• Residency Books & Materials

    Common Books 

    Each residency, the faculty select a set of books that all students are expected to read prior to the start of the residency. These books, some of which may be authored by our visiting writers, will serve as a common basis for discussion for lectures and presentations, as well as provide an opportunity to more fully engage with our guest authors. We will also offer separate sessions to discuss the common books in more detail. July 2018 common books coming soon.


    During most mornings of the residency, students will participate in a workshop (each student is assigned in a group with up to 8-10 others) with two faculty advisors. In the workshop, a selection of your work is read and critiqued. Each student will be workshopped once, for about an hour.

    We ask that you send your workshop materials to The CWP Office electronically no later than Monday, June 4.

    You may send in up to 15 double-spaced pages of prose OR one picture-book manuscript. Once we get all pieces, we’ll compile them and email you the copies of others in your workshop group.

    In addition, please include a brief synopsis of your work in a short paragraph at the top of the page. Be sure to identify the genre. If the work is an excerpt from a longer work, include relevant information the readers must know about what has come before.

    As you prepare for sending your workshop material to us (cwp@hamline.edu), please follow these guidelines to ensure everyone is able to open and follow your manuscript:

    • Put your name on the first page at the top, before anything else.

    • When you save your material, please save it as a name that includes your manuscript title (or an abbreviated version) and your last name so that when it shows up as an attachment, we are able to be sure we have everyone's.

    • Please number your pages.

    • Save it only in a Word document or as a pdf. Do not send zip files or any other form. 

    • Send it from your Hamline email account. We will confirm receipt of your materials.


    The required and recommended reading lists are regularly updated. The intent of the required book list is to ensure that students in the MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults program learn how to read as writers, and that they complete the program with a working knowledge of the field of children’s and young adult literature.

    Students are asked to read the entire required book list (120 books) by the end of their third semester in the program. They should read 40 books during each of the first three semesters, ten books per packet per semester (four packets over the course of the semester). The faculty advisor may recommend one or more specific books for the student to read; otherwise, students may select books in any order they wish. 

    Students should write a brief, annotated bibliography for each book they read. This should include the title and 3-5 sentences that address one or two select issues of craft they found most useful for their own writing or for their appreciation of the book.  They should read critically, mining the texts for what they can learn about the craft of writing.  Students include their annotated bibliographies in monthly packets sent to their advisor. 

    These annotated bibliographies, while brief, should address in concrete terms one or more pertinent issues of craft you learned from the book and can apply to your own work. To get a n idea of what we're looking for, see these exemplary submissions.