Workshop Series and Singles

Making Memoir Meaningful: Craft, Authenticity, and Voice

at WeWork Crystal City, July 26 and Aug 2, 9, and 16

Imagine your tale, touching others.

You want to write because you think you have something to say. Guess what? You do. Your stories aren't meaningful just to you; they can powerfully affect your readers as well. Of course, this doesn't happen automatically; we've all listened to or read other people's anecdotes that bore us, that have no bearing on our lives. And yet as humans we are all connected. We differ, but we share universal passions, sorrows, yearnings, and joys. Discovering the thread that links us all will make our writing light up another person's mind—and heart. And mastering craft, authenticity, and voice will lead us to that thread.

Be inspired, hone your craft, find out how others do it, sharpen your analytical skills (thus improving your ability to revise your own work), meet potential readers for the long term, and much more.

We'll explore crucial elements of personal writing—craft, authenticity, and voice—via lecture, example, practice, and feedback.

In addition to the feedback of your peers on your writing, you'll receive detailed commentary and (included but optional) line edits from me. Each student will submit a piece of writing up to 1,500 words; we will take turns providing feedback to each other.

Class size is limited to maximize individual attention and feedback.

We will use Mary Karr's Art of Memoir as a textbook.

When: Four Thursdays: July 26 and Aug 2, 9, and 16, 6–8 p.m.

Where: WeWork Crystal City, 2221 S. Clark St., Arlington, VA 22202

How much: $160 

Register: Use the Contact form to let me know you are signing up and submit payment via Venmo or Paypal to


Write Your Memories Into Story: a Politics & Prose offering

SOLD OUT for this session (check here for new P&P offerings)

Memoir, like all creative nonfiction, relies on literary craft tools such as scene and plot to mold a clear storyline and develop characters. This five-session workshop will help you write your memories into scenes for essays or chapters of a full manuscript. Participants workshop one essay or manuscript excerpt (up to 1,500 words). We will consider issues of editing, revising, reaching and touching readers, and publishing. Students give and receive feedback to and from each other, and each student receives a thorough commentary on his or her work from the instructor.