Writing Classes & Conferences

This is an entirely subjective selection of classes taught either by me or by writers and teachers I respect. I also include writing conferences that I am participating in, or that I think are well worth your time and money. All are listed (more or less) in chronological order, unless one item is especially newsy.

The Latest in Longform:

The Berkeley Narrative Journalism Conference 2014

November 8, 2014

Graduate School of Journalism, UC Berkeley

Under the direction of Constance Hale, a veteran journalist and teacher, this Cal conference brings together top editors and an audience of talented, veteran writers. The all-day event will be one long conversation about the tradition and the edges of literary journalism. Sessions will ask big questions and will also bore in on specific techniques. Platforms discussed will range from microblogs to books and genres looked at will range from spot news to memoir. We will not just explore how to research and write great stories, but also where to publish them, and how to collaborate with agents and editors. There will be keynotes, lectures,  practical workshops, and additional "master classes" on Sunday, Nov. 9. Attendance is limited to 75 experienced writers, to allow for small-group sessions and rich networking. Registration begins September 1. Email NarrativeatCal [at] gmail [dot] com for more information. More detailed information here.


Finding the Writer's Voice

December 4, 2014

University of Hawai'i at Mānoa

What do we mean when we refer to a writer's voice, and how can each of us develop a distinctive one–whether for emails, memos, or memoirs? Does an author have one voice or many? Constance Hale, the author of bestselling books on literary style including Sin and Syntax and Vex, Hex, Smash, Smooch, answers these questions and others in a presentation that mixes readings, lecture, and discussion. Find more about this free public lecture here.


Mokule‘ia Writers Retreat:

Nā Wahi Ho‘oulu

(Places That Inspire Us)

May 3 - 8, 2015

On Oahu’s North Shore

After its first successful writers retreat in April 2013, Camp Mokule‘ia will host another gathering of artists interested in exploring the notion of place in their work. Directed by Constance Hale, the 2015 will include top writers and editors from the islands and the mainland, as well as Hawaiian musicians and cultural icons. Writers of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, essays, and memoir to are invited to spend five amazing days and nights on O‘ahu’s North Shore. With the mountains at our back and the open ocean at our front, we will learn from the masters, write in the shade of ironwoods, wander along the beach, salute the sun in morning yoga, and come to understand the essence of Hawaii through evening programs led by island composers, dancers, and musicians. The program includes daily workshops, private writing time, and one-on-one meetings with faculty. Optional activities—available to family and companions staying at the camp—include yoga, snorkeling, beachcombing, and even skydiving. Other highlights include hike to sacred spots in this remote part of the islands . Information, updates, and registration will be posted here.