Current Courses

Fall 2019

The Beautiful Grotesque:  Exploring the Beauty and Monstrousness of Horror

Instructor: Victoria Dalpe

Students in this four-week class will read and discuss horror by and about women, using it as the launching point for writing their own dark fiction. Classes will include discussion, inspirational exercises, outlining, writing and critiquing. At the end of the course each student will have produced a finished, submission-ready, horror tale of their own.

Course Texts may include “Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?” by Joyce Carol Oates, “The Husband Stitch” by Carmen Maria Machado, “Stone Animals” by Kelly Link and “The Yellow Wall-paper. A Story” by Charlotte Perkins Gilman.

Dates: Mondays, September 30th to October 21st

Time: 6:30pm to 9:00pm

Location: School One

Tuition: $160

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Writing for the Diaspora

Instructor:  Rachel Hughes

Students interested in writing Afro-futurism and speculative fiction about and for people from the African diaspora will participate in guided writing exercises, in-class readings, and storytelling in the tradition of a displaced people dependent on their oral histories during this one-day workshop. Students will also take part in meditative sound exercises to explore the Swahili concepts of Sasa and Zamani.

Books referenced will include but are not limited to Black Quantum Futurism by Rasheedah Phillips, Brown Girl in the Ring by Nalo Hopkinson, and Kindred by Octavia E. Butler.

Date: Sunday, October 6

Time: 12:00pm to 5:00pm

Location: What Cheer Writers Club

Tuition: $65

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Madeleines to Umami:  Essays and Poetry on Food and Memory

Instructor: Christina Liu

Food is metaphor and sustenance, forbidden and revered. Students in this one-day workshop will produce poems and/or essays that approach the world through the universal lens of food while also taking time to revel in the work of notable food writers such as Anthony Bourdain, Julia Child, and Martin Yan. Classwork may include writing while engaging the five senses, experiencing synesthesia in poetry and memories, and eating and writing mindfully. This class is for writers of both poetry and prose, beginners and those with more experience.

Date: Sunday, October 20

Time: 10:00am to 2:00pm

Location: What Cheer Writers Club

Tuition: $65

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Persistence in Practice: Creating a Sustainable Writing Life

Instructor: Amy Lewis

Are you stuck? Have trouble getting started? Finishing?

The biggest challenges we face as writers are often not questions of craft or business, but of time and energy. Your creative life is not a separate life, but rather part of the one you already have. This course will give you specific tools and resources to help you build and maintain a creative practice that can sustain you, no matter what life throws at you.

This is a class about defining your own process, looking hard at what you’re doing, and implementing tangible changes, for tangible results. The course uses in-class writing and out-of-class assignments that are designed to help you not smash down barriers to writing, but to build ladders to scale them. Please note, this class does not incorporate workshopping and is focused on process, not generative writing, though work is often created during it.

Dates: Mondays, October 28 to December 2

Time: 6:30pm to 9:00pm

Location: School One

Tuition: $250

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Speculative Fiction

Instructor: Amanda Kallis

In this course, students will read and write fiction that doesn’t follow the rules of this world. Expect alien encounters, imagined technologies, mind-bending time narratives, and girls raised by wolves. Students will develop skills that are important to writing in any genre (characterization, plot, setting, strong sentences, and point of view) while also investigating the special challenges of writing science fiction and fantasy, like convincing world-building, all while exploring the broad spectrum of speculative fiction, from magical realism to space opera. This workshop is for fans and writers of science fiction and fantasy and those who are looking to try something new.

Reading may include “Bloodchild” by Octavia Butler; “The Husband Stitch” by Carmen Maria Machado; “Memory Wall” by Anthony Doerr; “Story of Your Life” by Ted Chiang; “The Man Who Lost the Sea” by Theodore Sturgeon; “St. Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised by Wolves” by Karen Russell; “The Standard Loneliness Package” by Charles Yu; “The Ceiling” by Kevin Brockmeier; “26 Monkeys” by Kij Johnson.

Dates: Mondays, November 18 to December 9

Time: 6:30pm to 9:00pm

Location: School One

Tuition: $160

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