There are several excellent writers' workshops, Breadloaf being the most famous. I have attended the Kenyon Writers' Workshop and found it exhilerating. Yesterday I sent in my application to the Sewanee writers' workshop.
What do I hope to get from a workshop?
First, and most importantly, I get the opportunity to write. For two weeks I hope to be in the mountain campus of University of the South in Tennessee where I'll discuss the craft and profession of writing with professors and fellow authors. Away from the distractions of tv and cell phones, I will - as my buddy James Iredell put it - hermitize myself, and devote myself full time to something I normally squeeze into thirty minutes or so before I go to work each morning - writing.
Writing workshops are also a great place to - here comes that awful word - network. The greatest resource writers have is other writers. At Kenyon I met people whom I continue to value as friends. My teacher and mentor at Kenyon, Nancy Zafris, (The People I Know, Lucky Strike and Metal Shredders) was gracious enough to write a blurb for my first book, Days of the Endless Corvette, as well as for Paradise Dogs. I also met Michael Griffith (Bibliophilia and Spikes) who wrote a lovely blurb for Paradise Dogs.
These are just two of the lovely people I got to know at Kenyon.
I can hardly wait for Sewanee.