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"If I tell you how I feel
Will you keep bringing out the best in me?"

- Sade

“There are these silences we carry that are our own, societal, and inherited that stop us from writing,” says instructor Arisa White. “The voice in your head comes on and warns, ‘You can’t write that,’ and you are stalled in your expression, anxious you have broken the rules, gone against some controlling force. However, engaging those taboos will ultimately free you creatively.”

During this five-week workshop, your writing will be inspired by five of your own personal taboos—the things you do not write about due to fear of what others may think, of it being too near to your heart, of shame. “Because I believe the fear is more associated with how to write such subjects,” says Arisa, “you will be given strategies for how to craft writing that is emotionally balanced and imagistically rich, strategies that will create an experience for readers to confront their own taboos.

“To guide you through your difficult terrain, so you can arrive at your own stride, I will include directed breathing and movement activities to help situate you in your body before the writing begins. Doing so creates spaciousness from which to resource your creativity and to connect the writing to more than just the mind’s story, but the bodymind’s story. I will lead you through a series of questions to generate writing—questions that approach the subject from unexpected angles and perspectives—in order to foster a fresh way of sensing the experiences you intend to bring to the page.”



    Cave Canem graduate fellow Arisa White received her MFA from UMass, Amherst, and is the author of Black Pearl, Post Pardon, Hurrah’s Nest, and A Penny Saved. She teaches in the low-residency BFA program at Goddard College and is a member of the board of directors for Nomadic Press. You’re the Most Beautiful Thing that Happened, published by Augury Books, was a nominee for the 29th Lambda Literary Award.

  1. Wednesday, October 4, 7:00pm-9:30pm
  2. Wednesday, October 11, 7:00pm-9:30pm
  3. Wednesday, October 18, 7:00pm-9:30pm
  4. Wednesday, October 25, 7:00pm-9:30pm
  5. Wednesday, November 1, 7:00pm-9:30pm


Wednesday, October 4, 2017 @ 7:00 pm
Wednesday, November 1, 2017 @ 9:30 pm
Event Category:


2121 Bonar St, Studio D, 2nd Fl
Berkeley, CA United States
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7 available
The Sweetest Taboo: A Generative Writing Workshop$295.00

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Registration Deadline

Registration closes 24 hours before the start time for a class.

Refund Policy

There is a cancellation fee of 15% included in each registration. The Writing Salon will not issue a refund if a cancellation occurs within 48 hours of the class start time.

The Writing Salon cannot provide refunds, transfer payments, or offer makeup sessions for classes a student might miss, for any reason.

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