Writing Classes: Memoir

Class: Leslie Keenan - Master Writers (Jan/Feb 2020)

Tuesday, January 7, 2020 - 6:30pm
photo of Leslie Keenan

Eight Tuesdays: Jan. 7 - Feb. 25 • 6:30 - 8:30pm • $360

Prerequisite: You must have taken either “Is There a Book in You?” or “You Can Complete That Book!” offered by Leslie Keenan.

Use the support of fellow writers and well-timed feedback to move through resistance and finish your work.

Leslie Keenan is a writing coach, teacher and editor with 30 years' experience helping writers complete their books. She knows the most frequent reasons writers get stuck and can help writers discover how to get back in flow and write effortlessly again.

What Students Are Saying about Leslie Keenan

“If it weren’t for Leslie Keenan’s courses at Book Passage, I would never have written a word of fiction, and I would never have been published. To this day, I still use the tools she gave me for understanding my process, finding my voice, and fighting my fears.” – Tammy Kaehler, author of Dead Man’s Switch, Poisoned Pen Press

“Leslie is inspiring, compassionate and has a natural gift for creating a safe place for a writer.” – Student, “Is There a Book in You?”

“Truckloads of useful information and inspiration.” – Harvey Hyman

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Class: Connie Josefs - Who’s Talking? The Narrator in Memoir

Saturday, January 11, 2020 - 10:00am
photo of Connie Josefs, craft of writing memoir instructor

Saturday, January 11, 2020 • 10:00am – 1:00pm • $95 

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“Get the narrator and you’ve got the piece.” —Vivian Gornick The narrator’s voice is central to the success of any memoir. It releases the story from the raw material of our lives and illuminates shape, forward movement, tone and theme. How do we find the right voice to tell our story? In this workshop, we will explore the concept of narrator as persona, a construct that emphasizes certain parts of ourselves and omits others. We will also explore the assets and liabilities of writing in first person. 

Connie Josefs Connie Josefs is a writer, teacher, and writing coach who has worked extensively with writers to write and publish their memoirs. She has taught writing at the University of New Mexico, the Taos Writers Conference, and Santa Monica College. She has also been a writer and story analyst for film and television.

While the classes can be taken individually, Connie has found that the workshops were most valuable for people who did the full series.

The 4-class series includes:

  • Who’s Talking? The Narrator in Memoir                                            Sat Jan 11   10am - 1pm
  • The Way They Were • Writing Believable Characters in Memoir     Sat Jan 11   2:30pm - 5:30pm
  • You Had To Be There • Writing Scene in Memoir                              Sun Jan 12  10am - 1pm
  • The Shape of Time in Memoir                                                             Sun Jan 12  2:30pm - 5:30pm

Register for the 4-class series: 

What Students Are Saying about Connie Josefs

"The class went above and beyond my expectations! Connie is gifted in approach, connection, and content. She has a beautiful way of corralling the group and keeping people on track in a caring way. In addition, she has to hear people share some of their worst moments and traumas and respond with feedback on the writing, instead of as a therapist or friend. She’s truly brilliant in how she manages these delicate, intricate dynamics.” – Erin P.

"Connie was very clear & specific as to each segment she taught, answered questions thoughtfully and well AND had us do writing exercises in each segment. She is an excellent teacher. I feel so much better equipped to work on my memoir now." – Ruth M.

"The class totally met my expectations – so rich in content and experience. I only took one class – I wish I had taken all four!" – Joan L.

"Connie’s class surpassed my expectations. The instructor is deeply knowledgeable and wove many helpful concepts and exercises together to great effect." – Athena K.

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Class: The Craft of Writing Memoir with Connie Josefs (4-Class Series)

Saturday, January 11, 2020 - 10:00am
photo of Connie Josefs, craft of writing memoir instructor

Four Classes • Saturday, Jan 11, 10am - 1pm & 2:30-5:30pm • Sunday, Jan 12, 10am - 1pm & 2:30-5:30pm • $350

We all have life stories to tell. But how do we write about personal experience in a way that will engage a reader? This series of four, half-day workshops focuses on the craft of writing memoir. Each workshop will provide concrete tools and strategies for transforming memory into compelling narrative. Class format includes readings, discussion and writing exercises. Experienced and aspiring writers welcome. The 4-class series includes:

Who’s Talking? The Narrator in Memoir                                            Sat Jan 11   10am - 1pm
The Way They Were • Writing Believable Characters in Memoir     Sat Jan 11    2:30pm - 5:30pm
You Had To Be There • Writing Scene in Memoir                              Sun Jan 12  10am - 1pm
The Shape of Time in Memoir                                                             Sun Jan 12   2:30pm - 5:30pm

Connie Josefs Connie Josefs is a writer, teacher, and writing coach who has worked extensively with writers to write and publish their memoirs. She has taught writing at the University of New Mexico, the Taos Writers Conference, and Santa Monica College. She has also been a writer and story analyst for film and television.

While the classes can be taken individually, Connie has found that the workshops were most valuable for people who did the full series.

What Students Are Saying about Connie Josefs

"The class went above and beyond my expectations! Connie is gifted in approach, connection, and content. She has a beautiful way of corralling the group and keeping people on track in a caring way. In addition, she has to hear people share some of their worst moments and traumas and respond with feedback on the writing, instead of as a therapist or friend. She’s truly brilliant in how she manages these delicate, intricate dynamics.” – Erin P.

"Connie was very clear & specific as to each segment she taught, answered questions thoughtfully and well AND had us do writing exercises in each segment. She is an excellent teacher. I feel so much better equipped to work on my memoir now." – Ruth M.

"The class totally met my expectations – so rich in content and experience. I only took one class – I wish I had taken all four!" – Joan L.

"Connie’s class surpassed my expectations. The instructor is deeply knowledgeable and wove many helpful concepts and exercises together to great effect." – Athena K.

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Class: Connie Josefs - The Way They Were: Writing Believable Characters in Memoir

Saturday, January 11, 2020 - 2:30pm
photo of Connie Josefs, craft of writing memoir instructor

Saturday, January 11, 2020 • 2:30pm – 5:30pm • $95 

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“I write to discover what I know.” ― Flannery O'Connor How do we get the people we know onto the page? When writing memoir, it’s all too easy to take our characters for granted because we know them. Complexity develops in characters as we discover them, moment by moment. This workshop will provide tools to help memoir writers reach beyond the familiar and craft characters in vivid and memorable detail.

Connie Josefs Connie Josefs is a writer, teacher, and writing coach who has worked extensively with writers to write and publish their memoirs. She has taught writing at the University of New Mexico, the Taos Writers Conference, and Santa Monica College. She has also been a writer and story analyst for film and television.

While the classes can be taken individually, Connie has found that the workshops were most valuable for people who did the full series.

The 4-class series includes:

  • Who’s Talking? The Narrator in Memoir                                            Sat Jan 11   10am - 1pm
  • The Way They Were • Writing Believable Characters in Memoir     Sat Jan 11   2:30pm - 5:30pm
  • You Had To Be There • Writing Scene in Memoir                              Sun Jan 12  10am - 1pm
  • The Shape of Time in Memoir                                                             Sun Jan 12  2:30pm - 5:30pm

Register for the 4-class series: 

What Students Are Saying about Connie Josefs

"The class went above and beyond my expectations! Connie is gifted in approach, connection, and content. She has a beautiful way of corralling the group and keeping people on track in a caring way. In addition, she has to hear people share some of their worst moments and traumas and respond with feedback on the writing, instead of as a therapist or friend. She’s truly brilliant in how she manages these delicate, intricate dynamics.” – Erin P.

"Connie was very clear & specific as to each segment she taught, answered questions thoughtfully and well AND had us do writing exercises in each segment. She is an excellent teacher. I feel so much better equipped to work on my memoir now." – Ruth M.

"The class totally met my expectations – so rich in content and experience. I only took one class – I wish I had taken all four!" – Joan L.

"Connie’s class surpassed my expectations. The instructor is deeply knowledgeable and wove many helpful concepts and exercises together to great effect." – Athena K.

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Class: Connie Josefs - You Had To Be There: Writing Scene in Memoir

Sunday, January 12, 2020 - 10:00am
photo of Connie Josefs, craft of writing memoir instructor

Sunday, January 12, 2020 • 10:00am – 1:00pm • $95 

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“I find that scene making is my natural way of marking the past.” — Virginia Woolf  
Scene is the building block of narrative; it brings the reader into the immediate experience of a story. But how do we determine when to move from scene to exposition? This workshop will examine the varied effects of scene and exposition in memoir and explore how they are used effectively to bring personal experience to the page.

Connie Josefs Connie Josefs is a writer, teacher, and writing coach who has worked extensively with writers to write and publish their memoirs. She has taught writing at the University of New Mexico, the Taos Writers Conference, and Santa Monica College. She has also been a writer and story analyst for film and television.

While the classes can be taken individually, Connie has found that the workshops were most valuable for people who did the full series.

The 4-class series includes:

  • Who’s Talking? The Narrator in Memoir                                            Sat Jan 11   10am - 1pm
  • The Way They Were • Writing Believable Characters in Memoir     Sat Jan 11   2:30pm - 5:30pm
  • You Had To Be There • Writing Scene in Memoir                              Sun Jan 12  10am - 1pm
  • The Shape of Time in Memoir                                                             Sun Jan 12  2:30pm - 5:30pm

Register for the 4-class series: 

What Students Are Saying about Connie Josefs

"The class went above and beyond my expectations! Connie is gifted in approach, connection, and content. She has a beautiful way of corralling the group and keeping people on track in a caring way. In addition, she has to hear people share some of their worst moments and traumas and respond with feedback on the writing, instead of as a therapist or friend. She’s truly brilliant in how she manages these delicate, intricate dynamics.” – Erin P.

"Connie was very clear & specific as to each segment she taught, answered questions thoughtfully and well AND had us do writing exercises in each segment. She is an excellent teacher. I feel so much better equipped to work on my memoir now." – Ruth M.

"The class totally met my expectations – so rich in content and experience. I only took one class – I wish I had taken all four!" – Joan L.

"Connie’s class surpassed my expectations. The instructor is deeply knowledgeable and wove many helpful concepts and exercises together to great effect." – Athena K.

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Class: Connie Josefs - The Shape of Time in Memoir

Sunday, January 12, 2020 - 2:30pm
photo of Connie Josefs, craft of writing memoir instructor

Sunday, January 12, 2020 • 2:30pm – 5:30pm • $95 

register button

“You don’t look back along time but down through it, like water. Sometimes this comes to the surface, sometimes that... Nothing goes away.” — Margaret Atwood  Time can be one of the the most challenging aspects of memoir. We view events from two vantage points: then and now. How do writers accommodate this shifting narrative stance? How do we effectively utilize hindsight to gain access to narratives of the past? This workshop will explore how memoirists organize time, voice and point of view to structure scenes and create coherence.

Connie Josefs Connie Josefs is a writer, teacher, and writing coach who has worked extensively with writers to write and publish their memoirs. She has taught writing at the University of New Mexico, the Taos Writers Conference, and Santa Monica College. She has also been a writer and story analyst for film and television.

While the classes can be taken individually, Connie has found that the workshops were most valuable for people who did the full series.

The 4-class series includes:

  • Who’s Talking? The Narrator in Memoir                                            Sat Jan 11   10am - 1pm
  • The Way They Were • Writing Believable Characters in Memoir     Sat Jan 11   2:30pm - 5:30pm
  • You Had To Be There • Writing Scene in Memoir                              Sun Jan 12  10am - 1pm
  • The Shape of Time in Memoir                                                             Sun Jan 12  2:30pm - 5:30pm

Register for the 4-class series: 

What Students Are Saying about Connie Josefs

"The class went above and beyond my expectations! Connie is gifted in approach, connection, and content. She has a beautiful way of corralling the group and keeping people on track in a caring way. In addition, she has to hear people share some of their worst moments and traumas and respond with feedback on the writing, instead of as a therapist or friend. She’s truly brilliant in how she manages these delicate, intricate dynamics.” – Erin P.

"Connie was very clear & specific as to each segment she taught, answered questions thoughtfully and well AND had us do writing exercises in each segment. She is an excellent teacher. I feel so much better equipped to work on my memoir now." – Ruth M.

"The class totally met my expectations – so rich in content and experience. I only took one class – I wish I had taken all four!" – Joan L.

"Connie’s class surpassed my expectations. The instructor is deeply knowledgeable and wove many helpful concepts and exercises together to great effect." – Athena K.

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Class: Diane Conway - Brainstorming Your Book (Corte Madera)

Saturday, January 18, 2020 - 12:30pm

Saturday January 18, 2020  • 12:30am - 3:30pm • $75

This class helps you strengthen and refine your vision for your nonfiction book or memoir. You have the idea for your book and have done a fair amount of writing, but the concept is still fuzzy? You can’t grasp exactly what your book is about and so you are failing to gain traction? With her experience in developmental and concept editing, Diane Conway will help you brainstorm your core idea. In this supportive class you’ll discover how a clear focus is key to writing that flows.

Diane Conway is a seasoned writing coach and teacher who has published three books including What Would You Do If You Had No Fear?

 

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Class: Corey Fischer - Finding Your Story

Sunday, January 19, 2020 - 10:00am
photo of actor, storytelling teacher Corey Fischer

Sunday, January 19 • 10:00-4:00 pm • Tuition: $150

“Stand-up storytelling” invigorates the imagination, reclaims memories, and inspires the body’s own creativity. Award-winning actor/ writer/director Corey Fischer will share a variety of exercises in a safe and supportive setting as he guides each student in discovering a particular personal story that needs to be told. This class is for anyone who wants to tell their own stories and expand their expressive range.

Corey Fischer, co-founder of Traveling Jewish Theatre (1978-2012), has been creating and teaching theatre over 50 years. He views autobiographical storytelling as a much-needed way to open imagination and memory and to nurture community.

What Students Say About Corey Fischer

“Corey Fischer is an amazing teacher.  I took his workshops in storytelling, performance, and improvisation whenever I could. Each time my mind opened, my body became more energized and limber, my spirit and imagination expanded – always in an atmosphere of safety, human connection, and enjoyment. I highly recommend Corey as an extraordinary teacher for anyone seeking to express their creativity, find their storytelling voice, and have a lot of fun along the way.” -- Jonathan D. Greenberg, Executive Director, Gandhi King Institute for Nonviolence and Social Justice, Stanford Law School

“With humor and heart, Corey guides you to the wild, unknown parts of your creativity.  He is a teacher not to be missed: a man with a lifetime of experience, an insightful perspective, and a gentle and supportive approach. He grounds you as you leap into the unknown, and expertly helps you shape what you bring back from your explorations.” – Naomi Stein, writer, performer

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Class: Corey Fischer - Telling Your Story

Thursday, February 20, 2020 - 6:00pm
photo of actor, storytelling teacher Corey Fischer

Six Thursdays: Feb 20, 27 & Mar 5, 12, 19, 26 • 6:00-8:00 pm • Tuition: $250

Creating on your feet, out loud, is a powerful way to explore and expand your “voice” as a writer or a storyteller. Award-winning actor/writer/director Corey Fischer uses free-writing exercises, theatre games, and prompts for group sharing in a safe and supportive setting as he guides each student in discovering, shaping and performing a particular personal story. In the final class, participants will share their stories with a small, invited audience. This class is for anyone who wants to tell their own stories – on the page or on the “stage.”

Corey Fischer, co-founder of Traveling Jewish Theatre (1978-2012), has been creating and teaching theatre over 50 years. He views autobiographical storytelling as a much-needed way to open imagination and memory and to nurture community.

What Students Say About Corey Fischer

“Corey Fischer is an amazing teacher.  I took his workshops in storytelling, performance, and improvisation whenever I could. Each time my mind opened, my body became more energized and limber, my spirit and imagination expanded – always in an atmosphere of safety, human connection, and enjoyment. I highly recommend Corey as an extraordinary teacher for anyone seeking to express their creativity, find their storytelling voice, and have a lot of fun along the way.” -- Jonathan D. Greenberg, Executive Director, Gandhi King Institute for Nonviolence and Social Justice, Stanford Law School

“With humor and heart, Corey guides you to the wild, unknown parts of your creativity.  He is a teacher not to be missed: a man with a lifetime of experience, an insightful perspective, and a gentle and supportive approach. He grounds you as you leap into the unknown, and expertly helps you shape what you bring back from your explorations.” – Naomi Stein, writer, performer

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

Class: Peter Thabit Jones - Singing in Chains: Sound-texturing in Poetry

Saturday, April 18, 2020 - 10:00am
photo of Peter Thabit Jones, poet, sound-texturing

Saturday, April 18 • 10am – 1pm • $95

The sound-texturing of a poem connects with the iambic beat in us. Dylan Thomas believed in “the colour of saying,” suggesting it is not just what we say in a poem, but the way we say it. Peter’s talk will focus on the craft of cynghanedd, Welsh-language harmonizing devices, used by Thomas and others in English. The workshop will allow participants to experiment with the devices and poetic forms that lend themselves to creating poems that “sing.”  

Peter Thabit Jones has authored fourteen books, including Dylan Thomas Walking Tour of Greenwich Village. A recipient of many awards including the Eric Gregory Award for Poetry (The Society of Authors, London) and the Homer: European Medal of Poetry and Art, Peter will be in America as a writer-in-residence in Big Sur. 

What People Are Saying about Peter Thabit Jones

"Peter Thabit Jones is poetry. He lives, creates and recites the alluring and mysterious. In Salem and in Cambridge MA, Peter’s readings, classes and workshops were magical. His is a dynamic voice and he invites us to explore the world with him. Such an adventure is pure delight as Peter can transform even the arduous job of stone-laying into verse.” – Kristine Doll, Ph.D., Professor, Department of World Cultures and Languages, Salem State University

"Peter Thabit Jones mesmerized a gathering of Boulder poets and novelists at my home, an event to be reprised this fall, to satisfy audience demand. Peter's poems and public appearances have captured the imagination of the Boulder community. To listen to him read is a rare treat, not to be missed in any venue." -- Paul M. Levitt, Professor emeritus, University of Colorado

51 Tamal Vista Blvd
Corte Madera, CA 94925

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