GrubStreet, Inc. is a non-profit creative writing center located in the heart of Boston , Massachusetts . Through various workshops, seminars, events and programs, GrubStreet supports writers at all stages of development. According to GrubStreet’s website, its mission is “to be an innovative, rigorous, and welcoming community for writers who create their best work, find audience, and elevate the literary arts for all.” [1] Since it was founded, 53 instructors and 22 students have successfully published their books. [2] Among those include New York Times Bestselling Author Jenna Blum . GrubStreet is considered to be literary life in Boston. [3]


GrubStreet was founded in 1997 in Boston , Massachusetts. Founder Eve Bridburg opened GrubStreet as a place for anyone interested in creative writing to gain instruction and guidance. At first, GrubStreet only offered fiction workshops, had two instructors (Bridburg one of them) and eight students. GrubStreet published early 1998, HarperCollins published student Jamie Katz’s mystery novel Dead Low Tide . By 2001 GrubStreet had nearly 100 students, a dozen instructors, and races in poetry, screenwriting, nonfiction, and playwriting. GrubStreet became a fully accredited nonprofit in 2002. [3]

Since then, GrubStreet has taught over 10,000 Boston-area writers of all levels and has put over $ 1 million into the pockets of writers. It has a full staffed office overlooking Boston Common in downtown Boston and operates on an annual budget of $ 800,000, funded by grants, donations, and membership dues. New books affiliated with GrubStreet include: Jenna Blum’s “The Stormchasers;” Jonathan Papernick’s “There is No Other;” Lynne Griffin’s “Sea Escape;” Michelle Hoover’s “The Quickening;” Marianne Leone’s “Knowing Jesse;” Bruce Machart’s “The Wake of Forgiveness;” Randy Susan Meyers’s “The Murderer’ s Daughters” and “The Comfort Of Lies”; Amy MacKinnon’s”Tethered”; Lisa Genova ‘s “Still Alice”; and Daphne Kalotay’s “Russian Winter,” Nichole Bernier’s “The Unfinished Work of Elizabeth D,” Julie Wu’s forthcoming The Third Son and Henriette Power’s Lazaridis ‘ forthcoming “Clean Monday.” [2]


GrubStreet does not offer any writing degrees. Rather, it provides writing that is comparable to an MFA program. The pedagogy is, in effect, to offer classes in both the “muse” (inspiration) and “marketplace” (how to get published). The writing workshops — courses in poetry, fiction, essay, narrative nonfiction, as well as screenwriting — are run like traditional writing workshops, with weekly group reviews of student work, led by the instructor. Classes in the Writing Life (time management, blogging, writer ‘s block, etc.) and publishing and promotion. Races can be one-night seminars, weekend workshops,


GrubStreet classes are open to all, however the membership provides discounts and benefits. Members, called “Grubbies,” are given discounts on courses, as well as discounts from all Boston independent bookstores . Further benefits include discounts on theater tickets, magazine subscriptions, free access to the GrubStreet space and library. [4]

Muse & the Marketplace

GrubStreet’s signature event, The Muse and the Marketplace, is a three-day, weekend-long writer’s symposium. It is known for attracting acclaimed authors, agents, and editors to its programs. Hugely successful, the Boston Globe calls it “the highlight of the Boston literary scene”. [5] It is attended by over 900 writers and publishing professionals. [2]

Over the three days, prominent writers lead craft seminars, while agents, editors, and publicists lead sessions on the business aspects of writing. There is also a Manuscript Mart, where writers meet one-on-one with an agent or editor for personalized feedback. Various seminars, lectures, and panels about creative writing and the business of writing are held.

Many bestselling authors and renowned agents have been involved with GrubStreet’s Muse and the Marketplace. In 2010, Chuck Palahniuk was the keynote speaker. Other people of rating include: Steve Almond , Jessica Shattuck Jeanne Leiby, Richard Abate, Elyse Cheney, Lynne Barrett, Martha Southgate, Christina Thompson Jenni Ferrari-Alder Lisa Grubka, Maud Casey , Ben Percy , Miriam Altshuler, PJ Mark, Vestal McIntyre, Michael Downing, Joseph Olsham, Elizabeth Evans, Tim Bartlett, Susan Tiberghien, Lauren Grodstein, Leslea Newman, Arthur Reagan, Regina Brooks, Joanna Volpe, Ann Hood , Allison Winn Scotch, Jennifer Pride, Mitchell, Stephany Evans, Jennifer Waters 8. Lee ,Ethan Gilsdorf , Randolph Ladette, Elizabeth Weed, Rebecca Oliver, Thomas Mallon, Anita Shreve , Pamela Dorman, Julie Barer, Sorche Fairbank, Nathaniel Rich, Pablo Medina , Janna Malamud Smith, Jofie Ferrari-Alder, Denise Shannon, Elizabeth Strout , Michelle Hoover , Janet Silver, Amy Einhorn, Bret Anthony Johnston , Donovan Campbell, Katherine Fausset, Jill Kneerim, Elinor Lipman , Randy Susan Meyers, Jenna Blum , Hallie Ephron , Lynne Griffin, Mameve Medwed , and Katharine Sands. [6] [ better source needed ]


Memoir Project

Working with the city of Boston, Grub Street founded the Memoir Project in 2006, which involves older residents in 10 Boston neighborhoods, including Nantucket , to write. The joint effort aims at teaching and encouraging the elderly to use as a document and preserve their stories for future generations. [2] Neighborhoods involved include: Chinatown, Charlestown, East Boston, Mattapan, Roxbury, South Boston , and the North End . Two anthologies of collected works have been published: Born Before Plastic and “My Legacy Is Simply This: Stories From Boston’s Most Endearing Neighborhoods.” Another anthology is to be published. [2]

Young Adult Writing Program (YAWP)

GrubStreet’s Young Adult Writing Program (YAWP) Boston-area teenagers. The program consists of monthly, 4-hour workshops during Saturday at the downtown offices. Workshops range from poetry and fiction to Grub Street instructors. [7] YAWP has been recognized as the hub for creative writing in the Boston area. [8]

Summer Teen Fellowship

GrubStreet runs the YAWP Teen Writing Fellowship, an intensive two-week creative writing program during the summer. Accepted teens are immersed in the writers’ life of crafting and publishing: they work with published authors, meet with agents and editors, and receive a stipend for their commitment. The YAWP Fellowship is the only one of its kind in the world. About 20 students are accepted each summer. [7]

National Book Prize

The GrubStreet Book Prize is awarded a second year to a writer. As Massachusetts, Vermont, Maine, New Hampshire, Connecticut, and Rhode Island are eligible. Thoughts are the most important criterion, authors publishing with small presses, writers of short stories, and writers of color are encouraged to apply. Winners of the Book Prize each receive $ 1,000 at a book party at Grub Street’s downtown location and co-sponsored by an independent bookstore. Winners will also have a seminar of their choice, with accommodations, travel, and board provided by GrubStreet. Fiction and non-fiction winners are invited as a guest to the next Muse and the Marketplace. [7]

Previous Book Prize winners include:


  • Fiction: Sheri Joseph, Stray ( MacAdam / Cage )
  • Poetry: Linda Gregg , In the Middle Distance ( Graywolf Press )
  • Non-Fiction: Susan Richards Shreve, Warm Springs: Traces of Childhood at FDR Polio Haven ( Houghton Mifflin Harcourt )


  • Fiction: Joshua Furst , The Sabotage Café ( Alfred A. Knopf )
  • Poetry: Rebecca Seiferle , Wild Tongue ( Copper Canyon Press )
  • Non-Fiction: Dinty W. Moore , Between Panic and Desire ( University of Nebraska Press )


  • Fiction: Alan Cheuse , To Catch Lightning ( Sourcebooks )
  • Poetry: Rick Barot, Want ( Sarabande Books )
  • Non-Fiction: Not awarded


  • Fiction: McIntyre Vestal , Lake Overturn ( Harper Perennial )
  • Poetry: Debra Allbery , Finbul-Winter ( Four Way Books )
  • Non-Fiction: Rahna Reiko Rizzuto, The Hiroshima in the Morning ( The Feminist Press )

Affiliated Authors

Writers associated with Grub Street include Steve Almond , Arthur Golden , Margot Livesey , Sue Miller , Susan Orlean , Tom Perrotta , Michelle Hoover, and Ethan Gilsdorf .


  1. Jump up^ “What Is Grub Street?” . Grub Street . Retrieved March 29, 2012 .
  2. ^ Jump up to:e Gardner, Jan (4 July 2010). “Empowering writers” . The Boston Globe . Retrieved 29 March 2012 .
  3. ^ Jump up to:b Miliard, Mike (13 October 2005). “Putting in a good word” . The Phoenix . Retrieved 29 March 2012 .
  4. Jump up^ “join grub street” . Grub Street . Retrieved 29 March 2012 .
  5. Jump up^ McKenna, Kathleen (4 May 2008). “Novices peek at literary world” . The Boston Globe . Retrieved 29 March 2012 .
  6. Jump up^ “The Muse & the Marketplace 2012” . Grub Street . Retrieved 29 March 2012 .
  7. ^ Jump up to:c “Young Adult Writers Program” . Grub Street . Retrieved 29 March 2012 .
  8. Jump up^ Junge, Christine (24 December 2006). “Portrait of the young bards” (PDF) . The Boston Globe . Retrieved 29 March 2012 .