First Draft to Final:
Essay Bootcamp

(NOTE: We are no longer accepting registrations! Stay tuned for future opportunities.)

You’ve got the “shitty first draft” (to quote Anne Lamott) down. You know it isn’t where you want it to be, but now what?

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From your instructor, Chloé Caldwell:

"I know in my own writing life, I have seen my essays go from three pages to twenty-five, or twenty-five to three—each essay is a different ballgame, and there isn’t a one-size fits all. I’ve worked on essays that took only a month to write, while others have taken over a year. Learning the revision techniques I’ll share in this class has changed the game for me and made me a more productive and confident writer and reviser.

In First Draft To Final, we will use different revision strategies including decoupé, the read-aloud, the print-out, with more outside the box techniques announced in class. Structured through Susan Bell’s book The Artful Edit, you will be introduced to challenging and enlightening methods of revision.


Though you will be working with the instructor and the class for accountability and guidance, this is not a workshop class, but an active craft class. Students should arrive with a rough draft between 1200 and 4000 words. Bring your essay draft with you to the bootcamp, both on a laptop and printed out, if possible (but if you don't have access to a printer, no problem!). My goal and hope is that students leave class with a polished draft ready for submission, with the tools and resources ready to submit (I'll be sharing my list of resources of where to submit.)"

What's included:

Three hours in-person with Chloé Caldwell, getting yourself equipped to polish your essay and be ready to submit, using revision techniques used personally by Chloé. Class is small and intimate, limited to 6-8 participants. The Resort will provide snacks and beverages to keep you fueled.

First Draft to Final Bootcamp with Chloé Caldwell
Saturday, September 10, 2022
3pm-6pm IN-PERSON at the Resort in Long Island City, Queens, NYC
(location details will be provided upon registration)

Note for students:

Please bring your essay draft with you, along with proof of Covid vaccination, thank you! Due to small class size, refunds will not be available after September 6th -- in the case of inability to attend due to illness, you may transfer your registration to another writer, or we can offer credit for future Resort offerings.

(NOTE: We are no longer accepting registrations for the Sep 10th class! Stay tuned for future opportunities.)

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Photo by JD Urban

About your instructor: 

CHLOÉ CALDWELL is the author of three books: the essay collection I’ll Tell You in Person (Coffee House/Emily Books, 2016), the critically acclaimed novella, WOMEN (SF/LD 2014 and Harper Collins UK, 2017) and Legs Get Led Astray. Her memoir, The Red Zone: A Love Story published in April 2022 from Soft Skull.


Chloé’s essays have appeared in The New York Times, Bon Appétit, New York Magazine’s The Cut, The Strategist, Buzzfeed, Longreads, Vice, Nylon,, Medium, The Rumpus, Catapult, Hobart, The Sun, Men’s Health, The Nervous Breakdown, and half a dozen anthologies including Goodbye To All That: Writers on Loving and Leaving NYC and Without A Net: The Female Experience of Growing Up Working Class. Her essay “Hungry Ghost” was listed as Notable in 2017 Best American Non Required Reading.


She teaches creative writing online, offers mentorships, and hosts seasonal writing workshops and retreats. She lives in Hudson, N.Y. with her family.

Ready to go from first draft to final?

Your investment for First Draft to Final: Essay Writing Bootcamp is $195. Following your registration, you will receive a welcome email with location details (class will be in Long Island City, NYC, convenient to the 7/E/F/M subway lines). See you in bootcamp!

Questions? Feel free to email

(NOTE: We are no longer accepting registrations for the Sep 10th class! Stay tuned for future opportunities.)