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Three students in the University of Wyoming Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing Program are leading writing workshops at the Wyoming Girls’ School in Sheridan.
First-year MFA students Maria Anderson of Three Forks, Mont.; Carly Fraysier from Barre, Vt.; and Randall Tyrone of Houston, Texas, presented two workshops in January to girls between the ages of 14-18. The final workshop is Friday, Feb. 6.
Anderson, a fiction writer; Fraysier, a nonfiction writer; and Tyrone, a poet, assembled a packet of short stories, essays and poems for the girls to read. The reading materials guide discussion of how both reading and writing can be used to help an individual work through suffering.
"Working with these girls has been fantastic,” says Anderson. “The Wyoming Girls' School is a really nurturing and exciting place, and the girls were motivated to learn and to experiment with us as we talked about different texts and did some prompt-based free writing.”
Anderson says that she spoke about whimsy and repetition; Fraysier talked about wounds that can morph and bloom; and Tyrone contributed poems and raps to the discussion. They hope to do more teaching at the school this summer.
The Wyoming Girls’ School is a therapeutic and educational facility for the treatment of court-ordered delinquent girls, ages 12-21 years. The program teaches youth to take personal accountability for their actions and develop socially responsible values in preparation for a successful transition back to their families and communities.
Three other MFA students will read from their original works Friday, Feb. 6, at 7 p.m. at Night Heron Books, located at 107 E. Ivinson in Laramie. They are fiction writer Ryan Oberhelman of Laramie; poet Jeff Tatay from Mishawaka, Ind.; and nonfiction writer Jess White of Menlo Park, Calif. All three are first-year MFA students.
The event is free and open to the public.