Spring 2022 Workshops
Sat, Feb 26 1-3pm on Zoom
With Karen Greco
Intimate scenes can be among the most difficult to write. Whether you are an aspiring romance author or want to include a “steamy scene” in your novel, short story or memoir, this workshop gets down and dirty to get you comfortable with crafting a love scene that rings true to your characters. Bring your work in progress—or an idea of the characters you would like to bring together—so we can start drafting the naughty bits!
Recognizing the sensitive nature of writing intimacy, the workshop strives to create a safe space where writers can open up to the idea of taking their characters through the emotional arc of an intimate moment. As such, writers will not be sharing their work in the group setting - this is purely a process-oriented workshop.
Karen Greco, who writes romance under Elle Greco, writes fiction about badass women (and the people they fall in love with). All the books in her LA Rock Star Series (Heartbreak Beat, Love Song, Songbird, and Fade Into You) have topped the Amazon charts. Readers love their gritty, realistic settings and the angsty romance. In addition to writing steamy romance, she hosts the podcast Steam Scenes, where she talks to fellow romance authors about writing “the naughty bits.”
Sat, March 19 1-3pm on Zoom
With Nancy Agabian
Setting is often an overlooked element of story, especially in memoir and autobiographical fiction. But paying attention to place can help convey cross-cultural experiences of immigration, dislocation, social mobility, and other circumstances impacted by racism and discrimination. This workshop will consider works by Randa Jarrar, Alison Bechdel, Julia Alvarez and Lamtharn Hantrakul to discuss how they use place to break silences of war, colonialism and prejudice. After drawing maps as a way to orient ourselves to the idea of "home” in our writing, we will work with sensory description to prompt memories and to help our settings speak.
Nancy Agabian is the author of Me as her again: True Stories of an Armenian Daughter, a memoir, and Princess Freak, a collection of poetry and performance art texts. Her forthcoming novel, The Fear of Large and Small Nations, was a finalist for the PEN/Bellwether Prize for Socially-Engaged Fiction. She is the 2021 recipient of the Jeanne Cordova Prize for Lesbian/Queer Nonfiction. Nancy has taught community-based creative writing workshops for thirty years, most recently at NYU.
Sat, April 30 1-3pm on Zoom
With Rosalynde Vas Dias
Punctuation works differently in poetry than in the mundane world of work emails and everyday prose. Why do you need to learn about it? Because it’s a great tool for control, texture and mood-tweaking! This isn’t a “rules” course—we’ll be looking at the effect of stops and pauses in the work of master poets such as Louise Gluck, Anne Carson and Brigit Pegeen Kelly, as well as other usual suspects and new arrivals, and chatting about the feel of various marks on the page. You’ll leave this course excited about the always considered, sometimes unorthodox choices you get to make as a poet!
Rosalynde Vas Dias’ poetry has appeared in Crazyhorse, The Cincinnati Review, West Branch, The Pinch, Laurel Review, The Collagist, The Four Way Review and elsewhere. Her first book, Only Blue Body, won the 2011 Robert Dana Award offered by Anhinga Press. She lives in Providence, Rhode Island.
Sat, May 14 1-3pm on Zoom
With Susan Tacent
Every first page—whether story, novel, memoir, essay, or poetry collection —bears a promise and an invitation: Reader, there’s something I need to share with you, something important, that I believe with all my heart you’ll want to know. Powerful writing begins with the first word, and with each subsequent word, hooks readers, making them want to keep going. In this workshop, through writing exercises, discussions, craft presentation, and a look at some amazing beginnings, from authors N.K. Jemisin, Anne Carson, Lydia Davis, Homer, Samanta Schweblin, Bernardine Evaristo, and others, we’ll consider the craft of strong beginnings as well as implications for middles and endings. You’re welcome to bring beginnings from works in progress; expect to come away with at least one new start to a piece.
Susan Tacent’s work appears or is forthcoming in Tin House Online, Michigan Quarterly Review, Blackbird, DIAGRAM, Slice Magazine, Coolest American Stories 2022, Reckoning, and elsewhere. She loves teaching for how much she learns each time she does.