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.

VIEW CLASSES/REGISTER ONLINE HERE

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.

CLASS OFFERINGS

Here is the full roster of Spring 2017 classes offered at the JCC. Please go to the JCC Website to register. 

JCC CLASSES Winter/Spring 2018

 Charles Salzberg
 

Charles Salzberg

 ADVANCED NONFICTION

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 to hoke5@aol.comOnce approved call 646.505.5708 to register.

6 Mondays Feb 5 - April 16,  6:30-8:30 pm

6 Tuesdays Feb 6 - April 10, 6:30-8:30 pm 

6 Thursdays Feb 8 - April 26, 6:30-8:30 pm

Charles Salzberg is the author of more than twenty non-fiction books, including From Set Shot to Slam Dunk, and Soupy Sez: My Zany Life and Times, and has written for New York, Esquire, Redbook and The New York Times. He is also the author of the Shamus Award nominated Swann's Last Song, Swann Dives In, Swann's Lake of Despair, Swann's Way Out, 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 the New York Writers Workshop. 

[OFFERED AGAIN in Spring 2018 on Mondays and Thursdays (click for dates)]


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Hermine Meinhard

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.

  • Wed, Feb 07 - Wed, Mar 28
  • 07:00 PM - 09:00 PM
  • $320 members / $368 public

REGISTER HERE

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.

[OFFERED AGAIN in Spring 2018, Wed, May 16 - June 20]


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Yvonne Cassidy

CREATIVE WRITING

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!

  • Tue, Feb 06 - Tue, Mar 13
  • 06:30 PM - 08:30 PM
  • $240 members / $276 public

REGISTER HERE

Novelist Yvonne Cassidy moved to New York from her native Ireland in 2011. The author of three acclaimed novelsThe Other BoyWhat 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.

[OFFERED AGAIN in Spring 2018: Tues May 1 - Tues June 5]


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Laura Geringer Bass

FINDING YOUR STORY

  • Wed, Jan 31 - Wed, Mar 21
  • 06:30 PM - 09:00 PM
  • $300 members / $345 public

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.

Instructor's approval required prior to registering. Email a one- to three-page writing sample or synopsis of your novel or picture book in progress to lgbasswebsite@gmail.com. Once approved, call 646.505.5708 to register.

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.

[OFFERED AGAIN in Spring 2018, Wed May 2 - June 6]


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Karol Nielsen

CREATIVE NONFICTION

  • Tue, Jan 30 - Tue, Mar 20
  • 06:30 PM - 09:00 PM
  • $400 members / $460 public

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.

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 and was 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 Thomson Reuters and Jane's magazines as a staff writer and editor, New York Newsday and the Stamford Advocateop-ed page as a freelance writer, the New York Times as a stringer, and others. She works as a freelance manuscript editor and has served as senior editor, nonfiction editor, and contributing editor of Epiphany, an award-winning literary magazine. 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.

SOLD OUT

[OFFERED AGAIN in Spring 2018 Tues May 1 - Tues June 19]


 Roberta Allen

Roberta Allen

 

TWO NEW COURSES WITH ROBERTA ALLEN

 


SHORT PROMPTS FOR LONG PROSE: Three-hour intensive

Learn to use five-minute prompts to write full-length memoirs and novels.

  • Sun, Feb 04 - Sun, Feb 04
  • 02:00 PM - 05:00 PM
  • $60 members / $69 public

REGISTER 

MICRO STORIES: a six-session workshop

  • Wed, Feb 07 - Wed, Mar 14
  • 06:30 PM - 08:30 PM
  • $240 members / $276 public

In this workshop for beginning and experienced writers, you will learn to write micro stories, also known as flash or short shorts, in which the story is shaved down to its essence. Using a quick and simple method, you will tap into stories that move you--whether fiction or memoir--and learn to say more by saying less. You will learn how to shape your first drafts and revise them into finished works. The instructor will read and discuss published micro stories. Students will write in class, revise at home, and read aloud revisions to get constructive feedback and specific suggestions for improvement in an open, caring, and exciting environment.

REGISTER

Roberta Allen's collection of short and very short fiction, The Princess of Herself, was just published. She is the author of eight other books. Her two collections of short shorts, Certain People and The Traveling Woman, were both praised by the New York Times Book Review. She is also the author of the novel, The Dreaming Girl; the novella-in-shorts, The Daughter; and the travel memoir, Amazon Dream. She has published two writing workbooks, The Playful Way to Serious Writing and The Playful Way to Knowing Yourself and the first guide to writing very short stories, Fast Fiction. Over 300 of her short stories and very short stories have appeared in journals, such as Conjunctions, Guernica, Bomb, The Brooklyn Rail, Open City and in many anthologies, including the new Micro Fictionto come. She taught at The New School for eighteen years and at Columbia University. She is a member of New York Writers Workshop. Visit Roberta Allen's website:  www.robertaallen.com.


  Luis Francia

Luis Francia

STOP MAKING SENSE!

  • Sun, Mar 04 - Sun, Mar 04
  • 02:00 PM - 05:00 PM
  • $60 members / $69 public

STOP MAKING SENSE!

You don't need to write about something to write a poem. As the French poet Stèphane Mallarmé once said, poems are written with words, not ideas. This workshop uses Mallarmé's insight as its guiding principle, so participants can embark on a productive literary voyage distinct from that of prose. This workshop emphasizes lyricism and the spirit of play and an openness to technique distinct from narrative (think jazz). Participants will, for example, explore the sound of a word or phrase, and what this might suggest, without regard to meaning. Meaning will be arrived at rather than be predetermined. We will create nonsense that actually makes sense!

REGISTER

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 PoemsMuseum 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.


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SPECIAL WORKSHOP: MAKE YOUR OWN BOOK VIDEO TRAILER

  • Sun, Mar 11 -- 10:00 AM - 03:00 PM
  • $100 members / $110 public

Craig Serling & Charles Salzberg

It's a noisy universe out there and getting an idea up on its feet in today's digital age sometimes requires a "sizzle" -- or what's become known as a pitch deck. Whether you have just finished your first manuscript, published your 10th novel, or just have that outline of an idea, this course will help you conceive and execute a multimedia tool to help communicate your story to potential buyers, agents, and publishers. With graphics and/or video, participants will conceive and develop a concept, and learn the steps required to produce it. 

There will be a one hour lunch break from noon to 1 pm

REGISTER

Craig Serling is an award-winning producer, director and editor, who has worked for nearly every major television network (CBS, NBC, FOX) and cable outlet (Discovery Channel, Animal Planet) on some of television's most successful shows. He has been nominated for three primetime Emmy awards and is a former American Film Institute directing fellow. In film, Serling wrote and directed the award-winning feature "JAM" starring Jefferey Dean Morgan, Gina Torres, Jonathan Silverman and distributed by Showtime Networks.   Other notable credits include the PBS documentary "American Heroes" and "Amazing Race." Serling is currently at work on a new feature film to be shot in New York City. Visit his website at: www.craigeserling.com/

Charles Salzberg is the author of more than twenty non-fiction books, including From Set Shot to Slam Dunk, and Soupy Sez: My Zany Life and Times, and has written for New York, Esquire, Redbook and The New York Times. He is also the author of the Shamus Award nominated Swann's Last SongSwann Dives InSwann's Lake of DespairSwann's Way Out, 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 the New York Writers Workshop.

 

 

ARCHIVED CLASSES

Creative Writing

Yvonne Cassidy

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,

 and

 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, 

click here

 

Starting--and Finishing--Your Crime Novel

Tim O'Mara

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,

 Nasty Cutter

, 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, 

click here

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, 

click here

Selling Your Nonfiction Manuscript

LisaL. Kirchner

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, 

click here

 

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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 PoemsMuseum 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.


 

NEW: SHORT PROMPTS FOR LONG PROSE

  • Sun, Feb 04 - Sun, Feb 04
  • 02:00 PM - 05:00 PM
  • $60 members / $69 public

Roberta Allen
Learn to use five-minute prompts to write full-length memoirs and novels.

Roberta Allen's collection of short and very short fiction, The Princess of Herself, was just published. She is the author of eight other books. Her two collections of short shorts, Certain People and The Traveling Woman, were both praised by the New York Times Book Review. She is also the author of the novel, The Dreaming Girl; the novella-in-shorts, The Daughter; and the travel memoir, Amazon Dream. She has published two writing workbooks, The Playful Way to Serious Writing and The Playful Way to Knowing Yourself and the first guide to writing very short stories, Fast Fiction. Over 300 of her short stories and very short stories have appeared in journals, such as Conjunctions, Guernica, Bomb, The Brooklyn Rail, Open City and in many anthologies, including the new Micro Fictionto come. She taught at The New School for eighteen years and at Columbia University. She is a member of New York Writers Workshop. Visit Roberta Allen's website:  www.robertaallen.com.

REGISTER