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A Year with the Moon: Creation, Workshop, Chapbook

with Jane Wong and Sierra Nelson

Genres: Fiction, Nonfiction, Poetry, Memoir, Novel, Short Story, Essay

Online

Open to all levels

30 Sessions

Start Date: October 2, 2023
End Date: June 17, 2024
No Class: (skip days) 12/18/2023, 12/25/2023, 1/1/2024, 1/8/2024, 1/15/2024, 2/19/2024, 4/8/2024, 5/27/2024
Day of Week: Monday
Time: 5:00pm - 7:00pm PT
Capacity: 19 seats
1 seat left!
Member Price: $1359.00
General Price: $1510.00

Looking toward our moon (and other moons) anew, this class begins generatively (slanting to poetry, open to any genre) with eclectic writing experiments inspired by scientific, esoteric, and mythological moons to jump-start our creativity and playfully upend clichés. Readings include Neruda, Ruefle, Cheng, and Lorca. Most prompts begin in class, plus moon observation homework. By the second quarter, we'll start to workshop and revise our new moon drafts, and by the last quarter, we will build our own moon-infused chapbook collections with celebratory reading.

Payment plans are available for this class. Please email education@hugohouse.org to get a payment plan started.

Guest speakers: Three professional published writers will visit our class over the course of our time together, to inspire us with their own moon-infused writing and creative process, as well as offering their insights into editing and chapbook-making.

Syllabus: Available by request. Please email welcome@hugohouse.org.

No class dates: 12/18/2023, 12/25/2023, 1/1/2024, 1/8/2024, 1/15/2024, 2/19/2024, 4/8/2024, 5/27/2024

Registration dates: 

August 7: Scholarship Donation Day

August 8: Member registration opens at 10:30 am

August 15: General registration opens at 10:30 am

August 21: Last day of Early Bird pricing

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CLASS FAQS WITH INSTRUCTOR SIERRA NELSON

Who is this class best suited for? How much writing experience do I need to take this class?

This class is well suited for writers at all levels of previous experience interested in generating new work, from new writers or writers returning to their practice after a break looking for some encouragement and structure to get started in their creative process, to well established writers looking for community and some fresh approaches to creating new work. Our focus will be on writing new work, building toward a small chapbook collection. For those already working on longer manuscripts, our moon-work could either be an independent smaller manuscript, or potentially woven into your larger collection.

What will I learn over the course of this yearlong?

We will approach our own creative process (from writing new work to revision) and the world around us (with the moon as our guide) with curiosity and wonder. The first quarter will be generative: focused on creating lots of pieces and beginnings inspired by provided prompts and readings, sharing out loud in class from in-progress work. In winter, we'll weave in revision, with rotating workshops for peer and instructor feedback on select pieces inspiring our editing process. In spring, we will learn about chapbooks and each build and share a moon-infused small collection, with a final celebratory reading.

What's the balance of in-class generative writing, lecture, and workshop?

Fall quarter will focus on generating new work. Classes include short lectures and/or readings and brief discussion to get our ideas sparking, and then provided prompts and time to begin drafting, ending with a little time to share in class from in-progress works as we go. In winter, we’ll continue creative momentum with short in-class readings and prompt writing, alternating with short revision lectures, and workshops will take roughly half of each class. In spring, we’ll continue creative moon engagement especially toward revision plus lectures on chapbook structure; in-class revision time and small group feedback taking the other half.

How much time outside of class will I need for this class each week?

In the fall when our focus is primarily generative, most writing prompts begin in class (sometimes spilling into homework), plus short daily moon observations. Key readings will also be shared in class, with optional additional reading. In the winter, some additional time will be needed outside of class to read and give feedback on peer writing for workshop, and for your own revising. In the spring, time outside of class will be needed to revise and compile your chapbook and offering chapbook feedback to at least 2 peers.

How much feedback will I receive on my work, peer, or instructor?

You will receive feedback from class peers and the instructor. In the first all-generative quarter, feedback will primarily be out loud and in the moment as we share from our in-progress drafts. As we move into more workshops in the second quarter, feedback will be written responses on hard copies, with one "first reader" providing more in-depth response and discussion guidance, in addition to instructor feedback and group discussion. In the last quarter, as we build our chapbooks, there will be small group feedback and troubleshooting opportunities, and we will write final letters to one another.

Who will we be reading?

There are so many writers who have been inspired by the moon through the centuries who can help illuminate our way! Some of the writers we’ll read together include Pablo Neruda, Mary Ruefle, Jennifer S. Cheng, Federico García Lorca, Franny Choi, Denise Levertov, Elizabeth Bishop, and Dorianne Laux. We will also look at scientific writing about our moon and other planets’ moons, as well as moon myths, moon art, and other moon-inspired materials.

Jane Wong

Jane Wong

Jane Wong is the author of the poetry collections How to Not Be Afraid of Everything and Overpour and the memoir Meet Me Tonight in Atlantic City. An associate professor of creative writing at Western Washington University, she grew up in New Jersey and currently lives in Seattle, Washington.

Sierra Nelson

Sierra Nelson

Sierra Nelson is a poet, president of Seattle’s Cephalopod Appreciation Society, and co-founder of literary performance art groups The Typing Explosion and Vis-à-Vis Society. Her poetry books include The Lachrymose Report (PoetryNW Editions, 2018), lyrical adventure I Take Back the Sponge Cake made with visual artist Loren Erdrich (Rose Metal Press), and forthcoming Vis-à-Vis Society collaboration 100 Rooms: A Bridge Motel Project (Entre Rios Books). Recently Nelson’s poems accompanying ichthyologist Adam Summer’s fish skeleton photographs were exhibited at the Ljubljana Natural History Museum and Piran Aquarium in Slovenia.

Each class description includes a breakdown of what you can expect in terms of in-class activity, feedback, and homework (if any). 

Generative means you’ll be generating new writing, either in class or at home between classes.

Workshop means you’ll be sharing work to be read and critiqued by your instructor and classmates and that you will also be critiquing the work of your peers. 

Reading means you’ll be doing close reading of a work with an eye toward craft. 

Craft discussion means you’ll be looking at the tools writers use to do that thing they do so well and then trying it out yourself.

Class levels are designed for various stages of the writing journey. Simply self-select the level that sounds best for where you’re at. 

Introductory: This is your first creative writing workshop, first writing class since high school, or first foray into a new genre or form. You’re looking to try something new, kickstart your writing, and/or establish yourself in the fundamentals.

Intermediate: You have a strong understanding of writing fundamentals and are eager to deep dive into craft. You’re honing your writerly identity and voice through independent projects. In workshop, you look for constructive feedback and are ready to do writing and reading outside of class.

Advanced: You’ve written a significant body of work and have taken it through several stages of revision. You’re getting ready to publish or are in the early stage of publishing, and you’re interested in refining the skills that will take you to the next level in the literary industry.

All Levels: You are any of the above and are looking to play with new possibilities.

You’ll get your class information, including Zoom link if applicable, three days before the first day of class.

Write With Hugo House is our free monthly write-in program, operated in partnership with the Seattle Public Library. Two take place onsite at SPL locations, one takes place online. 

Sliding-scale classes are offered every quarter. Find them in our Class Catalog.

We announce flash sales, early bird periods, and special deals through our e-newsletter; sign up at the bottom of this page.

At this time, we offer payment plans on classes 8 sessions and up. Email education@hugohouse.org with the name of the class you’re interested in to set up a payment plan.

Asynchronous classes are perfect for students that need flexibility!

During an asynchronous class, instructors release new lessons once per week. Students then have one week to complete that lesson and any accompanying coursework. You’ll learn as much as you would in a traditional class but with the flexibility to work at the best times for your schedule!

While there are no live sessions, asynchronous classes are still a lively and rigorous experience. Async classes are not static lessons but an adaptable and energetic community space. Be ready to work in a collaborative environment, giving and receiving feedback on your writing, participating in discussions, and growing your writing practice in a way that works best for you.

Asynchronous classes take place through the website Wet Ink. Students receive an invitation to the class and to set up a Wet Ink account on the start date of the class. Each week of the class, a new lesson will be available through the Wet Ink portal. Classes close two weeks after the end date, and students receive an email containing their content from the class when it closes.

Hugo House will only process refund requests that are submitted 5 business days or more before the class start date. To request a refund, log in to your account, go to “My Account,” select the “Orders” tab on the left-hand side, click the appropriate order, and request a refund for your specific class. Administrative fees apply. Please see our full refund policy here.

In general, we do not record classes. However, an exception if a student has specific access needs.

We encourage students to only sign up for classes that fit with their schedule.   

We do not tolerate racist, sexist, homophobic, ableist, transphobic or any other oppressive behaviors, regardless of who commits them. Please check out our full community guidelines by clicking here. If an instance of community guidelines are violated and not resolved within the classroom, students may let us know by filling out the student incident report.

If Hugo House needs to cancel a class for any reason, you’ll receive a full refund.

Hugo House members get to register early for classes – a full week before they open to the general public!, receive a 10% discount on events and classes, and more. See the full list of membership benefits here!

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If you’re interested in contributing your skills, Hugo House accepts volunteer applications for a variety of roles, including event support, administrative tasks, and more. Learn more on our Volunteer page.

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