Spring 2016 Writing Workshops

The Non-Narrative Poem
 
In this class we will examine examples of non-narrative poems by other master poets and write our own for weekly critique. We'll enjoy spirited discussion of articles and excerpts.  Some of the types of poems we'll consider are the ontological poem, the surreal poem, the ekphrastic poem, the incantation, etc.  We'll be delving into the effective use and appropriate placement of the irrational and the conceptual in creating poetry that sings to its best ability.

This class is limited to a maximum of four students and a minimum of three. Checks must be received and cleared at the bank by January 26, 2016
  
Level: Intermediate to Advanced
Monday nights, 6-8 p.m.
Dates: Feb. 8, 15, 22, 29, March 7, 14, 21, 28, 2016
Cost: $275
Location: Montrose-area bungalow
Please review the cell phone policy below.


Write Dazzling Prose
 
In this class we'll learn how to write clear, stylistically elegant prose.  We'll learn from contemporary American writers in both fiction and non-fiction by analyzing what they do and what they don't do. And, of course, we'll learn by writing weekly for critique and reading articles or excerpts for discussion.  We'll utilize concepts from How to Write a Sentence and How to Read One, and The First Five Pages and other sources.  Our goal: to give you additional tools to craft your prose writing into your own polished style.

This class is limited to four students with a minimum of three. Checks must be received and cleared at the bank by January 26, 2016.

Level: Intermediate to Advanced
Tuesday nights, 6-8 p.m.  
Dates: Feb. 9, 16, 23, March 1, 8, 15, 22,29, 2016
Cost: $275
Location: Montrose-area bungalow  
Please review the cell phone policy below.

Nuts and Bolts of Registration                    
                              
To register, please mail a check for the tuition to S. Cortez, POB 980579, Houston, TX 77098-0579. 
Please email me if you wish to register for a course or have any questions.  cortez.sarah@gmail.com (cortez dot sarah at gmail dot com)

Checks should be payable to SARAH CORTEZ CONSULTING LLC.
 
Cell Phone Policy:  Due to the intimate nature of a small workshop, all cell phones/pagers must be turned completely off during class. (You may wish to check your phone or return calls during the breaks.)  Please give yourself, your fellow students, and your teacher the great gift of uninterrupted creative time.

Fall 2015 Writing Workshops

The Non-Narrative Poem

In this class we will examine examples of non-narrative poems by other master poets and write our own for weekly critique.  We’ll enjoy spirited discussion of articles and excerpts.

Some of the types of poems we'll consider are the ontological poem, the surreal poem, the ekphrastic poem, etc.

We’ll be delving into the effective use and appropriate placement of the irrational and the conceptual in creating poetry that sings to its best ability.

Level: Intermediate to Advanced

Monday nights, 6-8 p.m.

Dates: Sept. 14, 21, 28, Oct. 12, 18, 26, Nov. 2, 9, 2015

Cost: $275 - Scroll down for registration details.

 

Write Dazzling Prose

In this class we'll learn how to write clear, stylistically elegant prose.

We’ll learn from contemporary American writers in both fiction and nonfiction by analyzing what they do and what they don’t do.  And, of course, we'll learn by writing weekly for critique and reading articles or excerpts for discussion.

We'll utilize concepts from How to Write a Sentence and How to Read Oneand The First Five Pages and other sources.

Our goal: to give you additional tools to craft your prose writing into your own polished style.

Level: Intermediate to Advanced

Tuesday nights, 6-8 p.m.

Dates: Sept. 15, 22, 29, Oct. 6, 13, 20, 27, Nov. 3, 2015

Cost: $275

 

Nuts and Bolts of Registration

Please snail mail a check to Sarah Cortez, POB 980579, Houston, TX 77098-0579.

Checks should be made payable to SARAH CORTEZ CONSULTING LLC.

Tuition must be received by September 1, 2015.  There are no refunds of tuition.

Please email me when you mail your check and I will give you the class location and the first weekly assignment.  My email is cortez dot sarah at gmail dot com.

 

SPRING 2015 CREATIVE WRITING CLASSES IN HOUSTON

HOW TO FINISH YOUR NOVEL
$30.00 - $45.00
Saturday 5/23/2015
1:00 pm - 4:pm

How to Finish Your Novel

Instructor: Sarah Cortez

Daunted by characters who won’t cooperate inside your plot? Foiled by narrative arcs that don’t end, that have lost their tension or, worse yet, that fail to deliver reader satisfaction? Come to this workshop by award-winning writer, teacher, and editor Sarah Cortez to learn strategies used by professional novelists in these exact situations and more. If you would like to schedule a private critique with Sarah in which she helps you determine what your novel needs from a craft standpoint, she will be meeting with a limited number of writers after workshop for fifteen-minute professional critiques for $45. To participate, please send the first five pages of your novel and an optional one-page synopsis to write@writespacehouston.org, and send $45 to Writespace's Paypal account by May 16th (our account on Paypal.com is payment @ writespacehouston.org. Or, mail Writespace a check that will arrive by May 16th. We will add appointments as we receive sign-ups; thus, the first writers to purchase this service will be the first to get to work one-on-one with Sarah after workshop. 

Writespace Houston
Silver Street Studios
2000A Edwards #212
Houston, TX 77007
713.516.5679

DATE: Saturday, May 23rd, 1-4 p.m.

LEVELS: All

CAP: 14

Writing with Rilke: Examining and Reacting to Letters to a Young Poet

Rainer Maria Rilke was not only the early Twentieth’s century most intensely lyrical poet in the German language, he was one of the first poets to deal resolutely with the issues surrounding the process of creating poetry.  His writings explore solitude, the requisites of creation in the midst of a troubled world, and the need (if not “longing”) for human companionship while staying true to the poet’s calling.

We will read the Stephen Mitchell’s translation of Rilke’s Letters to a Young Poet, then formulate our responses in both poetry and process.

Expect to come away from Rilke with a renewed sense of poetic identity and a revitalized energy for creating your own work.

Please obtain this particular translation (available in used books on Amazon) before the first class, January 26, 2015.

Class dates: (eight weeks)

6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., Mondays

Beginning January 26

Feb. 2, 9, 16, 23,

Mar 2, 9, 16

Cost: $250/person due before the first class.

Please make check payable to SARAH CORTEZ CONSULTING LLC and snail mail to POB 980579, Houston, TX 77098-0579

Email cortez dot sarah at gmail dot com for address of classes and first homework assignment.

 

 

FALL 2014 CREATIVE WRITING CLASSES IN HOUSTON

(scroll down for other cities)

Poetry Class: The Triggering Town

This poetry writing class will engage with Richard Hugo’s book The Triggering Town: Lectures and Essays on   Poetry and WritingClick here to view the book on Amazon.

We’ll write, revise, critique, and deeply evolve within our own writing process as we (in Hugo’s own words) “help you with that silly, absurd, maddening, futile, enormously rewarding activity: writing poems.”

Please purchase your own copy of Hugo’s book before classes begin.

Level: Intermediate to Advanced

Day of week: Monday nights, 6-8:00 p.m.

Dates: Sept. 22, Oct. 6, 13, 20, 27, Nov. 3, 10, 17, 2014

plex, highly charged situations are often “white hot” with consequences—for the subjects, the readers, and even the writers. Practice forging this heat into elegant, powerful writing. Hone your skills to capture a sense of both place and situation. Required reading: Our Lost Borders: Life Amid the Narco-Violence(Arte Publico, 2013).

October 18 @ 10:00 am - 3:00 pm
$75

Gemini Ink, 513 S. Presa, San Antonio, 78205

+ Google Map

Phone: 210-734-9673 

Memoir Class: This is What I Wore

Memoir writers are constantly looking for the clues to help them determine how to shape individual pieces of writing, but more importantly, how to shape a series of memoir pieces. This semester we will look at writing in response to the intricacies of fashion and dress which will lead us deeper into the meaning contained in different eras’ mores, assumptions about behavior, fabrics, and other fascinating areas ripe for exploration in our writing—imagination and the function of dreams and desire.

Level:  Beginning to Intermediate

Day of week:  Tuesday nights, 6-8:00 p.m.

Dates: Sept. 23, Oct. 7, 14, 21, 28, Nov. 4, 11, 18, 2014

To register, please snail mail a check for $250/class to: S. Cortez, POB 980579, Houston, TX 77098-0579.  Please mail this check to arrive before the first class.

Minimum registration: four 

Maximum registration: six

Classes without minimum registration one week before start date, unfortunately, will be cancelled.

Class location is a Montrose-area bungalow at 2505 Driscoll St., Houston, TX 77019. 

Please email with questions: cortez dot sarah at gmail dot com

FALL 2014 CREATIVE WRITING CLASSES IN SAN ANTONIO

The Personal Essay: The Intersection of Place and Situation

Personal essays about complex, highly charged situations are often “white hot” with consequences—for the subjects, the readers, and even the writers. Practice forging this heat into elegant, powerful writing. Hone your skills to capture a sense of both place and situation. Required reading: Our Lost Borders: Life Amid the Narco-Violence(Arte Publico, 2013).

October 18 @ 10:00 am - 3:00 pm
$75

Gemini Ink, 513 S. Presa, San Antonio, 78205

+ Google Map

Phone: 210-734-9673 

SUMMER 2014

Pima Writers' Workshop May 29 - June 1, 2014, Tucson AZ

The hottest thing in Tucson this summer is not the weather, it's the excellent workshop hosted at Pima Community College and organized by Meg Files, who chairs the Creative Writing, English and Journalism Departments.  I'm in very good company with 13 authors, agents and publishers - all intent on helping new and evolving writers learn to craft their very best work.  In addition to lectures and workshops, we provide manuscript consultation for a small fee in addition to the registration. 

Call Pima at 520-206-6468 to register.  You may talk with Meg Files directly at 520-206-6084, mfiles@pima.edu.  Hope to see you in Tucson.  Bring sun screen, shades and your latest manuscript!

FALL 2013

Advanced Poetry: The Revision Project

This class will focus on those poems of yours that seem to defy revision.  The ones you’ve labored over through many drafts without a clear sense of making headway.

In addition, there will be selected weekly readings in poetics with subsequent discussion.  The readings will be in Mark Doty’s The Art of Description: World into Word (Graywolf Press) and in Ezra Pound’s ABC of Reading. (New Directions Paperbook, either the 1960 or 2010 edition).  Each student is responsible for obtaining his/her own copies of these two books before class begins.

Dates: Sept. 16, 23, 30, Oct, 7, 14, 21, 28, Nov. 4 (Mondays)

Times: 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Tuition and Registration: $225

Location: Montrose-area bungalow

Class Size: limited to six students

Please review the cell phone policy below.

Memoir: The Architecture of a Life

In this series of classes, we will utilize self-drawn maps of an important house we lived in and write the stories from that house that define who we are now.  Multi-sensory input will help us hone our writing craft:  Fabrics, smells, mementos.  We will borrow from the techniques of family history writing to illuminate our own lives and deeply personal histories.

Dates: Sept. 17, 24, Oct, 1, 15, 22, 29, Nov. 5, 12 (Tuesdays)

Times: 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Tuition and Registration: $225

Location: Montrose-area bungalow

Class Size: limited to six students

Please review the cell phone policy below.

The Lyric Essay in Response to Women Who Run with the Wolves

As a flexible vessel of words, the lyric essay is non-linear prose that allows the writer to create imagistic responses freed from pure narrative.  We’ll write and revise lyric essays in response to selected readings from Women Who Run with the Wolves, Clarissa P. Estes’ seminal book of archetypal women’s stories centered on the spiritual in women’s psychology. (Please obtain your own copy of this book before class.)

The classes will alternate between one week responding through discussion and art to the readings and one week responding through writing to the readings.

No previous writing experience is necessary.  No art experience is necessary.

Dates:      Sept. 11, 18, 25, Oct. 2, 9, 16, 23, 30 (Wednesdays)

Times: 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Tuition and Registration: $225

Location: Montrose-area bungalow

Class Size: limited to six students

Please review the cell phone policy below.

General Information

Full tuition is due before or at the first class.  Please note that tuition is non-refundable. 

Please expect to write and to review work each week which you will receive by email.  All work critiqued in class will be in response to assignments given.  (This is not an appropriate forum for a complete manuscript already written by an author in need of a professional editor.)

If you wish to pay for a class in two installments, please email me at cortez.sarah@gmail.com. 

If you have any questions, please email me at cortez.sarah@gmail.com.

Please make all checks payable to Sarah Cortez Consulting LLC.

Checks may be mailed to: S. Cortez, POB 980579, Houston, TX 77098-0579

Cell Phone Policy

Due to the intimate nature of a workshop containing six students who work one-on-one with the teacher, all cell phones/pagers must be turned completely off during class.  There are no exceptions.  There will be a five-minute break after one hour of class and during this break cell phones may be checked for messages and calls returned.