Wayward Writers East Bay

4632 Telegraph Av., Oakland , CA
Wayward Writers East Bay Website
Galleries, Arts & Crafts Education
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Wayward Writers is a Bay Area program for poets, fiction writers, memoirists and maybe-writers at all levels. At Wayward, we believe making art requires getting lost. We also believe in camaraderie, compasses, first aid, bushwhacking and learning to speak octopus--because you never know.

We offer four kinds of classes in Oakland and the SF Mission, each geared toward a different stage of the creative process. All are appropriate for beginners and experienced writers alike, with the exception of the workshop.

GENERATIVE classes use a broad theme to spark beginnings and experimentation. We read stories, poems and play excerpts by contemporary authors, do about an hour per class of prompt-based writing and hone our observation skills on one another’s brand new work. Last year, “Empty Vessels” had us babbling along with pop culture while “Immersions” meditated on the four elements. In 2015, “True Love” will get personal with language and take a full-body dive into the sex scene.

DEEPENING classes unite a specific craft area and a theme to help us go deep in a particular area or even with a single project. In 2014, “Monsters & Mirrors” repurposed classic monster archetypes to illuminate different elements of character. In 2015, “Close Encounters: Bringing People Together” will give writers in all genres and at all levels the opportunity to practice writing in scene (and its poetic equivalent).

CRAFT INTENSIVES get down and dirty in one specific skillset. As in Generative classes, we’re writing from prompts and reading contemporary authors whose work uniquely exemplifies our topic—only instead of inspiration, we’re looking for the straightforward how-to of technique. Upcoming CIs may include “The Sentence as Musical Instrument: Playing with Style & Voice” and “Landscapes of Feeling: Setting as a Vehicle for Emotion.”

WORKSHOPS are designed for writers with a draft (or ten) ready for feedback. Here, we bust up negative stereotypes of “workshop” by using insight to discover the innate shape of a work-in-progress. Our goal is mutual aid: to help the writer find her or his next step. Workshops may also include in-class writing exercises, craft lessons or whatever else seems useful. In 2015, students can find our fiction and memoir workshops on both sides of the Bay.