In a World: The Geography of Memoir

Friday, September 22nd, 10:30am-1:30pm
Remote (Live Zoom Meetings)
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Level: For Everyone
Adult (18+)
This class is full

One of the reasons people read memoir is to enter and experience a different world. As you write, it’s your job to create that world, making sure to include both your internal space—your emotional state when the story takes place—and the world that is the backdrop to your story, including geography, climate, interiors, and historical context. Setting is the wallpaper of your story: It should neatly fit into the larger work, enhancing the narrative themes and characters, but not be so dominant that it overwhelms the people in the room. In this seminar we will look at the many ways we can develop the external worlds of our personal stories. We will read examples of the role of setting in successful memoir and essays and do in-class writing to help the worlds of our memoirs come to life. You will leave this seminar with new writing and a new perspective on existing work.

Part of GrubStreet's Memoir Series, dedicated to the craft and process of memoir writing. Classes include:

To learn more about instructor Alysia Abbott and her teaching style, check out the short podcast with her in our GrubStreet Instructor Interview series:

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Alysia Abbott
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Previous Students Say

  • "Supportive Environment"
  • "Lots of Practical Tips"
  • "Inspired Me to Write More"
  • "Inundated with great info"


  • Study Published Writing
  • Craft Lessons
  • Inspiration
  • Class Discussion


  • Book-Length Memoir
  • Nonfiction

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