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Class Catalog

Browse Winter & Spring Classes!

 

Hugo House: Your best source for writing classes in Seattle.

For more information on the schedule, scholarships, the various formats of our writing classes, and cancellation policies, check out our About page. Or, go meet our talented instructors.

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Spring Registration Dates

All registrations open at 10:30 am

$500+ donor Registration: March 4
Member Registration: March 5
General Registration: March 12


New! Early Bird Pricing March 4 through March 18:

  • $10 off one-session classes
  • $20 off classes that are two to six sessions
  • $35 off classes that are eight sessions or more

Early bird pricing will automatically apply at checkout. 

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The Writer’s Welcome Kit

Want to be a writer? Don’t waste time. The Writer’s Welcome Kit aims to save you 100 hours of work and worry as you go from wanting to be a writer to working to be a writer. It’s the first e-course…

Course Type: 6 Sessions  |   Instructor: The Writer's Welcome Kit

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The Writer's Welcome Kit

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Personal Coaching for the Writer’s Welcome Kit

If you need accountability and guidance while completing your Writer’s Welcome Kit and committing to the writing life, our coaching level class is for you. You’ll start with a 15-minute discussion of your goals with a professional writer, send in…

Course Type: 6 Sessions  |   Instructor: The Writer's Welcome Kit

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The Writer's Welcome Kit

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Memoir Four Ways

The dates for this class have been updated from the print catalog. What is it about the genre of memoir that we find so thrilling, so intriguing and yet, so oft scandalized and difficult to accept as the legitimate sister…

Course Type: 1 Session  |   Instructor: Sophia Shalmiyev

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Start Date: 03/22/2019 – 10:00:00
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Sophia Shalmiyev

Sophia Shalmiyev emigrated from Leningrad in 1990. She is an MFA graduate of Portland State University with a second master's degree in creative arts therapy from the School of Visual Arts. She lives in Portland with her two children. Mother Winter is her first book.

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Generative Revision: Beyond the Zero-Sum Game

Poets tend to treat revision as a process of renunciation. But is there another, kinder way? This workshop considers another, generative model of revision—one in which the original and revised poem can coexist, can inhabit alternative realities. We’ll work on…

Course Type: 1 Session  |   Instructor: Monica Youn

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Start Date: 03/25/2019 – 17:00:00

Monica Youn

Monica Youn is the author of Blackacre (Graywolf Press 2016), which won the William Carlos Williams Award, was a finalist for the National Book Critic Circle Award and the PEN Open Book Award, and was longlisted for the National Book Award. Her previous poetry collections are Ignatz (Four Way Books 2010), which was a finalist for the National Book Award, and Barter (Graywolf Press 2003). She has been awarded the Wallace Stegner Fellowship at Stanford University and the Witter Bynner Fellowship of the Library of Congress, as well as residencies at Civitella Ranieri, the Rockefeller Foundation – Bellagio, Yaddo, and MacDowell. A former lawyer and the daughter of Korean immigrants, she currently teaches at Princeton University and in the Columbia University and Sarah Lawrence MFA programs.

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Poetry and Memory

All Levels | Memory is specific, sensory and concrete—like the best writing. We will learn how our forgotten memories of simple things—from the taste of an ice-cream soda, to holding a kitten in our lap, to the sound of our…

Course Type: 1 Session  |   Instructor: Kim Dower & Erica Jong

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Start Date: 04/01/2019 – 10:00:00
3 seats available

Kim Dower & Erica Jong

Kim Dower, originally from New York City, received a BFA in Creative Writing from Emerson College, where she also taught creative writing. She has published three collections of poetry, all from Red Hen Press: Air Kissing on Mars, (2010) which was on the Poetry Foundation’s Contemporary Best Sellers list and described by the Los Angeles Times as, “sensual and evocative . . . seamlessly combining humor and heartache,” Slice of Moon, (2013) called, “unexpected and sublime,” by O magazine, and Last Train to the Missing Planet, (2016), “full of worldly, humorous insights into life as it is,” says Janet Fitch. Her fourth collection, Sunbathing on Tyrone Power’s Grave is out on April 1, 2019. Kim’s work has been nominated for two Pushcarts and has been featured in the Academy of American Poets, Poem-A-Day, Garrison Keillor's The Writer's Almanac, and Ted Kooser’s American Life in Poetry, as well as in Ploughshares, Barrow Street, Rattle, and Eclipse. Her poems are included in several anthologies. She teaches workshops in the B.A. Program of Antioch University Los Angeles as well as weekly workshops for the City of West Hollywood Library. Kim was City Poet Laureate of West Hollywood, California from October 2016 – October 2018. kimdowerpoet.com

Erica Jong is a celebrated poet, novelist & essayist with over 26 published books that have been influential all over the world. Her new book of poetry titled The World Began With Yes is due for publication in the U.S. on April 16th, 2019 by Red Hen Press. Erica’s most popular novel, Fear of Flying celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2013. Never out of print, it has sold over 35 million copies in 42 languages including Chinese and Arabic. Her awards include the Fernanda Pivano Award for Literature in Italy (named for the critic who introduced Ernest Hemingway, Allen Ginsberg, and Erica Jong to the Italian public); the Sigmund Freud Award in Italy; the Deauville Literary Award in France; the United Nations Award for Excellence in Literature; Poetry Magazine’s Bess Hokin Prize (also won by Sylvia Plath and W.S. Merwin). Erica’s poetry has appeared in publications worldwide, including The New Yorker, L.A. Times, The Paris Review, Haaretz, and many more. Erica lives in New York and Connecticut with her husband and two poodles. Her daughter, Molly Jong-Fast is also an amazing writer. You can find more information about Erica Jong at her website: ericajong.com. You can also follow Erica on twitter at @EricaJong and on facebook.

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My House But Not My House: Surrealist Poetry & the Imagination

What we love most about our dreams is also what can make them frightening: they’re of our making, but out of our control. Surrealism aims to access the parts of us that build the imaginative landscapes we visit in our…

Course Type: 1 Session  |   Instructor: Laura Eve Engel

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Start Date: 04/03/2019 – 6:00 PM

Laura Eve Engel

Laura Eve Engel is the author of Things That Go (Octopus Books). The recipient of fellowships from the Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center, the Wisconsin Institute for Creative Writing and the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation, her work can be found in The Awl, Best American Poetry, Boston Review, The Nation, PEN America, Tin House and elsewhere.

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What Now?

You wrote something. So now what? The most indispensable tool in writing is editing. Every draft is an opportunity to reimagine, experiment, and learn. In this workshop, we will closely read and consider our works-in-progress. There will be no prescriptions…

Course Type: 1 Session  |   Instructor: Morgan Parker

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Start Date: 04/04/2019 – 1:00 PM

Morgan Parker

Morgan Parker is the author of Other People’s Comfort Keeps Me Up At Night (Switchback Books 2015), selected by Eileen Myles for the 2013 Gatewood Prize. Her second collection, There Are More Beautiful Things Than Beyoncé, is forthcoming from Tin House Books in February 2017. Morgan received her Bachelors in Anthropology and Creative Writing from Columbia University and her MFA in Poetry from NYU. Her work has been featured in numerous publications, as well as anthologized in Why I Am Not A Painter (Argos Books), The BreakBeat Poets: New American Poetry in the Age of Hip-Hop, and Best American Poetry 2016. Winner of a 2016 Pushcart Prize and a Cave Canem graduate fellow, Morgan lives with her dog Braeburn in Brooklyn, NY. She works as an Editor for Little A and Day One. She also teaches creative writing and co-curates the Poets With Attitude (PWA) reading series with Tommy Pico. With poetAngel Nafis, she is The Other Black Girl Collective. She is a Sagittarius.

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Poetry I

The dates for this class have been updated from the print catalog. Whether a beginning poet or lover of the art, this class will introduce you to the beauty and complexity of writing and reading poetry, as well as the…

Course Type: 6 Sessions  |   Instructor: Sierra Nelson

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Start Date: 04/06/2019 – 1:00 PM
5 seats available

Sierra Nelson

Sierra Nelson is a poet, performer, and installation artist. Her books include forthcoming poetry collection The Lachrymose Report (Poetry Northwest Editions), lyrical choose-your-own-adventure I Take Back the Sponge Cake (Rose Metal Press), and chapbook In Case of Loss (Toadlily). Earning her MFA in Poetry from University of Washington (2002), Nelson is a MacDowell Colony Fellow, Carolyn Kizer Prize winner, Pushcart Prize nominee, and winner of the Carolyn Kizer Prize and Seattle Office of Arts & Culture's CityArtist Grant. She is also co-founder of literary performance groups The Typing Explosion and Vis-à-Vis Society, and president of Seattle's Cephalopod Appreciation Society. For more info: songsforsquid.tumblr.com

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Re-cognition and Re-vision: Pushing the Boundaries of Your Poems

Writers often draw a hard line between writing and revising. While the first is an act of joyful inspiration, the second is generally viewed as drudging perspiration. In this class, you?ll learn to infuse revision with the creative energy of…

Course Type: 1 Session  |   Instructor: Nickole Brown and Jessica Jacobs

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Start Date: 04/06/2019 – 1:00 PM

Nickole Brown and Jessica Jacobs

Nickole Brown is the author of Sister, first published in 2007 with a new edition reissued by Sibling Rivalry Press in 2018. Her second book, Fanny Says, came out from BOA Editions and won the Weatherford Award for Appalachian Poetry in 2015. The audiobook of that collection became available in 2017. She is the Editor for the Marie Alexander Poetry Series and teaches at the Sewanee School of Letters MFA Program, the Great Smokies Writing Program at UNCA, and the Hindman Settlement School. She lives with her wife, poet Jessica Jacobs, in Asheville, NC, where she volunteers at a four different animal sanctuaries. Currently, she’s at work on a bestiary of sorts about these animals, but it won’t consist of the kind of pastorals that always made her (and most of the working-class folks she knows) feel shut out of nature and the writing about it—these poems speak in a queer, Southern-trash-talking kind of way about nature beautiful, damaged, dangerous, and in desperate need of saving. A chapbook of these poems called To Those Who Were Our First Gods recently won the 2018 Rattle Chapbook Prize.

Jessica Jacobs is the author of Take Me with You, Wherever You’re Going, published by Four Way Books in March 2019. Her debut collection, Pelvis with Distance, a biography-in-poems of Georgia O'Keeffe, won the New Mexico Book Award in Poetry and was a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award. Her poetry, essays, and fiction have appeared in publications including Orion, New England Review, Guernica, and The Missouri Review. An avid long-distance runner, Jessica has worked as a rock climbing instructor, bartender, and professor, and serves as the Associate Editor of Beloit Poetry Journal. She lives in Asheville, North Carolina, with her wife, the poet Nickole Brown.

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The Words To Say It: Writing & Reading Poems on Illness,Trauma & Healing

All Levels | By focusing on the craft of writing, we can transform personal experience into art. Readings will include Rafael Campo, Nick Flynn, Gregory Orr, Jane Kenyon, Lucia Perillo, Susan Sontag, Lucille Clifton, Anatole Broyard, and Kevin Young, among…

Course Type: 6 Sessions  |   Instructor: Suzanne Edison

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Start Date: 04/17/2019 – 5:00 PM

Suzanne Edison

Suzanne Edison, MA, MFA is a poet, educator and former therapist. She has led workshops for parents and medical professionals on the effects of chronic illness on families at Seattle Children’s Hospital (SCH), NIH, and at national conferences for the Cure JM Foundation. She created a writing group for parents of kids with chronic illness at SCH, and the workshop “Teens Writing from the Heart of Illness & Healing” at Odessa Brown Children’s Clinic. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Lesley University in Cambridge, MA. Her recent chapbook, The Body Lives Its Undoing, was published in 2018 by The Benaroya Research Institute. It is an exploration in poetry and visual art about autoimmune diseases based on interviews with researchers, doctors, patients and caregivers.

Suzanne is the recipient of grants from Artist Trust, 4Culture of King County, Seattle Office of Arts and Culture and will be a Hedgebrook fellow in Fall of 2019.

Some of Suzanne’s work can be found in her first chapbook, The Moth Eaten World, and in the following journals and anthologies: Michigan Quarterly Review; Naugatuck River Review; JAMA; CMAJ; The Healing Art of Writing, Vol. I; The Examined Life Journal; Face to Face: Women Writers on Faith, Mysticism and Awakening. Her work can be read online in various other journals and on her website. www.seedison.com

Writers I Return To: Louise Gluck, Wislawa Szymborska, Rachel Zucker, Seamus Heaney, Galway Kinnell

Favorite Writing Advice: Read, write, read, write

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Poetry III

The purpose of the workshop is to build on Poetry I and II by developing your writing skills and your perspectives on poetry. We will workshop student poems, based on assignments that cover a wide range of techniques and themes….

Course Type: 10 Sessions  |   Instructor: Evelynn Yuen

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Start Date: 04/17/2019 – 7:10 PM

Evelynn Yuen

Eve Yuen received her MFA in poetry from Cornell University, where she also taught for three years. Her interests are in book length poems, philosophy of language, and the history of the avant-garde. She is at work on a book about light and a book about trans poetics. Her poems have appeared in The Seattle Review, TAB: The Journal of Poetry and Poetics, and other publications. She lives and writes in Seattle.

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Translating Poetry

All Levels | Writing poetry is itself a kind of translation—your observations are transformed into words and music. Nothing illuminates that process like reading multiple English translations of the same poem. Every difference between them makes the translator’s hand visible:…

Course Type: 8 Sessions  |   Instructor: Sharon Bryan

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Start Date: 04/18/2019 – 7:10 PM

Sharon Bryan

Sharon Bryan received her BA in Philosophy and an MA in Anthropology before she began to write poetry, and then received her MFA from the University of Iowa.

She has published four books of poems: Sharp Stars, Flying Blind, Objects of Affection, and Salt Air, which won The Governor’s Award from the State of Washington. She received the Isabella Gardner Award for Sharp Stars. Her other awards include two NEA Fellowships in Poetry, an Academy of American Poet’s Prize, the Discovery Award from The Nation, an Artist Trust Grant from the Washington State Arts Council, a Senior Fellowship to the Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center, a grant from the Utah Arts Council for the film collaboration Eureka, and a Fellowship in Poetry from the Tennessee Arts Commission, among others. She was Poet-in-Residence at The Frost Place in Franconia, New Hampshire.

She is also the editor of two collections: Where We Stand: Women Poets on Literary Tradition, and, with William Olsen, Planet on the Table: Poets on the Reading Life.

She taught at the University of Washington for seven years and at Memphis State University for six. Since then she has taught as a visiting poet in almost twenty writing programs around the country, including Dartmouth, the University of Houston, Western Michigan, Kalamazoo College, Ohio University, Wichita State, the University of Missouri at St. Louis, the University of North Carolina at Wilmington, San Diego State, and Fresno State. She has also been on the faculty of low-residency MFA Programs at Pacific Lutheran Universitiy, Warren Wilson, Pacific University, and Fairfield University.

She is currently on the faculty of the low-residency MFA in Creative Writing at Lesley University in Cambridge, Massachusetts. She lives in Seattle, Washington.

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Introduction to Creative Writing

Introductory | If you’ve never taken a creative writing class but are curious about the basics, this course is for you. Through reading, discussion, and exercises, we will investigate multiple genres—fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry—and students will leave with a…

Course Type: 8 Sessions  |   Instructor: Beth Slattery

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Start Date: 04/18/2019 – 7:10 PM

Beth Slattery

Beth Slattery moved to Seattle after eighteen years of teaching creative writing and literature at Indiana University East. Since her relocation, she has been writing and editing. Beth is currently working on a collection of personal essays about her mid-life marriage to a Zimbabwean, a move from the Midwest to the Pacific Northwest, and a reluctant acceptance of the call to adventure. Her most recent publications appear in Assay: A Journal of Nonfiction Studies and Southern Women’s Review. Beth’s recent editing work includes being a “beta” reader for an author with a multi-book publishing contract, content and copy editing of a personal essay collection, and providing comprehensive editing services on an edited academic volume that was later published by Oxford University Press. She has an M.A. in fiction writing from Miami University and an M.F.A. in creative nonfiction from the University of Southern Maine—Stonecoast.

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Poetry III Online

Online | This class will build upon craft learned in Poetry I and II. Students can expect close readings of mentor texts from a wide range of contemporary poets, advanced forms and prompts, discussions of poetic techniques and workshops of…

Course Type: 10 Sessions  |   Instructor: Quenton Baker

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Start Date: 04/19/2019

Quenton Baker

Quenton Baker is a poet and educator from Seattle. His current focus is the fact of blackness in American society. His work has appeared in Jubilat, Vinyl, Apogee, Pinwheel, Poetry Northwest, The James Franco Review, and Cura and in the anthologies Measure for Measure: An Anthology of Poetic Meters and It Was Written: Poetry Inspired by Hip-Hop. He has an MFA in Poetry from the University of Southern Maine and is a two-time Pushcart Prize nominee. He was a 2015-2016 Made at Hugo House fellow and is the recipient of a James W. Ray Venture Project award from Artist Trust. He is the author of This Glittering Republic (Willow Books, 2016).

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Writing Hybrid Forms

The nontraditional texts of writers Claudia Rankine and Maggie Nelson brought new readers to poetry. But are these works poetry? How do we define genre, showcase our critical observations, champion our individual lyric? In this class, we will blur the…

Course Type: 1 Session  |   Instructor: Shayla Lawson

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Start Date: 04/20/2019 – 10:00 AM
5 seats available

Shayla Lawson

Shayla Lawson is the author of three hybrid poetry collections—A Speed Education in Human Being, PANTONE, I Think I’m Ready to See Frank Ocean—and a forthcoming collection of essays from Harper Perennial. Her work has appeared in Guernica, ESPN, Tin House, and Salon. She is the recipient of fellowships from the MacDowell Colony, Yaddo Artist Colony, and serves as Director of Creative Writing at Amherst College.

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