Upcoming classes: Memoir
WEDNESDAYS, JANUARY 9 —FEBRUARY 20 | The goal of this course is to help you draft, structure, and polish a multi-scene, 1,200-1,500 word memoir. Expect weekly reading and writing assignments. We will begin with narrative prompts and then move quickly towards workshops and revision. While the class is geared towards creating stand-alone pieces, it is also a great place to create the foundation for a larger memoir project.
Kristen Cosby is a freelance writer, editor, and educator. Her writing has received support from the Jan Michalski Foundation, Can Serrat, the Corporation of Yaddo, the MacDowell Artist Colony, and the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, and garnered the Normal Prize in Nonfiction and a Pushcart Prize Special Mention.→ READ MORE
WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 16 | Big challenges can spark writing that is personal, meaningful and cathartic. As a seriously ill patient as well as a caregiver for my mom, I channeled my grief into a book project and writing assignments (to help pay the bills and avoid going crazy) – often using humor. The writing you create in this class will help kick start your writing process and give you tools for processing your grief. All writing levels and genres are welcome.
We’ll read from the masters, Oliver Sacks and Joan Didion, and do our own generative short exercises to explore how to find points of entry into personal experiences of loss.
MONDAYS, FEBRUARY 4 —MARCH 11 | Need some structure and community to keep writing? If you’re looking to generate pages and gain insight into your project – whether fiction, memoir, personal essay, narrative nonfiction, or some combination thereof – set aside five Monday evenings this winter. You’ll find a supportive community designed to foster productivity and good writing habits. We’ll address specific craft issues as they come up, and I will be available for meeting one-on-one. You’ll have the opportunity to meet in small groups for feedback (with specific guidance), if you choose. Homework assignments are designed to help you meet your goals, wherever you may be in the process.→ READ MORE
SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 9 | Whether you’re writing about your own life in memoir or personal essay, or developing characters and situations for a fictional plot, imagery brings your material to life. Effective imagery goes far beyond flowery description to reveal character, mood, context, tone, setting, and theme. In this one-day intensive, we’ll explore how to make imagery work for you on the page. We’ll use exercises of intuition and right-brain association to harvest images, and we’ll look at how to choose and shape those images. Analyzing the uses of imagery in published pieces will help you cultivate your own voice and technique.→ READ MORE
TUESDAYS, FEBRUARY 12 — MARCH 12 | In this class, we’ll dive in to workshopping personal essays after a brief review of the form and reading some examples. We’ll work on structure, tone, voice, scenes, effective beginnings and endings, and how to create a narrative arc in a few pages. If you’re an experienced writer but haven’t written personal essays, or have some experience with essays but are not yet published, this is a great class for you, but it is limited to people who already have a writing practice and want to take their work to the next level with constructive (and never mean) feedback.