2020 Courses & Workshops 

To better serve our writing community during COVID-19, all of our upcoming spring programming is online using the Zoom web conferencing app. 

 

A huge thank you to The Calgary Foundation for supporting the Alexandra Writers Centre and our community of writers. Their assistance under the Pandemic Relief Fund means that we may continue to bring you all the great programming you’ve come to know and love, now from the comfort of your home.

For special events, drop in programs and more, please visit our EVENTS page.

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 micro workshops for those who are unable to commit to a longer course.

Simply click on the tabs below to see everything currently on offer. 

Most of our courses are geared towards beginner to intermediate writers. If a course is more advanced, or has specific requirements beyond a beginner level, it will say so in the listing.

Not sure how to gauge your experience level? Try this quick guide to help. If you’re still not sure, please feel free to contact us for advice. 

Want to know more about our Instructors?

Due to the change to online learning, youth are welcome to register for ANY of our adult courses, workshops, and drop-in programs.

Questions? Please contact us by email or phone 403.264.4730

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Become a Member Today

Membership

Member Price: $50-$70
Non-member Price: $50-$70

Become a member of AWCS today and enjoy great member benefits.

The Alexandra Writers’ Centre Society is an exceptional place to meet and connect with other writers. Membership is not required to participate in any of our programs, however as a member of the AWCS you will receive great benefits which include:

  • be part of a diverse group of writers that is continually growing
  • 25-30% discount on courses and workshops.
  • 30% discount on Manuscript Review Service
  • Free admission to our centre for drop in programs such as critique groups, readings, Free Fall Writing Sessions and other programming not requiring registration, social events or just come to write during open writing times.
  • Be the first to know about new and exciting programming including special presentations and feature workshops through our email newsletters.
  • one free manuscript consultation with our Writer in Residence (spring of every year)
  • Annual Member Guest Pass* (see details below)
  • Refer a Friend* (see details below)
  • After 5 consecutive years of membership, all members are eligible to apply for author support for book launches, self-publishing and more.*
  • Voting rights at AGM and Special Membership Meetings

YOUTH MEMBERSHIP – The AWCS encourages young writers to express themselves. If you’re under 18, your membership gets you similar benefits to a regular membership at a reduced price as well as some extra special stuff just for you. For more information on youth programs (clubs, camps, classes, and more) click here

View Course Details & Register

Drop-In Programs

Novelmancer Summer Write In

Kim Firmston
Thursdays
8:30-10:00 PM
July 2 - Aug 18 (8 weeks)
Member Price: Free
Non-member Price: Free

Calling all young writers, (ages 25 and below) come and join us for some summer writing fun. Gather on our Discord server and work on your novel, comic script, screenplay, animation, short story, poetry, or whatever. We will be meeting every Thursday night July-August to support each other, make up names for characters, cities, and more, and generally support each other while having fun.

- Youth Programming: Summer online View Course Details & Register

ONLINE Short Story Salon

Robin van Eck
Sundays
10-12pm
Member Price: $5
Non-member Price: $5

Due to the increased risk of COVID-19, Short Story Salon will be moving online indefinitely through the Zoom app. For a limited time we are reducing the price of these sessions. Please register online so that you are sent the login information.

Do you love to write short stories? Flash fiction, longer shorts? Maybe you’ve never tried writing a short story and want to start.

The Short Story Salon is a place for writers to come together, share ideas, write collaboratively or alone. We’ll write, share and discuss. Each week we will study a published short story and discuss what works and what doesn’t. We’ll look at different forms from flash fiction to the more traditional 3000-5000 word story, practice a variety of genres and hone your short story skills with a goal of submitting to literary journals.

Guest speakers may appear.

If you think a short story collection may be in your future, this will be a great way to generate content.

Drop ins are welcome but registration is recommended.

- Course Type: fiction - Genre: Short Fiction - Event: Sunday Programs View Course Details & Register

ONLINE Poetry Cafe

Laurie Fuhr
Sunday
12:30 PM - 2:30 PM
varies
Member Price: $5
Non-member Price: $5

Due to the increased risk of COVID-19, Poetry Cafe will be moving online indefinitely through the Zoom app. For a limited time we are reducing the price of these sessions. Please register online so that you are sent the login information.

Imagine a place where poets gather regularly to write new work, share poems, and encourage one another. Poetry Cafe is your oasis and your community. No matter what life has in store, poetry can be part of your life every week. Anticipate occasional surprises and special guests too!

Poetry Cafe combines poetry prompts or exercises to generate poems with workshopping and discussion. It’s great for both emerging and established poets, and it’s open to poets of all ages. Join us to write with prompts from 12:30-1:45 and workshopping from 1:45-2:30. Great for both emerging and established poets and it’s open to poets of all ages. Let’s have some fun and write together.

click link below to view upcoming dates

View Course Details & Register

Adult Multi-Week Courses (Daytime)

ONLINE Writer, Artist, Mother: Living, Writing & Creating Without Selling Your Children Or Losing Yourself

M. Jane Colette
Wednesdays
10am-12pm MST
July 29, 2020 (3 weeks)
Member Price: $90
Non-member Price: $120

Kids, dinner, dishes, day job, add to that the challenges of a global pandemic–when, exactly, are you making your art, writing your novel, and taking care of your soul? M. Jane Colette built a career as a legal affairs and business writer and published four novels (and counting) and an assortment of novellas, short stories, poetry, and non-fiction while homeschooling her three children. Join her for this practical, hands-on workshop on radical prioritization and creative organization, and leave with practical, immediately implementable techniques that will make you love more, create more, laugh more–and maybe even rest more.

This is an interactive workshop using the Zoom web conferencing platform. 

M. Jane Colette writes tragedy for those who like to laugh, comedy for the melancholy, and erotica for lovers who like their fantasies real. She believes rules and hearts were made to be broken—ditto the constraints of genres. Her novels include the erotic romances Tell Me, Consequences (of defensive adultery), the award-winning rom-com Cherry Pie Cure, and Text Me, Cupid, a (slightly dirty) love story for 21st century adults who don’t believe in love… but want it anyway. She is the curator of the YYC Queer Writers’ fabulous anthologies Screw Chocolate, Screw Chocolate 2, Queer Christmas in Cowtown, and A Queer Summer Night in Cowtown.

- Level: All Levels - Genre: All Genres View Course Details & Register

ONLINE The Dreaded Synopsis

Susan Forest
Tuesdays
2-4pm
August 4, 2020 (4 weeks)
Member Price: $120
Non-member Price: $160

Your novel is complete and you are ready to submit, but there is one gigantic elephant blocking your way: The synopsis. The synopsis is often the antithesis of good writing; told not shown, dry, and confusing. Come to this 4-week mini-course to workshop your synopsis through multiple drafts, and to hone it into multiple lengths for different submission purposes.

This is an interactive workshop using the Zoom web conferencing platform.

Susan Forest writes SF, fantasy and horror, and is an award-winning fiction editor for Laksa Media. Her novel, Bursts of Fire, came out in 2019, to be followed by Flights of Marigolds (2020). She has published over 25 short stories, contributes to When Words Collide, and has appeared at many international writing conferences.

- Level: All Levels View Course Details & Register

Adult Multi-Week Courses (Evening)

ONLINE The Craft of Character

Meghan Victoria
Thursdays
7-9:00pm MST
July 9, 2020 (6 Weeks)
Member Price: $180
Non-member Price: $240

“When writing a novel, a writer should create living people; people not characters. A character is a caricature.” – Ernest Hemingway

Compelling and complex characters are the secret sauce to every great story. They are the reason we return to the same books over and over – why we cry and laugh and then feel their loss so acutely when the final page is turned. But what makes a character unforgettable?  In this course students will become intimately acquainted with their protagonists, their villains, and their supporting cast. Get ready to dig into backstory, dialogue, motive, and – best of all – deep dark secrets and vulnerabilities. Come with an existing crew or create your characters as the weeks progress – either way, you will leave with a cast of living people and a solid understanding of what future characters need from you in order to come to life.

This is an interactive online class using the Zoom web platform.

Meghan Victoria writes in a variety of genres and her short fiction has been published by the Antigonish Review, Coffin Hop Press, and Morning Rain Publishing. Meghan has spent two years as part of the Banff Centre Residency Program and is finalizing edits for her first novel.

- Level: All Levels - Course Type: Fiction, Novel - Genre: Fiction - Event: Course View Course Details & Register

Adult One-Day Workshops

ONLINE Novel Building

Laura Swart
Sunday
10am-3pm
August 9, 2020
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $100

If you are a beginner novelist who has completed part or all of a first draft, this workshop is for you. You’ll send two scenes (2-3 pages each, double-spaced) to classmates and the instructor before the class begins, and we’ll try to determine what the scenes need: stronger characters, perhaps? More details in the setting, a tighter plotline, a stronger opening? Maybe your sentences are weak, or you need a stronger voice. After completing this class, you’ll apply the lessons you learned to other scenes in your story and create a superlative first novel.

This is an interactive workshop using the Zoom web conferencing platform.

Laura Swart enjoys writing literary fiction, essays, drama, and poetry. She has taught writing classes to adult learners for over thirty years, encouraging students to find and raise their writing voices. Laura is director of I-AM ESL, a virtual language school that uses story and song to teach the intricacies of English to refugees. Her degrees and research in education, philosophy, and theology have shaped her thinking, her teaching, and her writing.

 

- Course Type: Fiction - Genre: All Genres View Course Details & Register

Fall Feature Workshop w/ Anthony Doerr

Anthony Doerr
Saturday
10-3:30pm
November 14, 2020 (One Day)
Member Price: $300
Non-member Price: $325

 

For Writers

Breaking the “Pre-”  off the “-Dictable”

A writing workshop exploring habit and strangeness, with the goal of seeing our work—and the world—with new eyes.

We humans need habit: habit helps us cook dinner, feel safe, and find light switches in the dark. But as an old proverb puts it, “habits are cobwebs at first, cables at last.” How often do we rely on the habitual in our writing? In this four-hour workshop, we’ll try to investigate the formulaic and the familiar—from cliches at the sentence level to cliches at the structural level—and understand how we might better recognize, utilize, and resist the habitual in our novels, stories, essays, and poems. Do we want our work to be soporific, or do we want our work to wake our readers up to the exquisite miracles of being alive? As Ralph Waldo Emerson reminds us, “People wish to be settled; only as far as they are unsettled is there any hope for them.”

November 14, 2020| 10am-3:30pm

Officers Mess – Fort Calgary

750, 9th Ave SE, Calgary, AB

Lunch provided.

 

AWCS/WGA Members: $300

Non-Members: $325

 

 

- Level: All levels. - Event: Spring Feature Workshop View Course Details & Register

Summer Workshops

ONLINE The 5 Keys of Showing – Dialogue Key

Vivian Hansen
Tuesday
7-9pm
July 7, 2020
Member Price: $30
Non-member Price: $40

How does your character sound? Can you hear them now?

The tools for showing your narrative and not telling it seem elusive in your first drafts. In this five-part series, we will examine the ways that these tools animate and alter your work in a productive direction. Learn how to apply these keys to your fiction, creative nonfiction or poetry.

This class is part of the Five Keys of Showing Series. Register for 1 or register for all five and receive 20%. Use KEYS20 upon checkout.

- Level: All Levels - Course Type: Fiction, Poetry, Creative Nonfiction - Genre: All Genres - Event: Micro Workshop View Course Details & Register

ONLINE Stages of Psychological Change

Susan Forest
Tuesday
2-4pm
July 7, 2020
Member Price: $30.00
Non-member Price: $40.00

From Precontemplation (“not ready”), through Contemplation and Preparation to Action, Maintenance, and Termination, examine the stages of psychological change from the perspective of character arc. Bring a character (or more than one) from story you are planning, writing or revising, for whom you would like to create key scenes to illustrate their growth along one or more change dimensions.

This is an interactive workshop using the Zoom web conferencing platform.

Susan Forest writes SF, fantasy and horror, and is an award-winning fiction editor for Laksa Media. Her novel, Bursts of Fire, came out in 2019, to be followed by Flights of Marigolds (2020). She has published over 25 short stories, contributes to When Words Collide, and has appeared at many international writing conferences.

- Level: All Levels - Course Type: Fiction - Genre: All Genres View Course Details & Register

Learn the Japanese Language – Travel Basics

Emily Firmston and Jamie Yawney
Tuesdays
7-8 PM
July 7 - Aug 25 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $60
Non-member Price: $60

Ever wanted to go to Japan but were afraid the language barrier would be too tough to crack? The AWCS has you covered. From culture lessons and basic manners to reading, writing, and speaking Japanese, you’ll be able to use this information to spice up scenes set in Japan or even go there yourself (trust us, it’s great).

For anyone who wants to learn no matter their age. Taught by two Japanese language and culture enthusiasts.

- Level: Beginner - Course Type: Japanese Language View Course Details & Register

Technological Poetry: Poetry in the Age of Information

Em Williamson
Tuesday
1-2:30 PM
July 7 (1.5 hours)
Member Price: $25
Non-member Price: $33

Can predictive text write poetry? Can you write a poem from the results of just one Google search? Em Williamson’s workshop Technological Poetry teaches that yes you can, and that modern technology has so much more to offer in the poetry genre too.

For Teens and Adults online!

- Level: All levels - Course Type: Poetry Online View Course Details & Register

ONLINE Literary Devices: An Invitation to Explore

Laura Swart
Monday
2-4pm
July 13, 2020
Member Price: $30.00
Non-member Price: $40.00

Readers like to search out meanings; they like to ask questions and solve puzzles. In short, they like to think. Literary devices are nesting dolls, essentially—they invite readers to enter in and find new things. In this micro-workshop, we’ll examine several literary devices and incorporate them into our writing: alliteration, repetition, metaphor, motif, symbol, allusion, and others. Bring 1-2 pages of double-spaced writing to class, and in a workshop approach, we’ll add layers of meaning to your piece with well-placed literary devices. All levels of writers are welcome.

This is an interactive online class using the Zoom web platform.

Laura Swart enjoys writing literary fiction, essays, drama, and poetry. She has taught writing classes to adult learners for over thirty years, encouraging students to find and raise their writing voices. Laura is director of I-AM ESL, a virtual language school that uses story and song to teach the intricacies of English to refugees. Her degrees and research in education, philosophy, and theology have shaped her thinking, her teaching, and her writing.

 

- Level: All Levels View Course Details & Register

ONLINE The 5 Keys of Showing – Point of View Key

Vivian Hansen
Tuesday
7-9pm
July 14, 2020
Member Price: $30
Non-member Price: $40

What POV is the best choice for moving this story? First, Secord, or Third Person perspectives?

The tools for showing your narrative and not telling it seem elusive in your first drafts. In this five-part series, we will examine the ways that these tools animate and alter your work in a productive direction. Learn how to apply these keys to your fiction, creative nonfiction or poetry.

This class is part of the Five Keys of Showing Series. Register for 1 or register for all five and receive 20% off. Use KEYS20 upon checkout.

- Level: All Levels - Course Type: Fiction, Poetry, Creative Nonfiction - Genre: All Genres - Event: Micro Workshop View Course Details & Register

ONLINE The 5 Keys of Showing – Setting Key

Vivian Hansen
Tuesday
7-9pm
July 21, 2020
Member Price: $30
Non-member Price: $40

How does your setting uphold the conflict in the story?

The tools for showing your narrative and not telling it seem elusive in your first drafts. In this five-part series, we will examine the ways that these tools animate and alter your work in a productive direction. Learn how to apply these keys to your fiction, creative nonfiction or poetry.

This class is part of the Five Keys of Showing Series. Register for 1 or register for all five and receive 20% off. Use KEYS20 upon checkout.

- Level: All Levels - Course Type: Fiction, Poetry, Creative Nonfiction - Genre: All Genres - Event: Micro Workshop View Course Details & Register

ONLINE Wolf Pack Writing

Em Williamson
Wednesday
1-4pm
July 22, 2020
Member Price: $45
Non-member Price: $60

While the archetypical image of the writer might be an isolated creative working alone in a basement, writing doesn’t always have to be alone – and sometimes it works best in packs. This workshop will be centered around various ways of writing prose and poetry in a collaborative setting, including writing conversation poems, teaming up to create collaborative micro-fiction, and quite literally finishing each other’s sentences. If you’ve always wondered what writing collaboratively would be like but never had a chance to try it out, this is the workshop for you!

This is an interactive workshop using the Zoom web conferencing platform.

Em Williamson is a spoken word poet and writing instructor who believes that art is at its best when it’s shared – and when it’s strange. She got her start writing and performing slam poetry collaboratively, and since then has performed at open mic venues across the city, including several paid feature performances. But she’s found that writing and performing in groups is always the most exciting, and grants a unique perspective writing alone can’t quite seem to match.

- Level: All Levels - Genre: All Genres View Course Details & Register

ONLINE The 5 Keys of Showing – Tone Key

Vivian Hansen
Tuesday
7-9pm
July 28, 2020
Member Price: $30
Non-member Price: $40

What does your setting and dialogue have in common and how does tone evoke feelings and deploy emotive words with muscle?

The tools for showing your narrative and not telling it seem elusive in your first drafts. In this five-part series, we will examine the ways that these tools animate and alter your work in a productive direction. Learn how to apply these keys to your fiction, creative nonfiction or poetry.

This class is part of the Five Keys of Showing Series. Register for 1 or register for all five and receive 20% off. Use KEYS20 upon checkout.

- Level: All Levels - Course Type: Fiction, Poetry, Creative Nonfiction - Genre: All Genres - Event: Micro Workshop View Course Details & Register

ONLINE Buoyant Lit Mag Submissions

Samantha Jones
Friday
2-4:30pm
August 21, 2020
Member Price: $38
Non-member Price: $50

Float to the Top of the Slush Pile…

Have you always dreamed of seeing your work published in literary magazines alongside your favourite writers? Join me for Buoyant Submissions where we will discuss and develop submission packages to lit mags. Participants will leave the workshop with a personalized cover letter template, a short author bio, and the confidence to navigate the unique guidelines for submitting to literary magazines. This workshop is open to writers of all levels who are interested in submitting work to literary magazines. Content will be accessible to beginners and will be relevant to more experienced writers looking to fine-tune their submission strategy. If you have a piece that you would like to submit please bring it to the workshop, although this is not required to complete the exercises.

This is an interactive online class using the Zoom web platform.

Samantha Jones (she/her) is a Calgary-based poet of mixed European and African Canadian heritage. She is a lit mag enthusiast with poetry published or forthcoming in Blanket Sea, blueskiespoetry.ca, CV2, the Eunoia Review, Grain Magazine, New Forum, and Room Magazine. Her words also appear in March 2020: A COVID-19 Anthology published by the /tɛmz/ Review and 845 Press, and in Tap, Press, Read, an anthology of Calgary area writers curated and published by Loft on EIGHTH. Samantha holds a Certificate in Creative Writing from the University of Calgary and is currently a PhD Candidate in Geography at the same institution.

- Level: All Levels - Genre: All Genres View Course Details & Register

Youth Summer Online Clubs and Weekly Programs

Midnight Academy

Erin Emily Anne Vance
Wednesday Nights
8:30-10:00 PM
July 8 (7 weeks)
Member Price: $80
Non-member Price: $105

Dark things are afoot at midnight (or our closest approximation – after all Midnight is a state of mind). So crawl under your covers, grab your flashlight (or electronic device), and prepare to write and share stories of a world just beyond the veil with other teen writers.

Welcoming all grade 8-12  writers of any skill level.

- Level: Jr/Sr Highschool - Youth Programming: Summer online View Course Details & Register

D&D Summer – Adventurer’s Academy (G5 – 12)

Emily Firmston and Kim Firmston
Second and Fourth Saturday, June-August
6-9 PM
June 13 (6 meetings over three months)
Member Price: $100
Non-member Price: $130

A Dungeon and Dragons adventure like no other for players in Junior and Senior high school. No experience needed, grab your sword or your wand and come play online!

Adventurer’s Academy

Welcome to the Adventurer’s Academy, where young enterprising students will learn all they need to know about combat, magic, and survival in the great kingdom of Aegis. This great and historical academy trains students the old fashioned way, with plenty of hands-on experience. However, the old halls of the school hold truths that some perceptive students may pick up on, much to the concern of the rather watchful staff.

Grades 5-12 (Two Groups)

- Level: Grade 5-12 - Genre: Fantasy RPG - Youth Programming: D&D View Course Details & Register

Campfire Sing-along

Laurie Fuhr and Jess Tollestrup
Thursdays, July 2 -August 20
7-8 PM
July 2 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $10-$65
Non-member Price: $10-$65

Join Laurie Fuhr and Jess Tollestrup as they strum, sing, and clap songs for you and your friends to sing along with. So grab your s’mores and let’s have some online campfire fun on these warm summer nights.

BONUS! If you want to sing a song, share a tale, or show off a skill (keeping in mind that we have all ages of participants and keeping your performance to 5 minutes or under) contact us and we’ll put you on the performance list for the night. We’d love to see what you have to share! Just e-mail kfirmston@alexandrawriters.org

- Level: All Ages! - Youth Programming: Summer online View Course Details & Register

Novelmancer Summer Write In

Kim Firmston
Thursdays
8:30-10:00 PM
July 2 - Aug 18 (8 weeks)
Member Price: Free
Non-member Price: Free

Calling all young writers, (ages 25 and below) come and join us for some summer writing fun. Gather on our Discord server and work on your novel, comic script, screenplay, animation, short story, poetry, or whatever. We will be meeting every Thursday night July-August to support each other, make up names for characters, cities, and more, and generally support each other while having fun.

- Youth Programming: Summer online View Course Details & Register

Anime and Manga Club

Emily Firmston and Jamie Yawney
Fridays
11:30 AM - 12:30 PM
July 3 - Aug 21 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $65
Non-member Price: $85

Meet on the school roof at lunch hour and talk Anime and Manga. Each week you will be assigned anime and/or manga to watch or read, then use these mediums to learn more about Japan and discuss what we liked and didn’t like about the story.

All media will be available online through various hosts (usually free or first month free with sign up). We will be using a Zoom classroom for our meeting.

Grade 8 and up.

- Level: Grade 8+ - Youth Programming: Summer online View Course Details & Register

Art Club

Kat Davenport and Tom Moritz
Fridays
1-2 PM
July 3 - Aug 21 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $65
Non-member Price: $85

Learn art styles from pencil drawing to cartooning to character design and more. Meet with artists Kat and Tom as they introduce you to a world of art. Play games, do activities, and create art you never thought you would!

All grades!

- Level: all grades - Youth Programming: Youth Summer View Course Details & Register

Learn the Japanese Language – Travel Basics

Emily Firmston and Jamie Yawney
Tuesdays
7-8 PM
July 7 - Aug 25 (8 weeks)
Member Price: $60
Non-member Price: $60

Ever wanted to go to Japan but were afraid the language barrier would be too tough to crack? The AWCS has you covered. From culture lessons and basic manners to reading, writing, and speaking Japanese, you’ll be able to use this information to spice up scenes set in Japan or even go there yourself (trust us, it’s great).

For anyone who wants to learn no matter their age. Taught by two Japanese language and culture enthusiasts.

- Level: Beginner - Course Type: Japanese Language View Course Details & Register

Youth Summer Online - July

Journalism Camp

Priya Migneault
Wednesday-Thursday
1-2:30 PM
July 8-9 (2 days)
Member Price: $25
Non-member Price: $33

Are you looking for an engaging course to teach you how to write compelling non-fiction pieces with ease? Join AWC’s journalism camp and gain practical and easily applicable skills to write articles and reviews from Zed News YYC`s top journalist, Priya Migneault. If you are looking to enhance your skills and learn multiple ways to construct amazing media content, join us for our two-day camp.

Grades 6+, held in our Zoom classroom

- Level: Grades 6+ - Course Type: Journalism - Youth Programming: Summer online View Course Details & Register

Write a Rainbow

Anna Jakubowych
Monday-Thursday
1-2 PM
July 13-16 (4 days)
Member Price: $80
Non-member Price: $105

Pick a color and write about it! Whether its a literal story or an abstract creation, use colour for inspiration! Then we’ll create a webpage where we can “open” a color and see all your creations there.

All grades, all skill levels!

- Level: All grades and skill levels - Youth Programming: Summer onlne View Course Details & Register

Fairy-tales and Folklore Camp

Erin Vance
Monday-Thursday
1-2:30 PM
July 20-23 (four days)
Member Price: $80
Non-member Price: $105

Fall down a rabbit hole of stories with Erin Emily Anne Vance, expert in fairy-tales and folklore. Learn what they don’t tell you about fairies, all about witches, hares, and butter churning, what is folklore and why we study it, and some folklore behind Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings and more! And then… use this knowledge to inspire your own writing!

All Grades and writing abilities welcome!

- Level: All grades - Youth Programming: Summer online View Course Details & Register

The World Beyond

Kim Firmston
Monday - Thursday
1-2:30 PM
July 27-30 (Four days)
Member Price: $80
Non-member Price: $105

Race through genres, games, styles, and ways of creating stories in this exploration of places you never thought writing would take you. Write your way and every way in the world beyond.

For grades 4-7 (suggested), all skill levels, taught in our Zoom classroom

- Level: Grades 4-7 - Youth Programming: Summer online View Course Details & Register

Technological Poetry: Poetry in the Age of Information

Em Williamson
Tuesday
1-2:30 PM
July 7 (1.5 hours)
Member Price: $25
Non-member Price: $33

Can predictive text write poetry? Can you write a poem from the results of just one Google search? Em Williamson’s workshop Technological Poetry teaches that yes you can, and that modern technology has so much more to offer in the poetry genre too.

For Teens and Adults online!

- Level: All levels - Course Type: Poetry Online View Course Details & Register

Youth Summer Online - August

Radio Plays

Kim Firmston
Tuesday-Thursday
1-2:30 PM
August 4-6 (Three days)
Member Price: $60
Non-member Price: $80

Create your own old-timey radio plays and learn scriptwriting, sound effects, storytelling, and character-building when dialogue is the only thing you have. We will upload our final project to our camp page when we finish so you can show off to your friends and family!

All grades, all skill levels

- Level: All grades. All skill levels - Youth Programming: Summer online View Course Details & Register

Make a Movie

Kim Firmston
Monday-Tuesday
1-2:30 PM
August 10-11 (Two days)
Member Price: $40
Non-member Price: $50

They say it can’t be done, but we know it can! Write, plan, and film a movie all while continuing to be quarantined and then upload it to YouTube. See the creation from our test run with the Reality Is Optional kids’ writing club kids: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6t2Qku0DBcQ

All grades / All skill levels

- Level: All grades and skill levels - Youth Programming: Summer online View Course Details & Register

Let’s Get Questing!

Jamie Yawney
Wednesday-Thursday
1-2:30 PM
August 12-13 (Two days)
Member Price: $40
Non-member Price: $55

Have you ever wanted to send a motley cast of adventurers on a mystical quest packed with danger? Learn the ins and outs of writing an action-packed hero’s journey, explore and develop the driving motives of your heroes.

All grades, all skill levels

- Level: All grades, all skill levels - Youth Programming: Summer online View Course Details & Register

Camp Superbad Villain Smite!

Colin Martin
Monday - Tuesday
1-2:30 PM
August 17-18 (2 days)
Member Price: $40
Non-member Price: $55

Camp Superbad Villain Smite! Misunderstood. Social outcasts. Today’s villains aren’t really bad. Well, okay, they’re really bad, but not like bad, bad. Isn’t it time we got to hear from their side, instead of all those boring heroes; I mean, who wears a spandex onesie to work anyway!? In this camp, villains unite! We’ll tell their stories for a change, and perhaps people will understand that being bad can be pretty good.

For Jr/Sr High School Students

- Level: Jr/Sr High School - Youth Programming: Summer Online View Course Details & Register

Rock the Personal Response

Erin Vance
Wednesday-Thursday
1:2:30
August 19-20 (Two days)
Member Price: $40
Non-member Price: $55

For standardized exams in Alberta, students have to write a critical essay, complete a reading comprehension test, and write a personal response paper. While teachers spend a lot of time on critical essay writing and reading comprehension, there often isn’t a lot of time left to dedicate to the personal response, which, when done well can be both a huge grade boost AND a fun experience. In this camp, we will go through ALL of the possibilities of a personal response and how to write them (did you know you could write a monologue? A series of letters? A rant?!). We will also look at our strengths and weaknesses and explore how best to approach this section of the PAT or diploma exams. Get creative and get ready to rock your personal responses!

- Level: Jr/Sr High School - Youth Programming: Summer online View Course Details & Register

Youth Classes and Clubs - Sept-June

Young Journalist Program

Patti Edgar
First and Third Mondays of the month
6:30-8:30 PM
September 21, 2020 (Full-Year (Sept-June))
Member Price: $350
Non-member Price: $450

The Young Journalist Program is for youth aged 14-19 looking to enter the field of journalism.

EXPLORE! DIG! WRITE!

This elite program allows Young Journalists to meet professionals in many fields of journalism, enabling them to ask questions and get the real scoop on what journalism is today as well as in the future.

Young Journalists will create a print and/or online newspaper to give them practical experience in writing content, editing, organizing, and publishing content.

Using this content, the Young Journalists will create a portfolio that can be used to improve their chances of acceptance to the degree program of their choice.

See our Website http://www.zednewsyyc.weebly.com

MEET YOUR INSTRUCTOR – PATTI EDGAR

Patti Edgar teaches in Mount Royal University’s journalism department. She has worked as multimedia writer and editor at CBC Calgary, as well as a reporter at several newspapers, including the Winnipeg Free Press and Ottawa Citizen. Students have won awards for projects created in her classroom, including the Canadian Association of Journalists Student Award of Excellence

- Level: Jr/Sr high - Course Type: Journalism - Genre: Non-Fiction - Youth Programming: Class View Course Details & Register

Pen & Panel Comic Creation Class

Sebastien Ringuette
First and third Thursday
5 PM - 6:30 PM
Sept 5 - Join anytime (September - June)
Member Price: $200
Non-member Price: $260

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. September to June, join any time.

- Course Type: Comics - Youth Programming: Course View Course Details & Register

Reality Is Optional Writing Club

Kim Firmston
Monday (2nd and 4th Monday of the month)
5:00-6:30
Runs year round (Sept - June) Join anytime (10 months)
Member Price: $150
Non-member Price: $195

Reality Is Optional Writing Club (RIO) – Do you love to play? Do you love writing? Well, why not do both with every kind of genre and style under the sun?  Writing games, art, improv, friends, and creativity. Play with your words! All grades, all levels, twice a month. Join any time!

- Level: All Ages - Course Type: Writing through games - Youth Programming: Clubs View Course Details & Register

Novelmancers Novel Writing Club

Kim Firmston
2nd Thursday of the Month
5:00-6:30
Sept - June (10 months)
Member Price: $100
Non-member Price: $130

Novelmancers Novel Writing Club. If you’re serious about writing and want to get that novel (or any long work) done, join us and lighten the load. Do writing activities and join in on discussions to get your skill level up. Take part in critique circles (optional). Join our NaNoWriMo classroom and write in. Become the writer you want to be.

All Ages. Join anytime

- Level: All Ages - Course Type: Novel Writing - Youth Programming: Clubs View Course Details & Register

Rogue Poets Poetry Club

Em Williamson
First and Third Tuesday of the month
5:00-6:30
September 15 (September - June)
Member Price: $150
Non-member Price: $195

Rogue Poets Poetry Club – Explore what poetry can be, then take it past those limits. Join Coach Em Williamson on a journey to the outer edges of poetry and performance. Have the opportunity to perform on various stages with the Rogue Poets, hone your poetic craft, create collaborative work the likes of which you’ve never imagined, and even compete at the Can You Hear Me Now provincial school poetry slam. Jr/Sr High students only, please.

Registration starts again in July, however, poets are welcome to drop in for June. We take a break in July and August.

 

- Level: Jr/Sr High School - Genre: Poetry - Youth Programming: Clubs View Course Details & Register

Dungeons & Dragons Club

Adam, Anna, and Kim
Last Saturday of the month
6:00-9:00 PM
September 26 (JOIN ANY TIME!) (September - May)
Member Price: $150
Non-member Price: $195

2020-2021 Regular season D&D (Sept-May) Now open for Registrations

Dungeons & Dragons Club – Enjoy fantasy? Want to live it? Join us for this epic and wildly creative game. Battle monsters, solve puzzles, find treasure, and learn to work in a team while telling and experiencing your story together. No experience necessary.

Grades 4-12 (split by age into groups of 5-8 players)

We are not yet sure what level characters we will be playing – you will get an e-mail before we begin September 26.

*Please note: Meeting dates may change due to room availability.

- Level: Grade 5-12 - Course Type: Fantasy Role Playing - Youth Programming: Clubs View Course Details & Register

Tutoring

Writing Improvement for Adults

Instructor Varies
Monday-Saturday
Times Vary
Member Price: $155
Non-member Price: $185

NOW ONLINE!

All Ages / All Skill Levels / All Styles and Types

Tutoring is one on one and offered in one hour, four-class sessions created specifically to address your individual needs. It takes place at the AWCS located at: 1721 29 Ave SW #460, Calgary, AB. Tutoring runs Monday-Saturday (dependent on instructor availability).

Writing Improvement for Adults

Write well, write tight, and convey your ideas to others. One on One tutoring to help you improve your communication and literacy skills. Join one of our talented tutors to get you to the level you want to be. Contact Kim Firmston to book your tutoring session today. info@alexandrawriters.org

PLEASE NOTE OUR CANCELATION, ABSENCE, AND RESCHEDULING POLICY

All classes need to be canceled at least 24 hours in advance, via a phone call, text, or e-mail directly to the instructor, or the class is considered to have happened and will come off the total classes booked in the session. The instructor is under their own discretion whether to reschedule any canceled classes and is not obliged to do so. Instructors will never reschedule a class if that class isn’t canceled prior to the 24-hour deadline.

View Course Details & Register

Academic Post-Secondary Tutoring

Instructor Varies
Monday-Saturday
Times Vary
Member Price: $270
Non-member Price: $350

NOW ONLINE!

All Ages / All Skill Levels / All Styles and Types

Tutoring is one on one and offered in one hour, four-class sessions created specifically to address your individual needs. It takes place at the AWCS located at: 1721 29 Ave SW #460, Calgary, AB. Tutoring runs Monday-Saturday (dependent on instructor availability).

Academic Post-Secondary Tutoring

Struggling with academic writing? Need to learn to write academic papers or improve the quality of your university essays? Is English your second language? Having trouble knowing what to and how to cite? Are formatting and footnotes getting you down? AWCS has you covered. Qualified instructors will get you on track. Contact Kim Firmston to book your academic tutoring session. info@alexandrawriters.org

PLEASE NOTE OUR CANCELATION, ABSENCE, AND RESCHEDULING POLICY

All classes need to be canceled at least 24 hours in advance, via a phone call, text, or e-mail directly to the instructor, or the class is considered to have happened and will come off the total classes booked in the session. The instructor is under their own discretion whether to reschedule any canceled classes and is not obliged to do so. Instructors will never reschedule a class if that class isn’t canceled prior to the 24-hour deadline.

View Course Details & Register

Youth Tutoring

Instructor Varies
Monday-Saturday
Various times
(4 x 1hr Classes)
Member Price: $155
Non-member Price: $185

NOW ONLINE!

All Ages / All Skill Levels / All Styles and Types

Tutoring is one on one and offered in one hour, four-class sessions created specifically to address your individual needs. It takes place at the AWCS located at: 1721 29 Ave SW #460, Calgary, AB. Tutoring runs Monday-Saturday (dependent on instructor availability).

Youth Tutoring and Homework Help

Want to impress your teachers? Falling behind in Social Studies or English? Need some extra help on a specific project? Want to prepare for finals or PATs? Or do you just want to get better at writing in general? Our one on one tutoring is perfect for students looking for a boost in essays, book reports, journalism, creative writing, poetry, or anything writing-related. Contact Kim Firmston to book your youth tutoring session. info@alexandrawriters.org

PLEASE NOTE OUR CANCELATION, ABSENCE, AND RESCHEDULING POLICY

All classes need to be canceled at least 24 hours in advance, via a phone call, text, or e-mail directly to the instructor, or the class is considered to have happened and will come off the total classes booked in the session. The instructor is under their own discretion whether to reschedule any canceled classes and is not obliged to do so. Instructors will never reschedule a class if that class isn’t canceled prior to the 24-hour deadline.

View Course Details & Register

Special Events

Fall Feature In Conversation w/ Anthony Doerr

Anthony Doerr
Saturday
7pm
November 14, 2020 (One Day)
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $100

For Writers & Readers

In Conversation w/ Anthony Doerr

November 14, 2020 | 7pm

New Venue – TBD

 

AWCS/WGA Members: $75

Non-Members: $100

 

Join us for a mesmerizing evening with Anthony Doerr as he spills the details on the writing life, why stories are so important to our cultural landscape and the wonder and awe in the world around us. There will be an opportunity to ask questions.

Book signing to follow! Bring your copy of, or purchase at the event, any book written by Anthony Doerr.

- Level: All levels. Writers & Readers View Course Details & Register

Fall Feature Workshop - Anthony Doerr

Fall Feature In Conversation w/ Anthony Doerr

Anthony Doerr
Saturday
7pm
November 14, 2020 (One Day)
Member Price: $75
Non-member Price: $100

For Writers & Readers

In Conversation w/ Anthony Doerr

November 14, 2020 | 7pm

New Venue – TBD

 

AWCS/WGA Members: $75

Non-Members: $100

 

Join us for a mesmerizing evening with Anthony Doerr as he spills the details on the writing life, why stories are so important to our cultural landscape and the wonder and awe in the world around us. There will be an opportunity to ask questions.

Book signing to follow! Bring your copy of, or purchase at the event, any book written by Anthony Doerr.

- Level: All levels. Writers & Readers View Course Details & Register

Fall Feature Workshop w/ Anthony Doerr

Anthony Doerr
Saturday
10-3:30pm
November 14, 2020 (One Day)
Member Price: $300
Non-member Price: $325

 

For Writers

Breaking the “Pre-”  off the “-Dictable”

A writing workshop exploring habit and strangeness, with the goal of seeing our work—and the world—with new eyes.

We humans need habit: habit helps us cook dinner, feel safe, and find light switches in the dark. But as an old proverb puts it, “habits are cobwebs at first, cables at last.” How often do we rely on the habitual in our writing? In this four-hour workshop, we’ll try to investigate the formulaic and the familiar—from cliches at the sentence level to cliches at the structural level—and understand how we might better recognize, utilize, and resist the habitual in our novels, stories, essays, and poems. Do we want our work to be soporific, or do we want our work to wake our readers up to the exquisite miracles of being alive? As Ralph Waldo Emerson reminds us, “People wish to be settled; only as far as they are unsettled is there any hope for them.”

November 14, 2020| 10am-3:30pm

Officers Mess – Fort Calgary

750, 9th Ave SE, Calgary, AB

Lunch provided.

 

AWCS/WGA Members: $300

Non-Members: $325

 

 

- Level: All levels. - Event: Spring Feature Workshop View Course Details & Register

Gift Certificates

Gift Certificate

Member Price: varies
Non-member Price: varies

 

 

For the writer in your life.

Available in various denominations.

Gift certificates will be emailed.

For different denominations please email us.

View Course Details & Register

Until further notice all programs are provided online through the ZOOM web conferencing app.

 

View our Terms and Conditions