Event: Write Your Story Workshop

You actually can change the direction of your life by writing it.

Steve Friedman’s Workshop on the Art of the Personal Essay: Divorce, Breakups and Beginnings

writingonriverbank

The ability to let go of the simple narratives about our lives, and give ourselves the freedom to explore complexity, has a huge impact on how we shape our future.  Whether you dream of being published or just want to find your way out of the forest of grief, this workshop is one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself.

THE CONVENTIONAL BREAKUP STORY:
girl meets boy, girl loses boy, girl finds better boy and ultimate riches and happiness as a fly-fishing instructor in Montana.

We’re not ones to quibble with happy endings, but they are rarely so simple or straightforward as the conventional narrative suggests. Reality is messier, more complicated, more nuanced. It’s not one but a number of realities, each hard to grasp in its own way, each excruciating in its own manner, each moving toward its own singular resolution.

WHAT’S YOUR NARRATIVE?
If you’re like most people, you’ve been telling yourself a particular story for a long time, without recognizing the elements of the story–or even that it’s a story at all.

In three intensive sessions over the course of the weekend, this workshop will provide you an opportunity to examine the truth – both literal and emotional – of your story and to convey it in a compelling way. Publication is not the primary goal, but it will be discussed, encouraged, and hopefully achieved for those who are interested.


This weekend includes:

• Lessons on the craft of the personal essay
• Assigned readings
• Talks and discussion with guest speakers Sarah Crichton and Laurie Abraham.
• Group discussion and feedback on your work
• Three delicious home cooked meals (dinner and two lunches)

 

Friday, May 11th, 6-9pm (includes dinner)
Saturday, May 12th, 10am-4pm (includes lunch)
Sunday, May 13th, 10am-4pm (includes lunch)
Brooklyn Heights

Early bird price $499 through April 20 | Members use code for 20% discount

Regular price $585

 

Testimonials

It really did change my perspective on life. I was feeling helpless and paralyzed waiting for this divorce, and the workshop helped me see it’s my story, my life, and I don’t need to waste another moment of it on my ex.

– Domenica D.

I greatly appreciated the powerful weekend spent with all of you. The lessons, the honesty (even when it was uncomfortable), and the judgment-free environment have left a lasting impact on me.

– Tracie R.

There were very rich stories to tell and such power in supporting and nurturing one another. So Inspiring. Thank you, Steve, for teaching us about how to focus on the story we want to tell. You brought us such wonderful intellectual food.

– Anne S.

Thanks to all for an incredible weekend. Elise, for opening your home and feeding us. Steve, for keeping us upright on the life raft. And to everyone for being so honest and nurturing and supportive of each other on what often feels like a painful journey of discovery. Writing is hard!!! But we’re doing it.

– Anna M.

I am so moved by our weekend!! Something magical happened with us all together. Thank you all for helping me to find my story and reclaim it from my ex. I’ve wanted to arrive here for quite some time and when he dropped the kids off with me tonight I felt different; not angry and disgusted! A miracle.

-Lucia R.

I was really afraid of what I was getting myself into with this class – but it was just what I needed to be doing right now. I felt so much support and compassion from the group and I was moved by the stories of resilience. I can’t thank you enough and I have learned so much from you.

– Lillian R.

Early bird price $499 through April 20 | Members use code for 20% discount

Regular price $585

 

Instructor & Speakers

Instructor Steve Friedman has won numerous writing awards and been published in more than a dozen anthologies, including The Best of Modern Love, The Bastard on the Couch, The Best American Sports Writing and The Best American Travel Writing.  He was a finalist for the national magazine award in feature writing in 2014 and 2016. He also wrote the very first Modern Love column published in The New York Times, and has authored seven books (including a memoir and two New York Times bestsellers). His personal essays have appeared in GQ, Esquire, Elle, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Outside, and New York Magazine among many others. He has taught personal essay writing for the past fifteen years in NYC, as well as at the University of Missouri School of Journalism. See his work at stevefriedman.net

 

Guest Speakers:

Meghan Daum is the author of four books, most recently the collection of original essays The Unspeakable: And Other Subjects of Discussion, which won the 2015 PEN Center USA Award for creative nonfiction. She is also the editor of the New York Times bestseller Selfish, Shallow & Self-Absorbed: Sixteen Writers  on the Decision Not To Have Kids. Her other books include the essay collection My Misspent Youth, the novel The Quality of Life Report, and Life Would Be Perfect If I Lived In That House, a memoir.  For more than a decade Meghan was an opinion columnist at The Los Angeles Times, covering cultural and political topics. She now writes the Egos column in The New York Times Book Review, reviewing new memoirs. Meghan has written for numerous magazines, including The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, The Atlantic, and Vogue. She is the recipient of a 2015 Guggenheim Fellowship and a 2016 National Endowment for the Arts fellowship and is on the adjunct faculty in the MFA Writing Program at Columbia University.

 

Roberta “Robbie” Myers was, until very recently, the editor-in-chief of Elle for 17 years. Under Myers, Elle was known as the only true mainstream competition to Vogue for its crisp journalism and cutting-edge fashion photography. Prior to joining ELLE, Myers worked at Mirabella magazine, where she had been the editor-in-chief since April 1998. Before Mirabella, she was a senior articles editor at ELLE; a senior editor at InStyle, where she worked on the start-up of the Time Inc. launch; and editor-in-chief of Tell. She was managing editor at Seventeen. She also worked at Interview, for Andy Warhol, and began her career at Rolling Stone.