WRITING WORKSHOPS

With

Chloe Yelena Miller has been teaching writing privately and at the college level since 2005, when she received her MFA in creative writing from Sarah Lawrence College. Her poetry chapbook, Unrest, was published by Finishing Line Press, and her writing has been published in such journals as Alimentum, The Cortland Review, and Narrative. Read sample publications and writing advice here: http://chloeyelenamiller.blogspot.com

This five-session course will help you write your memories into scenes by responding to writing prompts and workshopping essays and excerpts. Five Tuesdays: March 14*, 21, 28, April 4, 11, 10:00 a.m. to noon Sold out!
*Tuesday, March 14 meeting has been rescheduled for Tuesday, April 25 at 10 a.m. in Condo 7

To be placed on a wait list for this class, please email Justin at jstephani@politics-prose.com.

With

Joyce Winslow was Travel Editor of Redbook magazine and Mademoiselle magazine and has published hundreds of travel articles and essays. This is her fourth course for Politics & Prose.

Enjoy the craft of travel writing and journaling by learning how to structure your stories, organize your insights, and write evocatively using fiction techniques. Four Thursdays: March 16, 23, 30, April 6, 7 to 9 p.m.

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With

Eric Weiner, a former correspondent for NPR, is columnist for BBC Travel and best-selling author of several books, most recently The Geography of Genius: Lessons from the World’s Most Creative Places. His travel writing has also appeared in The New York Times, AFAR, National Geographic Traveler, and elsewhere.

In this course, NYT-bestselling author Eric Weiner guides you through the art of travel writing, exploring ways to craft strong narratives and make a place come alive. Four Tuesdays: April 4, 11, 18, 25, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

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With

John DeDakis is a former Senior Copy Editor on CNN's "The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer" and the author of four novels, Fast Track, Bluff, Troubled Water, and Bullet in the Chamber – all part of John’s Lark Chadwick mystery-suspense series. Bullet in the Chamber deals, in part, with the death of John’s 22-year-old son Stephen in 2011. During John’s nearly 45-year award-winning career in journalism (25 years at CNN), he has been a White House correspondent and interviewed such luminaries as Alfred Hitchcock, Jimmy Carter, and Ronald Reagan. He has taught journalism at The University of Maryland – College Park and novel writing at The Writer’s Center in Bethesda.  In addition to leading writing workshops around the country and abroad, he edits book-length manuscripts. For more information, visit www.johndedakis.com.

In this session, writers will learn tips and strategies for making the scene you see in your head come alive on the page. Wednesday, April 5, 10:30 a.m. to noon

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With

John DeDakis is a former Senior Copy Editor on CNN's "The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer" and the author of four novels, Fast Track, Bluff, Troubled Water, and Bullet in the Chamber – all part of John’s Lark Chadwick mystery-suspense series. Bullet in the Chamber deals, in part, with the death of John’s 22-year-old son Stephen in 2011. During John’s nearly 45-year award-winning career in journalism (25 years at CNN), he has been a White House correspondent and interviewed such luminaries as Alfred Hitchcock, Jimmy Carter, and Ronald Reagan. He has taught journalism at The University of Maryland – College Park and novel writing at The Writer’s Center in Bethesda.  In addition to leading writing workshops around the country and abroad, he edits book-length manuscripts. For more information, visit www.johndedakis.com.

A one-day, step-by-step workshop meant to deconstruct and demystify the novel-writing process for struggling and/or aspiring writers. Saturday, April 8, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

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With

Lori Steel is a freelance editor and school librarian. She has an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from the Vermont College of Fine Arts and has worked for two children’s literary agencies. Lori reads and writes all kinds of fiction from her home in Kensington.

In this workshop-based class, students will generate creative ideas, hone craft, read critically and receive constructive feedback on their MG/YA fiction writing. Four Mondays: April 10, 17, 24, May 1, 4:30 to 6:45 p.m.

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With

Aaron Hamburger was awarded the Rome Prize by the American Academy of Arts and Letters for his short story collection The View from Stalin’s Head (Random House). His next book, a novel titled Faith for Beginners (Random House), was nominated for a Lambda Literary Award. His writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Chicago Tribune, Poets & Writers, Tin House, Subtropics, Details, Michigan Quarterly Review, Boulevard, and The Village Voice. He has received fellowships from the Edward F. Albee Foundation and the Civitella Ranieri Foundation in Umbria, Italy, as well as residencies from Yaddo and Djerassi. He has also taught writing at Columbia University, NYU, the Stonecoast MFA Program, and George Washington University.

Learn how to make dialogue work in your writing in this two-session class filled with close readings of real-life dialogue and dialogue in fiction. Two Mondays: April 17, 24, 6 to 8 p.m.

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With

Joyce Winslow was Travel Editor of Redbook magazine and Mademoiselle magazine and has published hundreds of travel articles and essays. This is her fourth course for Politics & Prose.

Uncover the craft of travel writing by learning how to structure your stories, organize your insights, and write evocatively using fiction techniques to tell your story. For beginning travel writers. Four Thursdays: April 20, 27, May 4, 11, 7 to 9 p.m.

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With

Cynthia Kane is an author, development editor, and the lead literary agent with Capital Talent Agency here in D.C. Her writing has appeared in the Washington Post, the Chicago Tribune, BBC Travel, The Huffington Post, Women’s Day, Yoga Journal and more.

Shaheen Qureshi is a graduate of Bard College, recipient of the Wilton Moore Lockwood Prize in creative writing, and former managing editor of Tadween Publishing. Her writing has been published in Bard Papers and Sukoon Magazine.

In this workshop, you will explore first how to perfect a personal essay, then how to pitch it to editors so the world can read it. Four Wednesdays: April 26, May 3, 10, 17, 1:30 to 3 p.m. Sold out!

To be placed on a wait list for this class, please include your name and the title of this class in an email to classes@politics-prose.com.

With

Leslie Pietrzyk is the author of two novels, Pears on a Willow Tree and A Year and a Day. This Angel on My Chest, her collection of linked short stories, won the 2015 Drue Heinz Literature Prize and was named one of the Kirkus Review’s best short story collections of 2015. Her short fiction and essays have been widely published and she has received fellowships from the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference and the Sewanee Writers’ Conference. Pietrzyk is a member of the core fiction faculty at the Converse low-residency MFA program and teaches in the MA Program in Writing at Johns Hopkins University. She lives in Alexandria, Virginia. For more information: www.lesliepietrzyk.com

Most writers know they have to hook their reader starting with the first paragraph they write, and in this class, you’ll learn how to strengthen your opening pages and get your novel, memoir, essay, or short story off to a great start. Wednesday, May 24, 1 to 4 p.m.

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With

Leslie Pietrzyk is the author of two novels, Pears on a Willow Tree and A Year and a Day. This Angel on My Chest, her collection of linked short stories, won the 2015 Drue Heinz Literature Prize and was named one of the Kirkus Review’s best short story collections of 2015. Her short fiction and essays have been widely published andshe has received fellowships from the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference and the Sewanee Writers’ Conference. Pietrzyk is a member of the core fiction faculty at the Converse low-residency MFA program and teaches in the MA Program in Writing at Johns Hopkins University. She lives in Alexandria, Virginia. For more information: www.lesliepietrzyk.com

Explore your creative side with this evening of guided writing exercises focused on daily life and its simple beauty. No experience necessary! Session 1: June 15, 6:30 to 9:00 p.m. OR Session 2: Tuesday, June 20, 1:00 to 3:30 p.m.

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With

Alicia Oltuski is the author of Precious Objects, a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers selection. Her work has appeared in Tin House magazine, W magazine, on NPR Berlin Stories, and other publications. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Columbia University, where she received a David Berg Foundation Fellowship, and a BA and MA from the University of Pennsylvania.

In this “gentle bootcamp,” writers at all levels will explore the art of dialogue-writing in a fun and eclectic environment. Four Tuesdays: July 11, 18, 25, August 1, 1 to 3 p.m.

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POETRY

With

Melanie (Penny) Du Bois did her undergraduate and graduate work at Harvard, has lived in Europe, and taught literature at universities there and here. She has directed a reading group in Washington since 1989, and taught at Politics & Prose throughout 2016, leading a series of three courses on Henry James' stories and novels.

Study the poetry and prose of Pulitzer- and National Book Award-winner Elizabeth Bishop in this four-session class. Four Wednesdays: March 1, 15, 29, April 5, 1 to 3 p.m.

With

Gigi Bradford is chair of the Folger Shakespeare Library Poetry Board and former Literature Director of the National Endowment for the Arts. She has been teaching the poetry circle at Politics & Prose for 12 years.

This spring, explore the work of two poets who delight in form, rely on form, and astound and teach us with their formal considerations. Six Tuesdays: March 28, April 4, 11, 25, May 2, 9, 3 to 4:30 p.m.

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With

Rose Solari is the author of three full-length collections of poetry, The Last GirlOrpheus in the Park, and Difficult Weather; the one-act play, Looking for Guenevere, and a novel, A Secret Woman. She has lectured and taught writing workshops at many institutions, including the University of Maryland, College Park; St. John’s College, Annapolis; the Jung Society of Washington; and The Centre for Creative Writing at Oxford University’s Kellogg College. Her work as a journalist includes numerous freelance assignments, as well as positions as staff writer and editor for SportsFan Magazine and Common Boundary Magazine.

Her awards include the Randall Jarrell Poetry Prize, an Academy of American Poets’ University Prize, The Columbia Book Award, and an EMMA award for excellence in journalism. In 2012, she spent two terms as a Visiting Writer with the Centre for Creative Writing, University of Oxford’s Kellogg College, doing research and teaching, and currently serves on the Centre’s Advisory Panel.

This workshop is designed to help keep your creative juices flowing, to encourage you to explore some of the many choices of form and language available to you as a poet, and to allow you to take chances with your work. Monday through Friday, April 10 to 14, 10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

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POLITICS & PLACE

With

Virginia Newmyer has lectured frequently for the Smithsonian Institution in Washington and in Great Britain on a wide variety of topics in British history and literature. She also teaches OLLI courses at American University, as well as at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton and Jupiter.

Dr. Susan Willens, emerita professor of English at George Washington University, also teaches at the Smithsonian Resident Associates Program, the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, and other literature classes.

For more than 10 years, Virginia and Susan have been holding classes at Politics & Prose that examine the threads that join British fiction and history.

This class will explore Great Britain’s upheaval of values following the first World War through its literature, including works by E.M. Forster, George Orwell, and Dorothy Sayers. Session 1: Five Tuesdays: January 10, February 14, March 21, April 18, May 16, 1 to 3 p.m.; Session 2: Five Wednesdays: January 11, February 15, March 22, April 19, May 17, 1 to 3 p.m.; Session 3: Five Thursdays: January 12, February 16, March 23, April 20, May 18, 1 to 3 p.m. Sold out!

To be placed on a wait list for this class, please email Justin at jstephani@politics-prose.com.

With

Heba F. El-Shazli is an Egyptian-American and an avid lover and reader of literature from the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. She is an assistant professor of political science at George Mason University’s Schar School of Policy and Government and an adjunct professor at Georgetown University’s Master’s Degree Program at the Center for Democracy and Civil Society. Heba teaches courses on governments and politics of the Middle East and North Africa, Islam and politics, international relations, and the role of civil society and social movements in democratization. She has a Ph.D. in Government and International Affairs from Virginia Tech’s School of Public and International Affairs and a Master’s degree from Georgetown University. She was the Director of MENA programs at the Solidarity Center (2004-2011) and the Deputy MENA Regional Director at the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs (NDI) from 2001 until 2004. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

Join us on a literary journey to Turkey! In the next class in our series on the Middle East, we’ll explore the decline of the Ottoman Empire and rise of the Republic of Turkey through the eyes of five 20th-century Turkish authors. Five Fridays: February 3, 17, March 3, 24, April 7, 1 to 3 p.m. Sold out!

To be placed on a wait list for this class, please email Justin at jstephani@politics-prose.com.

With

Heba F. El-Shazli is an Egyptian-American and an avid lover and reader of literature from the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. She is an assistant professor of political science at George Mason University’s Schar School of Policy and Government and an adjunct professor at Georgetown University’s Master’s Degree Program at the Center for Democracy and Civil Society. Heba teaches courses on governments and politics of the Middle East and North Africa, Islam and politics, international relations, and the role of civil society and social movements in democratization. She has a Ph.D. in Government and International Affairs from Virginia Tech’s School of Public and International Affairs and a Master’s degree from Georgetown University. She was the Director of MENA programs at the Solidarity Center (2004-2011) and the Deputy MENA Regional Director at the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs (NDI) from 2001 until 2004. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

This class will continue its exploration of Middle Eastern literature and politics by reading several works of Naguib Mahfouz (1911–2006), who is the only Arab writer to have been awarded the Nobel Prize for literature. Five Fridays: April 21, May 5, 19*, June 2, 16, 1 to 3 p.m. Sold out!

To be placed on a wait list for this class, please include your name and the title of this class in an email to classes@politics-prose.com.

With

Ari Roth is a producer, playwright, and educator. As of December 2014, he is the Founding Artistic Director of Mosaic Theater Company of DC. Previously, he served as artistic director of Theater J from 1997 to 2014, building the theater into the largest and most respected Jewish theater in North America. Roth's plays have been nominated for five Helen Hayes Awards, including two for subsequent productions of his script Born Guilty, originally commissioned and produced by Arena Stage in 1991 under the direction of Zelda Fichandler, and then produced at Theater J in repertory for its sequel, The Wolf In Peter, 11 years later. Roth is a two-time recipient of the National Endowment for the Arts’ playwriting grants, four-time recipient of commissions from the Foundation for Jewish Culture, and two-time recipient of the Avery Hopwood Award. He has taught at the University of Michigan since 1988, currently teaching for their Michigan in Washington program.

Led by a producer, playwright, and educator who is the Founding Artistic Director of Mosaic Theater Company, this class will discuss the social and political themes currently playing out on DC stages. Over six weeks, participants will hear directly from directors, designers, and actors who have experience holding a mirror up to turbulent societies. Six Tuesdays: May 2, 9, 16, 30, June 6, 13, 7 to 9 p.m.

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With

Aaron Hamburger was awarded the Rome Prize by the American Academy of Arts and Letters for his short story collection The View from Stalin’s Head (Random House). His next book, a novel titled Faith for Beginners (Random House), was nominated for a Lambda Literary Award. His writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Chicago Tribune, Poets & Writers, Tin House, Subtropics, Details, Michigan Quarterly Review, Boulevard, and The Village Voice. He has received fellowships from the Edward F. Albee Foundation and the Civitella Ranieri Foundation in Umbria, Italy, as well as residencies from Yaddo and Djerassi. He has also taught writing at Columbia University, NYU, the Stonecoast MFA Program, and George Washington University.

In this course, writers of any level or experience will learn to use their fiction, non-fiction, or poetry to respond, either publicly or privately, to current events. Three Tuesdays: May 2, 9, 16, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

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With

Aaron Hamburger was awarded the Rome Prize by the American Academy of Arts and Letters for his short story collection The View from Stalin’s Head (Random House). His next book, a novel titled Faith for Beginners (Random House), was nominated for a Lambda Literary Award. His writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Chicago Tribune, Poets & Writers, Tin House, Subtropics, Details, Michigan Quarterly Review, Boulevard, and The Village Voice. He has received fellowships from the Edward F. Albee Foundation and the Civitella Ranieri Foundation in Umbria, Italy, as well as residencies from Yaddo and Djerassi. He has also taught writing at Columbia University, NYU, the Stonecoast MFA Program, and George Washington University.

Explore ways to create a vivid sense of setting and bring the world of your writing to life, adding a vibrant, essential element to your storytelling in both fiction and non-fiction. Three Tuesdays: May 23, 30, June 6, 6 to 8 p.m.

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LOSE YOURSELF IN FICTION

With

Rhonda Shary was an adjunct professor of English in New York for over ten years, teaching courses at Marymount College of Fordham University, New York Institute of Technology, and SUNY New Paltz in contemporary issues and literature, women’s writing, film and graphic narratives, and Native American literature. A published writer and poet, her work has appeared in several anthologies and journals, including P&P’s District Lines III, Water Writes: An Anthology in Honor of the Hudson River Quadricentennial, A Slant of Light: Women Writers of the Hudson River Valley, and The Shawangunk Review. After moving to D.C. in 2014, she joined the staff at Politics & Prose as a bookseller and coordinator of the Book A Month program, and is now a freelance writer, editor, and teacher.

In this third course centering on authors who have received or are considered to be contenders for the Nobel Prize in Literature, the group will read works in a range of genres that attest to each artist's lasting literary greatness and cultural importance. Six Thursdays: January 26, February 9, March 2, 16, 30, April 13, 1 to 3 p.m.

With

Alicia Oltuski is the author of Precious Objects, a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers selection. Her work has appeared on NPR's Berlin Stories, in W magazineand other publications. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Columbia University, where she received a David Berg Foundation Fellowship, and a BA and MA from the University of Pennsylvania.

Jump into George Saunders’ Lincoln in the Bardo, one of the most highly anticipated books of 2017, immediately following its release. Six Wednesdays: February 22, March 1, 8, 15, 22, 29, 3:30 to 5 p.m.

With

Helen Hooper, a fiction writer, was a Stegner Fellow at Stanford University. She has published stories in American Short Fiction, The Common, The Hopkins Review, Bellevue Literary Review and elsewhere. She was MacDowell Colony fellow, a Kenyon Review Peter Taylor fellow and holds an MFA from Warren Wilson College and a BA from Johns Hopkins. She has taught literature and creative writing at Stanford and other universities and at the middle and high school levels. She is now writing a novel.

Begin 2017 with a journey through Louise Erdrich’s intricately developed body of work by reading and discussing four of her novels, from her first, Love Medicine, to her latest, LaRose. Four Fridays: February 24, March 10, 17, 31, 1 to 3 p.m.

With

Nancy Garruba is a writer, artist, and lifelong student of Italian language and literature. She has taught writing and design at the Corcoran College of Art, University of Maryland, and Virginia Commonwealth University, and she has received multiple grants from the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities and from the National Endowment for the Arts. To learn more about her work: www.nancygarruba.com. To read her essays on Ferrante’s Neapolitan Novels: www.nancygarruba.com/blog/.

In this class, perfect for Ferrante lovers, we’ll explore the literary relationship between mothers and daughters in novels by three female masters. Four Wednesdays: April 5, 12, and 19 and May 3, 6 to 8 p.m.

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With

Christopher Griffin studied literature at Trinity College and University College in Dublin and in U.S. colleges. He taught humanities at Strayer for 28 years, Irish literature at George Washington University for eight years, and various classes at Politics and Prose for 25 years. He was a study leader on eight Smithsonian Journeys.

Ulysses, considered by many to be the seminal novel of the 20th century, tends to linger on bucket lists for years; this class will help readers tackle this daunting book by breaking down the structure and examining the most memorable moments. Five Fridays: April 7, 14, 28, May 5, 12, 3:15 to 5:15 p.m.

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With

Christopher Griffin studied literature at Trinity College and University College in Dublin and in US colleges. He taught humanities at Strayer for 28 years, Irish literature at George Washington University for eight years, and various classes at Politics and Prose for 25 years. He was a study leader on eight Smithsonian Journeys.  He has seen most productions of Shakespeare in Washington since 1981.

Shakespeare may be the greatest writer ever, and while he is still the most produced playwright in the USA and around the world, his drama can also be appreciated on video. Five Fridays: April 7, 14, 28, May 5, 12, 6 to 8 p.m.

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With

Helen Hooper, a fiction writer, was a Stegner Fellow at Stanford University. She has published stories in American Short Fiction, The Common, The Hopkins Review, Bellevue Literary Review and elsewhere. She was a MacDowell Colony fellow, a Kenyon Review Peter Taylor fellow and holds an MFA from Warren Wilson College and a BA from Johns Hopkins. She has taught literature and creative writing at Stanford and other universities and at the middle and high school levels. She is now writing a novel.

This class will take you deep into the world of Elizabeth Strout, exploring the web of family and community she created in last year’s My Name Is Lucy Barton, and which she returns to this year in Anything Is Possible. Two Fridays: April 21, May 5, 12:30 to 2:30 p.m.

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With

Nicole Miller’s prize-winning essays have appeared recently in New Letters and Arts & Letters magazines. Her fiction has been published twice in The May Anthology of Short Stories, edited by Jill Paton Walsh and Sebastian Faulks. She received an M.Phil in Victorian Literature from Lincoln College, Oxford; a PhD in English at University College, London; and an MFA at Emerson College, Boston, where she held the Graduate Fellowship in Creative Writing. At The Oxford English Dictionary, she has served as a scholarly reader for British Dialects since 2002. She edits faculty manuscripts in Harvard’s English Department and teaches nineteenth and twentieth century British literature at Politics & Prose in Washington D.C.

She also leads fiction workshops at Grub Street in Boston, and is an emerging writer in residence at Kingston University, Kingston-upon-Thames, U.K.

Additional information about this instructor can be found at her website, www.inthesmallhours.com.

Join Nicole Miller in exploring the luxurious prose of Henry James’ 1902 novel, The Wings of the Dove, as well as reviewing Iain Softley’s 1997 adaptation of the film. Five Mondays: April 24, May 1, 8, 15, 22*, 1 to 3 p.m.

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With

Melanie (Penny) Du Bois did her undergraduate and graduate work at Harvard, has lived in Europe, and taught literature at universities there and here. She has directed a reading group in Washington since 1989, and taught at Politics & Prose throughout 2016, leading a series of three courses on Henry James' stories and novels.

Tolstoy's classic will be revisited and reassessed in this four-session course, which will dovetail with a discussion of Vasily Grossman's Life & Fate later this year. Four Wednesdays: May 24, 31, June 14, 21, 1 to 3 p.m.

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THE WRITING LIFE

With

Alicia Oltuski is the author of Precious Objects, a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers selection. Her work has appeared in Tin House magazine, W magazine, on NPR Berlin Stories, and other publications. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Columbia University, where she received a David Berg Foundation Fellowship, and a BA and MA from the University of Pennsylvania.

This one-day workshop will guide students through the maze of submitting fiction for publication, providing tips, tricks, and encouragement for short story writers at all stages. Monday, May 8, 1 to 4 p.m.

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With

Cynthia Kane is an author and certified meditation and mindfulness instructor. Her work has appeared in the Washington Post, the Chicago Tribune, BBC Travel, Yoga Journal, Women’s Day, the Huffington Post, and more. Her latest book, How to Communicate like a Buddhist, was published by Hierophant Publishing in 2016.

This one-day workshop explores the benefits of mindfulness and meditation for our everyday writing practice. Friday, May 12, 10 a.m. to noon

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With

Phyllis Theroux began her career in Washington, D.C. writing essays for the Washington Post and the New York Times. That segued into a memoir, which led to a career as an author, columnist, and teacher. As the founder of Nightwriters, she is currently working on a biography of her late mother, who was the inspiration for many of her essays. She lives with her husband, Ragan Phillips, in Ashland, Virginia, where she runs the Politics & Prose/Ashland Writer's Cottage that hosts other writers needing time and creative space for their work (http://www.politics-prose.com/writers-cottage). 

Explore the rules and rewards of keeping a worthwhile journal with author Phyllis Theroux, who will share how the habit of recording one’s observations leads to a more thoughtful life. Saturday, June 17, 10 a.m. to noon

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