Jumpstart Your Memoir/Personal Essay: Providence

6 Mondays from 6:00pm-9:00pm, starting February 4th
School One, Providence, RI
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Level: For Everyone
12 seats max

This course has a very clear mission: to get you started on your memoir or personal essays. Through a series of targeted writing in-class and take-home exercises, we will explore the terrain of personal narrative writing: mining  for material, finding a story arc, crafting description, shaping vivid scenes, and honing your voice. We will discuss the process of memoir and personal essay writing and review the strengths and weaknesses of the work we produce in class using an on-the-spot workshopping format. We will also read and discuss short published texts in regards to the craft and excerpts of powerful memoirs and personal essays, and learn how to apply similar methods in our own works. The class will offer a supportive and productive atmosphere for writers of every experience level.

NOTE: Class does meet February 18th or March 11th.

Scholarship Information

Thanks to the excellent literary citizenship of our donors, scholarships are available for all GrubStreet classes. To apply, click the gray "APPLY FOR SCHOLARSHIP" button. In order to be considered for a scholarship, you must complete your application at least one week before the start date of a class. Please await our scholarship committee's decision before registering for the class. We cannot hold spots in classes, so the sooner you apply, the better. Scholarships cannot be applied retroactively.

For more more detailed information about GrubStreet scholarships, including how to contribute to scholarship funds for other students, click here.

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Ethan Gilsdorf
See Bio

Previous Students Say

  • "Generative"
  • "Great for Newbies"
  • "Supportive Environment"
  • "Inspired Me to Write More"


  • Generate New Work
  • Class Discussion
  • In-Class Writing
  • Craft Lessons


  • Book-Length Memoir
  • Personal Essay
  • Literary Journalism
  • Nonfiction

Commitment Level



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