Word Works: Writers on Writing

The art and craft of writing.

For those who sit and stare in wonder at a sentence or a turn of phrase, marveling at how they came about, Word Works reveals how the magic happens.

These craft talks by novelists, essayists, poets, and memoirists focus on writing as process rather than finished product, examining how language works to inspire and provoke new ideas through live close readings of the writer’s own or others’ work. The talks are designed to apply to writers of all genres as well as illuminate well-known works for avid readers. They are followed by an interview with a noted editor, writer, or critic.

Ticket Prices

General Admission: $15
Member: $12
Student/Need-Based Discount: $5

2021-2022 Season Events

Peter Ho Davies on the Art of Revision

October 29, 2021 | 6:30 pm PT

Ross Gay on Joy and the Cover

November 12, 2021  |  6 pm PT

Sarah Gailey on Building a Trauma-Informed Narrative

February 16, 2022  |  6 pm PT

Matthew Salesses on Craft in the Polluted World

March 18, 2022 | 6 pm PT

Morgan Parker on I Know What You Mean

April 8, 2022  |  6 pm PT

Vanessa Hua on Breaking the Green Wall: Sharpening the Writer’s Gaze

April 29, 2022  |  6 pm PT

Past Word Works Participants

  • Min Jin Lee
  • Charles Johnson
  • Kevin Young
  • Maggie Nelson
  • Ruth Ozeki

  • Terrance Hayes
  • Sarah Manguso
  • David Shields
  • Luis Alberto Urrea
  • Lidia Yuknavich

  • Karen Russell
  • Major Jackson
  • Ada Limón
  • Mary Ruefle
  • and others!