Learning Communities in the Residence Halls
One of Emerson’s oldest and most applied Learning Communities is the Writers’ Block. Housed on the 9th floor of Piano Row, participation is open to students from all majors and writing levels. Writers’ Block meets in relaxed settings to discuss literature, workshop projects, and experience the dynamic literary culture of Boston. The workshop caters to the needs of the group, using a fluid approach to both creative and academic writing. In recent years, students have used Writers’ Block as a supplement to their Introduction to Writing and Research Writing courses. Writers’ Block is home to writers of fiction, poetry, stage and screenplays, nonfiction, essays, and experimental literature.
The workshop culminates with the spring semester production of The Writers’ Block Anthology, an annual literary publication, which showcases the creative talents of the Learning Community. The anthology also allows for student artists, photographers, and graphic designers to engage with the writers for a colorful, amalgamated publication unlike any other on campus.
Writers’ Block focuses on developing student writing on the basis of literary immersion. The Learning Community will often organize trips to readings, bookstores around the city, and institutions like the MFA or ICA to expose students to the cultural milieu of Boston. Open mic nights and reading groups allow students to demonstrate their work in a supportive environment.
All suites on the 9th floor of the Piano Row Residence Hall are typically assigned to the Writers' Block Learning Community. Should more people apply and be approved than can live on the 9th floor, additional housing for Writers' Block–approved students may also be provided on the 10th floor.
“I wasn't going to apply for Writers' Block because I didn't think I'd be up to par with the other students, but I'm so glad I did. We've created a community full of people who generally care about one another. My Writers' Block friends are super supportive and they push me to be both a better person and writer. I don't know how drastically different my college experience would have been without Writers' Block, but I don't want to imagine that."