Writing a book has been compared to giving birth.
With both writing and birthing, you are bringing something new and beautiful into the world. To do this well requires tremendous creative energy, along with self-awareness about the fears that might hold you back and the need for helpers and allies in the quest for success.
In this live online workshop series, offered by memoirist and writing teacher Jennifer Browdy and novelist and birth doula Audrey Kalman, you are invited to step into a non-judgmental space where you will feel safe to discover your most tender voice, so that your truest stories can take root and blossom.
Month by month, you will:
- Discover the tools you need to birth your next creative work;
- Develop a powerful internal ally to walk with you on your writing journey;
- Enjoy the collaborative energy of a warm writing community;
- Find the courage you need to tell the story that seeks to come through you.
Each month features a stand-alone master class on a key aspect of the writing process, along with a writers’ circle for sharing and receiving productive feedback on your work, and two office hours for group collaboration and support for the creative process.
Both Jennifer and Audrey also offer individual author coaching and developmental editing for novelists and memoirists.
You can join for the monthly master class alone ($49) or purchase a monthly pass that includes all four sessions ($169). The master class is recorded and shared with registrants in case you can’t make the live session.
In this small and supportive group environment, you will:
- Discover how to apply concepts from the birthing world—such as surrender, facing fears, and working with a doula (coach)—to your writing practice
- Learn how to move beyond the fears that impede your writing journey
- Produce new work during generative writing sessions
- Receive monthly feedback during class from the group and from two seasoned writing teachers
- Find community in a small, supportive group of fellow writers
- Find accountability to the group—and to yourself
When you finish the workshop, you will come away with:
- Deeper knowledge of yourself and your writing process
- A reliable toolkit for tackling fear and uncertainty
- Several thousand words of draft material
- Confidence in your ability to serve as your own writing ally
- A writing community to cheer you on
QUICK LINKS FOR MONTHLY REGISTRATION
(see below for details on content)
|TIME: Pacific||TIME: Eastern||TIME: Atlantic|
|OFFICE HOURS||3 – 4:30||6 – 7:30||7 – 8:30|
The classes and writers’ circles meet on Sundays. Office hours meet twice a month, on a Monday and a Wednesday. Are you somewhere else? Use the Timezone Converter to figure out your starting time.
All sessions meet on live online via Zoom.
Your monthly tuition includes:
- A 90-minute class covering a wide range of writing and revision techniques, as well as questions related to publishing
- Two office hours sessions with the instructors, for informal group sharing about the writing process and any questions that come up
- A 2-hour writers’ circle to share and receive feedback on your work
While you’ll get the most benefit from taking the whole series, you are also welcome to join us for just one month, or to attend master classes only.
SESSION DATES & TOPICS: UPCOMING
SECOND TRIMESTER – Developing the Story
- 2/06, CLASS: Who in the world are you? Finding and cultivating your unique voice. Who is telling your story, and how? What point of view is being used? Whose eyes are we looking through? Explore the narrative strategies other writers have employed and learn how to enliven your work in progress by shifting the way you tell your stories.
- 2/16, Office Hour
- 2/20, Writers’ Circle
- 2/28, Office Hour
- 3/06, CLASS: Show vs. Tell. How can your use of language help readers understand emotion? What do we mean by “show vs. tell?” What’s the right balance of scene vs. narration and dialogue? Explore the use of sense-based writing and putting your words in service of your story.
- 3/16, Office Hour
- 3/20, Writers’ Circle
- 3/28, Office Hour
THIRD TRIMESTER – Laboring and Delivering
- 4/03, CLASS: Narrative Arc – Where is your story going? What is the relationship of plot to character? What prototypical structures (hero/heroine’s journey, 3-act structure, seven steps) might underpin your book? Explore your book’s structure and timeline and different ways to put your book together.
- 4/10, Office Hour
- 4/20, Office Hour
- 4/24, Writers’ Circle
- 5/01, CLASS: Revision–Trusting your most tender voice. Integrating feedback and staying the course through the hard work of revising your writing.
- 5/11, Office Hour
- 5/15, Writers’ Circle
- 5/22, Office Hour
- 6/5, CLASS: Birthing your work into the world. What are the next steps for a writer who has finished their labor and is ready to bring their work out on stage? We’ll discuss various publishing options, the query letter and agent, and your goals for yourself as a published author.
- 6/12, Office Hour
- 6/15, Office Hour
- 6/19, Final Writers’ Circle & Celebration!
SESSION DATES & TOPICS: PAST
FIRST TRIMESTER – Gestating
- 9/26, CLASS: Conception – What is the story asking to be born? What’s your story’s form: fiction, nonfiction? Length? Genre?
- 10/04, Office Hour
- 10/10, Writers’ Circle, Share your writing & received structured, productive, encouraging feedback
- 10/20, Office Hour
- 10/24, CLASS: Characters – Explore issues of character development, point of view, voice, and conflict.
- 11/01, Office Hour
- 11/07, Writers’ Circle, Share your writing & received structured, productive, encouraging feedback
- 11/17, Office Hour
- 11/21, CLASS: Get Inside Your Character’s Head – Master Class on How Psychology Drives Plot. Create rich, living characters that compel readers to keep turning the page. Uncover your character’s personal and family history and lineage. Articulate your character’s burning emotional needs and desires and discover how these drive the plot, scene by scene.
- 11/29, Office Hour
- 12/05, Writers’ Circle, Share your writing & received structured, productive, encouraging feedback
- 12/15, Office Hour
SECOND TRIMESTER – Developing the Story
- 1/09, CLASS: Your Characters in the World. What social and historical landscape do your characters live in? How do you build your characters’ real or fictional world in words?
- 1/19, Office Hour
- 1/23, Writers’ Circle
- 1/30, Office Hour
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Q: Is this class only for women or mothers?
A: Not at all. We are using birth as a metaphor. You need not have direct experience with giving birth to benefit from this class.
Q: Do I have to attend every session?
A: We hope you’ll be able to attend our live sessions to participate in the community, especially during the “second trimester,” when we’ll be sharing our work and giving feedback. However, if you need to miss a class, you will have access to a recording so you can catch up.
We also offer our monthly master class as a standalone. You can purchase a ticket here.
Q: What if I’m not a writer but I would like to be?
A: This class is intended for anyone with a story inside (which we believe is everyone!) that wants to be told. There are no prerequisites. And we will cultivate a welcoming atmosphere of non-judgment that will help everyone feel safe bringing their most vulnerable selves and stories to the class.