Writing Requirements


The Writing Department welcomes all eligible applicants who are interested in writing creatively in an inspiring and supportive environment. All classes are accessible to all skill levels.

We are not looking for perfection. We want to hear your voice. The application is not a test and there are no right answers. Grammar and spelling are important, but just as important is your own unique relationship to language and the courage to be yourself on the page.

Prepare your application with thoughtful attention. We want to be sure that what we see on the page is what you want us to see.


All assignments must be typed or neatly hand-written, and on separate pages. All entries must be typed in 12 pt. font, with 1-inch margins. No fancy fonts. Include your name and the proper assignment letter (A, B, C, or D) on each page.

A. What writing means to you: Write a short reflective piece that addresses the following: What role do you want writing to play in your life? Why do you write? What kind of writing excites you most? Who are some pieces of writing that have inspired you? What are your favorite forms (short stories, novels, poetry, comic books, film/tv) and why? (Limit: 500 words/double-spaced.)

B. Original Writing: Chose one and only one of the following prompts:
1. Prose Fiction: Write a short story in any genre about a character who is certain about who they are discovering something new about themselves, and the consequences of that discovery. (Limit 700 words/double-spaced.)
2. Dramatic Writing: Write a two-person scene in play, screenplay, or comic book format in which one character tries to get something from another character. (Limit: 3 pages)
3. Spoken Word Poetry: Record the performance of a spoken word piece that responds to the question “What does it mean to be brave?” (Limit: 2 minutes)
4. Poetry: Write a poem that is an act of forgiveness. (Limit: 2 Pages/single spaced)

C. Writing sample: Share a piece you wrote on your own. The work can be fiction, dramatic writing (play, screen play, or comic book), spoken word poetry, or poetry. Excerpts from longer works are acceptable. Please do not include school assignments. (Limit: 4 pages/double-spaced for prose, single spaces for poetry, or screenplay/play format.)

D. Returning Student Statement: If you previously attended CSSSA, upload your answer to the following question: What did you learn from your time at CSSSA? How and in what ways has your writing grown since leaving CSSSA? What do you plan to do with your four weeks if you return? (Limit: 500 words / double spaced.)


Parents and teachers are not to edit or collaborate with the writer.

Assignments will be uploaded once the application is complete. Please save your assignments with your first initial and last name followed by the appropriate letter for each of the submissions. For example, John Smith would save his work as follows: