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8-Week Introduction to the Personal Essay

Class Begins Thursday, January 17, 2019


$475 New Student | $450 Returning

In his memoir, Haruki Murakami writes, “The fact that I’m me and no one else is one of my greatest assets.”  But how do we craft our unique experiences into a compelling narrative? In this class, we’ll explore the personal essay as a way to tell our own stories. We’ll explore the essay as a form, with selections from The Art of Memoir by Mary Karr, and explore topics such as characterization, crafting scenes, and developing voice. Along the way, we’ll try out many generative exercises to trigger memory.

Each week, we will discuss the assigned readings and each other’s work. Students will have two opportunities to have their work critique, and they will receive written feedback from the instructor as well as their classmates. No prior creative writing study or workshop experience is required, but courage is highly recommended. 

NOTE: Students are required to purchase a copy of The Art of Memoir by Mary Karr.

  • Class size limited to 8 writers

  • Meets Thursdays 6:30PM to 8:30PM / January 17, 2019 to March 7, 2019

  • Class meets at Bamboo Detroit at 1420 Washington Blvd #301, Detroit, MI 48226

Contact us HERE if you have any questions about this class.

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Instructor Kelsey Ronan holds an MFA in creative writing from Purdue University and is the former writer-in-residence of the Hub City Writers Project. She grew up in Flint, Michigan and lives in Detroit. Her stories and essays have appeared in many magazines and literary journals, including Michigan Quarterly Review, New Ohio ReviewUtne ReaderKenyon ReviewBelt MagazineIndiana Review, and others. Her essay on the Flint Water Crisis, "Blood and Water," was honored as a notable essay in Best American Essays 2017, and she was the winner of New Ohio Review's 2018 Nonfiction Contest, judged by Roxane Gay. She recently completed a collection of linked short stories set in Flint, and is working on a memoir.