TUESDAYS, JAN. 5 — FEB. 9 | Even when we aren’t traveling, we can still travel through our memories of past trips. And there’s never been a better time than now to reflect on a journey you’ve already taken and put it on the page. In this six-session virtual workshop, you’ll write and revise a personal travel essay, from vague idea to final draft, and take steps to get it published. Along the way, you’ll learn the essentials of narrative travel writing, including structure, setting, characterization, and story arc. You’ll develop and strengthen your writing voice, awaken your senses, and come to recognize your juiciest, most compelling material. In addition to writing and revising your own essay, you’ll have the opportunity to study published pieces and discuss what made these essays shine. You’ll learn not only what an editor looks for in a story submission, but also gain the invaluable skill of viewing your own writing with an editor’s eye in order to make difficult but essential revisions. We’ll discuss the business of travel writing and the ethics of creative nonfiction, and we’ll go over tips for submitting writing and working with editors. You’ll come away with a list of print and online publication outlets, plus plenty of ideas and inspiration for future projects.
If you’ve ever aspired to being a travel writer, consider this your passport. Essays written in prior sessions of this course have been chosen for anthologies such as Lonely Planet’s An Innocent Abroad, Harvard Bookstore’s Around the World, and Travelers’ Tales The Best Travel Writing, The Best Women’s Travel Writing, and Wake Up and Smell the Shit.
This class will meet on Zoom. Registered students, please contact the instructor directly for Zoom details.
Lavinia Spalding is an award-winning writer and editor. She is the six-time series editor of The Best Women’s Travel Writing, author of Writing Away: A Creative Guide to Awakening the Journal-Writing Traveler, and co-author of With a Measure of Grace and This Immeasurable Place. She introduced the e-book edition of Edith Wharton’s classic travelogue, A Motor-Flight Through France, and her work appears in such publications as AFAR, Longreads, Tin House, Yoga Journal, Sunset, AirBnB magazine, Ms., Post Road, Inkwell, The Bold Italic, Westways, San Francisco magazine, The San Francisco Chronicle, and The Guardian, and has been widely anthologized. Lavinia is a member of The Writers Grotto and Peauxdunque Writers’ Alliance. When she isn’t teaching writing workshops around the world, she lives with her family in New Orleans and on Cape Cod.
Number of sessions: 6
Dates: Tuesdays, January 5, 12, 19, 26; February 2, 9
Time: 6:00 pm-8:30 pm Pacific Time
Course fee: $395