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Class Catalog

Browse Summer Writing Classes!

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

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.

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. Some summer writing classes may be held in person if stay-at-home directives are lifted and gatherings are again permitted. Remote (Zoom) access to all classes will continue, however, for anyone who cannot or prefers not to attend in person. If a class has (ZOOM) in the title, it will remain on Zoom regardless of stay-at-home directives.

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


Summer Registration Dates

All registrations open at 10:30 am

$500+ Donor Registration (by phone only): May 18
Member Registration: May 19
General Registration: May 26


Early Bird Pricing May 18 through June 1:

  • $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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Altering the Story: A Short Fiction Workshop (ZOOM)

This class will take place via video-conferencing (Zoom), Pacific Time. Introductory/Intermediate | You’re familiar with the basic elements of fiction, but what can you do to reconfigure, reinvigorate, or reframe them? In this course, we’ll read and discuss model texts…

Course Type: 6 Sessions  |   Instructor: Kirsten Sundberg Lunstrum

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Start Date: 07/16/2020 – 5:00 pm
This class is full

Kirsten Sundberg Lunstrum

Kirsten Sundberg Lunstrum is the author of two books of short fiction-- This Life She's Chosen and Swimming With Strangers (both published by Chronicle Books). Her short stories and essays have been published widely in journals, and she has been the recipient of a PEN/O. Henry Prize and a MacDowell Colony Fellowship. She taught creative writing at Purchase College, SUNY from 2008-2012, and now teaches as an adjunct faculty member at several schools in the Seattle area.

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Finding Your Story

This class will take place via video-conferencing (Zoom), Pacific Time. Introductory/Intermediate | Many writers experience a longing to write about their own lives but little idea of where to begin, of where to dig to unearth the stories you know…

Course Type: 1 Session  |   Instructor: Theo Nestor

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Start Date: 07/16/2020 – 5:00 pm
This class is full

Theo Nestor

Theo Pauline Nestor is the author of Writing Is My Drink: A Writer’s Story of Finding Her Voice (And a Guide to How You Can Too) (Simon & Schuster, 2013) and How to Sleep Alone in a King-Size Bed: A Memoir of Starting Over (Crown, 2008). Nestor has taught the memoir certificate course for the University of Washington’s Professional & Continuing Education program since 2006.

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The Geography of Home (ZOOM)

This class will take place via video-conferencing (Zoom), Pacific Time. All Levels | This class will illuminate the landscapes and dwellings we inhabit and how they inform our personal narratives. Whether you’re from another country, have lived in one house…

Course Type: 2 Sessions  |   Instructor: Christine Hemp

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Start Date: 07/18/2020 – 10:00 am

Christine Hemp

Christine Hemp has aired her essays and poems on NPR’s Morning Edition, and a poem of hers has traveled billions of miles on a NASA mission to monitor the pre-natal activity of stars. She is a speaker for the Humanities Washington Speakers Bureau and TEDx. Hemp is the author of That Fall (poems) and Wild Ride Home: Love, Loss and a Little White Horse, A Family Memoir. Her work has appeared recently in the New York Times, Psychology Today, and Tupelo Quarterly.

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Omissions Are Not Accidents

This class will take place via video-conferencing (Zoom), Pacific Time. All Levels | This three-hour intensive workshop will be focused on revision techniques. Come prepared with several poems that need work. We’re going to help you consider their strengths and…

Course Type: 1 Session  |   Instructor: Erin Malone & Kary Wayson

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Start Date: 07/18/2020 – 1:10 pm
This class is full

Erin Malone & Kary Wayson

Erin Malone was raised in Nebraska and Colorado. She’s the author of Hover (Tebot Bach Press), and a chapbook, What Sound Does It Make (Concrete Wolf). Her recent work has received fellowship support from Kimmel-Harding Nelson, The Anderson Center, Ucross, and Jentel, and has been included in journals such as FIELD, New Ohio Review, Radar Poetry, and Ruminate. She lives in Seattle and from 2016-2020 served as Editor of Poetry Northwest.

Kary Wayson is the author of two books—American Husband (Ohio State University Press) and The Slip (Burnside Review)—as well as a chapbook, Dog & Me (LitRag Press). Her poems have appeared in many places, including The Nation, Narrative, FIELD, The Rumpus, and the Best American Poetry and Pushcart Prize anthologies. A two-time Stranger "Genius Award" nominee, Kary was writer-in-residence at Hugo House from 2013-2015. She lives and works as a poetry teacher and freelance editor in Seattle, where she's an associate editor at Poetry Northwest.

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Short Story Bootcamp

This class will take place via video-conferencing (Zoom), Pacific Time. Intermediate/Advanced | Are you gearing up to submit your short fiction? This class is for you! In this intensive six-week workshop, students will do the hard, rewarding work of revising…

Course Type: 6 Sessions  |   Instructor: Jesse Edward Johnson

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Start Date: 07/18/2020 – 1:10 pm

Jesse Edward Johnson

Jesse Edward Johnson is the author of the novels The King of Nothing Much (forthcoming in 2020) and Yearbook (2017), both published by Paul Dry Books. His visual poetry has been exhibited in galleries throughout the Pacific Northwest. Jesse received his Ph.D. in English from UCLA, where he taught literature for five years, and his B.A. in English from UC Berkeley. He has taught writing to inmates at San Quentin State Prison and at Hugo House in Seattle.

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Write Your Picture Book (ZOOM)

This class will take place via video-conferencing (Zoom), Pacific Time. Introductory | Get started writing for children in this informative, supportive workshop that will give you an overview of what picture books are all about, help you to develop kid-friendly…

Course Type: 6 Sessions  |   Instructor: Julie Romeis Sanders

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Start Date: 07/18/2020 – 1:10 pm
This class is full

Julie Romeis Sanders

JULIE ROMEIS SANDERS has twenty years of experience as a children’s book editor, bookseller, and workshop instructor. As an acquiring editor for Bloomsbury Children’s Books and Chronicle Books she collaborated with many award-winning authors and illustrators including Aaron Reynolds, Victoria Jamieson, Rick Yancey, Dan Santat, and Laura Numeroff. She edited the Caldecott Honor book Flora and the Flamingo by Molly Idle and was the first editor for several writers who went on to create best-selling books that were awarded the Caldecott Honor, Newbery Honor, and Printz Honor. Julie also spent several years as a children’s bookseller, which gave her a deep understanding of how people buy books for children. For the past eight years Julie has worked as an independent developmental editor and workshop instructor. Her clients include writers, literary agents, and publishers. Julie also works with non-profit publisher Room to Read, where she edits books in translation and creates workshops for writers and illustrators in developing countries. In 2017 she traveled to Jordan to lead an illustrator workshop alongside talented illustrator Julie Downing. Julie is passionate about helping writers make their books the best they can be with creative, constructive, collaborative feedback at every stage of their career. To learn more about Julie, visit: http://www.editorialjulie.com

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How to Write a Memoir Book Proposal

This class will take place via video-conferencing (Zoom), Pacific Time. Intermediate/Advanced | In this class, you will learn about each component of a memoir book proposal, strategies for writing a proposal that will gain the attention of agents/editors, as well…

Course Type: 1 Session  |   Instructor: Theo Nestor

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Start Date: 07/18/2020 – 1:10 pm
This class is full

Theo Nestor

Theo Pauline Nestor is the author of Writing Is My Drink: A Writer’s Story of Finding Her Voice (And a Guide to How You Can Too) (Simon & Schuster, 2013) and How to Sleep Alone in a King-Size Bed: A Memoir of Starting Over (Crown, 2008). Nestor has taught the memoir certificate course for the University of Washington’s Professional & Continuing Education program since 2006.

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Elegy in a Time of Pandemic (ZOOM)

This class will take place via video-conferencing (Zoom), Pacific Time. How do we write about grief right now, when there are so many (and simultaneous) forms of grief to address? Can poems speak to job loss, loss of everyday routines,…

Course Type: 1 Session  |   Instructor: Chen Chen

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Start Date: 07/19/2020 – 1:10 pm
This class is full

Chen Chen

Chen Chen is the author of When I Grow Up I Want to Be a List of Further Possibilities, which won the A. Poulin Jr. Poetry Prize, Thom Gunn Award for Gay Poetry, and the GLCA New Writers Award. Longlisted for the National Book Award, When I Grow Up I Want to Be a List of Further Possibilities was also a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award for Gay Poetry, and was named one of the best of 2017 by The Brooklyn Rail, Entropy, Library Journal, and others. About the collection, Stephanie Burt says,“As Chen’s younger self had to escape from constricting familial expectations (become a lawyer, marry a woman, buy a house), the adult writer has to escape from the constrictions of autobiography, into hyperbole, stand-up comedy, fairy tale, twisted pastoral. It’s easy to imagine a young reader seeing himself here as he had not seen himself in poems before.” He is also the author of two chapbooks, Set the Garden on Fire (Porkbelly Press, 2015) and Kissing the Sphinx (Two of Cups Press, 2016).

In an interview with NPR, Chen explained, ““I felt like I couldn’t be Chinese and American and gay all at the same time. I felt like the world I was in was telling me that these had to be very separate things.” As someone who was struggling with his sexuality and thinking about identity— with immigrant parents and wondering how to come out, “Poems were a way for those different experiences to come together, for them to be in the same room.”

His work has appeared in many publications, including Poetry, Tin House, Poem-a-Day, The Best American Poetry, Bettering American Poetry, and The Best American Nonrequired Reading. Recently, his work has been translated into French, Greek, Spanish, and Russian. Poets & Writers Magazine featured him in their Inspiration Issue as one of “Ten Poets Who Will Change the World.” He has received fellowships from Kundiman, Lambda Literary, and the Saltonstall Foundation.

Chen earned his MFA from Syracuse University and is pursuing a PhD in English and Creative Writing as an off-site Texas Tech University student. He lives in frequently snowy Rochester, NY with his partner, Jeff Gilbert and their pug dog, Mr. Rupert Giles.

Chen is the 2018-2020 Jacob Ziskind Poet-in-Residence at Brandeis University.

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Our First Gods: Finding The Mother/Father through Personal Writing

This class will take place via video-conferencing (Zoom) only, Pacific Time. Too often unapproachable, unassailable, absent—our parents are our first gods. How have we known them? How might we know them now? How deep is our ache that we didn’t…

Course Type: 1 Session  |   Instructor: Joe Wilkins

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Start Date: 07/20/2020 – 1:10 pm

Joe Wilkins

Joe Wilkins is the author of the novel,
Fall Back Down When I Die (Little Brown),
a memoir, The Mountain and the Fathers
(Counterpoint), and three poetry collections,
most recently When We Were Birds, winner
of the 2017 Oregon Book Award in Poetry.
He directs the creative program at Linfield
College.

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Leaps and Swerves: Creating Surprise in Poetry (ZOOM)

This class will take place via video-conferencing (Zoom), Pacific Time. All Levels | Let’s explore unexpected moves in poems: disruptions to syntax, shifts in tone, and leaps that move associatively down the page. In this workshop, you can expect in-class…

Course Type: 1 Session  |   Instructor: Dilruba Ahmed

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Start Date: 07/20/2020 – 10:00 am
2 seats available

Dilruba Ahmed

Dilruba Ahmed is the author of Bring Now the Angels (Pitt Poetry Series, University of Pittsburgh Press, 2020). Her debut book of poetry, Dhaka Dust (Graywolf Press), won the Bakeless Prize. Her poems have appeared in American Poetry Review, Kenyon Review, New England Review, Ploughshares, and Poetry. Her poems have also been anthologized in The Best American Poetry 2019 (Scribner), Halal If You Hear Me (Haymarket Books), Literature: The Human Experience (Bedford/St. Martin’s), Indivisible: An Anthology of Contemporary South Asian American Poetry (University of Arkansas), and elsewhere. Ahmed is the recipient of The Florida Review’s Editors’ Award, a Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Memorial Prize, and the Katharine Bakeless Nason Fellowship in Poetry awarded by the Bread Loaf Writers Conference. She holds degrees from the University of Pittsburgh and Warren Wilson College’s MFA Program for Writers.

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Brilliant Openings: How to Hook Your Reader From Word One (ZOOM)

This class will take place via video-conferencing (Zoom), Pacific Time. Writing’s all fun and games until the rejections start piling up. In this intensive (though informal!) workshop, we’ll aim to make sure your stories or essays draw the reader in,…

Course Type: 1 Session  |   Instructor: Steve Almond

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Start Date: 07/20/2020 – 6:00 pm
This class is full

Steve Almond

Steve Almond is the author of ten books of fiction and non-fiction, including the New York Times bestsellers Candyfreak and Against Football. His forthcoming book is William Stoner and the Battle for the Inner Life. Steve's short stories have appeared in the Best American Short Stories and Pushcart Prize anthologies. His essays have appeared in the New York Times Magazine and elsewhere. For many years, he hosted the Dear Sugars podcast with Cheryl Strayed.

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Poetry and Publishing

Please sign on to the wait list if you’re interested in the class. If we have enough interest, we’ll open a second section. This class will take place via video-conferencing (Zoom), Pacific Time. Introductory/Intermediate | Students will generate 4-6 new…

Course Type: 6 Sessions  |   Instructor: Jeanine Walker

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Start Date: 07/21/2020 – 10:00 am
This class is full

Jeanine Walker

Jeanine Walker was a 2015 Jack Straw Writer and has published poems in Cimarron Review, Narrative, Pleiades, and Web Conjunctions. She holds a Ph.D. in Creative Writing from the University of Houston and teaches for Writers in the Schools.

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Assembling a Chapbook for Publication (ZOOM)

This class will take place via video-conferencing (Zoom), Pacific Time. Intermediate/Advanced | In this workshop, you’ll put together a chapbook manuscript to submit to publishers or self-publish. We’ll explore structural and stylistic possibilities, how chapbooks differ from full-length collections, and…

Course Type: 6 Sessions  |   Instructor: Lisa Gluskin Stonestreet

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Start Date: 07/22/2020 – 1:10 pm

Lisa Gluskin Stonestreet

Lisa Gluskin Stonestreet is the author of The Greenhouse (Frost Place Chapbook Prize) and Tulips, Water, Ash (Morse Poetry Prize). Her poems have appeared in journals including Plume, Zyzzyva, and Kenyon Review and anthologies including Nasty Women Poets and The Bloomsbury Anthology of Contemporary Jewish American Poetry. She holds a BA in contemporary American literature from Yale University and an MFA from the Warren Wilson Program for Writers, where she was a Javits Fellow. Lisa lives in Portland, OR, where she reads, writes, edits, parents, and cohosts the literary reading series Lilla Lit. (lisagluskinstonestreet.com)

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How to Write a “Modern Love” Essay

This class will take place via video-conferencing (Zoom), Pacific Time. All Levels | The Modern Love column in the New York Times has been a reader favorite since its inception in 2004. In this class we will look at a…

Course Type: 1 Session  |   Instructor: Theo Nestor

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Start Date: 07/23/2020 – 5:00 pm
This class is full

Theo Nestor

Theo Pauline Nestor is the author of Writing Is My Drink: A Writer’s Story of Finding Her Voice (And a Guide to How You Can Too) (Simon & Schuster, 2013) and How to Sleep Alone in a King-Size Bed: A Memoir of Starting Over (Crown, 2008). Nestor has taught the memoir certificate course for the University of Washington’s Professional & Continuing Education program since 2006.

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Write Your Memoir: The First Chapter (ZOOM)

This class will take place via video-conferencing (Zoom), Pacific Time. Introductory/Intermediate | Memoir author and book coach Ingrid Ricks will teach you how to open and structure your story in a way that grabs readers and lays the foundation for…

Course Type: 4 Sessions  |   Instructor: Ingrid Ricks

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Start Date: 07/23/2020 – 5:30 pm
3 seats available

Ingrid Ricks

Ingrid Ricks is an NYT-bestselling author, writing coach, ghostwriter and speaker who is passionate about leveraging personal storytelling to foster healing, awareness, empathy and change. Her memoirs include Hippie Boy, A Girl's Story and Focus. Visit ingridricks.com.

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