Explore where you are, where you’ve been, and where you might be going, in this special workshop with author, editor, and university teacher Laura Lynn Brown.
8 Weeks. Begins May 7, 2018. Limit 10 participants. Register by Friday, April 27, to avoid a $10 late registration fee.
Henry David Thoreau and Walden. Annie Dillard and Tinker Creek. Wendell Berry and Kentucky. Mary Karr and Texas. Kathleen Norris and the Dakotas. Patricia Hampl and Minneapolis. E.B. White and New York City and a Maine farm. So many writers are inextricably tied to places they’ve written about. And so many places are waiting for their writers. Where is your place?
When we’re getting to know someone, one of the first questions we ask is “Where are you from?” It’s one of the easiest — and most complicated — to answer. In this workshop, through readings, activities and writings, you’ll explore where you’ve been and where you are, in ways that might help you to see where you’re going.
Place means so many things, starting with physical location, a spot on the map with its own unique attributes of topography, climate, fauna and flora. It’s further defined by population: rural or urban, ethnic, familial, collegial. Place can act as a character. And it can be saturated with memory. In our readings, we will examine many of the ways place can figure in good storytelling.
This workshop is for you if you want to root yourself more deeply in the place where you live, to explore the stories of the places you used to live, to try your hand at travel writing, or to use place as a new filter through which to tell the stories only you can tell.
8-week *Basic* Level Course Includes
• Weekly readings (nonfiction and occasional poetry) from writers like Annie Dillard, Rick Bass, Gretel Ehrlich, Wendell Berry, Rebecca Solnit, Seamus Heaney, Shannon Huffman Polson and others, and from publications like The New Yorker, Outside, Vela, Atlas Obscura and others that focus on writing about place, to help inspire and shape your own writing.
• Writing prompts, assignments, and occasional activities to help you tell your stories through the lens of place
• Six asynchronous discussions you can participate in at your convenience and two live Zoom video chats (recorded, in case you need to miss)
• Pairing with a peer for weekly individual feedback and/or critique
8 Week *Premium* Level Course Includes
• All aspects of Basic level
• Professional guidance on how to begin to get your work published
• Continued access to the private classroom space after the course is completed
• Choose one:
-Professional editing of two articles you hope to submit for publication
-One high-points manuscript evaluation for a book-length project
-A 1/2-hour book-planning live conference session via Zoom
Themes We’ll Cover
WEEK 1: You Are Here
WEEK 2: Trailhead
WEEK 3: Residential Zone
WEEK 4: Blue and Green
WEEK 5: Highways and Roads
WEEK 6: Points of Interest, Roadside Attractions
WEEK 7: Here Be Dragons
WEEK 8: Compass Rose
Note to Teachers
You may be able to get professional development units for our courses. We recommend this service offered by Courses4Teachers (and that you check with your district beforehand).
Private online group setting that includes a free digital copy of God in the Yard (though we will not delve into this as a spiritual title, it is a strong example of “placed” writing)
You Will Need
A computer or mobile device with an internet connection capable of accessing our interactive online space, clicking on documents, and participating in Zoom chats. And you’ll need your favorite writing devices: computer, tablet, pencil, pen, crayon, notebook paper, Moleskine, spiral, or other creative tool. We also recommend a library card because this workshop includes many children’s books.
Your Workshop Leader
Laura Lynn Brown, a writing instructor at the University of Pittsburgh, is also an author, editor and writing coach who honed her writing and editing talents at The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. Her work was named as a Notable Essay in the 2013 Best American Essays. Laura has an MFA in nonfiction from the University of Pittsburgh and is the author of Everything That Makes You Mom. Writing about her own place (Pittsburgh) is one of her great loves.
From Past Tweetspeak Workshop Participants
Sharon Gibbs: Thank you for making Tweetspeak Poetry such a rich area of living and learning. The workshops are not only life-changing, but they have blessed me with friendships and community outside the classroom(s).
Laura Lapins Willis: The writing workshop I’m taking with Tweetspeak Poetry has been transformational. I’ve had a great teacher/mentor who has encouraged our group with interesting readings and assignments. My classmates have broadened my perspective and challenged me to be a better reader and writer.
Brad Grout: I am personally getting so much out of this memoir workshop…you people are AMAZING!
Lane Arnold: I struck gold. An afternoon session of writing poetry is good for the soul. The poetry workshop is a catalyst for creativity.
Lexanne Leonard: The most important step I’ve taken is to join Tweetspeak’s Poetry Workshop with Anne Doe Overstreet. I cannot begin to thank Tweetspeak, Anne, and my fellow students for this journey.
Darlene S.: I don’t think I can put into words both the overall value of the lessons learned and the encouragement I got.
Debra Hale-Shelton: My writing had become formulaic after so many years having to write the facts and just the facts. For the first time in years, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my craft, again dreamed of becoming what I dreamed of at age 18—a writer, not a reporter.
Rhonda Owen: Both of the Tweetspeak workshops I’ve taken this year have nourished me on so many levels. I also feel energized and revitalized through the relationships I’ve formed with the lovely, talented, kind people I’ve met in the workshops. Transformative is the best word to describe it…
Sandra Heska King: This was absolutely the single best whim I’ve followed.
8 week *Basic* • BUY NOW $350
8 week *Premium* • BUY NOW $399
Photo by Anja Pietsch, Creative Commons, via Flickr.