Translating Experience into Art:
A Generative Multi-Genre Workshop

with Kim Young in Eagle Rock

Eight Wednesdays
7:30 to 9:30 pm
October 16 to December 11, 2019
(with no class on November 27)


Have you been wanting to write poetry about your own experiences, fictionalize past events in your life, or craft personal essays? This eight-week workshop will explore how writers can turn lived experience into art through an attentiveness to language, form, and surprise. Each class will begin with generative poetry, nonfiction, and flash fiction exercises. Students will read widely, studying writers such as Ocean Vuong, Rick Moody, Michelle Tea, Kiese Laymon, Robert Hass, Ángel Garcia, Carmen Giménez Smith, and others. Discussions will focus on theoretical aspects of language, memory, and truth as well as practical approaches to attending to and recovering a sense of wonder and complexity when writing about lived experience.

This class is open to students at all levels and will take place at the Center for the Arts Eagle Rock, where wine, sparkling water, and the occasional gourmet snack will be served.

Enrollment limit: 8 students
$420 for new students; $380 for returning students.
(Payment plans available to returning students.)

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Kim Young is the author of Night Radio, winner of the 2011 Agha Shahid Ali Poetry Prize (The University of Utah Press) and finalist for the 2014 Kate Tufts Discovery Award, and the chapbook Divided Highway (Dancing Girl Press, 2008). She is the founding editor of Chaparral, an online journal featuring poetry from Southern California, and her poems and essays have appeared in Los Angeles Review, Los Angeles Review of Books, Hotel Amerika, Western Humanities Review, POOL, and elsewhere. She teaches at California State University, Northridge and holds an MFA from Bennington College, where she received a Jane Kenyon Scholarship in poetry.


“Kim Young is a generous guide. She demonstrates that every poem we encounter can teach us about the practice of writing—in terms of potential or mastery. In her workshops, the realms of enchantment are available to anyone with an open heart. Close reading, risk taking, and moral support are valued. I have made lasting friendships in these classes precisely because the atmosphere flourishes with laughter and appreciation.” —Sara Ellen Fowler

"Working with Kim Young in her poetry workshop was a completely surprising evolution and revelation that I had no idea was possible for a novice poet like myself who was simply looking for a little bit of feedback. Truth is, Young gave wholeheartedly, a vast stockpile of inspiration and encouragement that had an immense effect on my own writings, almost from the very get go to the weeks and months that now pass after the workshop’s end. I’ve always loved poetry as an art form and a medium, but now I understand more of the deep rooted reasons as to why I love poetry so dearly.” —Jeremy Szuder



"The poems are so moving, I feel as if I am suffering as much as any of the characters. This really is an excellent book of poetry. Her story is heartbreaking." —Apalachee Review

"Kim Young's Night Radio works much as its subject matter does: worming its way into your ear like an urban legend, it lodges somewhere behind your eyes and works itself out in pieces, at night, almost against your will. [Her] debut collection feels real, dark, and deep. In the face of horrible and irrational deeds, we are still open to communication, and the book reminds us of that in startling and lyric ways."—Pebble Lake Review

“Young forces the reader to question the reliability and necessity of memory: what we wish to remember, what we try to repress, and what we know we must not forget.” —Boxcar Poetry Review