What begins with “I have a story to tell” can soon feel unwieldy in terms of structuring a narrative, creating scenes, and adding factual depth. This class helps you create an action plan for getting your memoir written.
Week by week, we’ll discuss the key elements: where to begin and end, identifying core conflicts, developing characters, and incorporating research. We’ll look at craft essays and inspiring exemplars from successful memoirs. Participants will be encouraged to share new work, in response to prompts, and submit previously drafted work for line edits; in addition, our last week will focus on producing an annotated outline to ensure forward momentum. Get serious about your book with this fun, immersive workshop.
Sandra Beasley is the author of four poetry collections—Made to Explode, Count the Waves, I Was the Jukebox, which won the 2009 Barnard Women Poets Prize, and Theories of Falling—as well as Don’t Kill the Birthday Girl: Tales from an Allergic Life, a disability memoir and cultural history of food allergies. She served as the editor for Vinegar and Char: Verse from the Southern Foodways Alliance. Honors for her work include the 2019 Munster Literature Centre’s John Montague International Poetry Fellowship, a 2015 NEA fellowship, and five DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities fellowships. She lives in Washington, D.C.