Class Catalog

Browse Fall & Winter Writing Classes!

Hugo House: Your best source for online writing classes in Seattle and around the world.

For more information on the schedule,  the various formats of our writing classes, and cancellation policies, check out our About page. Information about Scholarships can be found on its own new page. Or, go meet our talented instructors.

For help finding writing classes, or if you’ve registered for an online class but haven’t received a Zoom link, contact our registrar or call us at 206.322.7030.

All classes are in Pacific Time. All classes will take place on Zoom or our asynchronous learning platform, Wet Ink, through Winter quarter 2021.

If you would like to receive our quarterly catalogs in the mail, please contact us.

Winter Registration Dates

All registrations open at 10:30 am

$500+ Donor Registration (by phone only): November 20
Member Registration: December 1
General Registration: December 8

Early Bird Pricing November 30 through December 14:

  • $10 off classes that are one to three sessions
  • $20 off classes that are four to eight sessions
  • $30 off classes that are ten sessions or more

Early bird pricing will automatically apply at checkout. 

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Building the Habits to Get Your Book Done

All Levels | In this class, we’ll focus on the bedrock of all finished books: developing and sustaining the habits to get your project completed. We’ll explore the psychology and science behind building better writing habits, how to maintain a…

Course Type: 4 Sessions  |   Instructor: Joshua Marie Wilkinson

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Start Date: 01/20/2021 – 5:00 pm
This class is full

Joshua Marie Wilkinson

Joshua Marie Wilkinson is the author or editor of thirteen books. Born and raised in Seattle, he's on the English faculty at Seattle University.

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Poetry II

Poetry II will add to your growing skill set in a supportive workshop environment. We’ll learn by closely reading and responding to mentor texts as well as each other’s poems, and practice the art of revision so that you can…

Course Type: 8 Sessions  |   Instructor: Jeanine Walker

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Start Date: 01/20/2021 – 10:00 am
This class is full

Jeanine Walker

Jeanine Walker holds a Ph.D. in Creative Writing from the University of Houston. Her poetry collection, Diagram of Parts, is forthcoming from Groundhog Poetry Press. Her poems have appeared in Chattahoochee Review, New Ohio Review, Prairie Schooner, and elsewhere.

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Poetry III

In examining the language of contemporary poets, we learn new techniques to apply to our own work. Poetry III assumes a foundation of craft and elements of poetry; from here we’ll practice generative writing exercises to produce new poems. Students…

Course Type: 10 Sessions  |   Instructor: Ed Skoog

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Start Date: 01/21/2021 – 7:10 pm
This class is full

Ed Skoog

Ed Skoog is the author of four books of poems, most recently Travelers Leaving for the City (Copper Canyon Press, 2020). His poems have appeared in The New Yorker, Harper’s, The New Republic and elsewhere. He is a former writer-in-residence at Hugo House.

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Poems for a Cause

All Levels | Why give a speech at the protest rally when you could speak a poem, witness through lyric lines, testify with an urgent blessing, or teach an anthem all can sing together? Or maybe the poems you write…

Course Type: 1 Session  |   Instructor: Kim Stafford

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Start Date: 01/22/2021 – 10:00 am
This class is full

Kim Stafford

Kim Stafford is the author of a dozen books of poetry and prose, most recently Wild Honey, Tough Salt (Red Hen Press). In 2018 he was named Oregon's Poet Laureate by Governor Kate Brown. He teaches writing at Lewis & Clark College, at Fishtrap, and at the Sitka Center.

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Indigenous Writer’s Toolkit: Strategies for Funding Applications

This is a free event for Indigenous* writers in any literary form, including poets and prose writers, and in any genre. This course introduces business writing concepts to strengthen applications for fellowships, grants, and residencies. Core objectives include deciphering and…

Course Type: 3 Sessions  |   Instructor: D.A. Navoti

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Start Date: 01/23/2021 – 1:10 pm
This class is full

D.A. Navoti

D.A. Navoti (he/him/his) created Wellness-ish-ness, a blog for creative hot messes because he's a hell of a hot mess. Navoti also writes creative nonfiction and poetic prose. His work has appeared in Homology Lit, Spartan, Indian Country Today, Cloudthroat, and elsewhere.

He's a CityArtist 2020 recipient from the City of Seattle Office of Arts & Culture, and a former fellow at Hugo House & Jack Straw Cultural Center. He received residencies from The Seventh Wave & Gullkistan: Center for Creativity, and holds an M.A. in English from Northern Arizona University and a Master of Liberal Studies degree from Arizona State. He's also co-founder of Fight For Our Lives, a performance series advocating for communities targeted by divisive politics.

He grew up in Phoenix, AZ, and is a member of the Gila River Indian Community, a descendant of O'otham (Salt & Gila Rivers), Hopi, Zuni, and Yavapai-Apache tribes. Born Daniel Napelee Jr., D.A. are initials to honor his late father, and 'Navoti' honors his Hopi mother. D.A. lives and writes in Seattle, WA.

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Lyrical Texture: Generative Strategies for Poets

All Levels | The focus of this class is lyrical texture. This may include developing sonic patterns, tactile landscapes, and compelling juxtapositions. Students will generate new poems and incorporate strategies to revise existing work. Methods include generative experiments and prompts,…

Course Type: 2 Sessions  |   Instructor: Laura Da'

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Start Date: 01/24/2021 – 1:10 pm
2 seats available

Laura Da'

Laura Da’ is a poet and teacher. A lifetime resident of the Pacific Northwest, Da’ studied creative writing at the University of Washington and The Institute of American Indian Arts. Da’ is Eastern Shawnee. She is a recipient of fellowships from the Native Arts and Cultures Foundation, Artist Trust, Hugo House, and the Jack Straw Writers Program. Her first book, Tributaries, won the 2016 American Book Award. Her newest book is Instruments of the True Measure (University of Arizona Press, 2018).

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Astonishing Experiences

All Levels | The purpose of this workshop is to help participants find the right words and poetic techniques to relate an astonishing experience. What kind of astonishment the student has experienced will not be furnished; please arrive to this…

Course Type: 1 Session  |   Instructor: Ed Skoog

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Start Date: 01/25/2021 – 6:00 pm

Ed Skoog

Ed Skoog is the author of four books of poems, most recently Travelers Leaving for the City (Copper Canyon Press, 2020). His poems have appeared in The New Yorker, Harper’s, The New Republic and elsewhere. He is a former writer-in-residence at Hugo House.

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Writing the Surreal and the Sensual: A Redefinition

Intermediate | What does Sylvia Plath’s braid, an hourglass museum, and a lampshade of silvering hair have in common? These are images conjured by American poets writing today. Though traditionally a white male realm, surrealist poetics is currently undergoing an…

Course Type: 1 Session  |   Instructor: Susan Rich

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Start Date: 01/30/2021 – 1:10 pm
5 seats available

Susan Rich

Susan Rich is the author of four collections of poetry including Cloud Pharmacy, The Alchemist’s Kitchen, named a finalist for the Foreword Prize and the Washington State Book Award, Cures Include Travel, and The Cartographer’s Tongue, winner of the PEN USA Award for Poetry and the Peace Corps Writers Award. Along with Brian Turner and Jared Hawkley, she is editor of The Strangest of Theatres: Poets Writing Across Borders. She has received awards and fellowships from Artist Trust, CityArtists, 4Culture, The Times Literary Supplement of London, Peace Corps Writers and the Fulbright Foundation. Rich’s poems have appeared in the Harvard Review, New England Review, and the Southern Review.

She has worked as a staff person for Amnesty International, an electoral supervisor in Bosnia Herzegovina, and a human rights trainer in Gaza and the West Bank. Rich lived in the Republic of Niger, West Africa as a Peace Corps Volunteer, later moving to South Africa to teach at the University of Cape Town on a Fulbright Fellowship.

Rich’s international awards include the Times Literary Supplement Award, a residency at the Tyrone Guthrie Center in Ireland and a residency at Fundacion Valparaiso in Spain. Other poetry honors include an Artist Trust Fellowship, a 4 Culture Award, a Seattle CityArtist Project Award, a GAP Award, and participation in the Cuirt Literary Festival in Galway, Ireland.

Her poems have been published in the Antioch Review, Alaska Quarterly Review, Christian Science Monitor, Harvard Review, Gettysburg Review, New England Review, Northwest Review, Poetry International and The Southern Review. Anthologized poems and essays are included in Best Essays of the Northwest, Poets of the American West, Poem Home: An Anthology of Ars Poetica, I Go to the Ruined Place: Contemporary Poets in Defense of Human Rights, Poem Revised: 54 Poems, and The Working Poet: 75 Poetry Writing Exercises. Susan is an alumna of Hedgebrook, the Helen Whiteley Center and the Ucross Foundation. She serves on the boards of Crab Creek Review, Floating Bridge Press and Whit Press.

Educated at the University of Massachusetts, Harvard University, and the University of Oregon, Susan Rich lives in Seattle and teaches at Highline College where she runs the reading series, Highline Listens: Writers Read Their Work. She has two collections forthcoming: The Gallery of Postcards and Maps: New and Selected Poems (Salmon Press) and Blue Atlas (Red Hen Press).

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Poetry Inside Out: Words to Feel By

Introductory | 2020 was a year full of cancellations and complicated feelings. Whether you’re reevaluating your plans or still at sea, this course offers space to engage with your emotions. We will welcome the sentimental and the sincere, calling on…

Course Type: 2 Sessions  |   Instructor: Wryly McCutchen

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Start Date: 02/01/2021 – 5:00 pm

Wryly McCutchen

Wryly T. McCutchen is a poet, memoirist, and Seattle Area native. Their work has appeared in Wilde Magazine, Alive With Vigor, and Raven Chronicles. Their poetry collection My Ugly and Other Love Snarls is available from University of Hell Press.

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The Roots of Spoken Word

All Levels | We’ll walk the path of griots with sneakers on our feet, listening to the when, why, and how the art of storytelling found its way from keeping the memories of traditions alive, to the poetry slam stage,…

Course Type: 4 Sessions  |   Instructor: Naa Akua and Matt Gano

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Start Date: 02/03/2021 – 7:10 pm

Naa Akua and Matt Gano

Naa Akua is a 2019 Citizen University Poet-in-Residence, queer poet, emcee, and Gregory Award winning actor. They are a WITS writer-in-residence at Franklin High School and co-facilitator for Young Women Empowered Y-WE Lead mentoring program.

Matt Gano is a Seattle based poet, MC, and Teaching Artist currently writing, recording, and performing
as, “ENTENDRES.” He is author of “Suits for the Swarm,” a poetry collection from MoonPath Press, co-founder of the Seattle Youth Poet Laureate Program, and was the principle bricklayer/Program Director of Abbey Arts' NEXT STAGE program - a career training program
for emerging artists. He works as a writer-in-residence for Seattle Arts and Lectures: Writers in the Schools program, and as a guest teaching artist for the Skagit River Poetry Foundation.

Gano made waves nationally as a spoken
word poet and Slam champion in the early 2000’s while representing Seattle multiple years at the National Poetry Slam. With a voice rooted in and born of 90’s hiphop, Gano studied and built his craft in a rising era of the Seattle poetry and hiphop scene. Performing
and writing alongside poets, Anis Mojgani, Buddy Wakefield, Tara Hardy, Iyeoka Okoawo, and many others, he completed multiple tours across the United States as a featured artist performing poetry on some of the world’s most legendary stages.

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Market While You Write: Building an Audience Before You Publish Your Book (ASYNCHRONOUS)

Intermediate | Like it or not, marketing is part of a modern author’s job description, and it starts long before the book comes out. The good news: building an audience isn’t as hard, or uncomfortable, as it might sound. This…

Course Type: 4 Sessions  |   Instructor: Beth Jusino

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Start Date: 02/04/2021

Beth Jusino

Beth Jusino is a writer, editor, and publishing
consultant. A former literary agent
and marketing director, she’s the author
of the memoir Walking to the End of the
World (Mountaineers Books, 2018) and The
Author’s Guide to Marketing (Sharper Words
Press, 2014).

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Gaining Good Ground

All Levels | What is the role of place in poetry? How do poems invite us to attend? In this class, we’ll explore how poems help connect us to the places we live and call home, allowing us to more…

Course Type: 2 Sessions  |   Instructor: Tess Taylor

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Start Date: 02/06/2021 – 1:10 pm

Tess Taylor

Tess Taylor is a poet and the poetry critic for NPR’s All Things Considered and a columnist for CNN. Her most recent book is Rift Zone (Red Hen Press, 2020), which the Los Angeles Times called “brilliant.” In his
introduction to the collection, Ilya Kaminsky describes Taylor’s voice as “invaluable” and she is a “poet for our moment.” Her other books include Work & Days (Red
Hen Press, 2016), named one of the best poetry books of 2016 by The New York Times; The Forage House (Red Hen Press, 2013), a finalist
for the Believer Poetry Award which The San Francisco Chronicle called “stunning,” and the chapbook The
Misremembered World, which was selected by Eavan Boland for the Poetry
Society of America’s inaugural chapbook fellowship. In February 2020, Last West, an exciting book length commission from the Museum of
Modern Art, was published in conjunction with the MOMA show, Dorothea Lange: Words & Pictures. ” Her work explores California and the
American West, her life as a critic, and the intersection of poetry and journalism.

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The Image as Fuel for Writing (And Living)

All Levels | In this workshop, we’ll explore the art and craft of image-making. We’ll explore how developing a friendly relationship to image can help bring clarity and depth to our writing, as well as our everyday lives. We’ll begin…

Course Type: 1 Session  |   Instructor: Carrie Fountain

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Start Date: 02/06/2021 – 10:00 am

Carrie Fountain

Born and raised in Mesilla, New Mexico, where her family’s multicultural history is deeply rooted, poet and novelist Carrie Fountain is the author of three books of poetry: The Life (Penguin, 2021), Instant Winner (Penguin, 2014), and Burn Lake (Penguin, 2010), winner of the 2009 National Poetry Series Award; selected by Natasha Trethewey, she also awarded the book this praise: “With grace and a keen attention to the implications of history, the poems in Burn Lake grapple with what it means to be tied to a place, knowing that our own losses are not only what is taken from us, but also what we take from others. ‘A road is the crudest faith in things to come,’ Fountain writes, suggesting the palpable longing that winds through these poems.” Fountain’s YA novel I’m Not Missing (2018, Flatiron Books)—which explores issues of abandonment, first love, splintering friendship, and forging ones’ own identity—is hailed as “utterly captivating, suspenseful, character-rich gift of a book” by Naomi Shihab Nye, and was a Bustle Best YA Book of July 2018. Her first children’s book, The Poem Forest (Candlewick Press, 2020) tells the story of American poet W.S. Merwin and the palm forest he grew from scratch on the island of Maui. She is currently adapting I’m Not Missing for the screen, working on a second YA novel, and finishing a third book of poems.

She is the 2019 Texas State Poet Laureate.

Fountain’s poems often use narrative to explore the tug of the unseen on the visible fabric of our days. In the wise, accessible, deeply emotional poems of Instant Winner, she captures a contemporary longing for spiritual meaning that’s wary of prepackaged wisdom, while in the poems of Burn Lake, she explore issues of progress, history, violence, sexuality, and the self. “Writing poetry has always been, quite simply, about trying to make sense of the experience of being in the world,” she said in an interview on Austin’s NPR station; then speaking about being a woman writer and mother of two, she continued, “I believe it’s a really daring political act to write about our bodies and our experiences with children.”

About her family history, Fountain has said, “My grandfather’s side of our family has been in southern New Mexico since before it became part of the United States in the Gadsden Purchase. My grandmother on my father’s side was born in Mexico and came to the U.S. to escape the Mexican Revolution. My mother is Scottish and German and was raised in New York City. She met my father in the Haight in San Francisco during his one year living away from Mesilla, in 1969. After my father was called home to take over the bar, my mother told him to come get her and marry her. So he drove his VW bug back to California and picked her up and drove her back to Mesilla. My mother had lived in Queens and San Francisco. Anyone who’s driven I-10 from, say, Tucson to Las Cruces, can imagine what a shock she was in for. Mesilla didn’t have paved roads until I was eight years old. We lived in an adobe house with a pot-bellied stove for heat. As a kid, I spent nearly every hour I wasn’t in school outside. We’d fish for crawdads in the ditches that brought water from the Rio Grande to the crops and orchards of Mesilla. We were wild, roamed free, came home at sundown covered in dust.”

Her honors include the Marlboro Poetry Prize, Austin Library Foundation’s Award for Literary Excellence, a residency with the Frank Waters Foundation, and Swink magazine’s Award for Emerging Writers. She was inducted in 2019 into the Texas Institute of Letters. Her poems have appeared in Tin House, Poetry, and The New Yorker, among many others.

She is the host of KUT’s This Is Just to Say, a radio show and podcast where she has intimate conversations on the writing life with other poets and writers, including such luminaries as Mahogany L. Browne, Aimee Nezhukumatathil, Carmen Giménez Smith, Ellen Bass, Marie Howe, Erika Meitner, Naomi Shihab Nye, Roger Reeves, Maggie Smith, Sarah Ruhl, Ada Limón, and Jericho Brown.

Fountain teaches creative writing workshops across the country, and for a number of years has served as writer-in-residence at St. Edward’s University, where she mentors student writers and advises graduates interested in pursuing a career in writing. She earned a BA at New Mexico State University and an MFA at the James A. Michener Center for Writers at the University of Texas at Austin.

She lives in Austin, Texas with her husband, playwright and novelist Kirk Lynn, and their two children.

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Poems of Affirmation and Praise

All Levels | How do we, in times of loss, praise what’s left? In this workshop, we’ll explore poems that do just that: affirm humanity in the face of challenge and darkness. We’ll learn how these poems tick and talk…

Course Type: 1 Session  |   Instructor: Danusha Laméris

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Start Date: 02/07/2021 – 1:10 pm
This class is full

Danusha Laméris

Danusha Laméris’ first book, The Moons of August (Autumn House, 2014), was chosen by Naomi Shihab Nye as the winner of the Autumn House Press poetry prize. Some of her poems have been published in The Best American Poetry, The New York Times, The American Poetry Review, The Gettysburg Review, Ploughshares, and Tin House. She’s the author of Bonfire Opera, (University of Pittsburgh Press, Pitt Poetry Series, 2020), and the recipient of the 2020 Lucille Clifton Legacy Award. Danusha teaches poetry independently, and was the 2018-2020 Poet Laureate of Santa Cruz County, California.

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Sad Songs

All Levels | What is it about sad songs that make us listen over and over? What are the words that evoke our own sadness and make us feel seen? In this craft class, we’ll break down the structures, movements,…

Course Type: 1 Session  |   Instructor: Gabrielle Bates & Paulette Perhach

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Start Date: 02/13/2021 – 1:10 pm

Gabrielle Bates & Paulette Perhach

Gabrielle Bates is a poet from Birmingham, Alabama, currently living in Seattle, where she works for Open Books: A Poem Emporium and cohosts the podcast The Poet Salon. Her poems and poetry comics have appeared or are forthcoming in the New Yorker, Poetry, American Poetry Review, and the Best of the Net anthology, among other venues.

Paulette Perhach’s writing has been published in the New York Times, Elle, Vice, Slate, Inc., McSweeney’s Internet Tendency, Hobart, Vice, Yoga Journal, Cosmopolitan, Marie Claire, Glamour, and The Stranger. She’s worked for Health and Coastal Living magazines, as well as various newspapers. In 2013, Hugo House selected her as a Made at Hugo House Fellow.

She received the 2016 BlogHer Voices of the Year award for her essay, “A Story of a Fuck Off Fund,” which is anthologized in The Future is Feminist from Chronicle Books, along with work by Roxane Gay, Mindy Kaling, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Caitlin Moran, and Audre Lorde.

A returned Peace Corps Volunteer, she’s also won multiple Solas Awards for her travel writing.

In 2015 she created the Writer’s Welcome Kit, the online course sold through Hugo House, which includes a 55,000-word workbook, writer’s templates, and writer interviews. To date, more than 600 students have taken the course.

Her book, Welcome to the Writer's Life, was published by Sasquatch Books, part of the Penguin Random House publishing family, and was selected as one of Poets & Writers' Best Books for Writers.

She blogs about everything a writer needs to thrive – craft, personal finance, business skills, and joy – at WelcomeToTheWritersLife.com. The site also offers a newsletter with a year of daily writing prompts.

She keeps a casual podcast about creativity and money called Can We Talk About Money?

Learn more and read her work at PaulettePerhach.com.

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