The Kravis Center located on Okeechobee Blvd in downtown West Palm Beach.
The Kravis Center for the Performing Arts invites writers of all backgrounds to participate in its Writers’ Academy, led by Pulitzer Prize-nominated biographer, novelist, playwright and educator Julie Gilbert. The academy’s four courses nurture creative writing skills in most genres.
“I’ve been privileged to witness the blossoming of immense talent” at the academy, Gilbert says. “The writers here are not just gifted, but audaciously brave in their craft. Their ability to marry raw talent with a bold spirit makes me profoundly proud. Each session offers a unique outlet to delve deep, unearthing and expressing the emotions that often remain hidden.”
Some participants in the Writers’ Academy have found literary success. Diane Bergner, the Kravis Center’s vice president of development, wrote the novel “Royal Coconut Beach Lunch Club,” published by Meridian Editions. The Kravis Center has published two books by Writers’ Academy members: “Driving Woodie: Tales From the Home Front During World War II” by Martha McMullen and “Verbal Snacks” by Nancy Sims.
“It’s more than just a class; it’s a community,” Bergner says of the Writers’ Academy. “I experienced firsthand the magic of seeing my ideas take shape and breathe life. This academy is a place where experimentation is celebrated, and every writing style is not just accepted, but enthusiastically encouraged. It’s where the seeds of imagination are cultivated and bloom brilliantly.”
Gilbert was nominated for a National Book Critics Circle Award for “Ferber: A Biography of Edna Ferber and Her Circle” and for a Pulitzer Prize for “Opposite Attraction: The Lives of Erich Maria Remarque and Paulette Goddard.” She has taught fiction writing and playwriting at New York University and Florida Atlantic University.
Classes with Gilbert are offered for every stage of writing, starting Jan. 9, at the Eunice and Julian Cohen Pavilion:
“Advanced Technique I” — This course of six sessions of two hours each is by invitation only and is for those who have decided to embark on the writing life. It is for dedicated writers who have worked with Gilbert in establishing voice, technique, style, work habits, projects and durability. Jan. 9 to March 9.
“Advanced Technique II” — This course has the same requirements and follows the same format as “Advanced Technique I” but is offered via Zoom from Jan. 16 to March 26.
“Kickstart Your Writing Ability” — An experience for the curious and adventurous, “Kickstart” is for those about to take the leap into writing. Learn how to release the writer within and to unlock your muse. The class is Jan. 11 at 1:30 p.m. and costs $30.
“Writers’ Launch” —Running from Jan. 25 to Feb. 29, this course is a launch pad for written expression. This course is designed to alchemize the unexpressed bounty of thoughts and memories within each person into a discipline of form, content, technique and style, resulting in a story. The focus is on a fictional story.
“We are deeply grateful to the Cornelia T. Bailey Foundation for their generous support towards our education programs at the Kravis Center,” says Diane Quinn, the CEO of the Kravis Center. “Through their invaluable contribution, we continue to ignite the spark of creativity, curiosity and love for the arts, fostering a future where these virtues are celebrated and cherished.”
The Kravis Center is a not-for-profit performing arts center at 701 Okeechobee Blvd. For general information, visit www.kravis.org.
For more information about the Writers’ Academy and for registration, visit www.kravis.org/performance-calendar/writersacademy.