Jensen Beach has proven to be not only the best writing teacher I’ve had, but also a paradigm by which I will inevitably compare all my teachers to come—and a high standard that will be. I’ve learned so much, but perhaps the greatest, broadest thing I’ve taken from this experience is confidence to share my writing, and a real sense of “organic” writing. There’s too much to describe. I took craft sessions with Mark Leidner, Nat Otting, and Ben Kopel. Both craft sessions were wonderful experiences, particularly because while they were still writing classes, their poetic bents were refreshing after my fiction workshops.
The evening readings were very fun and inspiring, but also provided useful mediums through which to discuss our own writings, philosophies, lifestyles, and the like in an enormously rewarding way. Being part of an intensive writing community like this was enjoyable and encouraging, challenging and competitive, familiar and friendly. Juniper was everything a writer needs to grow, and being surrounded by driven writers made it all the better. I found myself writing into the early morning.
Juniper will affect my writing in every way. The environment of encouraging writers, the readings by talented professionals, but first and foremost my workshops with Jensen, have opened up new arenas of confidence, creativity, and craft in my writing. Juniper was by far the deepest, most inviting, and strongest collection of writers I’ve ever had the privilege of growing with; it is a place where writers come to become themselves, and offers the best environment for them to do so.
—Kyle Harper, ’10 participant
Newtown Square, PA