Camp Nitty-Gritty

Where Should I Go?

Mount Mary University

2900 North Menomonee River Parkway, Milwaukee, WI 53222
We meet in Notre Dame Hall which is the main building facing Menomonee River Parkway.  We will have someone in front of the building to meet you and direct the camper to our room. Please pick up in the same place at 2:30  


Wilson Center for the Arts

19805 W. Capitol Dr, Brookfield, WI 53045
We meet in the Multipurpose Studio inside the center. Please walk your camper into the building and check him/her in with our staff member. Please pick up at the front doors at 2:30.


When Should I Arrive?

Camp Hours: 9:00 am – 2:30 pm  (Please arrive no earlier than 8:45 each morning.)

If you must reach us during camp hours, please call Kim’s cell 414-881-7276. If no one answers, please leave a message or text. (The Wilson Center and Mt. Mary are not affiliated with our camp and won’t be able to answer your questions.)

What should I bring?

See “Red Oak Creative Writing Camp Checklist”

What will the days “look like?” 

On the first day, we’ll begin with some icebreakers to help us get comfortable.

Following some exercises to get our ideas flowing, we’ll settle into a sustained period of writing. (We like to call it our “sacred” writing time, and it usually takes place outdoors, weather permitting.)  During this time, writers are free to expand upon the writing they began in our exercises or explore another genre or writing project of their choice.

Lunch is eaten outside (again, weather permitting) with time for campers to stretch their legs and socialize.

Most afternoons are dedicated to small Writers’ Circles in which campers share a portion of the writing they have done for the day. Others in the group provide supportive feedback and give ideas for revision. Many campers say this is their favorite part of camp.

In addition, we sprinkle in some hands-on activities and “out of the box” thinking exercises to stretch the creative sides of our minds.

By the end of the week, we will ask our writers to choose one of their pieces-in-progress to include in our camp anthology. They will turn in this piece either as hard copy or send it via email.  Campers will read a portion of this piece in our Writers’ Showcase on Friday afternoon. Participation is optional but encouraged. (Please tell your parents/friends to mark their calendars and join us! All are welcome.) *Camp will dismiss immediately following the Showcase on Friday, usually around 1:15 or 1:30.

A note about cell phones and other technology: Camp is a time to focus on your writing, the other participants and the writing coaches. During camp hours, technology should be turned off and in a backpack (unless you are composing on a laptop). Red Oak accepts NO RESPONSIBILITY for any electronics brought to camp.