Winter & Spring 2017 

New Address:

@cSpace King Edward, Suite 460, 1721, 29th Ave SW, Calgary, AB T2T 6T7 

Whether you’re a brand new writer or have been writing for years, we have courses and workshops to meet your needs. There are weekly courses (evening and daytime) for the writer who requires structure, support and that needed push, or one day and weekend workshops for those who are unable to commit to a longer course.

Don’t forget to check our Calendar of Events for other exciting programs and upcoming events.

Sign up today!

Home School Writing

Team Red (Grades 1-3)

Kim Firmston
Mondays
10:30am-12pm
September 18, 2017 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $120
Non-member Price: $150

AWCS HOME SCHOOL WRITING

Teaching writing through play in a no fail atmosphere.

For Beginning Writers

Students will learn the basics of sentence structure, spelling, and grammar. They will enjoy learning story structure while having fun using a variety of mediums and media. Storytelling, reporting, advertising, scripts, and a variety of other writing styles will be introduced in an entertaining way with lots of variety.

No class October 9, 2017

 

Team Orange (Grades 4-6)

Kim Firmston
Mondays
1-2:30pm
September 18, 2017 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $120
Non-member Price: $150

AWCS HOME SCHOOL WRITING

Teaching writing through play in a no fail atmosphere.

For Confident Writers

Students will review the basics of sentence structure, spelling, and grammar then move on to tenses, point of view and description. They will also cover basic creative writing, poetry, essays and articles, as well as advertising, scripts and a variety of other writing styles will be introduced in an entertaining way using a variety of mediums and media.

No class October 9, 2017

Team Yellow (Junior High/High School)

Kim Firmston
Thursdays
10:30-12pm
September 21, 2017 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $120
Non-member Price: $150

AWCS HOME SCHOOL WRITING

Teaching writing through play in a no fail atmosphere.

Students will review the basics of sentence structure, spelling, and grammar then jump into tenses, points of view, character development, world building, and description. Students will explore creative writing, poetry, the main types of essays and articles, as well as a variety of other writing styles in an entertaining way using a variety of mediums and media.

Understanding & Creating Comics (Junior High/High School)

Sebastien Ringuette
Thursdays
1-2:30pm
September 21, 2017 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $120
Non-member Price: $150

Do you love to draw? Do you love to write?

Enter the world of comics and be forced to choose between the two no longer! Comics, or ‘Sequential Art’, is the quintessential amalgamation of drawing and writing that doesn’t require you to be a master of either! Learn how to create your own comics from start to finish, including everything from character design and pacing, to story structure and script-writing. Develop and discover the artistic styles of a cartoonist, your inner comedian, and how to love your own work. Learn how to self-publish your works and how to bring them to the world! Cartooning is a world of trial and error, so expect to spend as much time writing and drawing as possible. (Occasionally we pause to breathe.)

Writing Programs for Youth

Team Red (Grades 1-3)

Kim Firmston
Mondays
10:30am-12pm
September 18, 2017 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $120
Non-member Price: $150

AWCS HOME SCHOOL WRITING

Teaching writing through play in a no fail atmosphere.

For Beginning Writers

Students will learn the basics of sentence structure, spelling, and grammar. They will enjoy learning story structure while having fun using a variety of mediums and media. Storytelling, reporting, advertising, scripts, and a variety of other writing styles will be introduced in an entertaining way with lots of variety.

No class October 9, 2017

 

Team Orange (Grades 4-6)

Kim Firmston
Mondays
1-2:30pm
September 18, 2017 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $120
Non-member Price: $150

AWCS HOME SCHOOL WRITING

Teaching writing through play in a no fail atmosphere.

For Confident Writers

Students will review the basics of sentence structure, spelling, and grammar then move on to tenses, point of view and description. They will also cover basic creative writing, poetry, essays and articles, as well as advertising, scripts and a variety of other writing styles will be introduced in an entertaining way using a variety of mediums and media.

No class October 9, 2017

Team Yellow (Junior High/High School)

Kim Firmston
Thursdays
10:30-12pm
September 21, 2017 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $120
Non-member Price: $150

AWCS HOME SCHOOL WRITING

Teaching writing through play in a no fail atmosphere.

Students will review the basics of sentence structure, spelling, and grammar then jump into tenses, points of view, character development, world building, and description. Students will explore creative writing, poetry, the main types of essays and articles, as well as a variety of other writing styles in an entertaining way using a variety of mediums and media.

Understanding & Creating Comics (Junior High/High School)

Sebastien Ringuette
Thursdays
1-2:30pm
September 21, 2017 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $120
Non-member Price: $150

Do you love to draw? Do you love to write?

Enter the world of comics and be forced to choose between the two no longer! Comics, or ‘Sequential Art’, is the quintessential amalgamation of drawing and writing that doesn’t require you to be a master of either! Learn how to create your own comics from start to finish, including everything from character design and pacing, to story structure and script-writing. Develop and discover the artistic styles of a cartoonist, your inner comedian, and how to love your own work. Learn how to self-publish your works and how to bring them to the world! Cartooning is a world of trial and error, so expect to spend as much time writing and drawing as possible. (Occasionally we pause to breathe.)

Reality is Optional (RIO) Kids’ Writing Club

Member Price: $100
Non-member Price: $140

Reality Is Optional (RIO) kids’ writing club is a multi-group program for youth to connect with each other through writing, art and improv. We strive to foster creativity, community, and youth leadership in an accepting environment. See RIOCKP website for more details.

Our four main groups include:

1. Reality Is Optional (RIO) kids’ writing club: writing, games, improv, and guests. 

2. Pen and Panel Cartooning Club: A constant current of fun and education, art and writing, web comics, cartoons and anime. See Pen & Panel website for details. 

3. Rogue Poets Club

Learn the art of poetry and spoken word with prompts, activities, the (if you feel brave) you can perform your creations on stage at the Can You Hear Me Now? open mic and poetry slams. Grades 7-12.

4. Novel Writing Club

Outline, plot, finish, edit and self-publish the novel you’ve always dreamed of writing with a group of like-minded friends. Ages 17 and under.

RIO Member Only Programs

  • Random Movie Night
  • Dungeons and Dragons Club
  • Workshops and Special Events
  • RIO Poetry Slam Team
  • Special Projects

Fees:

  • AWCS Youth Membership (mandatory): $40
  • RIOCKP Membership: $100
  • Drop-in Fee (core groups only): $5

Non-member rate includes annual membership.

 

 

Writing Retreat June 9-11

W.O. Mitchell Writing Retreat – FULL WEEKEND REGISTRATION (3 SPOTS AVAILABLE)

June 9-11, 2017
Member Price: $450
Non-member Price: $560

Unplug for a weekend of writing with fellow writers at the W.O. Mitchell Retreat Centre just 15 minutes north of Cochrane for the AWCS first writers’ retreat.

This will be a weekend full of workshops, events, discussions, free fall writing, individual writing time and the opportunity to re-connect with your creative self with other like-minded individuals, on the very property W.O. Mitchell used to write. Unwind at the end of the day around the covered fire pit with a glass of wine and lively discussion with friends.

There will be something for everyone: poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, yoga and guidance from our featured facilitators.

Naomi K. Lewis, Jenna Butler, Jani Krulc and Weyman Chan.

The weekend includes 2-nights accommodations, meals and all the workshops/events you can handle. Shared accommodations. Rooms include single beds with attached/shared washrooms. 2, 4 or 8 people per room. (the 8-person room is equipped with 4 bunkbeds.) Rooms will be assigned upon check in. Sorry, no private rooms.

If you’re into yoga, or want to try it for the first time, please bring a yoga mat.

Can’t come for the whole weekend? That’s okay. Register for Saturday only, meals and workshops included in the fee.

Driving directions and full workshop & event schedule will be sent out one week prior to retreat.

Dietary restrictions can be accommodated. Just let us know.

Facility is completely wheelchair accessible.

ONLY 20 FULL WEEKEND SPOTS AVAILABLE.

For more information about the facility please visit: www.womitchellretreat.com

Special thanks to the Amber Webb-Bowerman Memorial Foundation for their generous sponsorship. www.amberbowerman.ca

W.O. Mitchell Writing Retreat – SATURDAY ONLY

June 10, 2017
10am to 11pm
Member Price: $180
Non-member Price: $225

Can’t come for the whole weekend but would like to get away for a day?

Saturday registration includes lunch and dinner and all the workshops/events you can handle in a day. Come and write, take in some workshops, enjoy the company of friends and the fresh air.

Evening will end with an open mic and wine/cheese event.

 

General Admission

General Admission – Drop In

Please see calendar of events for drop in programs and open writing times.
Member Price: Free
Non-member Price: $5

Admission to our centre is free for currently paid members. If you’re a non-member and would like to check out our facility, come in to write in a quiet place or attend one of our drop in sessions, there is a $5 admission fee that is payable online or with cash at the door.

The centre is open during regular business hours for you to come in and write at anytime for as long as you want. This is subject to change based on availability of staff and volunteers.

Drop in Sessions include:

  • Free Fall Writing – Morning and evening sessions
  • Prose Critique Groups
  • Poetry Critique Groups
  • Social Events

Please check our calendar of events for upcoming sessions and open writing time.

If you are paying online in advance, please put the program you wish to attend in the comments section of the registration page.

 

Writing Out of Mind - Two Journaling Workshops to Offer You Alternative Ways to Get Writing

Writing Out of Mind – Bundle & Save

Sharon McLeay
May 23 - 26, 2017
See individual classes for times.
Member Price: $240
Non-member Price: $310

Two journaling workshops offering you alternative ways to get writing.

Select Writing Out of Mind to register for both Journaling for Writers and Vision, Voice & Story for a discounted rate on registration.

Includes materials fee for both classes.

Journaling for Writers: Sneaking in the Back Door to Creativity & Inspiration (10 Seats Available)

Sharon McLeay
May 23 & 24, 2017
10am - 1pm
(2 days)
Member Price: $110
Non-member Price: $135

Keeping a journal has changed dramatically, from a mere event recording device, to an amazing tool that can help inspire creative thought/expression. Discover the power of journaling for writers with this 6 hour course that leads you through the back door of journal writing to new forms of creativity and inspiration. You will enter your own writing laboratory where you will learn8 or 9 practical techniques you can use in as little as 15 minutes a day to experiment, invent, control, change, destroy, guide and construct writing projects and even shoot writer’s block without getting arrested.

$10 materials fee included in price.

Vision, Voice & Story: Journaling to Memoir (12 Seats Available)

Sharon McLeay
May 25 & 26, 2017
10am - 2pm
(2 days)
Member Price: $160
Non-member Price: $200

Memoir is more than just a collection of stories. It is an echoing of voices through time—of both writer and characters. The writer’s injection of values, beliefs and hopes into story, place and time. A unique way of revealing fact using fictional devices that leads to a special understanding between author and reader. Vision, Voice & Story is a hands-on 8-hour course that will lead you through the back door of journal writing to new ways of exploring and developing your memoir. You will learn up to 9 practical techniques you can use in a supplied “Memoir Journal” to help you better understand your memoir focus, establish authentic voices infused with your values and beliefs, generate stories and explore methods to turn anarchy into order. 

*$10 materials fee included in the price

 

Spring Feature Workshop - Perilous Realms

Perilous Realms (20% Sold Out)

Thomas Wharton
Saturday
10am-4:30pm
March 25, 2017
Member Price: $160
Non-member Price: $200
tw-conference-2015
Transform the everyday with the extraordinary. Delve into myth and folktale to find iconic images and powerful plots. Build entire worlds and populate them with believable beings. Cast spells of words over readers young and old.

 

Find out how much more there is to the realm of fantasy than just wizards and fairies. This workshop will plunge you into imaginary lands and alternate worlds, open your writing to new possibilities and new challenges, and answer your burning questions about writing truly fantastic fiction.
 
Saturday, March 25, 2017 | 10am-4:30pm
Fort Calgary, JOW Gallery (750, 9th Ave SE)
Coffee, tea, light lunch of soup and sandwiches provided.
 
About Thomas Wharton
… is a writer of fiction for adults and younger readers.
His first novel, Icefields, won the Commonwealth Writer’s Prize for Best First Book, Canada/Caribbean division. His second novel, Salamander, was short-listed for the Governor-General’s Literary Award and the Rogers Writers’ Trust Fiction Prize. A collection of short fiction, The Logogryph, published in 2004, was shortlisted for the IMPAC Dublin Literary Award.
Thomas Wharton has also written a YA fantasy trilogy, The Perilous Realm, an eco-fiction, Every Blade of Grass, and a book for children, Rutherford the Time-travelling Moose. His work has been published in the US, UK, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and other countries. He lives near Edmonton and teaches creative writing at the University of Alberta.
*membership not included

Writer in Residence Workshops

WIR – Short Form Fiction (8 Seats Available)

Micheline Maylor
March 18, 2017
10-3:30pm
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $100

In this creativity and post-card story manufacturing seminar. We will discuss, openings, setting, time-frame, efficient language, syntax, and diction, and narrative. As writers we want to move towards enchantment and away from summary, short, short stories are a way we can engage in practice and learn skill through technique and craft. In this part lecture, part creativity, part practice, part evaluation workshop, we will hone our skills and leave with near finished short-short stories.

WIR – Poetry Forms and Practice (11 Seats Available)

Micheline Maylor
Saturday, April 22, 2017
10-3:30pm
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $100

Sonnets, Sestinas, Glossas! Oh my! Japanese forms, ghazals, palindromes, pantoums, villanelles. Come and learn the structure and history of the poetic forms for poetry month. We will discuss forms, their origins, and practice creating through writing exercise. Consider this a poetry sweatshop, bring something to write on or in and prepare to take notes and work!

WIR – Craft and Writing (9 Seats Available)

Micheline Maylor
Saturday, May 13, 2017
10-3:30pm
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $100

Heather Sellers states, reading and writing are acts of paying close attention. In a quartet of lectures, the works of noted Canadian authors will be discussed, both in terms of their critical essays on craft, their views on aesthetics, and their written works. These intensive studies can lead us to better our practices in our writing.  In this blend of discussion and practice, big ideas about writing will be illuminated. This course is best for authors with some experience. Author studies will include: Jeffrey Donaldson, Douglas Glover, Richard Harrison, Steven Heighton, Jan Zwicky.

The Writers' Circle

Surviving & Thriving Through Rejection

Carrie Mumford
March 5, 2017
10-12pm
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

It’s part of the writing life, but that doesn’t make it any easier: rejection stings. Come discuss your best and worst rejections, and strategies for moving beyond them. Or, if you’ve yet to face rejection, come hear from those of us who have!

*membership not included

Writing the Rainbow

Sarah Johnson
March 12, 2017
10-12pm
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

LGBTQ+ folks are everywhere and if art imitates life, eventually you’ll have a character turn up queer. Join us for a discussion that will inspire, enlighten, and add some colour to your story.

*membership not included

Postcard Stories

Irene Naested
March 19, 2017
1-3pm
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

Participants will create collage images on blank card stock postcard and develop a story stimulated by the image they have created on the reverse.

*membership not included

Automatism

Irene Naested
March 26, 2017
1-3pm
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

Automatic drawing and writing. Collaborative art and writing over coffee just like the Paris Surrealist authors and artists.

*membership not included

Naughty Bits

Sarah Johnson
April 2, 2017
10-1pm
Member Price: $25
Non-member Price: $35

From the indecent to the poignant, the awkward to the omigod. Come prepared for a down and dirty discussion on the art of writing sex. Writing may occur.

*membership not included

Poetry Prompts

Laurie Fuhr
April 9, 2017
10-12pm
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

How do published poets across Canada write poetry when the mojo’s flowing slow? For this discussion, we’ve asked many. Pick up some inspiring poetry prompts for Poetry Month and share yours.

* membership not included

Publishing Your Work

Susan Calder
April 23, 2017
10-12pm
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

How do you get your novel, short story or memoir published? Bring your questions to this lively discussion.

*membership not included

Write What You Know?

Robin van Eck
April 30, 2017
10-12pm
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

We are told in the early stages of writing to write what we know, but is this really the best way to approach our writing?

Truth in Fiction

Robin van Eck
May 7, 2017
10-12pm
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

How true to life do you have to be when writing fiction? This question comes up a lot, more so in literary forms, but what obligation do writers have to the reader when writing something that takes place in the world as we know it? But it’s fiction.

Write In

Summer Writemare ~ 24 Hours of Writing

Self-Directed
June 23-25, 2017
Friday & Saturday, 12pm - 12am | Sunday, 10am - 10pm
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $75

How many words can you write in 24-hours? Do you know? Have you tried?

Welcome to our Summer Write Mare. Come on down, write with friends, write on your own, start a dance party. We don’t mind. The point is words. Lots of words. And we’re going to keep track.

Challenge yourself. Challenge your friends.

Stay all day, or for a few hours. Come and go as you please.

Nourishment provided throughout the 3 days. And coffee. Lots of coffee. Sunday ends with a special wine and cheese celebration to send you off into summer.

Are you ready? Can you handle it?

Sign up today! Limited seats available.

Write Nite

Write Nite – I Was Cleaning Out My Closets and I Found…

Maraya Loza Koxahn
March 24, 2017
7-9pm
Member Price: $15
Non-member Price: $30
Grab a glass of wine (or other beverage), a pen and paper and join us for Write Nite…

Once each month, spend two hours with kindred spirits, a glass of wine, a pen and paper. There will be nightly themes and you will be given prompts to focus your writing but disregard them if you choose and create something unique. Release your inhibitions, step out of your comfort zone, put a few words together, create evocative images and astonishing characters. Write something new or hone a current project with support.

Guidance is available but this is not a course; there will be no lessons. Only prompts focused on the theme, if needed. The purpose is to help you loosen your shackles a little to unleash you inner awesome author. Write, drink, nibble, share, laugh, play and have some fun creating.

All snacks and beverages provided. You only need to bring pen and paper. Everyone welcome!

 

Write Nite – What I’m Not Saying…

Maraya Loza Koxahn
April 21, 2017
7-9pm
Member Price: $15
Non-member Price: $30
Grab a glass of wine (or other beverage), a pen and paper and join us for Write Nite…

Once each month, spend two hours with kindred spirits, a glass of wine, a pen and paper. There will be nightly themes and you will be given prompts to focus your writing but disregard them if you choose and create something unique. Release your inhibitions, step out of your comfort zone, put a few words together, create evocative images and astonishing characters. Write something new or hone a current project with support.

Guidance is available but this is not a course; there will be no lessons. Only prompts focused on the theme, if needed. The purpose is to help you loosen your shackles a little to unleash you inner awesome author. Write, drink, nibble, share, laugh, play and have some fun creating.

All snacks and beverages provided. You only need to bring pen and paper. Everyone welcome!

 

Write Nite – Maybe, Maybe Not

Maraya Loza Koxahn
May 26, 2017
7-9pm
Member Price: $15
Non-member Price: $30
Grab a glass of wine (or other beverage), a pen and paper and join us for Write Nite…

Once each month, spend two hours with kindred spirits, a glass of wine, a pen and paper. There will be nightly themes and you will be given prompts to focus your writing but disregard them if you choose and create something unique. Release your inhibitions, step out of your comfort zone, put a few words together, create evocative images and astonishing characters. Write something new or hone a current project with support.

Guidance is available but this is not a course; there will be no lessons. Only prompts focused on the theme, if needed. The purpose is to help you loosen your shackles a little to unleash you inner awesome author. Write, drink, nibble, share, laugh, play and have some fun creating.

All snacks and beverages provided. You only need to bring pen and paper. Everyone welcome!

 

Write Nite – Irony: On the Edge of Summer

Maraya Loza Koxahn
June 16, 2017
7-9pm
Member Price: $15
Non-member Price: $30
Grab a glass of wine (or other beverage), a pen and paper and join us for Write Nite…

Once each month, spend two hours with kindred spirits, a glass of wine, a pen and paper. There will be nightly themes and you will be given prompts to focus your writing but disregard them if you choose and create something unique. Release your inhibitions, step out of your comfort zone, put a few words together, create evocative images and astonishing characters. Write something new or hone a current project with support.

Guidance is available but this is not a course; there will be no lessons. Only prompts focused on the theme, if needed. The purpose is to help you loosen your shackles a little to unleash you inner awesome author. Write, drink, nibble, share, laugh, play and have some fun creating.

All snacks and beverages provided. You only need to bring pen and paper. Everyone welcome!

 

4 Week Courses

Plan, Build & Launch Your Author Website (6 Seats Available)

Carrie Mumford
Tuesdays
7-9:30pm
March 7, 2017 (4 weeks)
Member Price: $120
Non-member Price: $150

So you know you need an author website, but where do you start? In this 4-week course you will create and launch your own site. You’ll get an in-depth understanding of what makes a good website, why it’s important to have one, and get hands-on experience building one. We’ll use WordPress.com, a free tool, to build your site.

You will:

  • Learn about the characteristics of a good website
  • Create a layout and content plan for your site
  • Learn how to choose and purchase a URL (website address)
  • Learn how to use WordPress.com
  • Write a stellar ‘About Me’ page
  • Analyse site traffic, find out who’s visiting & why
  • Actually create your own website!

This course is open to all skill levels. We ask that you bring a laptop that can connect to the internet so you can build your site in class.

 

 

Carrie Mumford is a fiction writer and senior marketing manager at a Canadian tech company. When she’s not working on her novel, she spends her time helping authors and editors create WordPress websites that work.

Carrie Mumford’s Website [www.carriemumford.com]

Second Draft (6 Seats Available)

Maraya Loza Koxahn
Mondays
7-9:30
April 3, 2017 (4 weeks)
Member Price: $120
Non-member Price: $150

You’ve finally spilled your entire first draft onto the page. Now it’s time to clean it up. We will review the essential elements of a story/novel. This will include structure, character development, and dialogue (referencing Master STORY Doctor Robert McKee). We will discuss common errors, better word choices, critiquing, formatting, and proper punctuation practices. Students must have work ready to bring to the first class and agree to do the homework – which will involve editing each others’ work as well as your own.

No class April 17, 2017 for Easter Monday.

8 Week Courses - Evening

Writing Memoir When Your Story is Difficult (5 Seats Available)

Karen Lee
Thursdays
6:30-9:30pm
March 30, 2017 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $240
Non-member Price: $300

 

Do you have a difficult story to tell? Things from your past that you’ve tucked into the back of your memory? More and more, people are realizing that getting those stories down on paper is therapeutic and valuable – the popularity of memoir is exploding. People want real life stories.

This course will focus on three-parts – the writing skills required, the journey of change you want to write about, and having the courage and persistence needed to tackle difficult personal subjects. Self-care will be discussed.

We will tackle dialogue, character sketches, scene setting, and your story arc – using parts of your story you want to tell. These will begin to form the outline of your memoir.

If you are interested in engaging in the often therapeutic task of memoir writing, start a retrospective journal now – jot down those memories, however small and fleeting, in a notebook, compile pictures of the past, or assemble meaningful objects. Then bring these to class.

Going public with stories from real life is completely different from getting your story down on paper, so the decision to publish will be discussed.

Three recommended readings are: “The Memoir Project” by Marion Roach Smith, “Why We Write about Ourselves” Ed. Meredith Maran and “Your Life as Story” by Tristine Rainer.

Karen Lee has a newly published memoir, The Full Catastrophe. You can find out more information on her website

S – Creative Writing Level II (8 Seats Available)

Olyn Ozbick
Tuesdays
7-9:30pm
March 28, 2017 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $200
Non-member Price: $250

In Creative Writing Level II, you will expand on what you already learned and go more in depth with the important story elements: character, plot, dialogue, world, flashbacks and more, through discussion, free fall writing, interactive exercises and mutual feedback. Learn about different genres such as literary vs. commercial fiction, creative non-fiction, writing for children and poetry to help focus your path.This class introduces writers to critiquing other’s work and receiving feedback in a practical and supportive atmosphere.

Recommended Prerequisite: Creative Writing Level I or equivalent

S – The Personal Essay (6 Seats Available)

Ellen Kelly
Thursdays
7-9pm
April 20, 2017 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $180
Non-member Price: $225

Do you have true stories to tell? Experiences you would like to share? Skeletons in your closet that you want to write about? Passionate feelings about a subject that you would like to explore? This eight-week course gives participants the opportunity to find deeper meaning in their writing by experimenting with various personal essay formats and through discussion of characterization, scene, narration, theme, voice, truth, and markets/publication. Specific interests of the class participants will be addressed and participants will be encouraged to write both briefly in class and more extensively at home. Sharing is encouraged.

Ellen Kelly Blog

Introduction to Playwriting (10 Seats Available)

Caroline Russell-King
Tuesdays
7-9pm
May 2, 2017 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $180
Non-member Price: $225

Join professional playwright Caroline Russell-King, as you discover your playwriting chops. Learn how writing comedy is more than just one-liners and writing drama isn’t just serious prose spoken by serious people! Pull out your idea file or your scribbles and come learn the craft of playwriting. Find out industry tips, discover the secrets of writing and what it takes to get from page to stage!

S – Creative Writing: Pen to Paper (9 Seats Available)

Maraya Loza Koxahn
Mondays
7-9:30
May 8, 2017 (7 weeks)
Member Price: $180
Non-member Price: $225

Start your story here!

Do you have a story burning inside you? Want to try writing for fun? Creative Writing: Pen to Paper is designed for the brand new writer or hobbyist. Spend 8 weeks learning where ideas come from, how to unlock your creative potential in a new way and bring words and images to the page in a fun and supportive environment. Lots of writing involved. No experience necessary.

No class on May 22, 2017 for Victoria Day.

 

 

8 Week Courses - Daytime

Finding a Female Form (8 Seats Available)

J. Jill Robinson
Wednesdays
12-2pm
March 15, 2017 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $180
Non-member Price: $225

“Finding A Female Form” explores the question of how and if female writing differs in significant ways from male writing, while simultaneously encouraging women writers to generate and workshop their own distinctive writing. Some questions to be addressed include: Are women more likely to be organic in their writing? Are they less likely than men to “construct” poems, fiction, and creative nonfiction? Are women and men drawn to different material and different perspectives in terms of subject matter, reflected in how and what they write? This course, through discussion, exercises, and workshops, focuses on women’s writing. It will include a visit from a guest woman writer (TBA) who shares her experiences with a more “female” approach to writing and answers your questions. Past participants claim that the dynamic in a group of women writers is very different from one involving both genders—not better or worse, necessarily, simply different—in terms of sensibility and focus; trust, and sense of intimacy.

S – Creative Writing Pen to Paper (Daytime) – (10 Seats Available)

Robin van Eck
Tuesdays
10-12pm
April 4, 2017 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $180
Non-member Price: $225

Start your story here!

Do you have a story burning inside you? Want to try writing for fun? Creative Writing: Pen to Paper is designed for the brand new writer or hobbyist. Spend 8 weeks learning where ideas come from, how to unlock your creative potential in a new way and bring words and images to the page in a fun and supportive environment. Lots of writing involved. No experience necessary.

S – Creative Writing Level II (Daytime) (9 Seats Available)

Madelaine Wong
Wednesdays
10-12:30pm
April 26, 2017 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $200
Non-member Price: $250

In Creative Writing Level II, you will expand on what you already learned and go more in depth with the important story elements: character, plot, dialogue, world, flashbacks and more, through discussion, free fall writing, interactive exercises and mutual feedback. Learn about different genres such as literary vs. commercial fiction, creative non-fiction, writing for children and poetry to help focus your path.This class introduces writers to critiquing other’s work and receiving feedback in a practical and supportive atmosphere.

Recommended Prerequisite: Creative Writing Level I or equivalent

Proprioceptive Writing (6 Seats Available)

Vivian Hansen
Thursdays
10-12pm
April 20, 2017 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $180
Non-member Price: $225

This course will explore the Proprioceptive Writing method developed by Linda Trichter Metcalf in which you explore the deepest volume of story in your life.  Proprioceptive writing has effectively blasted out writer’s block and sent aspiring writers into new and productive creative writing journeys.  In this course, we will plan out a secular spiritual journey with your writing.  Please note:  participants should be working on a manuscript of poetry, creative nonfiction, short story collection, or novel-in-progress.  We will explore the proprioceptive method in tandem with your writing project.

 Recommended reading:  Writing the Mind Alive: The Proprioceptive Method for Finding Your Authentic Voice.   By Linda Trichter Metcalf.

The Artist’s Way (10 Seats Available)

Caroline Russell-King
Fridays
12pm-2pm
April 28, 2017 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $180
Non-member Price: $240

For all writers and artists. As a group we will work through Julia Cameron’s’ book The Artist Way. We will engage in exercises and activities that spur the imagination and capture new ideas while unblocking obstacles on the path to inspiration and creativity.

No experience necessary.

Caroline Russell-King Website

8 Week Courses - Poetry

The Literary Fragment (10 Seats Available)

Joel Farris
Mondays
7-9pm
Begins May 1, 2017 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $180
Non-member Price: $225
In what social and economic conditions do poets begin to theorize the fragment as a purposeful literary form? What relationship does fragmentation have to capitalism? What can fragmentary composition offer our writing practices that cohesive composition cannot? Throughout the course we will explore these questions while moving through different taxonomies of fragmentation: dreams, the body, social media, appropriation, process, and risk. This will engage us in a range of historical periods, beginning in the early nineteenth century through to our contemporary moment. 
 
Though the course will be reading and discussion intensive, an emphasis will be placed on poetry exercises drawn from our collaborative engagement with the texts and with one another. In order to keep the course exploratory, we will not set out to answer our preliminary questions definitively. Rather, by the conclusion of the course, we will be in a position to assess, complicate, and reformulate those questions as they relate to our poetry practices.
 
*Note, there will be no class on May 22, 2017

10 Week Courses

S – The First Three Chapters (8 Seats Available)

Anne Metikosh
Wednesdays
7-9:30pm
March 29, 2017 (10 weeks)
Member Price: $250
Non-member Price: $315

Start as you mean to go on with this 10-week course designed to lay a solid foundation for your book-length manuscript. Instruction will focus on characterization, voice, plot, setting, conflict etc. as they specifically apply to those critical first three pages. While this course includes no formal workshopping, students can expect to share their work as it relates to a variety of writing exercises. By the end of the course, students will have generated a strong and focused beginning to their manuscript and be well poised to continue on their own.

S – Novel Ends (10 Seats Available)

Dwayne Clayden
Wednesdays
7-9:30pm
April 12, 2017 (10 weeks)
Member Price: $250
Non-member Price: $315

You’ve worked through the middle and you’re approaching that pivotal point in your work, the climax. The tension has peaked and now it’s time to wrap up the story. Through writing exercises, group discussion and peer feedback, learn what makes a good ending, how to tie up all those loose ends, climax, resolution, and change. Discuss common problems faced while trying to complete your manuscript.

You should have a significant portion of your novel completed.

March Workshops

Formatting Your Book for Self-Publishing

Howie Erickson
March 14, 2017
7-10pm
Member Price: $25
Non-member Price: $35
Learn how to format your book for self-publishing in multiple formats. Mobi, ePub, using MS word and Createspace.

Writing for the Big Screen – Basics of screenwriting (7 Seats Available)

Phyllis Heltay
Saturday & Sunday
10-4:30pm
March 11 & 12, 2017
Member Price: $180
Non-member Price: $225

Love movies and thought “Hey, I can write that!”? This workshop will give you essential tools for constructing a screenplay for film. Dig into the elements of structure that include formatting, dialogue, action, and the heart of character development and the story arc. Every genre will be explored to unlock the key features that make great film stories. Grab some popcorn and ideas and join us for a weekend workshop!

Phyllis Heltay is a Calgary award winning screenwriter and playwright. She won a Praxis Screenwriting Fellowship (Simon Fraser University) for the comedy feature screenplay, “Stealing Jesus”, and was a bronze prize winner of the Page International Screenwriting Awards for “Peripheral Vision” a supernatural thriller. Her short drama “Magpie” was a first place winner of the American Gems screenwriting competition, and she has had numerous options with international production companies for her sci-fi and animation scripts. She currently has an independent comedy feature in development to be produced in Canada.

The Body Electric, The Body Eclectic (11 Seats Available)

Maraya Loza Koxahn
March 18, 2017
10-3:30pm
Member Price: $80
Non-member Price: $100

Your body holds all your stories – locked in muscle memory. Sometimes a little supportive nudge is what you need to remember something old, discover something new. Is there a book in you? We will use music, movement, art and writing exercises to help access the subconscious, facilitating self-discovery and bringing forth creative self-expression. No previous art or writing experience is necessary.

Supplies fee included in price.

Blogging 101 (5 Seats Available)

Carrie Mumford
March 25 & 26, 2017
10-4:30pm
Member Price: $180
Non-member Price: $225
In this weekend intensive you will create and launch your own blog. We’ll cover everything you need to know about blogging, from chosing a topic for your blog, to planning your posts, and finding readers.

 
You will:
  • Narrow in on a topic for your blog
  • Create a content plan and schedule for yourself
  • Choose a theme/look for your blog
  • Learn how to find readers and keep them coming back
  • Create and launch your blog using WordPress.com
 
This course is open to all skill levels. We ask that you bring a laptop that can connect to the internet so you can build your site in class.
 

Carrie Mumford is a fiction writer and senior marketing manager at a Canadian tech company. When she’s not working on her novel, she spends her time helping authors and editors create WordPress websites that work.

Carrie Mumford’s Website [www.carriemumford.com]

April Workshops

Journal the Seasons (10 Seats Available)

Wilma Rubens
April 1 & 2, 2017
10-4:30pm
Member Price: $180
Non-member Price: $225

Explore Your Evolving Story

Our life patterns journey around in cycles and spirals. Using the seasons, summer, fall, winter and spring, as inspiration for self-reflection, free your inner rhythms, gain personal insights, and open up creativity. Through journaling, develop your courage as a writer and become more alert and passionate as a person.

Craft or Catharsis (9 Seats Available)

Naomi Lewis
April 8, 2017
10-3:30pm
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $95
In Craft or Catharsis, we’ll address the vital distinction between writing out trauma or crisis for the sake of healing, and writing about these experiences for an audience. Sometimes it’s difficult to tell the difference, and both are important and valid. Participants will evaluate their emotional distance from their material, choose personal writing that can be adapted into publishable stories, whether fiction or non-fiction, and work on specific crafting techniques. 

Very Short Poems (5 Seats Available)

Maraya Loza Koxhan
April 8, 2017
10am-3:30pm
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $95

Spend the day playing with literary devices and short poem formats to create several miniscule works of great magnitude. Say what you want to say succinctly – both humorously and seriously. Come with ideas for content and your favorite line from a song.

 

Is There A Play Hiding In My Poem? (10 Seats Available)

Caroline Russell-King
April 1, 2017
10-3:30pm
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $95

Shakespeare was a poet and a playwright. Playwrights used to be called poets! Use your poetry as a jumping off place to create monologues, scenes or even a one act play! Join Caroline Russell-King for a one day class on plotting and poetry. 

Writing Basics: Scene Construction (10 Seats Available)

Susan Forest
April 29, 2017
10am-3:30pm
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $95

 

Nancy Kress likely spoke for a lot of writers when she said, “When I started writing in scenes, I started selling.” Designed for writers early in their development, this one-day class will look at what is a scene, how scenes are structured (their function within a larger work and their internal structure), and what elements should be included. Students are asked to bring a scene they are working on, to develop further over the course of the session.

May Workshops

Finding Your Muse (10 Seats Available)

Ellen Kelly
May 6, 2017
10-4pm
Member Price: $80
Non-member Price: $100

Join us for a creative boost – a day filled with writing games and exercises, sharing and friendly discussion. This workshop is geared to beginners as well as to those looking for inspiration/motivation to get those creative juices flowing. Discussion is determined by the interests of the participants. Please bring your lunch.

 

How To Write A 10-Minute Play in Five Hours (10 Seats Available)

Caroline Russell-King
May 6, 2017
10am-3:30pm
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $95

10-minute plays are all the rage. Join professional comedy playwright Caroline Russell-King, as you discover your playwriting chops. End the class with a short play!  Pull out your idea file or your scribbles and come learn the craft of playwriting. 

All ages. All skill levels.

 

Word Painting (10 Seats Available)

Robin van Eck
May 13, 2017
10am-3:30pm
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $95

Bring images to life on the page through only the magic of your wordsSpend the day immersed in exercises to energize your creativity and get you writing more descriptively.  If you think you overburden your writing with description, or maybe don’t write descriptively enough, this is a great workshop to learn what details are important and which are not, while also having fun. 

No experience necessary.

Short-Short Boot Camp – Zero to 500 Words in One Day (9 Seats Available)

Lori Hahnel
May 27, 2017
10-3:30pm
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $95

Want to write a 500-word story in one day? In this workshop, we’ll consider what the essential elements of a short story are; we’ll come up with a first draft through freefall writing; we’ll rewrite and revise; we’ll give and get feedback. The result will be a solid 500 words of story that you can take home and polish. Come prepared to write and share; bring an idea to work on or use an in-class prompt.

Backstory Secrets (10 Seats Available)

Susan Forest
May 27, 2017
10am-3:30 pm
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $95

Backstory is tricky to interweave into your story effectively. Often, our mistake is to introduce it too soon, or all at once in one large infodump. When and how can it be feathered in effectively? Think of your backstory as a series of secrets your protagonist does not want to reveal. How can you make your audience hungry for backstory and deliver it at just the right moment? Bring a pages or an idea you are working on (your plot line of story events and plot line of backstory events), and use the tips from this one-day workshop to analyze your piece for optimal revelation of scandalous secrets!

June Workshops

The Art of Daring: The Pleasure of Risk in Our Writing (Waitlist)

Rosemary Nixon
June 2-4, 2017
Fri. 7-10pm | Sat. & Sun. 10am-4:30pm
Member Price: $300
Non-member Price: $375

“Safe stories are duds.” ~ Sean Haldane.

 

Art is breaking loose from the habitual and the stolid. In fact, artistic masterpieces come into the world partly through the artist’s love of taking a chance, having the nerve to risk failure. Ben Marcus, famous American writer, reminds us that stories keep mattering by reimagining their own methods, manners, techniques, ways of executing phrasing, rhythm, tonality, and pace–reminding us, Don’t get cozy in your genre. Push against it.

           

Join me for an exciting energizing weekend in which we take courage, plunge in, and discover how unique our writing can be!

(Pre-class homework will be sent out at least one week prior to class.)

To Write Monologues or Not to Write… (10 Seats Available)

Caroline Russell-King
June 3, 2017
10am-3:30pm
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $95

Learn how to master the art of writing dramatic and comedic monologue. Whether your dream is to perform, do stand up, audition or round out your playwriting skills this class is for you. Find out how dramatic monologues and soliloquies differ from prose and story telling. Learn about the tricks and secrets of the trade. This class is also for those interested in writing one person shows.

Caroline Russell-King Website

Magazine Writing for Beginners

Felicia Zuniga
June 10, 2017
10am-1pm
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $65
This workshop will provide a kick-start to those looking to break into freelance writing for magazines. The course will review the fundamentals of a good magazine article, the many magazines that are looking for content in Alberta, what makes a good idea, how to pitch it to the editors, how to negotiate with editors, current fair pay per word, how to conduct interviews, write and structure your article and then promote it. Participants will have the opportunity to write a magazine pitch and have it evaluated by the instructor and writing peers.

Life Into Story – Transforming Experiences Into Fiction (10 Seats Available)

Lori Hahnel
June 17, 2017
10-3:30pm
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $95

Got a great story idea inspired by real life events but not sure how or where or why to begin writing it? In this workshop we’ll explore characters, plots and settings derived from real life. We’ll also consider how closely fiction should resemble real life, and whether some ideas are better suited to fiction or creative nonfiction.

The Writer’s Voice (9 Seats Available)

Robin van Eck
June 17, 2017
10am-3:30pm
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $95

Have you ever wondered why we like particular writers? There’s something about the way they write that keeps us engaged for the duration. Could be turns of phrase, the pace at which a story moves along, quirks and ticks. In this workshop, we will do lots of fun writing exercises to help your own voice emerge onto the page. Learn the tune and rhythm of your voice and what makes it unique from everyone else’s and begin to understand how that translates into story voice.

September Workshops

Speedy Stories – How to Write Page Turners for Kids

Marty Chan
September 9, 2017
10am - 3:30pm
Member Price: $95
Non-member Price: $120

Middle-grade author Marty Chan has been writing for kids and adults for over 25 years. Applying principles he learned as a playwright, he writes engaging middle-grade fiction that hooks young readers and keeps them turning the page until the final one. He’ll share his approach to writing for middle-grade audiences, and he will reveal simple-to-follow and easy-to-apply techniques for developing plots, characters and scenes for younger readers. With his pragmatic approach, Marty strips away the clutter of the creative process to help participants focus on what really matters: writing their stories. Be prepared for writing exercises. 

Manuscript Review Service

Prose Submissions – less than 3500 words

Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $100

Prose Submissions – 3501 – 10000 words

Member Price: $150
Non-member Price: $195

Prose Submissions – 10001 – 50000 words

Member Price: $300
Non-member Price: $375

Prose Submissions – 50001 – 80000 words

Member Price: $500
Non-member Price: $625

Poetry Submissions – Up to 10 pages (poems)

Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $100

Poetry Submissions – 11-25 pages (poems)

Member Price: $150
Non-member Price: $195

Poetry Submissions – 26-50 pages (poems)

Member Price: $250
Non-member Price: $325

Unless otherwise noted, all programs take place at the 
Alexandra Writers’ Centre Society, @cSpace King Edward, 460, 1721, 29th Ave SW, Calgary, AB T2T 6T7

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