There is a great temptation to airbrush ourselves on the page, and yet this leaves us not only less trustworthy on the page, but less interesting. In this evening nonfiction seminar, students will explore how the contradictions in their personalities—the gaps between dirty laundry and grace—are the most interesting space. Hosted by Sublette County Public Library in Pinedale, Wyoming.
Conference Presentation: The Other Side of Fire: Toward An Embodied Pedagogy for Trauma Writing (Iowa City, IA)
Writing can be healing. But writing can also re-traumatize, making it difficult to tell the stories that make us who we are. In this workshop at The Examined Life Conference in Iowa City, IA, participants will explore how what an embodied, trauma-sensitive pedagogy has to offer the creative writing workshop.
Examined Life Pre-Conference Workshop: The Telling Itself: Managing the Narrative Structures of Illness (Iowa City, IA)
In this Examined Life Conference one-day workshop at the Carver College of Medicine, we’ll use published illness writing as our launching pad for exploring how to successfully manage the chronology and scope of modern illness experiences on the page.
Whether you think it contributes to the breakdown of sexual morals or is just a tool for sexual release, everyone seems to have an opinion about pornography. But rarely do we see nonfiction writers engaging the subject through rich memoir or thoughtful essaying. In this weekend intensive, we’ll read some of the rare literary works on the subject, identifying the craft challenges and social barriers to writing about porn well, and generating lots of our own material.
Join Kati and other contributors to How We Speak To One Another: An Essay Daily Reader at Tucson Festival of Books to discuss the essay as a multifaceted literary genre. More information forthcoming.
"If you can't talk about something, you can't think about something," writer Eula Biss told Krista Tippett. Join me in late February, as alumni of my classes-- writers of sex, illness, and trauma-- read together for the first time on the patio at Tucson Hop Shop.
How do we make meaning from our sexual experiences? What do our personal stories have to offer the world, and what is the best way to share them? In this bawdy, smart, & introspective seven-week class, participants will craft a personal essay about an aspect of their sexual experience. Beyond simply telling the narrative of what happened, we will work to build strong connective tissue between individual sexual stories and the larger questions about sex with which our culture is grappling.
What is the best way to tell a given story? How can we press form to enlarge, deepen or propel the stories we tell? In this introductory prose course, we’ll read across the creative nonfiction spectrum, exploring how the same story might be told in different ways. Through in-class writing, lively conversation, and independent revision, participants in this class will excavate, chisel, and transform their own stories, dynamically seeking the form their personal narratives want to take. THIS CLASS IS CURRENTLY FULL. Join the waitlist through the University of Arizona Poetry Center.
How have our bodies been silenced--in medical offices, in our private lives, and on the page? And what might it look like to embrace our sexualities wholeheartedly? Join writer, sexologist, and Narrative Medicine professor Kati Standefer for a short reading and interactive conversation about sex positivity and negativity, how she teaches sex writing, and her work training medical students to respond to the stories patients tell about their bodies.
Drawing on the lessons of my ongoing work with community-level writers, I’ll explore how the problems of modern illness become the craft problems of illness narratives, and how I help students break out of these ruts by teaching chronology, scope, framing, and to widen the narrative lens. Together, we'll discuss ways to avoid student re-traumatization, and explore how a supportive community can help writers see past doctors and medical technology to identify the real hero of their illness narratives: themselves.