The New York Writers Workshop faculty has been teaching writing classes at the Jewish Community Center in Manhattan since 2001. Classes run during Fall, Winter, and Spring/Summer terms.
Register by phone: 646-505-5708
Register in person: JCC Box Office, 334 Amsterdam Avenue at West 76th Street.
Mixed Level Classes: Most classes are appropriate for beginner and intermediate students, including writers who have participated in previous workshops but want to work on technique. Registration for these classes is on a first-come, first-served basis.
Advanced Level Classes: For experienced and previously published writers who want to refine their work for publication. Registration for advanced classes may require approval by the instructor and a writing sample.
Here is the full roster of Spring 2017 classes offered at the JCC. Please go to the JCC Websiteto register.
JCC CLASSES Spring 2017
This workshop is for students who are actively pursuing a non-fiction writing project, whether it be essays, a non-fiction book, memoir, or op-ed page pieces. Each week students share their work and it is critiqued by the rest of the class and the instructor. Students are usually allowed to submit two times during the semester.
Instructor's approval required prior to registration. Email a 3-5 page writing sample email@example.com. Once approved call 646.505.5708 to register.
May 1, 8, 15, 22, June 5, 12 (no classes May 29)
May 4, 11, 18, 25, June 8, 15 (no classes June 1)
Charles Salzberg is the author of more than 25 non-fiction books, and has written for GQ, New York magazine, The New York Times, Elle and other periodicals. He is also the author of four novels, including the Shamus Award Nominated Swann's Last Song, and Devil in the Hole, which was named one of the best crime novels of 2013 by Suspense magazine. He is a Founding Member of New York Writers Workshop.
Laura Zinn Fromm
WRITING OUR STORIES
Both fiction and creative nonfiction involve strong story lines, memorable characters, careful narration, and lively dialogue. We will migrate between the two genres. You can submit essays, short stories, or sections of memoirs and novels with the goal of turning them into publishable prose.
Instructor's approval required prior to registering. Email a 3-5 page writing sample to firstname.lastname@example.org. Once approved, call 646.505.5708 to register.
May 4, 11, 18, 25; June 8, 15 (no classes June 1)
Laura Zinn Fromm is the author of Sweet Survival: Tales of Cooking & Coping, available from Amazon and BN.com and published by Greenpoint Press. Fromm holds an MFA in fiction writing from Columbia University and teaches fiction and creative non-fiction through New York Writers Workshop. She has taught at Columbia and Montclair State University. A former editor at Business Week magazine, she is a winner of the Clarion Award and the Newspaper Guild’s Page One Award for Labor Reporting. Visit her at Laurazinnfromm.com and flawedmom.com.
- Thu, May 04 - Thu, Jun 08
- 06:30 PM - 09:00 PM
- $250 members / $288 public
Working on a novel or series of short stories? This workshop offers rigorous yet sensitive critique, every-other-week deadlines, and lively discussions about the elements of fiction. Work is read in advance of class for discussion.
Instructor's approval required prior to registration. Please send 5-10 pages to Maureen Brady at email@example.com. Once approved, call 646.505.5708 to register.
Maureen Brady, author of 7 books, including 3 novels and a collection of short stories, including Ginger's Fire and Folly, is a co-founder of New York Writers Workshop and teaches there as well as NYU and the Peripatetic Writing Workshop. Her stories have been published in Bellevue Literary Review, Sinister Wisdom, and many other literary magazines and anthologies. Her short story, "Basketball Fever," won the 2015 Saints and Sinners short story contest.
THE SOUL OF A POEM
Learn to draw on the elusive aspects of experience that give a poem depth and mystery. Using in-class exercises, objects, outside texts, and personal journals, connect to your deepest material, shaping it into finished works.
Six Wednesday evenings, May 3, 10, 17, and 24; June 7 and 14 (no classes May 31)
6:30 - 9:00 pm
Hermine Meinhard's book Bright Turquoise Umbrella, published by Tupelo Press, was a finalist for the Poetry Society of America's Norma Farber First Book Award. Her poems have appeared in American Letters & Commentary, Barrow Street, Drunken Boat, Verse Daily and many other publications. Meinhard is a faculty member of NYU's McGhee Division, and teaches workshops at the JCC Manhattan and NYPL through New York Writers Workshop. She has an MFA in poetry from Sarah Lawrence College.
Everyone has a book in them, so they say. Over the course of six weeks, Irish novelist Yvonne Cassidy will introduce you to the tools in a writer's toolbox to help you tell yours. Whether you're a complete beginner or have written before, this class will provide a fun and supportive environment where you can write that story you've always wanted!
Six Tuesday evenings: May 9, 16, 23, June 6, 13, 20 (no classes May 30)
6:30pm – 8:30pm
Novelist Yvonne Cassidy moved to New York from her native Ireland in 2011. The author of three acclaimed novelsThe Other Boy, What Might Have Been Me and How Many Letters Are in Goodbye? Yvonne has been widely published in Europe and will be published in the US in March 2016. Yvonne has taught fiction extensively both in Ireland and the US for organizations including The Irish Times, New York Public Library, The Irish Arts Center, Andrew Glover Youth Program and Holy Apostles Soup Kitchen where she currently heads up the creative writing program for homeless and other marginalized writers. Working with new writers to help them find and develop their writing voice is something Yvonne is passionate about and she also works one to one in a mentoring capacity as a writing coach. Yvonne is a member of New York Writers Workshop and has taken part in many writing festivals and events in Ireland and the US. She is currently working on her fourth novel. For latest information on readings and book events visit: http://www.yvonnecassidy.com or follow her on Twitter @YvonneCassidyNY. She is currently working on her fourth novel.
Laura Geringer Bass
NEW: FICTION FOR CHILDREN AND YOUNG ADULTS
- Oct 18, 2017-Nov 29, 2017.(NO CLASS NOV. 22)
- Time: 6:30pm to 9:00 pm
- $300 members / $345 public
This Fall I’ll be offering a series of 6 writing workshops sponsored by New York Writer’s Workshop at the JCC, 334 Amsterdam Avenue on Wednesday evenings: Every Wednesday from Oct 18, 2017-Nov 29, 2017. Time: 6:30pm to 9:00 pm (NO CLASS NOV. 22). If you have a story to tell whether that story is a children's picture book, a middle-grade or YA novel, a short story, a memoir, or a piece of flash fiction, this workshop will help you discover the heart of your tale and the narrative structure best suited to your voice and intention. In a supportive environment, participants will share their texts with their fellow writers and with the instructor. Detailed individual critiques, line edits and notes will be offered along with class discussion, prompts and published examples of fine storytelling. Email a one- to three-page writing sample or synopsis of your novel or picture book in progress to firstname.lastname@example.org. Once approved, please call the JCC at 646.505.5708 to register.
Laura Geringer Bass is the author of 20 books for children and young adults including the bestselling A Three Hat Day, an ALA Notable Book illustrated by Arnold Lobel, a Top Ten featured selection on LeVar Burton's Reading Rainbow. Her YA fantasy, Sign of the Qin, an ALA Best Book, was shortlisted for the Printz award. Myth Men, her popular series of graphic novels, was adapted by CBS as an animated TV show. She has worked with numerous publishing houses and entertainment studios including HarperCollins, Simon and Schuster, Scholastic, Houghton Mifflin, Hyperion/Disney, Dreamworks, Fox, and CBS. Laura Geringer Books, an award-winning imprint of HarperCollins, sold over fifty million books worldwide, including the If You Give a Mouse a Cookie franchise, and modern day classics by William Joyce, Brian Selznick and others. Laura has discovered and collaborated with some of the most celebrated authors and artists in the field of children's books. She enjoys helping new and veteran writers with their stories. She is a member of New York Writers Workshop. Her new novel, THE GIRL WITH MORE THAN ONE HEART is due out from Abrams in Spring 2018.
NEW: CREATIVE NONFICTION
Are you interested in writing a short-form or book-length memoir, essay collection, or creative nonfiction narrative but need to develop the focus and direction necessary to do so? Easy-to-follow lectures teach the essential elements of the storyteller's craft: structure, characterization, plot, description, dialogue, point of view, style, and voice. A series of creative and inspiring in-class exercises deepens students' understanding of the personal narrative and builds confidence. The workshop also considers revision, and publishing in both print and online formats.
May 2, 9, 16, 23, June 6,13 (no classes May 30)
Karol Nielsen worked as a journalist before becoming an author, editor, and writing instructor. Her memoir, Black Elephants (Bison Books, 2011), was selected as a New and Noteworthy Book by Poets & Writers in 2011 and shortlisted for the William Saroyan International Prize for Writing in nonfiction in 2012. Excerpts from her memoir were honored as Notable Essays in The Best American Essays in 2010 and 2005. Her poetry chapbook, This Woman I Thought I'd Be (Finishing Line Press, 2012), includes poems from her full collection, selected as a finalist for the Colorado Prize for Poetry in 2007. She has contributed essays and poems to The Moment: Wild, Poignant, Life-changing Stories from 125 Writers and Artists Famous and Obscure (Harper Perennial, 2012), Ink Stained (Ink Stained Press, 2013), and many publications, including Epiphany, Guernica, Lumina, North Dakota Quarterly, Old Red Kimono, Permafrost, riverSedge, Smith, Used Furniture Review, Women's Voices for Change, and Woodstock Poetry Society. As a journalist, she covered Latin America, the Middle East, New York City, and other beats, contributing to Jane's and Thompson Reuters' magazines as a a staff writer and editor, New York Newsday and the Stamford Advocate op-ed page as a freelance writer, the New York Times as a stringer, and others. She has served as senior editor, nonfiction editor, and contributing editor of Epiphany, an award-winning literary magazine, and now edits an online magazine, 140 Max. She has a B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania and an M.S. from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. She teaches writing workshops at New York University and New York Writers Workshop.
ARCHIVED 2015 CLASSES
Everyone has a book in them, so they say. Over the course of six weeks, Irish novelist Yvonne Cassidy will introduce you to the tools in a writer's toolbox to help you start yours. Whether you're a complete beginner or have written before, this class will provide a fun and supportive environment where you can write that story you've always wanted to!
Novelist Yvonne Cassidy is the author of three acclaimed novels,
The Other Boy, What Might Have Been Me,
How Many Letters Are in Goodbye?
Yvonne has been widely published in Europe and was published in the US in March 2016.
6 Tuesdays, Apr 5-May 10, 6:30-8:30 pm, $240/$276
For more info and to register,
Starting--and Finishing--Your Crime Novel
The hardest part of writing a crime novel is getting started. The second hardest part is finishing. Using published models, in-class exercises, and student-written material, you'll develop the tools you need to get your hero--and bad guy--from page one to the end of your novel.
Tim O'Mara, a member of New York Writers Workshop, is the Barry-nominated author of the Raymond Donne mystery series set in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. His fourth Raymond Donne novel,
, is scheduled to be published in fall of 2016 by Severn House.
8 Wednesdays, Apr 6-May 25, 7-9 pm, $320/$368
For more info and to register,
The Journey of a Story
Manreet Sodhi Someshwar
Do you have a story idea but can't seem to progress it? Do you need a scaffolding on which to flesh out your narrative? This workshop will take participants through Joseph Campbell's iconic concept of "Monomyth" and, through illustrations and in-class exercises, on a 12-step hero's journey to construct a compelling narrative arc.
Manreet Sodhi Someshwar trained as an engineer, graduated from the Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta, and worked in marketing, advertising and consulting before writing snuck up on her. An award-winning writer and copywriter, she has published four novels.
8 Wednesdays, Apr 20-Jun 8, 6:30-9 pm, $400/$460
For more info and to register,
Selling Your Nonfiction Manuscript
You've got an idea for a book, but to get to a publisher, you're going to need an agent. Your book proposal is the marketing document that packages your work to sell to an agent, who will turn it aroundand sell it to a publisher. In this session, you'll learn the basics of what's needed in a book proposal, and how that will help you sell your book.
Lisa L. Kirchner is the author of the critically-acclaimed, Hello American Lady Creature: What I Learned as a Woman in Qatar (Greenpoint Press, 2014). She is also the creator of the highly popular workshop, "Yoga for Getting Over It," which has toured throughout the U.S.A.
Sun, May 1, 2:30-5:30 pm, $60/$69
For more info and to register,
Luis H. Francia
NEW: CREATIVE NONFICTION INTENSIVE: THE USEFULNESS OF RABBIT HOLES
- Sun, Nov 06 - Sun, Nov 06
- 02:00 PM - 05:00 PM; $60 members / $69 public
Marcel Proust's molar's meeting of the madeleine is arguably one of the most famous eureka moments in Western literature. Who would have thought an itty-bitty sponge cake would have led to the profoundly monumental In Search of Lost Time? It was Proust’s equivalent of Lewis Carroll's rabbit hole, allowing him entry into a world he thought he had forgotten. Do you have an object, a person, or a place that could be a rabbit hole? Through examples, printed materials, and discussions, this workshop will show you how to mine that rabbit hole for a deeper understanding of your own life or someone else's.
Manila-born Luis H. Francia is a poet, nonfiction writer, and playwright. His latest volume of poetry is Tattered Boat, released in 2014. Previous collections include The Arctic Archipelago and Other Poems, Museum of Absences, and The Beauty of Ghosts. His poems have been translated into several languages. He has read at numerous literary festivals and most recently at the XI International Festival of Poetry (2015) held annually in Granada, Nicaragua. A collection of his most recent nonfiction, RE: Recollections, Reviews, Reflections, was released the summer of 2015. In 2002, he won both the PEN Open Book and the Asian American Writers literary awards. He is in the Library of America’s Becoming Americans: Four Centuries of Immigrant Writing. His full-length play, The Strange Case of Citizen de la Cruz, had its world premiere in San Francisco in 2012. He teaches at New York University and Hunter College. He has also taught at the City University of Hong Kong and has conducted workshops at, among other places, the St. Marks Poetry Project, the Asian American Writers Workshop, Curare in Mexico City, and St. Louis University in Baguio City.