Artist in Residence

I am writer and performer specializing in teaching four aspects of my craft: writing, revision, performance, and publication.

I use a writing technique that easily overcomes the challenges of getting going and writers’ block. Using prompts and exercises, students are able to produce drafts of poems, short stories and essays during the workshop. Assignments vary from freely associative pieces to use of forms, juxtaposed elements, ekphrastic compositions (writing about other art forms), and so on.

My demanding and exciting timed technique allows writers to access the fresh language flowing beneath the surface of the conscious mind and to disengage the inner critic. Depending on the length of each meeting, each student will leave with two to five complete new drafts.

Usually, participants read their pieces aloud, which tends to have a reinforcing, satisfying effect for the reader and creates energy and momentum. This is true even if the group is comprised of two people — instructor and student. Generally, I write along with the students and share my work if time permits. Only positive comments are welcomed during this part of the process.

The secret of good writing is revision. In subsequent sessions, students submit their drafts for review. In my 20-plus years of teaching, I have learned to critique with encouragement and rigor. To revise effectively, students need to be inspired to take on the task and to proceed with clear ideas about expanding, condensing, and polishing their pieces.

I was one of originators of the early ’90s resurgence of spoken word with live music in the New England area. As a seasoned performer in both solo and ensemble presentations, I draw on first-hand experience to coach students in the art of proper articulation, projection, and stage presence. Preparation is the best antidote to stage fright.

Having released two books and three compact discs, as well as having numerous publications in literary magazines, I am well versed in publication requirements. If a student expresses an interest, I will direct her with a step-by-step guide, from cover letter to manuscript preparation to choosing the best journals in which to publish her work.


Ms. Collins has been an artist-in-residence in a variety of settings, ranging from art camps, working with at-risk high school students, university students as well as adults.

As a seasoned performer and full-time artist, Ms. Collins is in a unique position to teach writing, revising and performing, as well as to offer insights into the challenges and rewards of the life of the artist.

Her artist-in-residence programs can be tailored to diverse audiences and may range in duration from one or two days to several weeks. For more information and rates, please contact her at 617.304.2939. She may also be reached by email at

Full bio here.