Motherhood & Words

I can’t believe fall is right around the corner. Everyone (Stella, Zoë, D.) will be back in school next week, which will be disorienting. But I’ll have time to finish the revision (please, please) and gear up for my fall classes, all of which I’m really excited about.

This is what I’ll be teaching:

Mother Words – 10 week class at the Open Book, Minneapolis
Tuesdays, 1-3 p.m. Sept. 28 – Dec. 7 (No class Nov. 23)

Whether you are a new mom or a veteran, whether you gave birth to or adopted your child, in this class you’ll learn how to take birth and motherhood stories and turn them into art. We’ll talk about the use of humor and explore ways to capture funny motherhood anecdotes on paper. We’ll also discuss and write about the heartbreak and loss that are part of motherhood. Weekly writing exercises will focus on telling details, character development, and strengthening your reflective voice. You can expect to generate two to three creative nonfiction pieces. The instructor will provide feedback on up to 10 pages of student writing (typed and double spaced) in addition to pieces shared and workshopped in class. Course packets will be available for a copy fee on the first day of class.

For more information and to register, visit the Loft.

Introduction to Creative Nonfiction – 8 week class at the Open Book, Minneapolis
Tuesdays, Oct. 12 – Dec. 7, 7:30 – 9:30 p.m. (No class Nov. 23)

Memoirist Patricia Hampl says, “I don’t write about what I know, but in order to find out what I know.” Writing is an act of discovery. In this class, you will have an opportunity to write and reflect, go deep into your writing to find out what you know. You will develop an eye for seeing the true story in your writing. Assigned readings and writing exercises will be focused on telling details, creating a sense of place, developing strong characters and strengthening your reflective voice. Students will have an opportunity to receive supportive, constructive feedback from class members and the teaching artist through weekly sharing and one workshop.

To register, please visit the Loft.

Blogging: A Tool for Writers – Open Book, Minneapolis
Saturday, Oct. 9, 1 – 3 p.m.

In this one-day workshop, we will explore the benefits of blogging for writers. We will discuss issues of audience and voice, and how to use a blog to help build your platform and cultivate a readership for print publications. Participants will leave with a better sense of how a blog can help further their writing careers and with a page of blog resources and tips for how to start and maintain a successful blog.

To register, please visit the Loft.

I’m also taking registrations for my winter online Mother Words class, which will begin in February, 2011. And there are still a few spots left for the Mother Words Retreat, which will be held February 24-27 at Faith’s Lodge. For more information about either of these, visit my website or contact me.

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I have been teaching creative writing for almost twenty years. Reading about other women’s lives and experiences has expanded my world. To be able to walk in someone else’s shoes, whether it’s for a moment or an hour or a few days, is an incredible gift, providing me with insight into the human experience. It takes courage to write your truths, especially if it doesn’t seem as though anyone cares, as though anyone is listening. Let me tell you: your stories matter, I’m listening, and I’m here to help you find the heart of those truths, to get them down on the page, to craft them, and to send them out into the world. Together, we will change the world, one story at a time.


  1. Mary on August 26, 2010 at 11:44 pm

    Ooooh — once again I wished I lived closer so I could take some (all!) of these fall classes.

    Sadly I can't make the retreat this year — family trip to Hawaii to celebrate Paul's parents 70th birthdays — but I just might sign up for the winter online class. I was hoping you'd be offering it again soon.

  2. 6512 and growing on August 27, 2010 at 10:39 am

    Do you ever teach online courses?

    I am offering my first (in person) writing classes this fall and realizing that even the teacher needs teaching!