All Classes

Corte Madera Book Group: Lisa Joss - First Editions Book Discussion Group 2024

Monday, February 26, 2024 - 2:30pm

Book Discussion Group: First Editions

3rd Mondays of the month (see scheduled meeting dates below)

2:30PM-4:00PM in Corte Madera


Non-First Edition Cub Members

$25 per session

First Editions Club Members
$20 per session


The First Edition Club has been running for years at Book Passage, and now we bring you a group to discuss these special books. Although you might recognize a name or two, the selections are most often the first published novels by these emerging authors and are carefully chosen for their likelihood to to become seminal works.

The freshest new voices in literature can reflect the times in which we live and bring us the rich stories from a generation not yet widely heard from. They can be refreshing or challenging. Either way, we believe the voice is worth hearing. We highlight one novel per month and bring this title to you.

Examples of topics we’ll discuss:

  • In what ways are you challenged by this book?
  • Did you observe a new or different tone?
  • Is the book opening a topic previously unexpressed?

The book group will meet the third Monday of the month and discuss the previous month's selection. For example, the discussion of the January 2024 pick (The Storm We Made) will take place on Monday, Feb 26. Register separately for each meeting you'd like to attend. (Membership in the First Edition Book Club is not a prerequisite, but if you would like to automatically receive a signed copy each month, you can sign up here.)

Meeting dates:

Feb 26 (4th Monday due to holiday): Discuss The Storm We Made, by Vanessa Chan

Mar 18: Discuss Martyr, by Kaveh Akbar

Apr 22: Discuss March selection, TBD

May 20: Discuss April selection, TBD

Jun 17: Discuss May selection, TBD

Jul 15: Discuss June selection, TBD

Aug 19: Discuss July selection, TBD

Sep 16: Discuss August selection, TBD

Oct 21: Discuss September selection, TBD

Nov 18:Discuss October selection, TBD

Dec 16: Discuss November selection, TBD

Since 2003, our Signed First Edition monthly subscription service has given subscribers the opportunity to receive a delivered, hand-signed-first-edition of some of the best, most important, and noteworthy books being published today. We specialize in highlighting debut and unknown authors; to date we have identified over 90 authors who have gone on to win the most prestigious literary awards. Our past selections have included Khaled Hosseini, Yiyun Li, Amor Towles, Adam Johnson, Celeste Ng, Tommy Orange, Ocean Vuong, and so many more before they were household names. See all of our past picks here


Meet the Group's Facilitator:
As a former corporate and consulting head-of-marketing, Lisa Joss spent years writing everything from marketing and business plans to communications pieces, including advertising and product briefs for large-scale tech companies. She also wrote and developed social justice campaigns for HBO’s Toxic Hot Seat documentary for the Redford Group and the communications strategy for The Representation Project. Lisa brings an analytic mind and warm heart to discussions on the work of emerging authors.

Book Passage Corte Madera
51 Tamal Vista Blvd.
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Corte Madera Class: Kerrin Meis - Paul Gauguin and Les Nabis: Prophets of Modernism

Friday, March 1, 2024 - 1:00pm

Paul Gauguin and Les Nabis, Prophets of Modernism

Two Fridays - March 1 and 8, 2024
1PM-3:00PM PT

Corte Madera Store

$120 for both, $65 for one session





In 1889 a group of artists calling themselves Nabis (the Hebrew word for Prophets) abandoned Impressionism and Academic painting calling for a new art. 

It all began in Pont Aven where Paul Gauguin encouraged his disciple Paul Serusier to paint Le Bois d’Amour or The Talisman and Maurice Denis issued his famous dictum that a painting need no subject, as it was an arrangement of colors on a flat surface. Out went linear perspective and in came bold flat colors. 

In 1891 Eduard Vuillard, Pierre Bonnard, and Maurice Denis established themselves in Paris, soon joined by more artists: Ker Xavier Roussel, Paul Ranson, Felix Vallotton, August Cazalis and others. All employed bold colors, distinct outlines, and a disregard for perspective. 

We will study their works and learn of their supporters: poets, critics and journalists. Vuillard and Bonnard were labeled “Intimists.” We shall see why this was so. They all embraced the idea of Art as Decoration and some created huge wall paintings, thus abolishing the difference between Art and Craft and - we could say - returning painting to its origins on walls. In spite of their common goals, their subject matter varied greatly. This is where the fun of looking begins!


Kerrin Meis taught art history at SFSU for ten years and has led study tours in Europe. Her Book Passage classes have been favorites for years.

Book Passage Corte Madera
51 Tamal Vista blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Corte Madera Class: Jenny Jedeikin - Humor Writing Workshop: The Truth is Often Funny

Saturday, March 2, 2024 - 2:00pm

Humor Writing Workshop: The Truth is Often Funny

Saturday - March 2nd • 2:00pm-4:00pm PT

Corte Madera Store • $80

Limited to 15 Participants


Discover your authentically humorous voice in this engaging, fun writing workshop. The two-hour class will focus on personal narrative writing, aiming to explore and cultivate material for a comedic essay through a series of generative writing exercises.

Participants will first learn short lessons on the basics of humor writing, before being guided through specific exercises aimed at creating material for a layered essay, rooted in time and place.

When we express our lived experience through the lens of humor we expose ourselves as imperfect narrators. Writing which exposes our pain and vulnerability can often be a healing way to work through personal challenges - past and present.

There will be time to share your work along the way, as well as specific coaching on next steps to take to complete your essay.

This class can serve as an intro to Jenny’s Create Your Own Selfie Strip class, with materials created to be utilized as a template for her class in the fall.


Jenny Jedeikin is a writer and editor with experience both in current online media platforms as well as national magazines, TV, and radio. Her column in Rolling Stone Magazine was the first to give national exposure to such topics as Generation X and body piercing. In her stint as a Segment Producer/Writer for MTV’s The Jon Stewart Show, she lent her perspective to the (now legendary) host’s first foray into television. As a stand-up comedian in New York City, Jenny appeared performing original material on Comedy Central. She has published personal essays and created graphic stories in The San Francisco Chronicle, The Advocate, Spiralbound, Pacific Sun, North Bay Bohemian, SF/Arts, Whole Life Times, The Bold Italic, Curve Magazine and Narratively. As a freelance writer, her contributions have won three MarCom awards, and two Hermes Creative awards. Jenny’s comic strip, “Just Living Jenny” is published on Substack.

See a sample of Jenny’s comic strip work here: The Ex Guest


Praise for Jenny’s class: 

"A fresh and exciting approach to storytelling.  This is a unique and fun class. I can’t say enough great things about Jenny. She was able to have us dig deeper into ourselves and bring out the richness of our stories. She was a wonderful teacher and created a very safe space for everyone."
— Jenn E.

"Excellent class! We were encouraged to develop a strong story and do a lot of deep thinking. I appreciated the writing exercises, watching our stories develop narratively, and the emphasis on staying in the moment in our storytelling!"
— Jane M.

Book Passage Corte Madera
51 Tamal Vista Blvd.
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Corte Madera Class: Corey Rosen - Your Story, Well Told

Wednesday, March 6, 2024 - 12:30pm

Your Story, Well Told - Storytelling Workshop
with the Host of “The Moth”

March 6 - April 3, 2024
5 Wednesdays, 12:30PM-3:30PM (and one Saturday)
Performance: Saturday, April 13 at 11:00am

Corte Madera Store

$380 (Includes book Your Story, Well Told)


You have great stories to tell. In this workshop, Author and Storyteller Corey Rosen (host of The Moth, BATS Improv, Author of "Your Story, Well Told") helps you to uncover your best stories, develop them in a safe and supportive environment, and then perform them in a free LIVE showcase for friends and family. All classes are taught in person in Corte Madera.


Corey Rosen is a writer, actor, visual effects producer, and storytelling teacher based in San Francisco, California. He hosts The Moth StorySlams and GrandSlams, and has been featured on The Moth Radio Hour, Alice Radio’s “The Sarah and Vinnie Show,” and KFOG's "The Finch Files" Podcast. Corey is a performer at BATS Improv, one of the world’s foremost centers for Improvisational Theater and is the author of “Your Story, Well Told: Creative Strategies to Develop and Perform Stories that Wow an Audience.”

Corey’s book - Your Story, Well Told - is included with class registration.

Book Passage Corte Madera
51 Tamal Vista Blvd.
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Corte Madera Class: Kerrin Meis - Art Lovers’ Lisbon: Three Museums Not to be Missed

Friday, March 15, 2024 - 1:00pm

Art Lovers’ Lisbon: Three Museums Not to be Missed

Friday - March 15, 2024
1PM-3:00PM PT

Corte Madera Store




Tour guides and guide books direct you to a predictable menu of sites: St. George Castle, Fado in the Alfama, Belem Tower and San Jeronimos Monastery, as well as the ubiquitous pastries on offer next door, and perhaps including a harrowing trip on the elevator to the upper town.  

But wait! You have missed the  three most important spots in Lisbon: 

  • The Calouste Gulbenkian Museum, one of the finest museums in Europe. It is encyclopedic, housing top quality works from Egypt to the early 20th century. Sculpture, paintings, tapestries, porcelains and jewelry. You will meet Ghirlandaio, Rubens, Manet, Monet and other masters. 
  • The National Museum of Antique Art - NAMA - which  houses not Ancient Art as we perceive it but art from the far flung places of the age of Exploration, as well as an outstanding collection of Portuguese and European Art from 1500 to 1700. Ask to see the Namban screens from Japan, the salt cellar from West Africa and the sensational St. Vincent panels. Enjoy the garden and cafe of this 17th century Palace. 
  • The Museu Nacional do Azulejo is housed in the monastery of Madre de Deus, the building alone worth a visit. Study the history and culture of Portugal from  tiles borrowing Arab decorations to tiles decorating modern buildings. A workshop demonstrates the art of creating these "polished stones,"  a decoration unique to Portugal!


Kerrin Meis taught art history at SFSU for ten years and has led study tours in Europe. Her Book Passage classes have been favorites for years.

Book Passage Corte Madera
51 Tamal Vista blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Corte Madera Class: Susan & Neil Silverman - Travel Photography with your iPhone

Saturday, March 16, 2024 - 10:30am

A Deep Dive into iPhone Camera & Photography

Saturday, March 16, 2024
10:30AM -2:30PM Pacific Time

Corte Madera Store - $155



Want to become a pro with your smartphone camera? This hands-on workshop will set you on that path. Combining discussion and demonstration with the iPhone Camera, Susan and Neil Silverman will share their photography experience with you.

We will discuss the technical aspects of the phone settings and will also inspire and mentor on how to MAKE a great photo, not just take a snapshot. The phone cameras are powerful devices and we will share tips on how to make the most of it. This will be an interactive class that will teach you the intricacies of creating and saving photos that you’ll want to share, print, and will help preserve memories of special people, events, and journeys.

Part One: Getting Started

  • Gaining control over your camera with basic settings, compositional considerations

Part Two: Diving Deeper

  • Controlling the camera for more control of exposure, focus, shutter speeds, choice of lenses

Part Three: Going All In 

  • Panoramic, close up photography, portraits, filters, videos

Part Four: Wrapping It Up

  • Artistic considerations, some great apps for fine tuning images and creativity


* All camera phones are welcome, but we will be demonstrating on an iPhone
* This workshop is open to all ages and all levels of experience.



Susan and Neil Silverman are a husband and wife team who have been “captured” with photography for over twenty-five years --(teaching, leading workshops and working professionally in many venues). They have taught for the Santa Fe Photo Workshops, Gualala Art Center, Santa Rosa Junior College, Pacific Northwest Art School, Pt Reyes Field Institute, Great American Photography Workshop (GAPW), B&H Photo, PPC, PPWC, WPPI, Better Photo as well as many Photo Clubs and organizations. They have presented several podcasts and have been interviewed by several broadcasting stations. Sharing knowledge, experiences and camaraderie is as meaningful as “getting the shot”. Their work has appeared as the cover of Outdoor Photography, in Elle Magazine, der Spiegel, Sierra Club, the Cure, Audubon, Nikon World, Press Democrat, San Francisco Chronicle and many more. As photographers they realize that the light reveals itself in meaningful ways— on the camera, as a visual awakening, as an awesome moment in time and as a kindling of spirit and soul.



Book Passage Corte Madera
51 Tamal Vista Blvd.
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Online Book Group: Matthew Felix - Personal Growth

Saturday, March 30, 2024 - 10:00am

Book Group: Personal Growth 

4 Saturdays: March 30, May 4, June 8, and July 6
10AM - 11:30PM Pacific Time

Hosted via Zoom • $150

Classes will be recorded and video replay will be available for a limited time. 



* Note that for all classes held on Zoom, registration closes at noon the day before the class begins.  Same-day registrations are not available, so please plan ahead.


This book group tackles personal growth from four distinct perspectives. We’ll start with the light-hearted yet comprehensive approach to living your best life described in Jen Sincero’s You Are a Badass—which since its release in 2013 has proved merely the start of much more badassery. And for good reason. We’ll get more cerebral with current New York Times bestseller, Think Again by Adam Grant, which invites us to “rethink and unlearn” so that we might benefit from “the power of knowing what (we) don’t know.” Third on the list is a book Matthew is currently reading for the third time: local author James Nestor’s life-changing exploration of Breath, which not only explains the grave consequences of breathing incorrectly, but leverages cutting-edge studies in pulmonology, psychology, biochemistry, and physiology to ensure that “you will never breathe the same again.” Last but far from least, The Book of Joy—because, isn’t that the goal? And who better to help us on our journey to attain it than the Dalai Lama and the late Archbishop Desmond Tutu? They outline eight pillars of joy, share their own daily practices, and remind us that “While happiness is often seen as being dependent on external circumstances, joy is not.”

Interested in hearing Matthew share more about his book selections? Click here.


Books can be purchased at links below:​​​


To ensure everyone can participate in the discussions, class size is limited to ten people. Likewise, to approximate as closely as possible the feel of an in-person gathering, please plan to attend with your cameras turned on.


Matthew Félix is an author, certified Human Potential Life Coach, speaker, and interviewer, including for Book Passage and as former host of the San Francisco Writers Conference podcast. Publishers Weekly called his debut novel about a Spaniard’s awakening to his intuition “(a) highly crafted gem.” A lifelong meditator, his own ongoing personal-growth journey has included leaving behind a conventional life to pursue a path aligned with his values, passions, and aspirations; an accredited certification in Intuitive Medicine; exploration of dream work in the US and France; and acceptance into Esalen’s Live Extended Education Program, a month of breath work study. Learn more about Matthew:


Corte Madera Class: Britta Stromeyer Esmail - Expressing Your Truth: Connecting with Your Authentic Voice

Saturday, March 30, 2024 - 1:30pm

Expressing Your Truth: Connecting with Your Authentic Voice

Saturday, March 30, 2024
1:30pm-3:30pm Pacific Time

Corte Madera Store and live via Zoom



* Note that for all classes held on Zoom, registration closes one day before the class begins. Same-day registrations are not available, so please plan ahead. Also, this particular online class will not be recorded and needs to be streamed live in order to attend.


Your voice is the essence of your writing, the key to making words come alive, and the signature that sets you apart. Authentic voices connect us. 

This class is a haven for anyone seeking to unearth and refine their genuine writer's voice, take creative risks, and witness their writer’s soul flourish. This is not just a workshop; it’s discovery and growth. 

Inspired by literary examples, you will explore a variety of styles - from narrative to poetry, enter uncharted territories of your mind and heart, and bask in the supportive embrace of fellow writers. You will learn techniques to infuse your writing with depth and emotion. Discover the freedom to express your ideas and emotions in your unique way. Watch your writing evolve and make meaningful strides. 

This class is suitable for writers of all levels and genres. It will equip you with the skills and confidence to express yourself authentically on the page.


Britta is the author of award-winning children’s books. Her flash fiction appears in Bending Genres Journal. She was a finalist for the Bellingham Review Tobias Wolff Award for Fiction 2021. She is a teaching artist at Marin School of the Arts, CA, a member of the National Writing Project Council, Page Street, LitCamp, & PEN, and SCBWI. She has been a reader for the Firecracker Awards. A former editor for Tuxedo Literature & Arts & FastForward Magazine, she holds an MFA from Dominican University, CA, a Masters in International Communication from American University, and a Certificate in Novel Writing from Stanford University.


What students are saying about Britta: 

Britta was thoughtful and full of wisdom. This class was inspiring and thought provoking.  I left inspired and full of possibility!
- Rebecca R.

As the first writing class I ever took, Britta’s workshop was an excellent way to kickstart my writing efforts. The rapidly paced and diverse prompt-writing exercises were challenging, thought-provoking and fun at the same time.
- Laurie W

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Online Class: John J. Geoghegan - How to Get Your Book Published

Sunday, April 7, 2024 - 12:00pm to 3:00pm

How to Get Your Book Published

Sunday, April 7 • 12PM-3PM Pacific Time

Hosted via Zoom • $95

(Online classes will be recorded, and video replay will be available for a limited time.) 



* Note that for all classes held on Zoom, registration closes at noon the day before the class begins. Same-day registrations are not available, so please plan ahead.


HOW TO GET YOUR BOOK PUBLISHED is designed to help aspiring authors improve their chance of getting their memoir, novel, or non-fiction book considered for publication by a reputable literary agent, acquisitions editor, or publisher. The course will cover:

  • how to identify the right literary agent, acquisitions editor, or publisher for your project
  • how to write a stand-out query letter
  • how to write a winning non-fiction book proposal
  • what publishers, editors and literary agents look for in a submission package
  • understanding the economics of the publishing industry, being a literary agent, or an author
  • publishing industry trends that you can work to your advantage
  • what a standard literary agency agreement and publishing contract look like
  • 10 rookie mistakes first time authors make
  • and much more


John J. Geoghegan began his career at Doubleday Publishers in New York City when it was the largest publisher in the U.S. In addition to serving as a Special Correspondent for the New York Times, John has written more than 100 articles for the New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The San Francisco Chronicle, WIRED, Smithsonian Air & Space and numerous other publications. He is also the author of three non-fiction books including: "Operation Storm: Japan's Top Secret Submarines and its Plan to Change the Course of WWII" (Crown, 2013), which The Wall Street Journal called, "a fascinating, meticulously researched and deft account;" "Hear Today, Gone Tomorrow: A True Story of Love, Hearing Loss, Heartbreak, and Redemption" (New Haven Publishing, 2018), which Booth Authority ranked No. 1 on its list of the 38 best books about hearing loss; and "When Giants Ruled the Sky: The Brief Reign and Tragic Demise of the American Rigid Airship" (The History Press, 2022). His next book, "White Elephant Technology: 50 Crazy Inventions That Should Never Have Been Built And What We Can Learn From Them" is due out from The History Press April 17, 2024.


What students are saying about John J. Geoghegan:

"As a writer, I’ve benefited from John’s wisdom through four books. A master at understanding how to meet reader expectations, John zeroes in on a writer’s intention, applauds what's going right, and nails that unnecessary bit of exposition or missed opportunity to drive the story forward."
—K. M., author of eight commercially published novels


Writing Historical Fiction

Saturday, April 27, 2024 - 1:00pm

Writing Historical Fiction 

Saturday, April 27, 2024

1PM-4PM • Corte Madera Store






Historical fiction is one of the most popular genres in the book world and it's really fun to write, too! In this informative and interactive masterclass, best-selling historical novelists Siobhan Curham and Linda Joy Myers will guide you through the key elements of writing gripping historical fiction, from creating believable characters and page-turning plots to venturing down the research rabbit hole. This class is perfect for beginners and writers looking to breathe new life into a historical work-in-progress.

Topics covered will include:

  • Coming up with an idea: choosing a time period, choosing your characters
  • The importance of research: Why it all starts with research and where to find it
  • Finding the plot: Using a historical timeline and events as the backbone for your plot
  • Developing characters: How to flesh out a real and fictional historical character
  • Descriptive details: What kind of details do you need and where to find them
  • Final brainstorming exercise/action plan: Leave feeling inspired to work on your historical novel 


Meet the Instructors:

Linda Joy Myers combines her passion for history and her insights into intergenerational trauma in her work as a writer. The desire to educate current generations about how the past repeats itself in the present led her to dig into the history of WWII and write her first novel The Forger of Marseille. It’s a finalist for the Indie Book Award, and on the short list for the Hemingway Wartime Fiction Award. The author of two prize-winning memoirs, Don’t Call Me Mother and Song of the Plains, and four books on memoir writing, Linda Joy founded the National Association of Memoir Writers and has enjoyed teaching writing for thirty years. Learn more about Linda Joy at:

Siobhan Curham is the award-winning author of almost 50 books, and her eight World War II novels have been translated into nine languages. She loves helping other writers achieve their dreams and has run workshops and given talks on writing to thousands of people around the world. Siobhan's new novel, The Paris Network, is being published in the US by Grand Central Publishing in March. Learn more about Siobhan at:

Corte Madera Store

Anne Lamott - Ticket to Write: The Whys, Wherefores and How-To’s

Saturday, May 11, 2024 - 1:00pm to 4:00pm



Ticket to Write: The Whys, Wherefores and How-To’s

Saturday, May 11th, 2024

1:00-4:00pm PT

Online •  $75





This is Annie’s annual 3 hour workshop on everything she knows about writing, with an emphasis this year on why writing and truth-telling is so vital to each person, the community, and the world.


Anne Lamott is the author of the New York Times bestsellers Hallelujah Anyway; Help, Thanks, Wow; Small Victories; Stitches; Some Assembly Required; Grace (Eventually); Plan B; Traveling Mercies; Bird by Bird; and Operating Instructions. She is also the author of seven novels, including Hard Laughter, Imperfect Birds and Rosie. A past recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship and an inductee to the California Hall of Fame, Anne is a longtime friend of the Book Passage family.



Anne Lamott photo courtesy of Sam Lamott