2017-2018 Courses & Workshops

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.

Download our 2018 Youth & Home School Brochure as a PDF.

Download our 2018 Winter Weekly Courses Brochure as a PDF.

Download our Fall 2017 Courses & Workshops Brochure as a PDF.

Sign up today!

November is National Novel Writing Month

Word Sprint Thursday #1

Self-Directed
Thursday
7pm to midnight
November 2, 2017
Member Price: $5
Non-member Price: $10

Kick off National Novel Writing Month with AWCS. 50000 words is a lot and we’re here to help.

Four Thursdays in November join us for Word Sprints. Whether you’re trying to punch out at NaNoWriMo Novel in a month or just want a quiet night out to focus on your project, come down and enjoy some writing time, nibblies, beverages and good friends.

Word Sprint Thursday #2

Self-Directed
Thursday
7pm to midnight
November 9, 2017
Member Price: $5
Non-member Price: $10

The month is barely started. Get ahead of the game and up that word count. 50000 words is a lot.

Four Thursdays in November join us for Word Sprint Thursdays. Whether you’re trying to punch out at NaNoWriMo Novel in a month or just want a quiet night out to focus on your project, come down and enjoy some writing time, nibblies, beverages and good friends.

Word Sprint Thursday #3

Self-Directed
Thursday
7pm to midnight
November 23, 2017
Member Price: $5
Non-member Price: $10

Getting close to the end of the month. How many words have you written?

Four Thursdays in November join us for Word Sprint Thursdays. Whether you’re trying to punch out at NaNoWriMo Novel in a month or just want a quiet night out to focus on your project, come down and enjoy some writing time, nibblies, beverages and good friends.

Word Sprint Thursday #4

Self-Directed
Thursday
7pm to midnight
November 30, 2017
Member Price: $5
Non-member Price: $10

This is your last chance to up that word count. How close are you?

Four Thursdays in November join us for Word Sprint Thursdays. Whether you’re trying to punch out at NaNoWriMo Novel in a month or just want a quiet night out to focus on your project, come down and enjoy some writing time, nibblies, beverages and good friends.

Youth Courses & Workshops

Pen & Panel Comic Creation Club

Sebastien Ringuette and Em Williamson
First and third Thursday
5 PM - 6:30 PM
(September - June)
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $95

Play drawing games, improve your art style, learn to make comics both online and on paper and pitch ideas, plus lots more! Hang out with like-minded artists and comic writers. Work on individual projects or collaborate. Focus on topics that will help you expand your skill set. Ages 12 and up.

Media Club

Kim Firmston
First Monday of Every Month
5 PM - 6:30 PM
(September - May)
Member Price: $40
Non-member Price: $50

Want to play with both writing and technology? This new club will involve both. We’ll try movie making, pod casting, music video creation, stop motion animation, and much more. Short projects just for fun. Let’s see what we can make!

Novelmancers

Kim Firmston
Second Thursday of each month
5 PM - 6:30 PM
(September - June)
Member Price: $40
Non-member Price: $50

Join others hard core youth writers on the epic journey through large and lengthy project. Projects can include Novels, Graphic Novels, Long Non-Fiction projects, and Poetry Collections. Each meeting will include a discussion/education topic, and the ability to have your writing critiqued by the instructors and the group. Take part in NaNoWriMo. Join our write-ins and write a novel in a month! Prizes included!

Home School Writing

Plays And Oral Storytelling for Beginner Elementary Writers – 12 Seats Available

Kim Firmston
Mondays
10:30 AM - 12:30 PM
February 5 (6 weeks)
Member Price: $135
Non-member Price: $170

Tell a story, create a play, act it all out! In this fun, on-your-feet class, the story arc comes to life and characters leap off the page.

Semester: Winter
Level: Elementary Grades; Beginning Writers
Note: No class on February 19 for Family Day

Plays and Scripting for Intermediate Elementary Writers – 12 Seats Available

Kim Firmston
Mondays
1 PM - 2:30 PM
February 5, 2018 (6 weeks)
Member Price: $135
Non-member Price: $170

Tell a story, create a script, turn it into a play, and act it out! In this fun, on-your-feet class, students make their own characters, learn script format, dialogue, and how to turn their ideas into a solid production.

Semester: Winter
Level: Elementary Grades; Intermediate Writers
Note: No class on February 19 for Family Day

Focus on Non-Fiction Writing for Junior & Senior High School Writers – 12 Seats Available

Kim Firmston
Thursdays
10:30 AM - 12:00 PM
February 1, 2018 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $180
Non-member Price: $225

Learn the basics of academic essays, personal essays, and how to transfer your non-fiction writing to other formats such as advertising, travel writing, journalism, and personal response to text.

Semester: Winter
Level: Junior and Senior High School

Understanding and Creating Comics for Elementary & Junior High – 12 Seats Available

Sebastien Ringuette
Thursdays
1 PM - 2:30 PM
February 1, 2018 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $180
Non-member Price: $225

Do you love to draw? Do you love to write? Enter the world of comics and you won’t have to choose between the two! 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 to pacing, story structure to script-writing. Develop and discover your inner comedian, the artistic styles of a cartoonist, and how to love your own work. Learn how to self-publish your own work and how to bring them to the world. Cartooning is a world of trial and error, so expect to spent as much time writing and drawing as possible. (Occasionally, we pause to breathe.)

Semester: Winter
Level: Elementary and Junior High

Writing for Beginner Elementary Writers – 12 Seats Available

Kim Firmston
Mondays
10:30 AM - 12:00 PM
April 9, 2018 (6 weeks)
Member Price: $135
Non-member Price: $170

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

Semester: Spring
Level: Elementary Grades; Beginning Writers

Writing for Confident Elementary Writers – 12 Seats Available

Kim Firmston
Mondays
1 PM - 2:30 PM
April 9, 2018 (6 weeks)
Member Price: $135
Non-member Price: $170

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

Semester: Spring
Level: Elementary Grades; Confident Writers

Taking Your Comics to the Next Page for Grades 4 & Up – 12 Seats Available

Sebastien Ringuette
Thursdays
1 PM - 2:30 PM
April 12, 2018 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $180
Non-member Price: $225

For students already in the thick of making their own comics and comfortable with the basics, but for whom the ideas of ‘polishing’, ‘distributing’, and ‘publishing’ remain cloudy and out of reach. In this class, young cartoonists will work directly with a veteran web cartoonist with 10 years’ experience. Students will bring their work to class with the intention of sharing, refining, receiving guidance, solidifying their presentation, and taking the first steps on the road to putting their work into the world. This is a program for budding cartoonists who know what they want to make, and want it to be the best it can be.

Semester: Spring
Level: Grades 4-12

Creative Writing, Poetry, and Scripts for Junior & Senior High School – 12 Seats Available

Kim Firmston
Thursdays
10:30 AM - 12:00 PM
April 12, 2018 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $180
Non-member Price: $225

Get those creative juices flowing in this colourful class where we explore wonderful words used to create tantalizing text, suspenseful scripts, and perilous poetry. It’s a journey not to be missed!

Semester: Spring
Level: Junior and Senior High School

The Writers' Circle

The Writers’ Circle: DIY Writers’ Retreat

Carrie Mumford
Sunday
10:30 AM - 12:30 PM
October 29, 2017
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

Everything you need to know to plan and book your own writing retreat, whether it’s in your home or somewhere remote.

The Writers’ Circle: Fiction vs Non-Fiction

Karen Lee
Sunday
10:30 AM - 12:30 PM
November 5, 2017
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

How do you write your story and use characters from real life?

The Writers’ Circle: Creating Your Author Brand

Carrie Mumford
Sunday
10:30 AM - 12:30 PM
November 19, 2017
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

Strategies for crafting an online presence as an author, what to share online and what not to share, being yourself vs. using a pseudonym.

The Writers’ Circle: Social Responsibility in Story

Susan Forest
Sunday
10:30 AM - 12:30 PM
November 26, 2017
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

Is it important for writers to base their work in some area of social responsibility? Discussion of how artists play a role in fostering positive social change and why that role is vitally important.

The Writers’ Circle: What’s in a Name?

Anne Metikosh
Sunday
10:30 AM - 12:30 PM
December 3, 2017
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

Titles, characters, streets, and restaurants – a discussion of how names, or the lack of them, serve your story

The Writers’ Circle: Using Myth to Add Power to Your Writing

Jim Jackson
Sunday
10:30 AM - 12:30 PM
December 10, 2017
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

You can add a timeless, can’t-put-it-down quality to your writing by incorporating structures from myths, legends and folktales from around the world

The Writers’ Circle: Bullpen Confessions

Axel Howerton
Sunday
10:30 AM - 12:30 PM
January 14, 2018
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

An informal discussion session where we can delve into the things that terrify you about being a writer, the things that freeze you up with fear and trepidation, and then support each other with constructive brainstorming on how to get past those roadblocks and keep on trucking towards literary excellence.

Axel Howerton is the Mentor in the Loop for January.

The Writers’ Circle – The Oral Storytelling Tradition

Doreen Vanderstoop
Sunday
10:30 AM - 12:30 PM
January 21, 2018
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

Storytelling–the performance of telling stories aloud–takes a talent and skill set all along. Many cultures have a strong tradition of oral storytelling which is connected to, but separate from, written literature. Come and discuss the oldest form of storytelling!

The Writers’ Circle – The Bildungsroman

Barb Howard
Sunday
10:30 AM - 12:30 PM
January 28, 2018
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

The Bildungsroman is the “coming of age” story. A young–or not so young!–protagonist becomes an adult by facing their fears and finding inner strength. They may realize they have responsibilities to themselves and others, or face loss, or come to terms with a challenging world. Come to discuss famous and effective examples of the Bildungsroman.

The Writers’ Circle – Marketing

Lori Hahnel
Sunday
10:30 AM - 12:30 PM
February 4, 2018
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

Finishing your story is only the first set. Marketing your story can mean submitting it to publishers or agents. But even after your writing is accepted for publication, you still need to get the published book in front of readers’ eyes. Discuss marketing techniques, leveraging networks, and promoting yourself as a writer.

Poetry Cafe

Poetry Cafe – October 22

Laurie Fuhr
Sunday October 22
12:30 PM - 2:30 PM
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

Imagine a place where poets gather regularly to read inspiring books, write new work, share poems, and encourage one another. Every Sunday, grab a coffee or tea, some fresh baking, and get comfortable during a half hour of dedicated reading time with great books to explore. Poetry prompts are provided each week so you can write new work without interruptions. We finish by sharing new poems with fellow poets. Anticipate occasional surprises and special guests too! Poetry Cafe is your oasis and your community. No matter what life has in store, poetry can be part of your life every week.

Poetry Cafe – October 29

Laurie Fuhr
Sunday October 29
12:30 PM - 2:30 PM
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

Imagine a place where poets gather regularly to read inspiring books, write new work, share poems, and encourage one another. Every Sunday, grab a coffee or tea, some fresh baking, and get comfortable during a half hour of dedicated reading time with great books to explore. Poetry prompts are provided each week so you can write new work without interruptions. We finish by sharing new poems with fellow poets. Anticipate occasional surprises and special guests too! Poetry Cafe is your oasis and your community. No matter what life has in store, poetry can be part of your life every week.

Poetry Cafe – November 5

Laurie Fuhr
12:30 PM - 2:30 PM
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

Imagine a place where poets gather regularly to read inspiring books, write new work, share poems, and encourage one another. Every Sunday, grab a coffee or tea, some fresh baking, and get comfortable during a half hour of dedicated reading time with great books to explore. Poetry prompts are provided each week so you can write new work without interruptions. We finish by sharing new poems with fellow poets. Anticipate occasional surprises and special guests too! Poetry Cafe is your oasis and your community. No matter what life has in store, poetry can be part of your life every week.

Poetry Cafe – November 19

Laurie Fuhr
Sunday November 19
12:30 PM - 2:30 PM
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

Imagine a place where poets gather regularly to read inspiring books, write new work, share poems, and encourage one another. Every Sunday, grab a coffee or tea, some fresh baking, and get comfortable during a half hour of dedicated reading time with great books to explore. Poetry prompts are provided each week so you can write new work without interruptions. We finish by sharing new poems with fellow poets. Anticipate occasional surprises and special guests too! Poetry Cafe is your oasis and your community. No matter what life has in store, poetry can be part of your life every week.

Poetry Cafe – November 26

Laurie Fuhr
Sunday November 26
12:30 PM - 2:30 PM
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

Imagine a place where poets gather regularly to read inspiring books, write new work, share poems, and encourage one another. Every Sunday, experience the camaraderie, imagination, and optimism of Surrealist Paris in 1919, Dorothy Parker’s Algonquin Round Table, or the Beat Poets’ Caffe Trieste right here in Calgary at the Alexandra Writers’ Centre! Grab a coffee or tea, some fresh baking, and get comfortable beginning with a half hour of dedicated reading time and a selection of great books to explore. Then, different poetry prompts are provided each week so you can write new work without the intrusion of your cell phone, your partner, your kids, or that unfortunate pile of laundry moaning in the corner. The last half-hour of our session is for sharing new poems with fellow poets. Anticipate occasional surprises and special guests too! Poetry Cafe is your oasis and your community, a place to ensure that no matter what life has in store, poetry is part of your life each and every week.

Poetry Cafe – December 3

Laurie Fuhr
Sunday December 3
12:30 PM - 2:30 PM
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

Imagine a place where poets gather regularly to read inspiring books, write new work, share poems, and encourage one another. Every Sunday, experience the camaraderie, imagination, and optimism of Surrealist Paris in 1919, Dorothy Parker’s Algonquin Round Table, or the Beat Poets’ Caffe Trieste right here in Calgary at the Alexandra Writers’ Centre! Grab a coffee or tea, some fresh baking, and get comfortable beginning with a half hour of dedicated reading time and a selection of great books to explore. Then, different poetry prompts are provided each week so you can write new work without the intrusion of your cell phone, your partner, your kids, or that unfortunate pile of laundry moaning in the corner. The last half-hour of our session is for sharing new poems with fellow poets. Anticipate occasional surprises and special guests too! Poetry Cafe is your oasis and your community, a place to ensure that no matter what life has in store, poetry is part of your life each and every week.

Poetry Cafe – December 10

Laurie Fuhr
12:30-2:30pm
Sunday December 10
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

Imagine a place where poets gather regularly to read inspiring books, write new work, share poems, and encourage one another. Every Sunday, grab a coffee or tea, some fresh baking, and get comfortable during a half hour of dedicated reading time with great books to explore. Poetry prompts are provided each week so you can write new work without interruptions. We finish by sharing new poems with fellow poets. Anticipate occasional surprises and special guests too! Poetry Cafe is your oasis and your community. No matter what life has in store, poetry can be part of your life every week.

Poetry Cafe – January 14

Laurie Fuhr
Sunday
12:30 PM - 2:30 PM
January 14
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

Imagine a place where poets gather regularly to read inspiring books, write new work, share poems, and encourage one another. Every Sunday, grab a coffee or tea, some fresh baking, and get comfortable during a half hour of dedicated reading time with great books to explore. Poetry prompts are provided each week so you can write new work without interruptions. We finish by sharing new poems with fellow poets. Anticipate occasional surprises and special guests too! Poetry Cafe is your oasis and your community. No matter what life has in store, poetry can be part of your life every week.

Poetry Cafe – January 21

Laurie Fuhr
Sunday
12:30-2:30pm
January 21, 2018
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

Imagine a place where poets gather regularly to read inspiring books, write new work, share poems, and encourage one another. Every Sunday, grab a coffee or tea, some fresh baking, and get comfortable during a half hour of dedicated reading time with great books to explore. Poetry prompts are provided each week so you can write new work without interruptions. We finish by sharing new poems with fellow poets. Anticipate occasional surprises and special guests too! Poetry Cafe is your oasis and your community. No matter what life has in store, poetry can be part of your life every week.

Poetry Cafe – January 28

Laurie Fuhr
Sunday
12:30 PM - 2:30 PM
January 28, 2018
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

Imagine a place where poets gather regularly to read inspiring books, write new work, share poems, and encourage one another. Every Sunday, grab a coffee or tea, some fresh baking, and get comfortable during a half hour of dedicated reading time with great books to explore. Poetry prompts are provided each week so you can write new work without interruptions. We finish by sharing new poems with fellow poets. Anticipate occasional surprises and special guests too! Poetry Cafe is your oasis and your community. No matter what life has in store, poetry can be part of your life every week.

FREE MEMBER WORKSHOPS

Emergency Medicine: What Writers Get Wrong

Blair Lindsay
Wednesday
7 PM - 9 PM
November 15, 2017
Member Price: Free
Non-member Price: $5

This talk is presented and guided by a Paramedic / Firefighter with over two decades of experience. Stephen King has said that a scattering of verisimilitude is essential for establishing a sense of reality in a story – when your characters encounter disasters, house fires, deadly diseases, heart attacks, poisonings, overdoses, a stay in the hospital or the wrong end of a bullet, let’s make sure you get the details right every time! The first part of this workshop includes a presentation of some of the most egregious errors committed by writers when portraying emergency personnel. During the second half, participants can ask questions specific to their own writing and together we’ll make sure they are realistic while still suiting dramatic purpose.

Advanced Manuscript Workshop

Advanced Poetry Manuscript Workshop Application Fee

Vivian Hansen
N/A
N/A
N/A (N/A)
Member Price: $100
Non-member Price: $160

About the Advanced Manuscript Workshop

Applications must be received by January 15, 2018

Please see link above for full application guidelines and details about the program.

Advanced Prose Manuscript Registration Fee

Naomi K. Lewis
Tuesdays
January 16, 2018 (20 weeks)
Member Price: $950
Non-member Price: $950

Only for accepted applicants.

Mentor in the Loop (November and December)

Blue Pencil Session with Karen Lee (5 Seats Available)

Karen Lee
November 6 and 7
times vary
(30 minutes)
Member Price: $5
Non-member Price: $10

Meet with the Mentor in the Loop for a short, intensive Blue Pencil session. Submit a sample of your writing (no more than 8 pages, double-spaced) ahead of your session and the Mentor will go over it with you with an editor’s eye.

Dig Deep: Creating Characters Through Guided Meditation (8 Seats Available)

Karen Lee
Monday November 6
1 PM - 4 PM
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $75

Relax via guided meditation where you meet some of the characters in your story. Visualize them and then write the character descriptions. Share in a discussion of this process.

Mentorship Session with Karen Lee (3 Seats Available)

Karen Lee
November 7 and 9
times vary
(30 minutes)
Member Price: $25
Non-member Price: $35

Mentorships sessions are conversations–a chance for new and emerging writers to discuss their writing and ask questions of an established, experienced writer. Whether you are looking at how to get published, how to overcome writer’s block, or how to address lingering self-doubt, the mentor will encourage and support you in all your writing goals. Whatever you need, the Mentor has been there.

Meet and Greet with Karen Lee

Karen Lee
November 8
1 PM - 4 PM
Member Price: Free
Non-member Price: $5

Have a question about memoir, creative non-fiction, or fiction? Drop in for an informal chat with our Mentor in the Loop.

Memory To Scene (10 Seats Available)

Karen Lee
Thursday November 9
7 PM - 9 PM
Member Price: $35
Non-member Price: $50

Bring a memory to life! Learn how to use dialogue and character description to turn a brief incident into a full-fledged scene.

Red Pencil Cafe (10 Seats Available)

Anne Metikosh
Saturday December 2
10:00 AM - 3:30 PM
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $100

Develop a critical eye! Learn how to discuss the elements of critique, how to approach giving feedback, and how to accept feedback on your own work. Practice examples will be pulled from various sources, but participants will also bring 1-2 pages of their own writing for workshopping.

Mentorship Session with Anne Metikosh (7 Seats Available)

Anne Metikosh
December 3, 4, 5, 6
times vary
(30 minutes)
Member Price: $25
Non-member Price: $35

Mentorships sessions are conversations–a chance for new and emerging writers to discuss their writing and ask questions of an established, experienced writer. Whether you are looking at how to get published, how to overcome writer’s block, or how to address lingering self-doubt, the mentor will encourage and support you in all your writing goals. Whatever you need, the Mentor has been there.

Blue Pencil Session with Anne Metikosh (8 Seats Available)

Anne Metikosh
December 3, 4, 5, 6
times vary
(30 minutes)
Member Price: $5
Non-member Price: $10

Meet with the Mentor in the Loop for a short, intensive Blue Pencil session. Submit a sample of your writing (no more than 10 pages, double-spaced) ahead of your session and the Mentor will go over it with you with an editor’s eye. In your submission, please indicate the genre of your piece and whether it is an early or complete draft.

Show AND Tell (10 Seats Available)

Anne Metikosh
Tuesday December 5
7 PM - 9 PM
Member Price: $35
Non-member Price: $50

“Show don’t tell” is a common saying in creative writing. But actually, there’s a time and place for both. Learn when to show and when to tell in this two-hour workshop.

Say What? (10 Seats Available)

Anne Metikosh
Wednesday December 6
1 PM - 4 PM
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $75

How you say it matters as much as what you say! Learn techniques that enhance your writing voice and style.

Mentor in the Loop (January and February)

Publish? Or PUBLISH? – 10 Seats Available

Axel Howerton
Saturday
10 AM - 3:30 PM
January 13, 2018
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $100

The paths and pitfalls on the road to publishing – traditionally, or otherwise – from an Author/Editor/Publisher who has seen it all, and lived to tell the tale.

The Writers’ Circle: Bullpen Confessions

Axel Howerton
Sunday
10:30 AM - 12:30 PM
January 14, 2018
Member Price: $10
Non-member Price: $20

An informal discussion session where we can delve into the things that terrify you about being a writer, the things that freeze you up with fear and trepidation, and then support each other with constructive brainstorming on how to get past those roadblocks and keep on trucking towards literary excellence.

Axel Howerton is the Mentor in the Loop for January.

Blue Pencil Session with Axel Howerton – 10 Seats Available

Axel Howerton
Times vary
January 14, 15, 16, 17
Member Price: $5
Non-member Price: $10

Meet with the Mentor in the Loop for a half-hour intensive Blue Pencil session. Submit a sample of your writing (no more than 6 pages, double-spaced) ahead of your session and the Mentor will go over it with you with an editor’s eyes.

Mentorship Conversations with Axel Howerton – 10 Seats Available

Axel Howerton
Times vary
January 14, 15, 16, 17 (30 minutes)
Member Price: $25
Non-member Price: $35

Mentorships sessions are conversations–a chance for new and emerging writers to discuss their writing and ask questions of an established, experienced writer. Whether you are looking at how to get published, how to overcome writer’s block, or how to address lingering self-doubt, the mentor will encourage and support you in all your writing goals. Whatever you need, the Mentor has been there.

Drop In On Axel Howerton

Axel Howerton
Times vary
January 13, 16, 17
Member Price: Free
Non-member Price: $5

Drop in for an informal chat with our Mentor in the Loop, Axel Howerton.

Saturday January 13: 4 PM – 5 PM
Monday January 14: 1:30 PM – 4 PM
Tuesday January 16: 11 AM – 1 PM, 4 PM – 5 PM
Wednesday January 17: 11 AM – 1 PM, 4 PM – 5 PM

8 Week Courses - Evening

Creative Writing: Pen to Paper (Waitlist)

Maraya Loza Koxhan
Mondays
7-9 PM
October 23, 2017 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $200
Non-member Price: $250

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.

Creative Writing Level II (5 Seats Available)

Lori Hahnel
Wednesdays
7-9:30 PM
November 1, 2017 (7 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

Free Verse Revival – 10 Seats Available

Laurie Fuhr
Mondays
7PM - 9 PM
January 8, 2018 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $200
Non-member Price: $250

Calgary may be known for its experimental output, but free verse poetry still lives here! In this course for beginner and intermediate poets aged 17 to 71, we will live and breathe the spark of poetry. We will explore the continued (if masked) relevance of poetry, discuss a few of the most fun and interesting personality and style-driven poetry movements that have made history more colourful, and learn from one another, sharing our favourite poems and poets. We’ll use both individual and group generative activities to write poems weekly, in class and at home (or in your favourite cafe). We will be visited and read to by a couple of great local writers, and keeners will have the option of attending poetry readings or writing meetups outside of class, accompanied by or guided by the instructor. We’ll also explore publishing opportunities and create our own micropress chapbook. We will unabashedly love reading and writing poetry! Each week will feature a different poetic focus and at least one generative writing activity.

Week 1: Poetry for Everyman, Everywhere; Week 2: Romance and Romantics; Week 3: The Beats go on… and on… and on; Week 4: Leonard, Joni, Bob, and Neil: The Poetry of Song; Week 5: French Surrealism: An Exquisite Corpse; Week 6: Canadian Poetry: Wild Poets on the Loose!; Week 7: Local Poetry Overview with featured guests TBA; Week 8: Writing Practices and Publishing

Poetry readings during the course and chapbook launch after the course: TBD in class

Please note: Non-member rate includes a one-year membership.

Creative Writing Level I (Winter) – 9 Seats Available

Lori Hahnel
Wednesdays
7 PM - 9 PM
January 24, 2018 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $200
Non-member Price: $250

In this eight-week course, you will learn about the free fall method of writing and how it can be a useful tool for all writing. Learn how to create images a reader will remember. Then, using the short story as a model, you will be introduced to the basics of character, plot, dialogue and setting through discussion, free fall writing, practical writing exercises and mutual feedback. 

No experience necessary.

Writing Memoir – 10 Seats Available

Karen Lee
Mondays
7 PM - 9 PM
March 19, 2018 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $200
Non-member Price: $250

Are you interested in telling your life story, or exploring your family’s history through storytelling? Do you have a unique journey you’d like to write about, either for yourself or for an audience? Find a starting point to share your story. Learn how to choose relevant information about your life and episodes that will grab your reader’s attention. Develop skills that will help you tell the story of your lifetime.

The Artist’s Way – 10 Seats Available

Caroline Russell-King
Thursdays
7 PM - 9 PM
March 22, 2018 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $200
Non-member Price: $250

The Artist’s Way is the seminal book on the subject of creativity. An international bestseller, millions of readers have found it to be an invaluable guide to living the artist’s life. Still as vital today–or perhaps even more so–than it was when it was first published one decade ago. Playwright Caroline Russell-King will lead you through the 12 steps to creating provocative and inspiring work and personal artistic success whether you are a poet, playwright, prose writer or visual artist.

Creative Writing Level II (Winter) – 10 Seats Available

Lori Hahnel
Wednesdays
7 PM - 9:30 PM
March 28, 2018 (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

8 Week Courses - Daytime

Writing The Wilderness – 10 Seats Available

Vivian Hansen
Tuesdays
10 AM - 12:30 PM
January 16, 2018 (8 Weeks)
Member Price: $200
Non-member Price: $250

Explore your character against the backdrop of wilderness, how does s/he move and act against this great big setting. Is your character actually the wild setting, the tone, the balance in the plot? How does the wilderness speak to your character and enact dialogue? We will workshop and refine stories in this class, as well as poetry and creative nonfiction, with a goal to completing a finished wilderness story.

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

Maraya Loza Koxhan
Thursdays
10 AM - 12 PM
January 18, 2018 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $200
Non-member Price: $250

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.

Writing Memoir When Your Story is Difficult (Winter) – 9 Seats Available

Karen Lee
Wednesdays
10-1pm
March 14, 2018 (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

10 Week Courses - Evening

Writing Speculative Fiction – 9 Seats Available

Susan Forest
Wednesdays
7-9:30pm
January 10, 2018 (10 weeks)
Member Price: $250
Non-member Price: $310

Speculative fiction is a broad category that includes any element that is not currently part of our real world, including Science Fiction, Fantasy, Horror, and their subgenres. Many writers of one form also write in one or more of the others, and all are growing in importance and popularity. This course will examine the elements that define these genres: which conventions are expected by readers of a genre, and which clichés to avoid. We will also examine writing techniques that underpin successful commercial fiction, what editors are looking for in terms of writing quality and professionalism, and what steps a starting author should take when approaching a magazine for publication. Come to this course prepared to workshop your own short stories or novel openings, to improve your craft with the goal of publication.p>

Introduction to Playwriting – 9 Seats Available

Caroline Russell-King
Thursdays
7 PM - 9:30 PM
January 11, 2018 (10 weeks)
Member Price: $250
Non-member Price: $310

Playwriting- with possible stage production!: This is a fantastic opportunity! Join professional playwright Caroline Russell-King in conjunction with Urban Stories Theatre as you learn how take your ideas and craft them for the stage. Discover how to adapt your other writing or just bring in your “idea file”and come learn the craft of playwriting. Find out industry tips, discover the secrets of the business and what it takes to get from page to stage! Professional actors will read excerpts of all the plays and one of the participants will receive a production by Urban Stories Theatre in Calgary! This class is for beginners and more experienced alike.

Introduction to Freelance Writing – 10 Seats Available

Olyn Ozbick
Thursdays
7-9:30pm
January 18, 2018 (10 weeks)
Member Price: $250
Non-member Price: $310

Do you want to write for magazines, newspapers or the internet but don’t know how to get started? Learn the basics of how to find fresh ideas, publish in multiple markets, incorporate research and write informative, inspiring and entertaining articles that assignment editors will love. You will do practice exercises to build on your new skills, and learn how to craft query letters that will get the attention of busy editors. Throughout the course students will develop well-targeted ideas, refine their queries and get ready to start writing for editors. 

10 Week Courses - Daytime

Creative Non-Fiction – 10 Seats Available

Ellen Kelly
Wednesdays
10 AM - 12:30 PM
January 10, 2018 (10 Weeks)
Member Price: $250
Non-member Price: $310

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 creative non-fiction formats, including the personal essay. We will discuss 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.

12 Week Courses

Creative Writing Basics (Daytime) – 10 Seats Available

Maddie Wong
Tuesdays
10 AM - 12:30 PM
January 9 (12 weeks)
Member Price: $375
Non-member Price: $470

This course is a combination of Creative Writing Level I & II in 12 weeks. It’s designed for the beginner writer who knows they want to write or maybe haven’t taken a creative writing class in a long time. Learn the basics of writing: character, setting, plot, dialogue and more, to get you well on your way to writing great short stories, creative nonfiction or novel length manuscripts. You can expect lecture, discussion, in-class writing exercises, workshopping and lots of writing.

Advanced Short Story – 10 Seats Available

Jani Krulc
Mondays
7 PM - 9 PM
January 15 (12 weeks)
Member Price: $300
Non-member Price: $375

Already have a few short stories under your belt? Familiar with the basic techniques and structure of the short story form? It’s time to take it to the next level. Bring a manuscript in progress or a complete draft to this thoughtful, critique-focused class. Learn how to apply the lessons from writing exercises to your own work. Incorporate feedback from your peers and the instructor to improve your next draft. Polish your short stories!

Creative Writing Basics (Evening) – 10 Seats Available

Olyn Ozbick
Tuesdays
7 PM - 9:30 PM
January 16, 2018 (12 weeks)
Member Price: $375
Non-member Price: $470

This course is a combination of Creative Writing Level I & II in 12 weeks. It’s designed for the beginner writer who knows they want to write or maybe haven’t taken a creative writing class in a long time. Learn the basics of writing: character, setting, plot, dialogue and more, to get you well on your way to writing great short stories, creative nonfiction or novel length manuscripts. You can expect lecture, discussion, in-class writing exercises, workshopping and lots of writing.

3-Month Novel Project (Waitlist)

Sarah L. Johnson
Tuesdays
7-9pm
March 6, 2018 (12 weeks)
Member Price: $300
Non-member Price: $375

SPRING 2018

Powering through to a complete first draft in 12 weeks.

This course is all about what Anne Lamott famously refers to as “shitty first drafts.”  A gentler more realistic version of the well known 30-day challenge, 3MoNoPro is designed to offer the support, information, and tough love you need to get you across that finish line to your very own garbage, but nevertheless complete, first draft.

Each class will look at a different element of writing with an eye toward finding inspiration in our obstacles. Through exercises, word count tracking, and sharing our shitty pages, we’ll cheer each other on and finish what we start.

This course is for writers of all levels. Whether you’re just starting, half way through or almost done a manuscript, sign up and by week 12 you could very well be typing THE END.

October Workshops

Sourcing Resources

Steven Ross Smith
Wednesday, October 18
7 PM - 9 PM
Member Price: $5
Non-member Price: $10

A talk and conversation on resources for writers and professional development tips.

Tonguing the Text (8 Seats Available)

Steven Ross Smith
Friday, October 20
6:30 PM - 9:30 PM
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $75

This workshop will focus on orality and the materiality of language—its sounds, textures, constructions—as applied to the forms and genres that the participants present—poetry, fiction, non-fiction, song, script, story-telling, and so on. Informed by this emphasis, attendees will begin to develop ongoing or new writing toward completion. Along the way discussion may consider formal innovation, writers’ block, process, editing, and generative devices.

Subtext in Stories (4 Seats Available)

Jani Krulc
Saturday
10am-3:30pm
October 28, 2017
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $100

As a writer, you’re always managing two stories: the one that appears quite literally on the page, and the one that is unspoken, implicit, and ephemeral. In this workshop, we will examine subtext in short stories, exploring techniques of withholding, pacing, and voice to craft layered and nuanced narratives. 

November Workshops

Excavating Your Creativity (6 Seats Available)

Maraya Loza Koxhan
Saturday
10-3:30pm
November 4, 2017
Member Price: $80
Non-member Price: $105

This is a mixed media workshop designed to access your inner artist. Writers–consider this cross-training–a way to open you up to different ways of seeing and thinking. We let go of our ‘critic/judge’ and just play with art and writing exercises allowing creations to manifest themselves spontaneously. This can be used as a space for personal growth, to inspire and explore themes for future writing, or to help break through blocks to a current project. Or just come out and play with us for a day. No previous art or writing experience required.

Participants: Please bring a journal and/or sketch book. An additional supplies fee is included in the registration fee for other materials which will be provided.

No experience necessary.

Writing for the Big Screen – Basics of screenwriting (10 Seats Available)

Phyllis Heltay
Saturday & Sunday
10-4:30pm
November 4 & 5 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!

Dig Deep: Creating Characters Through Guided Meditation (8 Seats Available)

Karen Lee
Monday November 6
1 PM - 4 PM
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $75

Relax via guided meditation where you meet some of the characters in your story. Visualize them and then write the character descriptions. Share in a discussion of this process.

Memory To Scene (10 Seats Available)

Karen Lee
Thursday November 9
7 PM - 9 PM
Member Price: $35
Non-member Price: $50

Bring a memory to life! Learn how to use dialogue and character description to turn a brief incident into a full-fledged scene.

Mystery Doesn’t Always Mean Murder (10 Seats Available)

Axel Howerton
Wednesday
7-10 PM
November 15, 2017
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $75

Learn how to craft a mystery without killing off the cast. From Sherlock Holmes and Sam Spade to modern classics like Gone Girl, mystery doesn’t always have to revolve around the sin of sins.

Emergency Medicine: What Writers Get Wrong

Blair Lindsay
Wednesday
7 PM - 9 PM
November 15, 2017
Member Price: Free
Non-member Price: $5

This talk is presented and guided by a Paramedic / Firefighter with over two decades of experience. Stephen King has said that a scattering of verisimilitude is essential for establishing a sense of reality in a story – when your characters encounter disasters, house fires, deadly diseases, heart attacks, poisonings, overdoses, a stay in the hospital or the wrong end of a bullet, let’s make sure you get the details right every time! The first part of this workshop includes a presentation of some of the most egregious errors committed by writers when portraying emergency personnel. During the second half, participants can ask questions specific to their own writing and together we’ll make sure they are realistic while still suiting dramatic purpose.

Warp & Weft (9 Seats Available)

Anne Metikosh
Saturday
10-3:30pm
November 18, 2017
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $100

Weaving subplots into your novel.

Life is not a smooth progression  of  events.  We juggle half a dozen balls at once.  Interruptions happen; change rushes in; we weave them into the fabric of our day.  Novels are like that, too.  Not monofilament but many-stranded.  Think of your main plot as the warp – the lengthwise yarn held in tension on a frame.  To create a strong piece of fabric with it, you need to add weft–transverse threads you draw through the warp.  In other words, subplots.    In this one-day workshop, we’ll look at the purpose, techniques, and timing of subplots.  Bring your ideas or notes for the novel you’re working on and learn how adding a subplot or two can add complexity and tension to your story.

Moving to the Next Level (10 Seats Available)

Rajni Mala Khelewan
Saturday
10:30 AM - 3:30 PM
November 18, 2017
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $100

Have you ever wondered why some writers get a publishing deal and some don’t? Is it just luck and who you know? Or is it hard work, determination, and specific techniques that get your manuscript from the bottom of slush pile to the publisher requesting to see your full novel? In this workshop, we will discuss the basic elements of fiction and writing techniques that get your first pages of manuscript turning a publisher’s head to noticing your work, and requesting to see more. In addition to discussing setting, point of view, themes, character, plot, and how all of these elements tie together, we will spend time on generating ideas on how to start a novel, or beat writer’s block, and how to transition from one chapter to the next effectively, so that your readers find it difficult to stop reading your novel. This workshop is for people who are wishing to start a new novel or get feedback on how to improve the one they have already begun.

The Simple Art of Murder (9 Seats Available)

Axel Howerton
Wednesday
7-10 PM
November 22, 2017
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $75

Learn Raymond Chandler’s surefire system for crafting literary mysteries that thrill and entice.

Group Poetry (10 Seats Available)

Laurie Fuhr
Saturday
10am-3:30pm
November 25
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $100

There’s power in numbers. Consider covens – it takes more than one witch to cast a really good spell. In Group Poetry, we’ll use famous and obscure, classic and contemporary poetry-generating techniques and games to make amazing verse together–solo, in pairs, and as a group–and we’ll have great time doing it! We’ll also collaborate with poets that aren’t present using their books. This course is ideal for all writers from beginner to expert; a mix of talents makes the most interesting and unexpected group verse.

December Workshops

Red Pencil Cafe (10 Seats Available)

Anne Metikosh
Saturday December 2
10:00 AM - 3:30 PM
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $100

Develop a critical eye! Learn how to discuss the elements of critique, how to approach giving feedback, and how to accept feedback on your own work. Practice examples will be pulled from various sources, but participants will also bring 1-2 pages of their own writing for workshopping.

Show AND Tell (10 Seats Available)

Anne Metikosh
Tuesday December 5
7 PM - 9 PM
Member Price: $35
Non-member Price: $50

“Show don’t tell” is a common saying in creative writing. But actually, there’s a time and place for both. Learn when to show and when to tell in this two-hour workshop.

Say What? (10 Seats Available)

Anne Metikosh
Wednesday December 6
1 PM - 4 PM
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $75

How you say it matters as much as what you say! Learn techniques that enhance your writing voice and style.

It Was A Dark And Stormy Night (10 Seats Available)

Axel Howerton
Wednesday
7-10 PM
December 6, 2017
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $75

Setting the stage for mystery through a more layered use of scene and description.

Out On A Limb

Out on a Limb (Six Sessions for the Price of Five) – 10 Seats Available

Anne Metikosh
Saturdays
10 AM - 2 PM
varies (6 sessions)
Member Price: $250
Non-member Price: $375

“Go out on a limb–that’s where the fruit is.” –Will Rogers

Once each month, this half-day workshop will go in-depth and hands-on with a focus on a particular element of novel writing, including a critique of the project you’re working on. We’ll meet in the cSPACE Treehouse to discuss the topics below and, through example and exercise, see how they apply to the story you’re writing. Participants are asked to bring some relevant work to share with the group. Sign up for all six sessions for the price of five, or register individually for the workshops that are most relevant to you. You are welcome to linger and chat or work on your novel in the Salon after the workshop is done.

  • 1. January 20: Structure
  • 2. February 10: What’s it all about?
  • 3. March 10: Who’s on First?
  • 4. April 21: A Dark and Stormy Night
  • 5. May 5: Glued to the Page
  • 6. June 16: Second Guessing Yourself

Out on a Limb (Structure) – 10 Seats Available

Anne Metikosh
Saturday
10 AM - 2 PM
January 20, 2018
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $75

A hero can’t be spineless; neither can a story. Why structure is important to a novel, with particular emphasis on the elements of goal and consequence. Participants are asked to bring some relevant work to share with the group. You are welcome to linger and chat or work on your novel in the Salon after the workshop is done.

Out on a Limb (What’s it all about?) – 10 Seats Available

Anne Metikosh
Saturday
10 AM - 2 PM
February 10, 2018
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $75

A good story is more than a sequence of events; it has a point to make. Deciding what you’re really trying to say and how best to say it. Participants are asked to bring some relevant work to share with the group. You are welcome to linger and chat or work on your novel in the Salon after the workshop is done.

Out on a Limb (Who’s On First?) – 10 Seats Available

Anne Metikosh
Saturday
10 AM - 2 PM
March 10, 2018
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $75

The characters in your story and the roles they fill. Who else is affected by what your protagonist is doing? Do they help or do they hinder? Participants are asked to bring some relevant work to share with the group. You are welcome to linger and chat or work on your novel in the Salon after the workshop is done.

Out on a Limb (A Dark and Stormy Night) – 10 Seats Available

Anne Metikosh
Saturday
10 AM - 2 PM
April 21, 2018
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $75

How place, time and, yes, weather, affect story. A look at the basics of worldbuilding. Participants are asked to bring some relevant work to share with the group. You are welcome to linger and chat or work on your novel in the Salon after the workshop is done.

Out on a Limb (Glued to the Page) – 10 Seats Available

Anne Metikosh
Saturday
10 AM - 2 PM
May 5, 2018
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $75

Once you’ve hooked a reader, how do you keep her reading? Applying subtle tension to character, dialogue and setting. Participants are asked to bring some relevant work to share with the group. Sign up for all six sessions for the price of five, or register individually for the workshops that are most relevant to you. You are welcome to linger and chat or work on your novel in the Salon after the workshop is done.

Out on a Limb (Second Guessing Yourself) – 10 Seats Available

Anne Metikosh
Saturday
10 AM - 2 PM
June 16, 2018
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $75

Taking a red pencil to your own work and learning to say ‘enough is enough’. Participants are asked to bring some relevant work to share with the group. Sign up for all six sessions for the price of five, or register individually for the workshops that are most relevant to you. You are welcome to linger and chat or work on your novel in the Salon after the workshop is done.

January Workshops

Organizing Your Writing Project With Scrivener – 10 Seats Available

Heather Osborne
Thursday
7 PM - 9:30 PM
January 11, 2018
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $75

Scrivener is a software program designed to help writers of all genres organize big, sprawling projects. Do you keep your novel chapters in folders-within-folders-within-folders? Do you have a pile of drafts and you’re not certain which are the best or most recent? Do you have trouble getting started on writing because you’re not sure where all your notes and research have ended up? Scrivener might be helpful for you! Learn the basics of Scrivener, plus a few advanced tools that will help you get the most out of this software tool.

Bringing a laptop is highly recommended! During the workshop, you can experiment with a Scrivener free trial, or buy the software in advance.

Yoga & Writing – 10 Seats Available

Jani Krulc
January 13, 2018
10-2pm
Member Price: $60
Non-member Price: $85

Writing requires us to use our entire bodies and our full range of sensory experience. But as writers, we sometimes get stuck in our heads, forgetting that we’re not just floating brains! In this gentle practice, we will awaken the body through focused breathing and mindful movement. Access your senses, memory, and emotions – all the stuff that makes your writing richer –  in a safe and supportive space. No yoga experience necessary.

Publish? Or PUBLISH? – 10 Seats Available

Axel Howerton
Saturday
10 AM - 3:30 PM
January 13, 2018
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $100

The paths and pitfalls on the road to publishing – traditionally, or otherwise – from an Author/Editor/Publisher who has seen it all, and lived to tell the tale.

Blue Pencil Session with Axel Howerton – 10 Seats Available

Axel Howerton
Times vary
January 14, 15, 16, 17
Member Price: $5
Non-member Price: $10

Meet with the Mentor in the Loop for a half-hour intensive Blue Pencil session. Submit a sample of your writing (no more than 6 pages, double-spaced) ahead of your session and the Mentor will go over it with you with an editor’s eyes.

Mentorship Conversations with Axel Howerton – 10 Seats Available

Axel Howerton
Times vary
January 14, 15, 16, 17 (30 minutes)
Member Price: $25
Non-member Price: $35

Mentorships sessions are conversations–a chance for new and emerging writers to discuss their writing and ask questions of an established, experienced writer. Whether you are looking at how to get published, how to overcome writer’s block, or how to address lingering self-doubt, the mentor will encourage and support you in all your writing goals. Whatever you need, the Mentor has been there.

Drop In On Axel Howerton

Axel Howerton
Times vary
January 13, 16, 17
Member Price: Free
Non-member Price: $5

Drop in for an informal chat with our Mentor in the Loop, Axel Howerton.

Saturday January 13: 4 PM – 5 PM
Monday January 14: 1:30 PM – 4 PM
Tuesday January 16: 11 AM – 1 PM, 4 PM – 5 PM
Wednesday January 17: 11 AM – 1 PM, 4 PM – 5 PM

Out on a Limb (Structure) – 10 Seats Available

Anne Metikosh
Saturday
10 AM - 2 PM
January 20, 2018
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $75

A hero can’t be spineless; neither can a story. Why structure is important to a novel, with particular emphasis on the elements of goal and consequence. Participants are asked to bring some relevant work to share with the group. You are welcome to linger and chat or work on your novel in the Salon after the workshop is done.

Whose Plot is it Anyway? – 10 Seats Available

Randy McCharles
Saturday
10 AM - 3:30 PM
January 20, 2018
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $100

Most novels and short fiction begin with an idea. The delivery of that idea is what makes each story unique. Delivery includes voice, character, and other elements, but most of all plot. Whether you are an outliner or a pantser, this workshop will provide you with several tools to help make your fiction sing as well as enable greater productivity and reduce writers block. Preparation: Come to the workshop with one of your story ideas, preferably one that you’ve been thinking about for a while but haven’t begun writing. This workshop includes exercises that will help you prepare to write that story.

Developing Vibrant Characters – 10 Seats Available

Aaron Roe
Saturday
10 AM - 3:30 PM
January 20, 2018
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $100

Populating your fiction with authentic, vivid characters is a certain way to captivate your readers from the first sentence to your last. Whether you’re writing a novel or short fiction, this workshop will help you to effectively introduce characters, build a believable protagonist, develop strong anti-heroes and compelling villains, juggle multiple points of view, craft authentic dialogue that propels the story forward, motivate your characters with powerful objectives and a believable conflict, and, finally, to show dynamic character development over the course of a story.

Writing With Emotion

Karen Lee
Saturday
10 AM - 3:30 PM
January 27, 2018
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $100

Emotions are one of the more difficult things to get right in our writing. Digging deep is necessary to get at the reality of emotion in your writing.  Make it real whether you are writing creative non-fiction or fiction by tapping into your own experience of grief, sorrow, or ecstatic happiness, Find ways to show, not tell, and have the reader really “get” what your characters are going through.

February Workshops

Fiction for Creative Non-Fiction Writers – 10 Seats Available

Robin van Eck
Saturday
10 AM - 3:30 PM
February 3, 2018
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $100

Have you spent all your writing career writing creative nonfiction and have a hankering to try fiction? Maybe fiction feels daunting since you have to invent so much. In this one-day workshop you will expand on the tools you already use and learn to create fresh new (imaginary) characters with amazing stories to tell. Lots of writing. Lots of fun. Lots of fiction.

The Body Electric / The Body Eclectic – 10 Seats Available

Maraya Loza Koxhan
Saturday
10 AM - 3:30 PM
February 3, 2018
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $75

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.

Out on a Limb (What’s it all about?) – 10 Seats Available

Anne Metikosh
Saturday
10 AM - 2 PM
February 10, 2018
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $75

A good story is more than a sequence of events; it has a point to make. Deciding what you’re really trying to say and how best to say it. Participants are asked to bring some relevant work to share with the group. You are welcome to linger and chat or work on your novel in the Salon after the workshop is done.

Writing Erotica – 10 Seats Available

Vivian Hansen
February 10, 2018
10-3:30pm
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $135

This workshop will explore strategies for writing that intensive love scene, that sizzling mix that is just perfect for your story.  We will examine your characters to find out what they like, and what they fantasize about.  Come prepared with a character you’d like to explore, and/or flesh out a character in this fun workshop!

Vivian Hansen Website

Beyond The First Draft – 10 Seats Available

Rosemary Nixon
Saturday
10 AM - 3:30 PM
February 24, 2018
Member Price: $60
Non-member Price: $80

John Casey, in Beyond the First Draft, says, “But the real wonder of good fiction is that it not only appeals to the senses—it makes all of your shadow senses receive the world of the story.” At its very best, he says, writing “gives us a sixth sense, a sense of the invisible forces that make people more than the sum of their five senses.” A workshop for writers who have written several drafts, this is a time to edit for this kind of depth and resonance. Participants will bring their best 5 pages.

March Workshops

Manuscript Submission – 10 Seats Available

Susan Forest
Saturday & Sunday
10 AM - 3:30 PM
March 3 & 4
Member Price: $180
Non-member Price: $225

Typing “The End” is just the beginning of manuscript submission. Revision and editing, researching fiction markets, publishers and agents, creating your pitch and synopsis, and schmoozing, are just a few of the skills you need to develop in order to submit your manuscript. You’ll also need to consider what publishing route is best for your project (Big Pub, Small Press or Indie), contracts, and career planning. And that doesn’t include building your fan base, book blurbs, back cover copy, launches, awards, and financial management. This short, weekend intensive will touch on multiple areas briefly, raising questions for you to consider as you take your manuscript to the next level.

Backstory Secrets – 10 Seats Available

Susan Forest
March 10, 2018
10am-3:30 pm
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $100

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!

Out on a Limb (Who’s On First?) – 10 Seats Available

Anne Metikosh
Saturday
10 AM - 2 PM
March 10, 2018
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $75

The characters in your story and the roles they fill. Who else is affected by what your protagonist is doing? Do they help or do they hinder? Participants are asked to bring some relevant work to share with the group. You are welcome to linger and chat or work on your novel in the Salon after the workshop is done.

Mapping A Novel – 10 Seats Available

Anne Metikosh
Saturday & Sunday
10 AM - 4:30 PM
March 24 & 25
Member Price: $185
Non-member Price: $230

You have a great idea. Maybe you’ve dreamed up some dynamite settings and scenes. But how do you turn all the bits and pieces into a novel? You know you need an engaging plot to keep the reader glued to the page. You know your characters have to grow and change. You know your story has to reach an emotionally satisfying conclusion. But you can’t figure out how to get there from here and you’re spending a lot of time spinning your wheels. What you need is a roadmap. In this class we’ll design a working model for your novel. We’ll discuss the basics, like the value of a three-act structure and why the incidents that make up a plot need to be linked by cause and effect. But we’ll also consider the underlying questions of goal, theme, character motivations and consequences as they relate to the particular story you want to tell. By the end of the workshop, you should have an integrated plan to follow as you write. This class involves brainstorming and discussion. Materials provided.

April Workshops

Out on a Limb (A Dark and Stormy Night) – 10 Seats Available

Anne Metikosh
Saturday
10 AM - 2 PM
April 21, 2018
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $75

How place, time and, yes, weather, affect story. A look at the basics of worldbuilding. Participants are asked to bring some relevant work to share with the group. You are welcome to linger and chat or work on your novel in the Salon after the workshop is done.

May Workshops

Out on a Limb (Glued to the Page) – 10 Seats Available

Anne Metikosh
Saturday
10 AM - 2 PM
May 5, 2018
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $75

Once you’ve hooked a reader, how do you keep her reading? Applying subtle tension to character, dialogue and setting. Participants are asked to bring some relevant work to share with the group. Sign up for all six sessions for the price of five, or register individually for the workshops that are most relevant to you. You are welcome to linger and chat or work on your novel in the Salon after the workshop is done.

June Workshops

Out on a Limb (Second Guessing Yourself) – 10 Seats Available

Anne Metikosh
Saturday
10 AM - 2 PM
June 16, 2018
Member Price: $50
Non-member Price: $75

Taking a red pencil to your own work and learning to say ‘enough is enough’. Participants are asked to bring some relevant work to share with the group. Sign up for all six sessions for the price of five, or register individually for the workshops that are most relevant to you. You are welcome to linger and chat or work on your novel in the Salon after the workshop is done.

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

Prose Submissions – 80,001 – 100,000 words

Member Price: $650
Non-member Price: $850

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

View our Terms and Conditions