Alpha is a 20-student, 10-day intensive science fiction and fantasy writing workshop for teenagers from 14-19, run on principles similar to those at the Clarion workshops. It looks like a hell of an experience, the kind of thing I'd have given an arm to attend when I was a teenager — this year's instructors are Tamora Pierce, Timothy Zahn, Michael A. Arnzen and Christopher McKitterick. The submission deadline is March 1.
Learn about writing and publishing. Meet other teens who share your interest in writing speculative fiction. Talk about short stories, novels, and films. Have your submission story critiqued. Brainstorm new story ideas, write a first draft, receive feedback, and rewrite. Attend readings by the authors. Do a public reading. Learn about submitting for publication, and send off your story at our manuscript mailing party.
Finally, at the conclusion of the workshop, attend Confluence, Pittsburgh's annual, literature-based convention, where you will have the opportunity to attend panels and readings, and interact with other fans, authors, editors, musicians, artists, agents, and scientists.
2008 will be Alpha's seventh year. Previous attendees placed in the Dell Magazines Award and Writer's of the Future contests, and have sold stories to Boys' Life, Realms of Fantasy, Fantasy Magazine, Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet, Fantastic Stories, Corpse Blossoms, Aberrant Dreams, and Fantastical Visions.