The 15th annual Alpha Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror Workshop for Young Writers (ages 14 – 19) will be held at the University of Pittsburgh’s Greensburg Campus from July 21 to July 31, 2016.

We’re getting ready for Alpha 2016! To be notified when guest authors are announced, please sign up for our quarterly newsletter:

Come spend 11 days working with professional authors, each of whom will spend two to three days at the workshop. Guest authors for 2016 will be announced soon; guest authors at last year’s workshop Alpha were:

  • Tamora Pierce
  • Ellen Kushner
  • Delia Sherman
  • Alaya Dawn Johnson

We’re looking for enthusiastic, talented young writers who have a strong interest in science fiction, fantasy, and/or horror. Students from anywhere in the world are welcome. In the past, students have attended Alpha from Canada, the United Kingdom, all over the United States, and even as far away as China, Turkey, Australia, and New Zealand.

Learn about writing and publishing. Meet other teens who share your interests. Talk about short stories, novels, and films. Have your application story critiqued. Brainstorm new ideas, write a first draft, receive feedback, and rewrite. Attend readings by the authors. Give your own public reading. Learn about submitting for publication, and send off your story at our submission party.

The workshop is small, with a maximum of 20 participants. Admission is based solely on the strength of the application story.

Wondering what Alpha’s really like? Here’s what previous students have to say.

Alpha has been held near Pittsburgh every summer since 2002. Previous attendees have placed in the Dell Magazines Award and Writers of the Future contests, and have published their novels and short stories in markets such as Clarkesworld, Strange Horizons, Fantasy Magazine, Daily Science Fiction, Cicada, Beneath Ceaseless Skies, Lady Churchill’s Rosebud Wristlet, Nature Futures, and Pseudopod.

Workshop tuition is $1200 and includes all workshop-related costs, including housing and meals, but does not include transportation to and from Pittsburgh. A limited pool of financial aid is available for students who cannot otherwise attend the workshop.

Alpha is a part of the non-profit, 501(c)(3), literary, charitable organization Parsec, Pittsburgh’s premier speculative fiction organization.