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The Lighthouse at night during Lit Fest InDupree, a short story writer, and her husband, poet Mike Henry, were in Boston straight out of graduate school teaching at local universities.
So the writers decided they could reach a broader audience by offering their own workshops with no minimum GPA requirement or course load.
The only requirement was a desire to write. They were quickly able to recruit writers from diverse backgrounds to build a community support group for writing, which proved to the husband-and-wife team that there is an audience for independently run workshop classes.
After they saw success in Boston, they decided to bring the concept to Denver in They began with two workshops at Denver Public Library, with featured about 50 people in attendance. Mike and Andrea co-facilitated these initial workshops and urged participants to take their first, somewhat undefined creative writing workshop.
The first such workshop had four members. The next had two. Then it was back to four again. By the end of the fourth workshop, Lighthouse had a core group of writers. Securing the nonprofit route Lighthouse was founded as a LLC.
But at the same time, the concept nicely aligned with that of a nonprofit. We felt that we had hit our max in what we could do as an organization, yet we were still growing. Dupree says that was the big turning point for the organization. This year, about 5, writers will attend a workshop or event at Lighthouse.
Membership is growing at a steady clip of about 25 percent a year. Dupree says that the spirit of those early workshops is alive and well at Lighthouse today. Writers are writing the stories they are meant to write. Workshop participants are publishing books, winning awards and even seeing their novels turned into movies.
While much of its core membership base is located in Colorado, writers from all over the country come to Denver to participate in a workshop.
Aspiring writers have embraced this more affordable and job-friendly alternative to the academic route. Going forward, Dupree says Lighthouse is focused on smart, sustainable growth. In addition, they are looking to get even more involved in the Denver arts community.Business Writing.
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