Fiction First Aid – Private Consultations

This Friday, join us for private consultations: Fiction First Aid
August 28, 2020, between 10 am and 3 p.m (Pacific)

Private 15-Minute Appointments     $25

First-come first-served: appointments are limited.

Quick fifteen-minute consultations will be offered on Zoom with some of our finest writer-teachers, including Leland Cheuk, Janet Fitch, Glen David Gold,  Vanessa Hua, Michael Jaime-Becerra and Victoria Patterson. Come with a question. Or come with a page! Having a thorny problem with a story? Worried about the end of your novel? Do you have issues about the writing life? This is the place to get fresh insight. The focus of your session is up to you.

Sign up for a consultation today. You will be paired with one of these generous and talented writer-teachers. (You may request your top two choices of staff member, subject to availability. ) If there is a time of day (between 10 AM – 3 PM Pacific) that doesn’t work for you, please let us know.

Come with a question: Issues about dialogue, prose style, characterization? Come to the session prepared with a question or more than one! The time is yours.

Or come with a page: Need help with dialogue or prose style? Submit one page, double spaced (limit 250 words), and a staff member will respond to what’s on the page and beyond.

To read a bio, click on the image below, or view them all as a list.

Sign Ups open close 6:00 PM on Thursday, August 27. (Pacific)


Once you register, we will be in touch with your appointment details.

Please make sure you’ve downloaded and installed the most recent version of Zoom and have good audio and video available.

(Cancellations for full refunds, to be considered, must be requested before 6 pm on Thursday, July 27.)

*Thanks to Sharon Olds who originally coined this term for the Poetry Workshop’s “Poem First Aid.”


The Newest OGQ is Here!

The third issue of OGQ: Omnium Gatherum Quarterly, the new quarterly online magazine from the Community of Writers, is here.

In this issue, we present an essay from one of our Community’s legends, the much-esteemed late novelist and journalist Robert Stone. It’s an excerpt from a just-released collection of his nonfiction. Longtime member Molly Fisk shares two poems, one each from two anthologies she’s featured in, one of which she edited. Leland Cheuk makes us all smarter and less America-centric with a journal of his recent internationlist reading. And, finally, we feature two gorgeous fictions from recent participants on the way up. Lyndsey Ellis‘s short story is a musically-structured experiment in association and observation by a mortuary technician. Her novel arrives next year. Elison Alcovendaz offers a poignant story of quotidian loss and emotional discovery.  

We’re also pleased to announce the inaugural episode of Conversations from the Virtual Valley, our new series featuring author interviews, readings and panels.  Our first features Michelle Latiolais in conversation with Ryan Ridge

Conversations from the Virtual Valley is hosted by Andrew Tonkovich and produced by Laura Howard

OGQ Issue 3

To get the next issue sent directly to your inbox, subscribe today.


Quarterly Roundup of New Alumni Books

Books published by Alumni and Staff Authors in April – June, 2020

Congratulations to these Community of Writers Alums and staff members who have published books during the second quarter of 2020!

We are thrilled to share their success with you. You can explore these books by clicking the book cover images below.

Visit our Omnium Gatherum to explore all the recent alumni news.




Memoir Workshop Public Events in the Virtual Valley

Join Us for the Memoir Workshop Week with Virtual Panels and Readings!

Please join us for the Public Events at the Community of Writers
during Memoir Week in the Virtual Valley.

Events are on the Zoom platform.


Monday, 8/3, 4:00 PM (Pacific): “Effective Strategies for Memoir & Nonfiction,” featuring:
Debra Gwartney • Elizabeth Rosner • Grace Talusan
moderated by Sands Hall

Tuesday, 8/4, 4:00 PM (Pacific): “Who Am I This Time? Revisioning Memoir,” featuring:
Alex Espinoza • Christine Hemp • Sands Hall • Amy Tan
moderated by Debra Gwartney


Ticket reservations will close one hour before the event. Reserve early.


Our Memoir staff talk about and read from their memoirs:

Tuesday, 8/4, 5:30 PM (Pacific):
Debra Gwartney • Sands Hall •  Grace Talusan

Thursday 8/6, 5:30 PM (Pacific):
Alex Espinoza • Christine Hemp • Elizabeth Rosner


Ticket reservations will close one hour before the event. Reserve early.