Upcoming classes: Career Skills
SATURDAY, APRIL 15 | Every published writer should have a website where readers can go to find out more about you and your work, but not all publishers will set one up for you. Creating one for yourself might be intimidating, but the web offers a wealth of resources that make creating your own site easy — and even fun.
This three-hour workshop will cover the basics of setting up your author website, whether you’re working on a shoestring budget or you have a little money to spend. We’ll go through the following topics:
- How to set up your own web address
- How to choose a web host
- Mapping out what you want on your site
- How to integrate other social media, such as Twitter
- The benefits and drawbacks of having a website versus a Facebook page
Beth Winegarner is a journalist and author.→ READ MORE
SUNDAY, APRIL 30 | This one-day workshop will give you the tools to help get your voice heard, whether writing opinion pieces or doing local reporting. In challenging times, it’s important to write as an act of resistance. Over the course of the day we will help you:
- Identify issues you care most about and how to focus on them
- Figure out what you have to say about those causes, how to report them, and how to write about them
- Talk about what makes an engaging, readable opinion piece or essay
- Connect with other people who are interested in writing as resistance
- Look at potential places to be published to get your voice heard
Special guest Tim Redmond has 30 years’ experience as a San Francisco investigative reporter and editor, mainly at the San Francisco Bay Guardian and more recently at the daily digital local newspaper, 48 Hills.→ READ MORE
SUNDAY, APRIL 30 & MAY 7 | Whether you have a half-written piece tucked away in a drawer, or a new story fresh out of the printer, this highly interactive, two-session workshop will give you concrete tools to strengthen your work and publish it. We’ll talk about revision as a process of “re-envisioning,” and you’ll learn how to accomplish this in do-able steps. You’ll have the chance to step back and look at your piece, assess where it would benefit from more work, and select among different in-class revision exercises to get the process going.→ READ MORE
SUNDAY, MAY 7 | Make your voice and your point of view heard! This day-long workshop will cover everything you need to know to write a persuasive OpEd piece, whether for newspapers, blogs, or other venues. We’ll talk about how to write about what you’re passionate about in order to enlighten readers or change people’s minds. We will cover the nuts and bolts of what makes a good, compelling OpEd piece, and take a look at some examples. We will also look at where and how to get your OpEd published.
Laura Fraser is a longtime journalist, Grotto member, and New York Times-bestselling memoirist.→ READ MORE
TUESDAYS, MAY 9 & 23 | Are your writing ideas (not to mention to-do lists and appointments) on a mess of Post-it notes, random online apps that you never use, and crumpled paper napkins? Do you forget, lose, and spend too much time looking for things? This class will introduce the bullet journal – a handwritten, analog “everything book” to plan for your future, organize your present, and track your past. Many of us writers are “creative types” with messy desks that can sometimes hinder more than help our creative life.
This class will take part in two sessions.→ READ MORE
SATURDAY, MAY 27 | These days, it seems almost impossible to figure out whether a news article comes from a trustworthy source or was written by money-grubbing teenagers from Macedonia. When legitimate news sources resort to click-bait headlines to compete with sensationalist media sites, how do you know what to believe?
Whether you’re a journalist, a writer inspired by current events, or someone who wants to be better informed, this workshop will give you the tools you need to tell the difference between outright fake news, propaganda and “alternative facts,” satire, and legitimate reporting. You’ll also learn how to do some quick, easy fact-checking of your own so you won’t wind up spreading links that seem truthy but really aren’t.→ READ MORE
SUNDAY, MAY 28 | Breaking into the world of freelance writing can seem mysterious and downright impossible at the outset. How will you make enough money? If you currently have a job, how do you transition into full-time freelancing? When can you take the plunge? Where will you find clients? How will you successfully pitch to publications, especially if you don’t have a portfolio?
It took me several years of pitfalls, wrong turns, financial struggling, over-caffeinated meltdowns, and learning on the job to successfully make it as a freelance writer. In this one-day bootcamp, I will teach you the fundamentals of how to successfully begin freelancing for a variety of publications including magazines, newspapers, websites, and other forms of paid writing and editing work.→ READ MORE
SATURDAY, JUNE 3 | Point of view is one of the most essential aspects of imaginative writing. In fact, perspective is everything in narration, but writers sometimes place the narrator without understanding the implications of the choice they’ve made. In this one-day class, we’ll talk about POV options—the use of first, second, or third person as well as the manipulation of narrative distance and its impact on characterization across the genres of fiction, creative nonfiction, and even poetry. We’ll identity common POV “violations” and look at published examples, and we’ll respond to some writing prompts in class to experiment with POV.→ READ MORE