We empower young people to write their own stories

An exciting, challenging, and supportive community where young authors thrive

Based in Washington Heights, Uptown Stories offers after-school, weekend, and summer creative writing workshops for children ages 8-18, led by rockstar teachers, who are also professional authors and artists.

Students learn the art and craft of writing, how to revise their work, and how to give and receive constructive feedback. Each workshop ends with a celebratory reading at the WordUp Bookshop in Washington Heights, and the publication of a paperback anthology, so every student leaves our program as a published author.

To ensure our program is accessible to our ethnically and economically diverse community, our tuition is “Pay-What-You-Can.” Uptown Stories creates an exciting, challenging, and supportive community where young authors thrive.

Why Creative Writing?

We believe that writing is an essential tool for:

Developing
Communication Skills

Creative writing helps young people develop their communication skills.
By learning to express their thoughts and ideas in writing, they become better able to articulate their ideas verbally, which is beneficial in all areas of life.

Stimulating Imagination

Creative writing encourages young people to use their imaginations and think creatively. This helps them become more innovative and adaptable in their thinking, which is useful in many different contexts, from problem-solving  to artistic expression.

Enhancing
Self-Expression

Creative writing provides young people with a medium for self-expression. This can be especially important for those who struggle with expressing themselves verbally or who may feel misunderstood or marginalized in other areas of their lives.

Building Confidence

As young people develop their creative writing skills and see their work improve, they gain confidence in their abilities. This translates to other areas of their lives, such as academics or social situations, where confidence and self-assuredness can be valuable assets.

Promoting
Critical Thinking

Writing creatively requires young people to think critically and analyze their own work. This helps them develop their critical thinking skills, which is needed in a wide range of academic and professional pursuits.

Writing used to be something that was just work; something we have to do at school. However, now it's a way for me to express different things, and it's much more enjoyable now that there is a place where everyone has the same passion for writing that I do.

Anna

Student

I feel like if I hadn't taken Girls Rising, I wouldn't have become a better writer, and I wouldn't have met some friends who have changed my life.

Xanthe

Student

The quality of teaching is superb. The teachers have the chance to get to know each child, and due to the small class size, the feedback is very specific. Also, witnessing the other children critique the writing is remarkable - the children are kind and respectful, but very honest.

Lori

Parent

I really appreciate the fact that every every student has a voice in their class. They trust each other and they listen to each other. All of this is happening because Uptown Stories has created a community of learners where everyone learns from each other.

Nina

Parent

Thanks to [Uptown Stories], a passing interest has become a passion.

Gerry

Parent

I love the teachers, love the community, have made SO many new friends. I feel like I can express myself through writing, and I couldn’t do that before. Everyone should be a part of Uptown Stories!

Isabella

Student

My daughter’s writing has improved tremendously. She loves writing now. She can sit for hours and let her imagination fly.

Annie

Parent

I would not be the writer I am today without Uptown Stories.

Elias

Alumnus