This workshop is sponsored by the UAB English Department. It is named in honor of Dr. Ada Long, founding director of the UAB Honors Program, Professor of English, and lifelong advocate for community outreach, the value of a liberal education, and the enduring significance of literature.

Do you write or want to? Do you have stories or poems squirreled away in a journal or in a corner of your mind? Would you like to see your own words in print? If so, apply to the Ada Long Creative Writing Workshop where you will find inspiration, guidance, and support to express your ideas. Each day for three weeks, you will work with nationally recognized authors and teachers. You will also explore and find inspiration in Birmingham’s rich culture and history. Best of all, you will learn and make friends with students who are just as interested in expanding their creativity.

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To feed our imaginations, the Ada Long Creative Writing Workshop seeks out unique activities such as catching river creatures with the Cahaba River Society and sewing quilt blocks for The March Quilts project with Bibb & Tucker Sew-Op. Writers never know where inspiration may strike.

What You Need to Know

  • What happens at the workshop?

    Every day, students work closely with nationally acclaimed novelists, essayists, and poets in small groups. Limited to just 30 students, the workshop encourages discussion and the exchange of ideas in small groups and one-on-one.

    In addition to small group workshops:

    • Students draw inspiration from field trips, creative activities, and presentations.
    • Each week students explore a different genre such as poetry, fiction, memoir, magazine production, etc.
    • Students draft, critique, and revise complete original works weekly.
    • Student work is published in the The Writers’ Block, our yearly anthology, and learn about other publishing opportunities.
    • Students can get a head start on college through the workshop — one hour of elective credit is available.
  • Location, cost, and other basic info

    • Dates: The workshop is a three-week summer day camp, June 12 – 30, 2023. Sessions last from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.
    • Location: Spencer Honors House, 1190 10th Ave. South, Birmingham, AL 35233 (on the UAB campus).
    • Participants: 30 students will be selected to join the workshop. All students will be rising high school freshmen, sophomores, juniors, seniors, and graduated seniors.
    • Cost: $800 for the workshop fee; $368 for an optional hour of college credit.
    • Financial Aid: Full and partial scholarships are available for the workshop fee for students who find the fee cost prohibitive. Financial aid does not cover the hour of optional college credit.
    • Application Form: See "How to Apply."
  • Sample daily schedule

    • 9:00 - 10:00 a.m.  — Directed writing exercises
    • 10:15 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. — Small group writing workshops
    • 12:00 - 12:30 p.m. — Lunch (provided each day)
    • 12:30 - 1:30 p.m. — Free writing time and individual conferences with instructors
    • 1:30 - 3:00 p.m. — Enrichment activities:
      • visits to local cultural and historical sites
      • readings and presentations from workshop faculty, UAB student writers, and visiting authors and performers
      • art activities
      • discussions about publication opportunities
      • public readings of student works
  • Deadlines

    • Accepting applications until the Workshop begins on June 12
    • Those applying for the optional college credit, apply by: May 10
  • How to apply

    Students need to complete and submit an application and writing sample to the director. pdfDownload and complete the application or apply online.

    • The writing sample should be three to five pages of creative writing in any form or genre.
    • To apply for a full or partial scholarship, a teacher or high school counselor should attest to the student’s financial need in a letter on school letterhead or in an email and send it to the Director.
  • Questions? Contact us!

    For more information, contact:

    Tina Braziel, Director, Ada Long Creative Writing Workshop
    This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
    UAB Department of English
    University Hall, Room 5065
    1720 2nd Ave. South
    Birmingham, AL 35294-1241
    (205) 934-8573

Student Highlights

Each year we collect our students' poems, stories, and memoirs in The Writer's Block. You can read excerpts online, or download the complete anthologies below.

Y’onna Hale
To My Hands
Anita Cade
Middle School Soup


2022 Issue


2019 Issue


2018 Issue


2017 Issue