I got help through the Loft to launch my writing career mostly in the classroom and also at public readings. I actually read a couple of times myself. While it's been a long time since I've taken a class, I support the Loft because I want it to be there for the next generation of writers. I should say that I still attend readings because they are all so good.
Great classes for writers in an inspiring space! Plenty of options for all kinds of writing. I've enjoyed every class and instructor I've had.
I have access close to home to top-notch writing classes and workshops, but my online class with the Loft is easily on par with any in-person class I have taken. Great instruction, class organization and design, feedback, and chat opportunies. Looking forward to future classes!
I joined the Loft so I could improve my writing. Even though I live three hours west of the Twin Cities, I've had the pleasure of taking two online classes, both on poetry. I had positive experiences with both my classes. One resulted in grant funding from the local arts council, and the other helped me place a poem for publication in a journal. Because of my income level, I've also received scholarships to help pay for classes. The Loft has definitely enabled me to become a contributing member of the literary community, on both the local and national levels. Thank You Loft!
When I got out of my undergraduate program, I wanted to find a way to keep my passion for my writing alive and to find others who loved it, too. I am so lucky to have The Loft in my community. The classes are great, the people are amazing and their events are always so much fun. By attending classes, I was able to cultivate my writing and take the next step to grad school. This organization is truly awesome!
The Loft is awesome. I have taken classes, attended readings, applied for grants, rented a writing studio, and have been inspired by other writers I've met there. The people who work at the Loft care about supporting writers. They care that writers produce good work. They care that American writing demonstrates the huge diversity and talent in this country and in Minnesota. And they care about serving the diverse community around them. Without a doubt, the Loft is among the most amazing non-profits in the U.S.
I've been a member for over ten years, since winning a Mentorship one year out of college. The environment, opportunities, and culture of the organization is welcoming, dynamic, and very encouraging. I am grateful to The Loft for helping not just my writing, but for introducing me to artists like Claudia Rankine and Nick Flynn, and for hosting so many excellent community events. I'm a big fan.
Without The Loft, I very much doubt I would have completed and published my memoir. I approached creative writing from a nontraditional standpoint with a background in journalism. Since I did not have a creative writing degree, I had to look for opportunities elsewhere. The Loft serves well the professional who has an interest in writing but does not have the time, energy, or resources to get a college degree in creative writing.
I owe my later-in-life writing career to the Loft. I was a person with a dream: a dream to write and publish fiction. The Loft provided superb instruction (from a host of talented and generous writers), programming, mentorships and grant opportunities. I've seen other beginning writers struggle in many settings and many ways, and I am certain I could not have developed and advanced my writing career the way I have without the help of the Loft.
This is the sequence of events, all Loft-mediated, which has brought me to a Spring 2014 short story publication in the literary magazine "Ploughshares," and collaboration on two novels-in-progress with a New York literary agency:
1. 2005 to present: Took classes offered at the Loft, from "Writing for the Absolute Beginner" (Fall, 2005) to a workshop with the esteemed Janet Burroway (Summer, 2014);
2. 2007-2008: Awarded Loft Emerging Writer Mentorship in Fiction; absolutely jump-started my fledgling fiction-writing career;
3. 2009 to present: Proposed and taught classes in beginning fiction writing at the Loft;
4. Awarded 2012-2013 Loft MN Emerging Writer Grant; used money for an online mentorship though the Loft;
5. Spring, 2014: Developed a website with the help of former Loft fellow-students and instructors, and started writing a blog. Please see one of my earliest posts, "Postcards From the Margins: Why I Love the Loft," April 21, 2014, http://www.donnatrump.org/page/5/ (scroll down to 4/21 entry).
I am grateful, every day, for the resources provided and the opportunities made possible by the Loft.
When I was 48 years old I decided it was "now or never" to try my hand at fiction writing. I took my first class at the Loft in September 2005--"Writing for Absolute Beginners," taught by Jorie Miller. Jorie said many encouraging things to all of her students, but it was her comment that my story-writing was "strong" that motivated me to keep going. In 2007-2008, I was awarded a Loft Emerging Writer Mentorship, during which time I had the unmatched pleasure of working with Sandy Benitez and Peter Ho Davies on an idea for a novel. Since that mentorship, I've published stories, essays and poems in a variety of journals. Now I'm working with Patricia Weaver Francisco in an online Loft mentorship, paid for by another Loft contest, the MN Emerging Writer grant, which I won this year. And that novel? Well, these things take time, but I've got an agent and 2013 sounds like a great year for a debut. None of any of this would have happened without the excellent teaching and remarkable guidance of many fine and talented people at the Loft Writing Center in Minneapolis.