Classes at the Attic

APPS DUE DEC 15: Poets Studio | Jan 13 - Jun 29

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Poets Studio is based on the idea that focusing on goals is the key to lasting growth as a poet. Poets Studio is a weekly workshop that will run from January 6 until the end of June (dates TBA) for 24 weeks.  It is designed to give form and focus to your poetry writing. The Poets Studio is open to applications from all poets. Poets join the Poets Studio as members and attend for the entire session. This creates the Poets Studio's special experience: a steady, supportive, and comprehensive study of your poetry among other poets.

Read more about the Poets Studio.

Deadline to apply is Dec 15

To Apply: Please send ten (10) pages of poems and a 250 words "Statement of Goals" to the Attic Institute.

APPLY NOW

Teacher: 
Time: 
Mon, 5:30 - 8pm, Jan 13 - June 29, 24 weeks | No Studio on Mar 23, Mar 30, and May 5
Location: 
Attic Institute, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Registration for the 24 weeks of Poets Studio is $1350 ($1416 via PayPal). Learn more about registration: http://atticinstitute.com/content/poetsstudio

APPS DUE JAN 5: Creative Nonfiction (CNF) Studio | Jan 16 - Mar 26

Write what you know you want to know

The Creative Nonfiction (CNF) Studio is based on the idea that inspiration, accountability, and community are essential to every writer’s growth. The CNF Studio meets weekly for multi-month sessions, and its curriculum is designed to help you deepen your writing through a keener understanding of both literary craft and your own voice. The CNF Studio is open to applications from all writers, and members often return for multiple sessions. This creates the Studio’s special experience: a consistent, deep, and supportive study of your writing in the company of other writers. Each weekly session includes a close-reading and discussion of a selected work of creative nonfiction, a roundtable reading of take-home prompts, and in-depth critique of several works-in-progress. Over the course of their time in the CNF Studio, writers can expect to read widely and gain deep insight into their own writing, all the while exploring questions of structure, form, narration, truth, memory, influence, and voice.  The Studio culminates in a celebration at a nearby watering hole.

Maximum 10 students per session 

Learn more about applying to the CNF Studio

To Apply: To apply to join the next Creative Nonfiction Studio, please send a writing sample of up to 3,500 words and a 250-word statement of purpose; let us know, too, if you’re available for the afternoon session, the evening, or both.

APPLICATIONS DUE JAN 5.

APPLY NOW

Teacher: 
Time: 
Thursdays,CNF Studio, Thursdays, 6:00-9:00, Jan 16 - Mar 26 | 11 weeks
Total Fee: 
Registration: $582 (cash/check); $604 (Paypal).

APPS DUE NOV 26 | WORKSHOP 8 | Jan 23 - Nov 6

8 Writers for 8 Months

There's a saying in Italian which translates to keeping "Dreams in a drawer." Everyone talks about their "desk drawer book" which is the book they kind of work on, or they wrote a single draft then put it away thinking that someday they would return to it. So you've always told yourself, "I'm going to finish that book and if I could just pull together a group of a few committed writers to work with me, I could do this." Think of this eight month workshop as that particular someday.  Take your dream (your novel or memoir, or essay or short story collection) out of the drawer and into the world.

Led by inspirational teacher and writer Whitney Otto, WORKSHOP 8 selects eight writers who are ready to write that novel or memoir or collection (essays or short stories). You can come into the group with a full draft, or a partial draft, or an idea that you are ready to make into a manuscript. We are your audience and your colleagues. We are that writing group you've wanted to help you get to the end of a workable draft. The page count turned into the workshop will be higher than most workshops, so much of your book (if not all of your book) can be read and discussed. You commit to your art, and the workshop commits to you.

One of the essential benefits of WORKSHOP 8 is the unique schedule. The workshop meets January - June breaks for a summer of concentrated writing, and finally resumes in the fall, September - November. Additionally, the workshop meets for four weeks followed by a week break because it is hard for even the most seasoned writer to maintain an unending writing schedule. Building in breaks allows the writer to write at his or her own pace while processing the discussion from the workshop. 

APPLY NOW 

 

Teacher: 
Time: 
Wednesdays, Jan - Nov (Exact Schedule TBA), 5:30-8pm
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Early Registration and Tuition Deadline is seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Early Registration: $1324 (cash/check); $1365 (Paypal). | Multiple payment options are available for accepted writers.

FREE: Consult about Your Writing

Call us. Let us help you with your writing.

You're invited to schedule a free 15-minute conference call consult to describe your writing situation and focus. During the call, we listen to your writing situation and help you out -- sometimes writers will register for an upcoming workshop. Other times, after a consult, writers will initiate a formal Introductory Consult through our Individual Consult Group to find a writing coach selected specifically for your project.

To initiate a Free Consult, e-mail us -- and when you do, please let us know specifically what you're working on and want to discuss. Then we'll get back in touch and begin to talk together about your writing.

Register for a free consult

 

Time: 
By appointment only.
Location: 
Telephone Conference Call
Total Fee: 
Free.

Techniques for Starting Any New Piece of Writing w David Biespiel | Nov 12 - Dec 17

Being able to write joyfully in an encouraging environment without the constant fear of negative critique can be incredibly freeing. In this workshop, led by Attic Institute founder David Biespiel, short, timed, directed writing sessions allow you to quickly make dramatic pieces of writing--in fiction, memoir, or poems--that encourage your personal sense of expression. These exercises are designed to establish easy-to-follow strategies that free up your imagination and let you discover something new, or something long percolating. These writing or "sketch" sessions build confidence, enabling you to concentrate on the material that's right before you. Our focus will be almost entirely on making new pieces of writing with hardly any time dedicated to critique or revision.

Register for this workshop

Teacher: 
Time: 
Tuesdays, Nov 12 - Dec 17, 4-5:30pm, 6 weeks
Location: 
Attic Institute, 4232 SE Hawthorne Blvd
Total Fee: 
Early Registration and Tuition Deadline is seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Early Registration: $189 (cash/check); $195 (Paypal). | Late Registration: $204 (cash/check); $210 (PayPal).

Saturday Poetry Workshop II: Open Forms w John Morrison | Nov 16

“Originality relies on a deep knowledge of traditions.” TS Eliot

In this session, we’ll open up and explore archetypal forms that power great poetry. We’ll consider the music and strategy of model poems, and then through generative activities, we’ll draft our version of several open forms, such as the Aubade, Letter, List, Ode, and Elegy. We’ll all leave the session with a greater appreciation and deeper understanding of our poetic tradition, and take home potent drafts to polish and shine. Come ready to read, discuss, and scribble away! | Maximum: 14 writers

[Note: This workshop is designed to be paired with John's Strict Forms workshop in Session I. Poets are welcome to take both, or just one.]

Register for this workshop

 

Teacher: 
Time: 
Saturday, Nov 16, 10am - 4:30pm, six hours (including 30-min. lunch break)
Location: 
Attic Institute, 4232 SE Hawthorne Blvd
Total Fee: 
Early Registration and Tuition Deadline is seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Early Registration: $126 (cash/check); $134 (Paypal). | Late Registration: $141 (cash/check); $149 (PayPal).

ONE DAY WORKSHOP: Life Writing: New Years Resolutions w David Biespiel | Nov 23

In this weekend workshop to focus your writing for 2020, we will try to help you get organized for the year ahead by organizing your goals -- and getting started now. As with Life Writing (weekend workshop in October) attention will be devoted to the quality of remembering and remaking your past experiences and stories on the page. Our focus will be on observation, with discussion and demonstration-writing exercises designed to include new techniques to frame your writing, draw out the details of place, use images to make fresh comparisons, and to pay attention to landmarks that anchor your imagination. While this in-class writing workshop is useful as preparation for large-scale pieces of writing (stories, novels, essays, poems), it also serves as a complete experience in and of itself. Prompts range in length from several minutes to an hour, allowing you to build from feelings to scenes and beyond. Each session will feature new techniques and strategies. | Maximum: 20 writers

Note: This workshop can be taken as Part 2 of Life Writing (Oct 26-27) or as a standalone class. There will be some review from the October workshop, but all the prompts and direction will be unique to this weekend's class.

Register for this workshop

Teacher: 
Time: 
Sat, 12-5pm, Nov 23 | 5 HOURS
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Early Registration and Tuition Deadline is seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Early Registration: $105 (cash/check); $111 (Paypal). | Late Registration: $120 (cash/check); $126 (PayPal).

WEEKEND: Poets Studio: Introduction | Dec 7-8

Pour the poet into the art and the art into the poet.

Poets Studio is based on the idea that focusing on goals is the key to lasting growth as a poet. Poets Studio is a weekly workshop that will run from January - June 2002.

"Poets Studio: Introduction" is a special, late fall weekend workshop for poets interested in applying to the Jan-June program. (Note: "Poets Studio: Introduction" enrollment is open to anyone whether you're thinking about Poets Studio for next year or not). Poets Studio is designed to give form and focus to your poetry writing. This creates the Poets Studio's special experience: a steady, supportive, and comprehensive study of your poetry among other poets. Maximum writers: 20.

Register for this workshop

Teacher: 
Time: 
Sat + Sun 12-5pm, Dec 7-8| 10 hours
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Early Registration and Tuition Deadline is seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Early Registration: $210 (cash/check); $222 (Paypal). | Late Registration: $225 (cash/check); $237 (PayPal).

WINTER: Writer's Tool Kit Workshop w Wayne Gregory | Jan 11-12

Weekend Workshop

“Learn the rules like a pro so you can break them like an artist.” ~ Pablo Picasso

You want to write and you think you may have a story to tell, but you’re not sure how to get started. The Writer’s Toolkit is the class for you. In this workshop, you will discover how to transform your ideas from imagination to a cohesive and compelling story that engages readers and keeps them turning the pages for more. You will learn some of the basic conventions for good writing that successful writers use: how to develop plot, how to create compelling characters, how to build dynamic scenes, and how to show rather than tell. You will learn by doing and will take away a wealth of writing tools and resources to keep honing your craft after the workshop is over. Whether you’ve never written anything or you’ve got reams of pages that you’re not sure what to do with, this workshop will be valuable for you. Sign up for A Writer’s Toolkit and learn the strategies you need to get you started as a writer and keep you going. | Maximum: 12 writers

Register for this workshop

Teacher: 
Time: 
Weekend: Jan 11-12: Sat 12-5pm | Sun 12-5pm | 10 hours
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Discounted Early Registration is due seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Discounted Early Registration: $215 (cash/check); $227 (Paypal). | Tuition Registration: $230 (cash/check); $242 (PayPal).sh/check); $242 (PayPal).

WINTER: Poetry as Practice Workshop w Ashley Toliver | Jan 13 - Feb 10

What happens when we expand our creative focus and let go of our expectations? In this workshop, we’ll talk a lot about poems— our own, each others’, how we made them, the weird poetry of being a human in the world right now— and then we’ll spend the next six days experimenting with new generative practices, writing prompts, and exercises, all with the aim of deepening our creative evolution. Can we stretch, resist, integrate, or upend our current poetic preoccupations enough to discover new and unexplored directions for our work? Whether you’re feeling stuck in your current project or simply seeking an approachable space to try something new, all are welcome to join in the experiment. | Maximum: 12 writers

Register for this workshop

Teacher: 
Time: 
Mondays, 5:30 - 7:30pm, Jan 13 - Feb 10, 5 weeks
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Discounted Early Registration is due seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Discounted Early Registration: $215 (cash/check); $227 (Paypal). | Tuition Registration: $230 (cash/check); $242 (PayPal).sh/check); $242 (PayPal).

WINTER: Intro to Flash Nonfiction w Brian Benson | Jan 14 - Feb 11

Flash nonfiction, simply put, is true-to-life writing defined by extreme compression: it's saying what you've got to say using as few words, and as much beauty, as possible. An endlessly accessible, playful, potent form, flash nonfiction is evermore popular; from Brevity to River Teeth, The Rumpus to The Sun, legions of great journals are eager to publish great flash. In this prompt-driven workshop, we'll read masters of the flash nonfiction form, including Anna Vodicka, Ross Gay, Brenda Miller, Ira Sukrungruang, Abigail Thomas, and more; we'll talk about what stories are suited for flash, how to tell them well, and where to publish them; and most of all, we'll write, and write, and write, via in-class exercises and take-home prompts. Students will leave the class with reams of new writing and ideas for where to publish. | Maximum: 12 writers

Register for this workshop

Teacher: 
Time: 
Tuesdays, 5:30 - 7:30pm, Jan 14 - Feb 11, 5 weeks
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Discounted Early Registration is due seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Discounted Early Registration: $215 (cash/check); $227 (Paypal). | Tuition Registration: $230 (cash/check); $242 (PayPal).

WINTER: Attic Writers' League w Patrick Dundon | Jan 14 - Feb 11

Attic Writers League workshops focus on three essential elements: imagination, metaphor, and story. These are essential writing elements that meet the needs of the emerging writer. The motto of the Attic Writers League is “Write another one.” Our philosophy allows you to engage, explore, and immerse yourself in the physical pleasure of writing, knowing that other workshops are available for revision, critique, and further development of original pieces. This workshop emphasizes the importance of the practice of writing regularly, and we'll be doing a lot of that during our time together.  | Maximum: 12 writers. 

Register for this workshop

Teacher: 
Time: 
Tuesdays, 7:45 - 9:45pm, Jan 14 - Feb 11, 5 weeks
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Discounted Early Registration is due seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Discounted Early Registration: $215 (cash/check); $227 (Paypal). | Tuition Registration: $230 (cash/check); $242 (PayPal).sh/check); $242 (PayPal).

WINTER: Observation and Locating the Telling Detail Workshop w Whitney Otto | Jan 14 - Feb 11

This workshop is about craft. Writers will be working on “Thumbnail Portraiture,” where you write a family (or friends) album of short pieces. Writers will be asked to be prepared to write a series of 250/300 word profiles of people in your lives: family, friends, co-workers, the checker at the grocery store you see every day, neighbors—really anyone who is a part of your world. The idea is to encourage you to be observant of and to think deeply about the people who you see all the time. We’re looking for the telling the detail, the thing that often catches your attention about the people in your life.  | Maximum: 12 writers

Register for this workshop

Teacher: 
Time: 
Tuesdays, 5:30 - 7:30pm, Jan 14 - Feb 11, 5 weeks
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Discounted Early Registration is due seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Discounted Early Registration: $215 (cash/check); $227 (Paypal). | Tuition Registration: $230 (cash/check); $242 (PayPal).

WINTER: The Poetry of Memory w John Morrison | Jan 14 - Feb 11

"The only thing you remember is your life." ~ Pablo Neruda

That Reminds Me: the Poetry of Memory: Our memories are not a single image, or even a single experience. Often, as the memoirist Jay Ponteri suggests "Memories nest inside memories." In this class we will let one memory lead us to another and another and another. We will be generating work in class, discussing the dream-land of memory, and looking at the work of other poets who are memory-based writers. Maximum | 12 writers.

Register for this workshop

Teacher: 
Time: 
Tuesdays, 7:45 - 9:45pm, Jan 14 - Feb 11, 5 weeks
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Discounted Early Registration is due seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Discounted Early Registration: $215 (cash/check); $227 (Paypal). | Tuition Registration: $230 (cash/check); $242 (PayPal).sh/check); $242 (PayPal).

WINTER: So, You Wanna Be A Writer? Workshop w Wayne Gregory | Jan 15 - Feb 12

“Writing is like driving at night in the fog. You can only see as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.” ~ E. L. Doctorow

You have a thousand stories inside your head. You dabble on the page but rarely if ever finish anything, much less share with others. “Is my work good enough?” you wonder.  “Do I have something original and interesting to say? What makes me think I can be a writer?”  The biggest obstacle for emerging writers is not lack of time nor lack of skill nor lack of things to write about. It’s a lack of self-confidence. This workshop is designed for those who want to be writers, but are not sure they can be.  It provides a safe space for you to explore your interest in writing within a community of others who are on the same journey of exploration that you are. You will have an opportunity to share your writing and receive feedback that will help you identify your creative strengths and build on them. If you have work to share, bring it. If you haven’t written anything, bring an open mind to the possibilities that the class may open for you. Learn about the craft and, in the process, discover what it is about you that makes your stories worth telling and makes you the only writer who can tell them. | Maximum 12 students

Register for this workshop

Teacher: 
Time: 
Wednesdays, 7:45 - 9:45pm, Jan 15 - Feb 12, 5 weeks
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Discounted Early Registration is due seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Discounted Early Registration: $215 (cash/check); $227 (Paypal). | Tuition Registration: $230 (cash/check); $242 (PayPal).sh/check); $242 (PayPal).

WINTER: Lee Montgomery's Personal Essay Workshop | Beginning Jan 16

Some of the most interesting writing done today is personal essay and memoir. Pushing narrative boundaries, utilizing traditional and nontraditional forms, this type of writing explores individuality and the minutiae of life unlike any other form. This workshop will help students explore the new world of personal essay writing and understand both traditional and nontraditional narrative strategies available to them. Though the class will be run as a classic workshop, where students will submit their work to be reviewed in class, it will also combine craft lectures, outside reading, and in-class exercises. | Maximum: 12 writers.

Register for this workshop

 

 

 

Time: 
Thursdays, 5:30 - 7:30pm, beginning Jan 16
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
TBA

ONE DAY WORKSHOP: Coming Through the Crucible Workshop w Philip Kenney | Jan 18

Using Writing To Illuminate Our Way

Even the most successful writers are subject to troubling insecurity, episodes of self-doubt and the persistent narrative that insists, “I am not good enough.” Navigating the turbulent, emotional waters of a creative life is a challenge we must all take up to ensure our work is not undermined by the vulnerabilities of our internal world. Using writing, especially poems, to illuminate the way, this workshop will explore the psychological and emotional underpinnings of the not-good-enough narrative. Participants will learn ways to relate to these challenges and loosen the binds that restrict creative work. A few of the writers who will guide us through the day are Emily Dickenson, Ellen Bass, Raymond Carver and Wendell Berry. Open to all writers in every genre. | Maximum: 14 writers

Register for this workshop

Teacher: 
Time: 
Sat, 12 - 5pm, Jan 18 | 5 hours
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Early Registration and Tuition Deadline is seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Early Registration: $105 (cash/check); $111 (Paypal). | Late Registration: $120 (cash/check); $126 (PayPal).

WINTER: Fiction Workshop w Joanna Rose | Jan 18 - Feb 15

Sentences are the Lego of Story

 

A critique workshop for writers of all levels designed to lead you deeper into the experience of your story, true or imagined. Any story depends on its sentences, and this workshop is built on defining what the job of its sentences is, and how they are doing their work. We’ll look into voice and language in the terms of the stories at hand. | Maximum: 12 writers

Register for this workshop

Teacher: 
Time: 
Saturdays, 9am - 11am, Jan 18 - Feb 15, 5 weeks
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Discounted Early Registration is due seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Discounted Early Registration: $215 (cash/check); $227 (Paypal). | Tuition Registration: $230 (cash/check); $242 (PayPal).sh/check); $242 (PayPal).

WINTER: The Writer’s Crucible Workshop w Philip Kenney | Jan 25 - Feb 22

This workshop is designed for writers who wish to deepen their understanding of the ideas presented in the “Coming Through the Crucible” workshop. We will use the text of The Writer’s Crucible as a starting point for an exploration of the emotional vulnerabilities we encounter in our work. Why the Crucible? Crucible is defined as: A situation of severe trial, or in which different elements interact, leading to the creation of something new. Writers know what it is to go through the crucible. It is trial by fire and the joy of making something new. This is the agony and the ecstasy of our work. We will explore in depth, the psychological, emotional and creative aspects that interact in this dynamic process and move us to experience such a tremendous range of feeling. Writers will come to a better understanding of their own psychology and develop improved ways of providing self-support through difficult times. In particular, this workshop will delve into material related to emotional flooding, shame-based reactions to rejections and critique, managing and confronting negative self-talk and the ways in which trauma lives in the body and psyche. We will also look at spiritual methods of understanding the creative process and in short meditations to transform states of emotional constriction into states of openness. This workshop will offer both an intellectual understanding of the material and experiential processes that make what we learn personally relevant. Each class will include exercises designed to connect us with and accept our emotional life. We will use writing prompts to explore the psychological material and have small group sessions to share insights and experiences that come up in the course of the program. There will be ample time to question and comment on the readings and class presentations.    

Schedule for the class:

Week One:  The Paradox of Self: We are one and many in the Theater of the Mind              

Week Two:  Understanding the Psychology of Vulnerability: Dealing with insecurities

Week Three: Trauma and the Problem of Shame: The epidemic of unworthiness

Week Four:  Internal Self-Attack: Three approaches to standing up to the inner critic

Week Five:  Writing as Spiritual Practice: The challenge of getting out of our way

 

Maximum: 12 writers

Register for this workshop

                

Teacher: 
Time: 
Saturdays, 10am - 12pm, Jan 25 - Feb 22, 5 weeks
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Discounted Early Registration is due seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Discounted Early Registration: $215 (cash/check); $227 (Paypal). | Tuition Registration: $230 (cash/check); $242 (PayPal).sh/check); $242 (PayPal).

WEEKEND: Write Better Right NOW Workshop w David Biespiel | Weekend Feb 1-2

Weekend Workshop

We all know it takes a long time and lot of practice to write well. Still, there a few proven strategies you can be doing now. As the writer Karen Karbo likes to ask her students, Are you working on something that’s refusing to gel? Do you keep generating pages but never feel as if you’re getting anywhere? Do you long to write something that speaks truth, moves readers, and changes the world (at least your corner of it). We'll be trying to help you get some answers in this two-day weekend workshop. Building from work generated in in the room, this crash course will teach you important, useable techniques for improving your writing life and your writing right this minute. Tuition includes a copy of Every Writer Has a Thousand Faces -- David Biespiel's book on releasing your creativity as a writer. This workshop is for all writers at every level | Maximum: 15 writers

Register for this workshop

Teacher: 
Time: 
Weekend: Feb 1-2: Sat 12-5pm | Sun 12-5pm | 10 hours
Location: 
Attic Institute of Arts and Letters, 4232 SE Hawthorne Boulevard
Total Fee: 
Discounted Early Registration is due seven (7) days prior to the start of the workshop. | Discounted Early Registration: $225 (cash/check); $237 (Paypal). | Tuition Registration: $240 (cash/check); $252 (PayPal).