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Braiding and Brainstorming: Writing Your Pop Culture Memoir with Lynn Melnick via Zoom

February 12 @ 12:30 pm - 4:30 pm


This 4-hour workshop will introduce students to the braided essay, weaving multiple threads of material into a more complex, and often revelatory, whole. Pairing and splicing one’s personal story with that of a larger pop culture moment (hit song, movie icon, fashion trend, moon landing…) will guide students’ work into unexpected and richer directions—a kind of larger context brainstorming. We’ll discuss how to outline a series of these personal and pop culture moments into the bones of a larger memoir.

Designed for experienced writers or those brand new to the form, students will read work in the genre, discuss tips and tricks for working in this form, receive prompts and guidance for in-class free writes, and share their new work for immediate feedback. This class will be generative, welcoming, and fun!

NB: This class will be capped at 15. You will receive the Zoom link as soon as you register to the email address you use to enroll in the class. Please check spam if you do not receive it. You will be sent a reminder email with the link 24 hours before class. Please read our policy page before registering.

Altman Person of Color Scholarships and Need-Based Scholarships will be available for this class. Applications will be available in November 2021.

Lynn Melnick is the author of the memoir/book about Dolly Parton, I’ve Had to Think of a Way to Survive, which is forthcoming from University of Texas Press in fall of 2022. She is also the author of three books of poems, most recently Refusenik. Her work has appeared in APR, The New Republic, The New Yorker, The Paris Review, Poetry, and A Public Space. A former fellow at the New York Public Library’s Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers, she currently teaches poetry at Columbia University and the 92Y.



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February 12
12:30 pm - 4:30 pm
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