Scribes applications are now closed with the exception of Scribes at RVCC. If interested, please email


Scribes is an intensive two-week creative writing program for teens. You’ll acquire a tool kit of literary forms, pick up exercises and techniques to develop your writer’s voice, get serious feedback from your instructors and peers, and tour the city with a writer’s eye. Sessions are facilitated by professional writers who will help you bring out the best in your work.

This summer we will be expanding this popular program into new neighborhoods and are excited to announce new partnerships with EMP Museum and Rainier Valley Cultural Center. These camps will be modeled after our traditional Scribes camp, so still expect activities and instruction in all genres (fiction, nonfiction, and poetry, along with experimental forms).


Each session is composed of 20 students, two instructors, and two interns. Class runs 10 a.m.–4 p.m., Monday through Friday. Community readings are held at the end of each session on Thursday evening. Student work will be published online on our soon-to-be-launched Young Writers Blog.

2015 dates:

At Hugo House (1634 11th Ave)

  • Session I (for students completing 7th & 8th grade): July 13–24, 2015 (Filled)
  • Session II (for students completing 9th–12th grade): July 27–August 7 (Filled)
  • Session III (for students completing 9th–12th grade): August 10–21 (Filled)

Scribes at EMP / Scribes at Rainier Valley Cultural Center

  • Scribes at Rainier Valley Cultural Center (for students completing 9th-12th grades) – July 27-August 7, 2015
  • Scribes at EMP Museum (for students completing 8th-12th grades) – July 6-July 17, 2015 (Filled)


2015 Scribes Instructors: Peter Mountford, Karen Finneyfrock, Emily Bedard, Kevin Emerson, Sierra Nelson, Alice Bolin, Rachel Kessler, Jane Wong, Malcolm Friend, and Emma Torzs.


Tuition: With the exception of Scribes at EMP, all camps have a tuition of $700. Scribes at EMP is $650.

Financial Aid: Need-based scholarships and payment plans are available.

Application Process:

Scribes students are accepted on the basis of their written application and writing sample.We are looking for students who are excited about writing, who are able to talk about their writing process and challenges, and who are ready to be contributing members of a creative literary environment.

Scribes 2015 Application

Scribes 2015 Scholarship Application

Acceptances are rolling. You will hear back about acceptance within one week of applying.

What can you expect from Scribes?

Acclaimed guests

Besides your primary Scribes instructors, many illustrious guests visit Scribes to share their knowledge and experience. Monologist Mike Daisey came to discuss his own writing life and even gave Scribes a sneak preview of his latest show. Megan Kelso showed us the secrets behind her graphic novels. Macklemore performed for us, gave us a writing prompt, and critiqued our work. David Shields talked about his life as a writer and Steven Schardt gave us the 411 on writing for the silver screen.

Unique field trips

Just because Scribes is a writing camp doesn’t mean that you’ll be holed up in the House all day long. During Scribes, you’ll take trips to neighborhood art museums, parks, and city streets in order to get out and about, observing the world with writers’ eyes. We’ve gone to cemeteries, thrift stores, fire stations, Pike Place Market, and Everyday Music in search of scene, scent, character, and story.

Hands-on projects

There’s more to writing than simply putting pen to paper. ZAPP (Hugo House’s Zine Archive and Publishing Project) has provided supplies, inspiration, and guidance for making a zine. Book artist Jennifer Borges Foster visited and led a workshop on how to make handmade books and broadsides. A visit to the Frye Art Museum got Scribes thinking about how to combine story with image, and if and how words can cure the world.

Inspiring prompts

Do you know what blackout poems are? Do you think you could write a story using only book titles? What do you think a spleen would say if it could talk? At Scribes, you will draw inspiration from learning new styles, genres, and forms; reading various authors; collaborating with your fellow participants; and observing the world around you.