Hi Jane and Elaine,

I just wanted to send a note of thanks for Elaine’s “Intro to Creative Writing” class. In five short weeks, I moved from writing bad journal entries to developing short scenes with fully imagined characters. I call that progress!

Thanks for creating a safe and inviting place to learn and write Elaine.

Best wishes,



WOW! Elaine, thank you. I just downloaded your edits and I so appreciate the time and thought that went into your feedback. You’re awesome! I have really enjoyed this class and I very much appreciate you. I feel like I got a college semester in just these five week sessions.

I signed up for your one day in May, and look forward to learning more as I go. Thank you so much for your time and effort. I got way more than I ever expected when I signed up with Writing Salon.

See you later,


Dear Elaine,

Thank you for teaching two incredible workshops this Spring.  I admire your dedication to your craft and to your students.  You were supportive, insightful, inspiring, and creative throughout, and you’ve reignited my passion for reading and writing.

 Take good care,



Elaine is an excellent, dynamic teacher and very organized with materials and communications.  Her critiquing of our writing was extremely valuable.  In addition to her considerable experience, she has a gift for it. . . . I wish she could always be my reader, and would definitely take another course taught by her and recommend her classes to others. –Adele Mendelson

The teaching style was excellent. First, Elaine paid close attention to the dynamics of the class, I felt, and was good at listening and encouraging discussion, but then moving the class along when it was time so that we didn’t get bogged down. I value both of those qualities. Second, her comments on our work were specific and well-explained. She clearly prepared for each class and didn’t “wing it.” It’s not easy in talking about writing to go back and forth between “big picture” discussions of writing and narrower craft concerns. She does a good job. — Agatha Hinman


Elaine always involves the class via exercises or discussion. I enjoy that she, like a good interviewer, asks a question, listens to the answer and responds to what we say rather than follow a scripted agenda. (for instance our discussion on long rambling sentences.) I would change nothing unless another hour is an option.

I am a big fan of Elaine’s classes. She immediately puts the novice at ease and her enthusiastic love of the craft is contagious. — Rick Kelley


Elaine is a wonderful teacher. She made me feel inspired and confident in my writing. She’s very supportive. — Mariah Klein


Dear Jane,

“Starting Your Novel” with Elaine Beale was one of the most useful classes I’ve taken. Elaine is the kind of teacher who puts everyone at ease, no matter what stage of their writing the students are at. Her critique, while incisive, is always positive and constructive, and that made me feel comfortable sharing my work in class. She is also generous with sharing her own experience of getting published. I learnt a lot from her insights into the craft as well as the business.”

Neha K.


I took Elaine’s course on Starting Your Novel and in five weeks got everything I came for and much more. Elaine is a wonderful teacher, at once challenging and encouraging. Her written materials are useful, her in class exercises creative and entertaining, and class discussions are always lively. The writing exercises that she assigned were extremely helpful to me in rethinking my novel and she made detailed comments with helpful suggestions on my writing. This is one of the most valuable writing courses I have taken.

Alice F.


Elaine knows her stuff, obviously, and articulates her insights in an inspiring style.  I truly appreciated hearing her critique of my work and others.  She respects how challenging writing is and accentuates that by constantly providing positive support.  She is warm, honest, and helpful for fledgling fiction writers! — Karolina Garrett


Just a little note to tell you how much Carrie and I enjoyed Elaine’s “Busting through Writer’s Block” class on Saturday. She is excellent and the group was fantastic.

Greg Sandoval



Elaine was incredibly and specifically helpful to me and to other members in the class. She built a sense of community and respect for each other. Generous in her energies and very inclusive. — Deborah Bic


I thought Elaine was great and I was definitely inspired and had a lovely day. I liked how it was an open, safe and creative space to talk and write. I did not have expectations, and while I was expected some more concrete tips (which of course is easier said than done in the world of writing), I ended up liking the format, and it was followed by an email with some exercises to do at home. I thought Elaine was really encouraging and great to be around, and I would certainly work with her again, and would also try some of the other courses.

It was a great day, thanks!


I found it very helpful, the exercises excellent, the handouts very useful, and Elaine’s presentation and management of the class, very skillful.  No complaints!



Because of Elaine’s nurturing, common-sense presence, I was able to immediately catch on to what she was saying and start writing.  I was extremely happy with the course – I feel it met my expectations and more.  She was able to help me reverse some of my bad mental habits in a permanent way.

All the exercises were helpful.  Her personal approach to the issue of blockage, however, was the most helpful of all.  Without her wise words, the exercises wouldn’t have been as effective.

Judith Pynn


Hi Jane,

I took two superb classes at Writing Salon this last term.  One was a seminar on Writer’s Block with Elaine Beale.  She was fantastic, giving great tangible ways to get around a block if not actually smash it.  I wish she taught more classes in SF.

I always tell everyone I know who’s even considering writing to head to you, to skip MFA programs etc.  It’s all here at the Writing Salon.

Well done!

Margaret Weir


Hi Elaine,

Welcome back to California!  I hope your trip home was everything you needed it to be.

From blocked writer to published author:  My very first piece has been printed, distributed with my bi-line and photograph.  Plus, I have the invitation to write additional articles and have now signed up for a book proposal class.

Absolutely amazing really! I’m thrilled and owe it all to your support and enthusiasm.

From that class, Steve, Rana, Katie, Deborah and I have tried to meet regularly. I suspect that this will peter out soon without the structure of a class, but it has been both helpful and enjoyable to continue with them.  Possibly Katie and I will continue supporting each other since we are neighbors and have a lot in common in our personal lives.  Rana is definitely one to watch for in the future.  What great energy!

Your class was transformational, and I continue to be grateful for your instruction, style and how you handled us with gentleness and generosity. You are a gifted teacher.

Thanks again,

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