New Class!
Online: Zoom

Self-Portraiture: Interrogating the Self in Memoir & Personal Essay

Friday, April 7th, from 6:00pm-9:00pm (EST).
Online: Zoom
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Level: For Everyone
Adult (18+)
This class is full

One of the world's most famous self-portraitists, Frida Kahlo's paintings reveal her psychological and emotional response to adversity and trauma. What can writers learn from Kahlo’s relentless interrogation of herself? Is this kind of intricate analysis and reflection of self necessary? How can it feed and layer our writing and our stories?

Creating the self as a character is a significant challenge of autobiographical writing. In this class, we will discuss the way relentlessly interrogating ourselves, our decisions, and our lives can improve out art. We will cover strategies for sifting through all that material of the self, and decide which details can be left out in one piece of writing, but could be absolutely critical to the next.

We will engage in deeply reflective activities to help you develop yourself as a character on the page. We’ll also examine how authors craft their narrative personas (which are often very different, story to story), and how and why the “I” can take on different shapes in creative nonfiction.

Class Format

This class will take place using Zoom videoconferencing. About 15 minutes before your class is scheduled to begin, you'll receive an email from your instructor with a link to join the class meeting!

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

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Vanessa Mártir
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Previous Students Say

  • "Generative"
  • "Great for Newbies"
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  • Craft Lessons
  • In-Class Writing
  • Inspiration
  • Lecture
  • Class Discussion


  • Book-Length Memoir
  • Personal Essay
  • Nonfiction

Commitment Level



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