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Katharine Harer: Nomad with a Notebook – Introduction to Travel Writing

5 Mondays, August 14 – September 18 (skip September 4), 7-9:30pm  San Francisco
$275 members/$295 non-members

“Ten years ago I stepped out of my life in San Francisco and spent a month in Chile,” says instructor Katharine Harer. “I wandered the hills of Valparaiso, the rocky beaches of Isla Negra, and the lyrical and eccentric houses of Pablo Neruda, my notebook always close at hand. Now I don’t travel any other way.”

Whether you’ve just returned from Paris or Sacramento or you’re dreaming of a trip, this class will help you transform your observations into vivid and lasting images. Katharine will provide tips on how to carefully observe and record your impressions of new places and cultures. In-class writing exercises will guide you in identifying themes, composing scenes, and cultivating your distinct voice.

During class sessions, you’ll draw inspiration from seasoned essayists and travel writers, such as Pico Iyer, Joan Didion, Ann Patchett, and Geoff Dyer. You’ll have short weekly out-of-class writing assignments with the goal of completing a rough draft of a travel piece or personal essay/memoir by the end of the course.

Katharine Harer loves teaching creative writing. She has worked with hundreds, maybe thousands, of students in her over thirty-year career as a community college writing teacher at Skyline College and private workshop instructor. Katharine has published six collections of poetry, the most recent, Jazz & Other Hot Subjects, in 2016. Her poetry and nonfiction have been published widely in literary journals, newspapers, magazines, and anthologies. Her most recent travel essay, Delle Donne, appears in Best Women’s Travel Writing 2016, from Travelers’ Tales. She’s currently working on a personal travel essay about Bali.


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