their tours in Iraq and Afghanistan. His writing has appeared in a number of national and regional publications, including Wired, The New York Times, The Daily Beast, The Wall Street Journal, Newsweek, Foreign Policy, Publisher's Weekly, and Garry Trudeau's The Sandbox anthology. Brian lives outside of Buffalo, New York with his wife and four sons.

Maurice Emerson Decaul, a former Marine, is a poet, essayist, and playwright, whose work has been featured in The New York Times, The Daily Beast, Sierra Magazine, Barely South Review, Epiphany, and others. His poems have also been translated into French and Arabic and his plays have been produced and performed in New York City, Washington DC, Paris and a forthcoming production in Antwerp. He is a graduate of Columbia University and is currently working towards his MFA at New York University. 



The cost of the program, which includes all workshops, lodging and food, is $500. 

In the spirit of Marlboro’s founders, all veterans, military spouses, gold star children, as well as those currently serving on active, reserve or guard duty are eligible for a Veteran’s Writing Grant which will entitle them to attend the Intensive at no cost.

Limited scholarships for non-veterans are also available.

About Marlboro College

The Summer Writing Intensive grows out of Marlboro College’s fundamental commitment to writing. Marlboro was founded in 1946 by veterans returning from World War II who wanted to create a different kind of college—one where students were not only participants but also active contributors to the academic and community life of campus. Writing is at the core of the curriculum these veterans designed: Marlboro’s Clear Writing Requirement stems from the belief that clear writing leads to clear thinking, and means that clear writing in all its forms is a constant focus in the intellectual, political and social life of the Marlboro Community. 

Learn more about the Writing Intensive's lead faculty member, John Sheehy, and the application process for veterans hoping to complete a degree at Marlboro. 

About Words After War

Co-founded by Brandon Willitts, veteran, writer and Marlboro alum, Words After War is a literary organization with a mission to change the national conversation around veteran issues by including civilians in that conversation. Through high-quality literary programming, Words After War provides veterans and civilians with opportunities to examine conflict and war through the lens of literature.



Contact the Ariel Brooks, Director of Non Degree Programs at or 802-451-7118.