Just Buffalo’s Writing Center (JBWC) is a FREE, after-school creative writing space where young writers, artists, and thinkers (ages 12-18) find community and inspiration through the literary arts. We provide one-on-one writing feedback, workshops, and platforms for young writers to share their work and talents!
We’re typically open each Tuesday & Thursday during the school year. Our doors open at 3:30pm, and workshops begin at 4:30pm. During Drop-In Hours, you’re welcome to join your peers for the scheduled writing meet-up, or to hang out in the independent writing/reading room to write, read, and get one-on-one feedback on anything you’re working on.
"JBWC is honestly one of the greatest resources I've come across for young writers and I'm so glad I did."
"The first time I read one of my poems out loud I felt powerful. I felt like after years of sitting in solitude, I was finally free to voice my thoughts and dreams. JBWC gave me that power."
"The JBWC is an atmosphere filled with open minds and curiosity. Peers at the JBWC are always willing to listen. Each of us come from different backgrounds but we all come together to exchange stories. I am constantly inspired by the other young artists at the center and spending time with them pushes me to become more confident in my writer identity."
“The JBWC provides a friendly atmosphere for young writers to express themselves freely, without judgment.”
"I can't imagine a better incubator for creativity."
"Learning new forms of communication, getting into college, performing, publishing: Just Buffalo has assisted so many young people in finding success. Without Just Buffalo, I would have never thought this passionate hobby could be something more; they inspire and motivate."
"Before coming here I had never let anyone outside of my family read my writing. The JBWC gave me new ways to look at my stories and helped me develop new techniques."
"For me, Just Buffalo’s Writing Center acts as a second home. It's a vibrant community of young writers and artists that has given me opportunities to grow and share my art in ways I never would have thought to be possible."
"Just Buffalo encourages young writers to explore the arts and hone their craft, but more importantly it is an unconditionally welcoming community. The ages of 12-18 have always been a tumultuous time, but now more than ever teens need a place to make connections where they are accepted unreservedly. Just Buffalo does all that while keeping the culture of writing & reading alive and well in Buffalo."
"It's an amazing program with a kind of access to working writers of all stripes that exceeds what is available at many writing colleges. It's made her a better person and given her great relationships."
"At a time when opportunities for young people to express themselves seem to grow slimmer, the JBWC is a place that offers hope because, whatever race, class, or identity, we come together and create—all inhibitions are gone."
"There's always something fun for you to do, whether crafting poetic lines together, trying your hand at comics or filmmaking, or getting inspired to revisit an old writing piece from when you were 12."
"The JBWC has challenged my daughter intellectually, and helped her gain confidence and become a more expressive writer."
"Without Just Buffalo, I might never have laid the foundation necessary for me to start growing into the writer that I need to become. I might never have learned how communal the practice and art of writing is and the true impact that it has on others-- from the individual to massive social movements. I might never have been able to discover and find confidence in my own voice."
"Just Buffalo is an organization that wants to see youth succeed; they give us incredible opportunities, prepare us for college, help us find a place in the world once we have to leave the nest."
"I come to JBWC because it is the only place for me to connect with other writers. Before coming here I had never gotten an opinion or even let anyone outside of my family read my writing. They gave me new ways to look at my stories and helped me develop new techniques while writing. At JBWC...I am encouraged to dig deeper and find the heart of the story."
"When I first came to a JBWC workshop, I was shy and anxious at the thought of sharing my writing. Spending time at the JBWC has encouraged me to perform my writing at events. The center has provided me with the resources, support, and opportunity to grow as a writer. I believe that my experiences at the JBWC will positively influence me for life."
"When I first heard about the Writing Center, I wasn’t sure it was for me. Since my first time stopping in, I’ve had a much stronger urge to write and have been attending the meetings now to be around people I can learn new things from. It’s been super welcoming as a new writer. After just a few months of attending, I’ve had 3 poems published. Someone called me a poet the other day and my first thought was, “I guess I am a poet now!”
"Because of the JBWC, I am a global citizen. I can think and write outside my comfort zone, to speak about issues larger than myself."
"The JBWC is a lively, diverse, collaborative community of young people with amazing ideas and voices all their own."
“The JBWC introduced me to other people with similar interests. Now I actually have people who will listen to all my crazy ideas.”
Your voice matters. At the JBWC, we get you. Come share your ideas. Tell your story on the page, on stage, or just one-on-one.
Come learn different ways of writing. From poetry and prose to comics, songwriting, and so much more. Come find the words you’ve been looking for.
Come be whoever you want to be in a safe and supportive space. Our doors—and minds—are open to you.
Come make friends! You’ll meet creative people just like you and all different types of writers—famous novelists, journalists, local poets, songwriters, and book artists.
Come to feel inspired. Come to laugh. Come for the snacks. Whatever your reason, just come!
Registration is NOT required for our youth writing workshops. From Tuesday to Thursday at 4:30 p.m., anyone can show up for the workshops.
Writing workshops take place on Tuesdays to Thursdays between 4:30 p.m.–5:30 p.m. Wednesdays are open workshop sessions where anyone can drop in and get one-on-one assistance with any kind of writing.
Of course! Anyone that needs one-on-one help will be accommodated as much as possible.
Check out the best works written by Just Buffalo Writing Center students from over the years in our annual anthology of student writing.
Order a poem on a topic of your choosing and support Buffalo’s next generation of literary voices. All poems are written by students of the Just Buffalo Writing Center.
Are you interested in becoming a Just Buffalo teaching artist? Find out what it takes to get involved in our creative writing workshops.
Want to help guide young writers? Sign up to work with teens 12–18 on writing and more during open hours at the JBWC.
Virtual via Zoom
Just Buffalo Writing Center
468 Washington Street, 2nd Floor
Buffalo, NY 14203
Tuesdays & Thursdays | 3:30 p.m.–6:00 p.m.
Youth Writing Workshops begin at 4:30 p.m.
All workshops are FREE, aimed at young writers aged 12–18, and limited to 12 participants.