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Workshop Registration



The Creative Youth Center presents the Wednesday Workshop Series, an exciting selection of one-time sessions led by regional authors.


Workshop space is limited! The fee is $15 with some scholarships offered. All workshops take place at the Creative Youth Center, 413 Eastern Ave SE.


Please call (616) 458-5505 or email to inquire about scholarship availability, for help registering, or with any other questions.



January 25, 6:30-7:45pm // KFG & Dani Golisch: High School // Spoken Word Patronus Poems

Harry Potter’s Patronus was a stag. What’s yours? A lion? Or perhaps a butterfly? We all have memories that elicit strong emotions and experiences that help define who we are. In this workshop, you’ll explore your memories and experiences and write a poem about how your Patronus was formed.

February 22, 6:30-7:45pm // Allen Trieu: 3rd-5th Grade // We Are the Champions: Intro to Sports Writing

This workshop will explore the basics of covering and writing about sports. By writing a story about an individual athlete, you’ll learn to bring what you see on the field to the printed page and to the millions of sports fans around the world.

March 22, 6:30-7:45pm // Sarah Jean Anderson: 3rd-5th Grade // Intro to Improv

Laughfest is here again and the CYC Comedy Club is back! Have you ever wanted to be like the actor onstage, making everyone laugh with silly improvised scenes? Learn the basic rules of improv comedy and make up some seriously funny skits.

April 26, 6:30-7:45pm // Danielle Gordon: Middle School // Mary Had a Little Tan, and Other Tall Tales!

Did you know that after school one day, Mary and her little lamb hopped on a plane and went on vacation in Hawaii? In this workshop you’ll be using your imagination to write your own tall tale. You’ll learn what aspects make up a tall tale, sharpen your exaggeration skills, and master the art of storytelling.

May 24, 6:30-7:45pm // Matt Baker: Middle School // For Musicians, <p>Coders</p>, and Whizzesmath : How to Write in Hybrid Languages

What do you do when English alone isn’t enough to express what you’re going through? This workshop will explore how artificial languages like math, music, and HTML can be used to tell a story.




Meet our talented workshop leaders!

Sarah Jean Anderson is a band counselor and instrument instructor at Girls Rock! Grand Rapids. She has worked as an artist and performer for the past 15 years, and can be seen hosting the annual Lady Fest GR festival celebrating women in the arts.

Matthew Baker is the author of If You Find This, a Booklist Top Ten Debut of 2015 and an Edgar Award Nominee for 2016, and his stories have appeared in magazines such as American Short Fiction, New England Review, One Story, Electric Literature, and Best of the Net. His other projects include Early Work, a website that publishes childhood writing by grown-up writers, at

Dani Golisch is a Grand Rapids slam poet who has been writing since kindergarten. She was chosen to go to young authors twice! Currently she is a bakery manager and mother of three who loves poetry. She hopes to help youth in small ways with her support and love. 




Danielle Gordon is the Founder and CEO of Afro Princess Publishing, LLC. The company seeks to instill positive self-image in children by publishing books that feature main characters that positively represent children of color and their infinite possibilities.  Her first title, Whitney’s Wonderful Imagination was created to help show children that anything is possible when you use a little imagination. 

KFG is a queer-of-some-sorts, Michigan-native poet and activist. Across slam competitions, universities, classrooms, rallies and venue features, KFG brings forth a powerfully unique voice, regarding LGBTQIA+ experience, mental health, and privilege, and shares through captivating example the motto which permeates their poetry and expression: “Strength Through Vulnerability.” 

Allen Trieu is a National Recruiting Analyst for He has covered football recruiting in the Big Ten and Midwest since 2004. He also contributes two weekly columns to the Detroit News and appears each February on The Big Ten Network’s Signing Day special. In addition, he has appeared on various Fox Sports affiliates and in print publications such as The Wall Street Journal, The Sporting News, Sports Illustrated and more. 



Past Workshop Offerings

Spring 2016 Wednesday Workshops

June 2015 Sketch Writing Workshop

April 2015 National Poetry Month Workshops