Loft Literary Center, The

Minneapolis, Minnesota, United States

Year Round


TUITION / COST:sliding fee based on household income

PHONE: 612-215-2575

The Loft supports the artistic development of writers, fosters a writing community and builds an audience for literature. The Loft serves 600,000 individuals each year with classes and festivals for writers at all levels of development; in-person and broadcast readings and spoken word performances featuring national and local writers; programming by and for teens; age specific activities for children and families; and fellowships, mentorships, and career initiative awards for Minnesota writers.

The Loft has offered creative writing classes "where writers learn from other writers" since 1976. More than 4,000 students participate in classes, conferences, and mentorships both at the Loft and online. Readings and performances range from students reading their work for the first time to such notables as Bernard Cooper, Andre Dubus III, Martin Espada, Rita Dove, Sandra Benitez, Mark Doty, Tracy K. Smith, Derek Walcott, Giles Li and Bassey Ipke. The Loft also supports writing and reading discussion groups; rents studios to writers; and offers a wealth of resources and articles on its active website.

Recent and upcoming weekend conferences include Children's and Young Adult Literature and Illustration; Memoir; Nature and Environmental Writing; Mystery, Crime and Thriller; Poetry; Novel Writing; and Graphic Novel Writing and Illustration. Conferences typically draw presenters and attendees from around the region and nation.


Featured Writers Include:

The Loft contracts with 400 teaching artists to offer classes and present at writers' festivals throughout the year. Teaching Artists include winners of the Pushcart Prize, Nimrod International Pablo Neruda Poetry Prize, Native American Prose Award, American Book Award, Academy of American Poets Prize, Hollywood Screenplay Discovery Award, Lambda Literary Award, Edgar Award, American Library Association's Alex Award, Midland Prize, and others. Instructors have also taught at a wide variety of educational institutions, including colleges and universities. Mentors for emerging writers have included prose writers Louise Erdrich, Grace Paley, Charles Baxter, and Michael Ondaatje, and poets Rita Dove, Galway Kinnell, Li-Young Lee, Yusef Komunyakaa, and Gary Soto. Biographies of current teaching artists and mentors, plus applications to become a teaching artist are available at


Poetry, Fiction, Creative nonfiction, Playwriting, Screenwriting, Children's literature


Open Book
1011 Washington Ave S
Ste 200
Minnesota, United States

The Loft Literary Center

Founded in 1974 (incorporated in 1975), The Loft Literary Center is one of the nation's leading literary arts centers. The Loft advances the artistic development of writers, fosters a thriving literary community, and inspires a passion for literature.

Each year the Loft engages more than 3,000 beginning, intermediate and advanced writers in learning opportunities, hosts more than 80 authors in readings and dialogues that draw more than 10,000 people, connects with more than 160,000 unique visitors through digital resources on our website, collaborates with at least 30 local and national organizations to enrich the literary environment and, through contracts, awards, and grants, pays writers more than $400,000.

In their evaluations, 96% of students report that their class helped them improve their writing, 91% identified their next steps as a writer, and 94% would recommend their class to others. Learn more at