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“For a long time I felt like a misfit with my writing,” says instructor Rob Williams. “I kept blurring genres and playing with form. My personal essays were made up of short, lyrical fragments, sometimes with diary entries or cooking recipes woven throughout. I didn’t realize until a few years ago that there was a name for this form (the lyric essay), as well as many other writers who were exploring its rich terrain.”

In this 5-week class, we'll immerse ourselves in this exciting form of creative nonfiction. We'll read a variety of pieces that fall into this category, looking at how the authors take risks that surprise and move us. In-class writing exercises and optional homework assignments will help us create our own lyric essays. We’ll learn essential tools to gain confidence with this form, such as how to construct images with sensory details, how to weave in excerpts or quotes from historical texts, song lyrics, diary entries, or newspaper headlines, how to use poetic language like alliteration and assonance, and how to experiment with structure and narrative.”

By the end of the course, participants will have created short drafts based on the four categories of the lyric essay: the prose poem, the braided essay, the collage essay, and the “Hermit Crab” essay. Writers of all levels are welcome.



No Instructor Specified

  1. Wednesday, April 10, 7:00pm-9:30pm
  2. Wednesday, April 17, 7:00pm-9:30pm
  3. Wednesday, April 24, 7:00pm-9:30pm
  4. Wednesday, May 1, 7:00pm-9:30pm
  5. Wednesday, May 8, 7:00pm-9:30pm
  • Rob is a fun, knowledgeable, and very generous teacher, who provided us with lots of resources, including bringing in, and loaning out, books about writing the lyric essay, and examples of the lyric essay. I would gladly take another class with Rob.

  • I enjoyed the writing exercises in "class" and the workshops. I found Rob's feedback to me and the other writers to be very helpful and a big part of the learning experience.



Thursday, April 11, 2019 @ 2:00 am PDT
Thursday, May 9, 2019 @ 4:30 am PDT
Event Category:


San Francisco
2042 Balboa St.
San Francisco, 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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