Writing Workshops and Classes
Beyond the Stacks recognizes the crucial place writing, sharing our unique stories, and building safe communal space for mutual expression hold in societal healing. This is why we offer writing workshops and classes for your sites of community. Each lasts for an hour and a half and can be booked either as a one-off program or three-part series. All of our workshops are built with three key parts: (1) an overview of the genre or topic (2) a deep dive into textual examples and (3) a writing prompt with time for participants to share. We recommend workshop sizes of no more than 20. We establish guidelines for an open yet moderated culturally aware and sensitive discussion. Our goal is to facilitate, not lead, a democratic workshop space. We need the humanizing power of stories to heal.
View full class descriptions and facilitator bio for advertising purposes. Each class is $250 and a three-part series is $600. We will work with justice-driven organizations' budgets.
Writing through Trauma, Participant Feedback Survey
"I would like to complement the director of this program, Ery Caswell. I was very impressed with the thoughtful and balanced energy that he brought into the room. He has what I would call a kind of magical quality that is very calming and peaceful that made me feel very much at ease."
Personal Essay and the Right to Write
Writing the personal essay offers us radical permission to express the values of our life and our experiences. Explore the power of the genre in this introductory workshop. Leave with the sprouted seeds of your writing prompts inspired to continue.
Start Your Memoir: Crafting a Life into Narrative
A memoir is not merely a series of events in your life; it is a cohesive story constellated around some particular theme or lens. Don't lose the forest for the trees. This workshop will help you reflect upon your life and discover the story you most urgently need to tell.
A Journey through Genre Bending and the Unconventional
The space between fact and fiction (and any other genre for that matter) is vast and undefined. Explore experimental, multimedia, and other forms of genre-bending writing from both classic and contemporary writers. Let's make abstract paintings out of text!
The Personal as Political: Forging Stories of Resistance
Politics is not confined to legislatures, pundit panels, or news outlets. Politics play out among, between, and within us personally. Find the power of human connection in articulating our politics, privileges, injustices, and wounds as they play out in daily life.
Short & Shorter: Intro to Flash Fiction & Micromemoir
We live busy lives inundated with information pressed for the time to read or write with presence. It's thus no surprise to see flash genres thriving in our literary landscape! Discover just some of the many gripping and revolutionary stories told in 500 words or less.
Poetry of Witness and Social Justice
Inspired by Caroline Forchee's "poetry of witness", we will explore and celebrate the poets and poems doing the work of journalism, justice digging, and bearing witness to the world as it is--and as it sometimes does not wish to see itself.
Writing as Healing: the Science & Art of Journaling
Writing holds tremendous value for everyone in recovering from trauma, cultivating resiliency, and building stable, well-regulated mental health. Learn the basic science behind what we know about writing as a modality for healing: what works, what doesn't, and how to journal our way to our most grounded selves.
The Total Novice Guide to Publishing in Literary Journals
Everybody has to start somewhere when it comes to getting published. You don't need an MFA or graduate degree to hone your craft and find readers and publishers who want to share your work with you. This approachable, down-to-earth guide to submitting writing to literary journals in the digital era will guide you to the yes's you seek (and to cope with the no's!).