Class #17

Memoir, Creative Nonfiction & Personal Essay: Writing From Your Life

Margaret Hawkins

May 31 - June 6

instructor imageIn this class, you’ll begin new manuscripts or work on existing ones, drawing deep from the well of memory to tell your stories and reflect on personal experience.

Each day’s class will begin with writing exercises, followed by a stretch of uninterrupted composition. After that, there will be readings, more exercises, more writing and group discussion. The next day, we’ll do it again. The goal is to gain momentum and confidence so that you can write forceful, beautiful, rigorous, truthful sentences that come together to tell the story you want to tell. Voice, structure, character development and the ethics of writing about people you know are some of the topics we will discuss in this class. At the end of the week, you’ll leave The Clearing with several short essays, the beginnings of a memoir or renewed commitment to work in progress.

In addition to a variety of paper notebooks and writing implements (including a laptop, if you like, but not only a laptop), bring one memoir or a collection of personal essays you’ve read that you think is great.

Margaret Hawkins is a writer and teacher. She is the author of three novels, A Year of Cats and Dogs, How to Survive a Natural Disaster and Lydia’s Party (recently out in paperback from Penguin Press), as well as a memoir titled After Schizophrenia: The Story of My Sister’s Reawakening. Her essay, “On Getting Lost,” appears in the award-winning travel anthology, She Can Find Her Way. Margaret teaches writing at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and Loyola University.

Level: All Levels

Pricing (per person):
$1080 Dorm Room Package*
$1180 Two-Person Room Package*
$1770 Single-Person Room Package* (limited availability)
$635 Commuter Package** (limited availability)

*package includes tuition, lodging & 16 meals
**package includes tuition & 7 meals