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*This class is a continuation of “Embodied Writing,” offered in Nov/Dec 2016, but you do not need to have taken the earlier class to enroll.


As writers, most of us expect to draw subject matter from our most troubling personal experiences. And daily news of shootings, terrorism, and natural disasters—along with conflict around the 2016 election—also call us to respond to discord within the civic realm. With so many difficult stories circulating in and around us, the task of writing about them might seem straightforward, yet doubts abound: Where are the words? Hasn’t everything already been said? How do I make my pain and anxiety artistically meaningful?


This class offers tools to help you write about personal pain and collective anxiety with clarity and complexity. “Our task as writers, as citizens, is to resist abstraction by imaginatively embodying our subject in concrete terms,” says instructor Alice Templeton. “This means reconnecting the imagination with the body. When we do this work, the paralysis of pain and anxiety can give way to the energy of transformation.”


The class provides writing exercises, along with literary examples, to help writers get past obstacles and practice concrete ways of expressing personal and collective pain. We will look at excerpts by Audre Lorde, Paul Celan, Claudia Rankine, and others. Writers of all genres are welcome.
✲ This class skips a date. Please see the schedule for details.



No Instructor Specified


1-   Saturday, May 13 | 2:00pm-4:30pm
2-   Saturday, May 20 | 2:00pm-4:30pm
3-   Saturday, June 3 | 2:00pm-4:30pm
4-   Saturday, June 10 | 2:00pm-4:30pm
5-   Saturday, June 17 | 2:00pm-4:30pm

Class Prep
  • Alice is a poet, and at first I didn't think her poetry examples would help my prose, fiction writing but woah was I wrong. In fact the poetry examples helped my writing MORE than the short story/essay examples. I'm still sitting with why. Because they're very precise/short manifestations of technique? Because they're a different style and sometimes you need to pull from different traditions? I do honestly feel that the few techniques I've used from this class have totally changed my writing. I'm thankful for that, because I was getting into a rut.

    Salima Hamirani
  • I loved Alice’s teaching style - casual yet informative. I learned new things. Alice moved at a good pace, was a thoughtful listener and was able to move the class along without getting ‘stuck’.

    June Jackson


Saturday, May 13, 2017 @ 9:00 pm PDT
Saturday, June 17, 2017 @ 11:30 pm PDT
Event Category:


2121 Bonar St, Studio D, 2nd Fl
Berkeley, CA United States
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Cancellation Policy

10 days or more before the start date for a class, the registrant will receive a credit minus a 10% fee OR a refund minus a 20% fee.

3-9 days before the start date for a class, the registrant will receive a credit minus a 20% fee OR a refund minus a 30% fee.

2 days or less before the start date for a class, the registrant will not receive a credit or a refund.

The Writing Salon cannot offer refunds, credits, or makeup sessions for classes a student might miss.

In the event of an emergency, we may consider a refund or credit, whether partial or full. We review these requests on a case-by-case basis, and we ask that you notify us as near as possible to the start date for the class.

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