2022 Summer Program


Class #21

Writing From Your Life: Memoir & Personal Essay

Margaret Hawkins

May 29 - June 4, 2022

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
Web: www.margarethawkins.com

Pricing (per person):
$1180 Dorm Room Package*
$1280 Two-Person Room Package*
$1920 Single-Person Room Package* (limited availability)
$675 Commuter Package** (limited availability)

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


NEW IN 2022! In order to register online, you will need to sign into a Clearing User Account. Complete user account info and "How To's" can be found on our Clearing User Account Page.