College Courses for Adults

Napa Valley College-St. Helena
Santa Rosa Junior College English Department
Santa Rosa Junior College Writing Scholarships and Awards

Santa Rosa Junior College Community Education Writing Courses

Sonoma State University Creative Writing Program

Sonoma State University Extended Education Program

Bay Area Writing Courses (non-college)

The Grotto, a San Francisco writing center and community workspace offers narrative arts workshops over several weeks or one day. Located in SOMA.

On-Line Writing Programs

University of California, Berkeley, Extension, Online Writing Certificates
Stanford University, Continuing Studies, Online Writers Certificates
Oxford University, Continued Education, short online courses
Online College Courses in Writing (database of free courses)
Visual Writers Workshops bring published authors together with writers for synergy and exchange one Sunday a month at 12 p.m. Eastern time, 9 a.m. Pacific time.

School-Based Programs for Youth

California Poets in Schools
Phyllis Meshulam, Area Coordinator
Sonoma State University EXCEL Program

Community Non-Credit Workshops

For a list of  Sonoma County writers offering workshops and consultations, check the Local Workshop Leaders and Writing Consultants page. Below you’ll find a list of upcoming workshops in chronological order and following that, ongoing (undated) workshops in alphabetical order by the workshop leader’s last name.


Upcoming workshops are in chronological order. See below for local ONGOING WORKSHOPS.


SRJC Readers Theater (Older Adults Program)

Thursdays, January 18 to May 3, 2018 from 1:30-3:30 p.m.

Fridays, January 19 to May 4, 2018 from 1:30-3:30 p.m.

FREE classes at 6th Street Playhouse – 52 West 6th Street, Santa Rosa
Details: Bill Trzeciak at (707) 235-1986 or
SRJC Older Adults Program at (707) 527-4533

SRJC offers noncredit courses for seniors as part of its goal to provide lifelong learning.
How to register: Sign up for a class by going directly to the location and the instructor will give you an application. No age limit for Older Adults Program courses though they are tailored for seniors. Students may register at any time during the semester. No fee for older adults.


Exploration of Playwriting with Linda Lau

Tuesdays, 2:30-4:15 p.m.
January 23 through May 22, 2018
Participants may register anytime at this location.
At Friends House: 684 Benicia Drive, Santa Rosa

This SRJC-sponsored course for older adults investigates how playwrights develop characters, plot and structure. Activities include reading plays, viewing media, in-class discussions and writing assignments. FREE. Contact Linda Lau for more information ( or simply show up for a session. Participants of all ages are welcome and may register at any time.


LifeLines: Memoir Workshop with Suzanne Sherman

This weekly writing workshop engages and supports new and experienced writers in writing stories from life for personal pleasure or for publication. You’ll learn how to find the story in situations and learn how to give shape to short memoirs as you generate 4 or 5 new writings and receive helpful feedback from the instructor and from your writing peers.

Suzanne Sherman teaches the craft of memoir, including writing good dialog to enliven the narrative, creating dimensional characters, and creating a sense of era. She provides occasional short readings by reputable memoirists and offers optional at-home writing exercises, inspiring and assisting writers in setting and achieving their goals.

Monday, 1:00–3:00 p.m., Sebastopol Center for the Arts, FIRESIDE ROOM
March 5–May 7 [8 weeks; no meeting April 2, April 9]
Fee: $300; continuing members get a $20 discount

For questions, please contact Suzanne at 707.478.3819.

TO ENROLL: To hold your place, send a deposit of $150 to Suzanne Sherman, P.O. Box 1121, Sebastopol, CA 95473. Be sure to include your email address and telephone number. Suzanne will confirm receipt and send you information to start the class. The balance of the class fee is due at the first meeting.

ABOUT THE INSTRUCTOR: For over 20 years Suzanne has taught memoir at colleges, universities, online, and independently. Since 1983 she has been a professional editor, publishing consultant, and writing coach ( specializing in memoir and other nonfiction. Her latest book is Girlhood in America: Personal Stories 1910–2010 (


Writers Forum

Thursday, March 15, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Abigail Samoun: The Children’s Book Publishing Process Revealed

Abigail Samoun will discuss the various stages involved in getting a book acquired. She will talk us through one book’s journey in the publishing process: Catching an editor’s eye, developing a manuscript, describing the editor’s role in getting the book through the acquisition process, signing the contract, working with the editor on finalizing the manuscript, and sending it to press.

Abigail Samoun was an in-house children’s book editor for over ten years, working on a wide range of projects, from board books to young adult novels. Her books received such honors as the CCBC Charlotte Zolotow award, the New York Public Library Ezra Jack Keats award, and the Pura Belpre.

At Copperfield’s, 140 Kentucky St. Free. Details:

Thursday, April 19, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Jean Hegland: Helping Ourselves to Write Our Best

Jean will discuss ways to fan the spark, make the grit, keep the faith, create the community, and court the luck that will enable us to do our best work.

Jean Hegland’s first novel, Into the Forest, has been adapted as a film and a graphic novel and translated into over a dozen languages; it was a best-seller in France in 2017. Her most recent book, Still Time, is finding fans among Shakespeare scholars as well as readers with Shakespeare allergies. Copperfield’s, 140 Kentucky St. Free. Details:



These listings are alphabetical, either by name of organization or last name of facilitator.

Book Arts: Sonoma County Book Arts Guild

If you make books, alter books, want to learn to make books please join us at the Sebastapol Center for the Arts. The intent is to create a group to share work, teach techniques, take field trips, invite guest artists to teach, and have a show.

Painting/Drawing Studio

Last Saturday of each month, 10 am-12 pm

Fee: $2-$5 donation to cover facility use

Location: Sebastopol Center for the Arts
Contact Dena Bliss 829-1732


Margaret Caminsky-Shapiro’s Sonoma County Writing Practice

Margaret Caminsky-Shapiro teaches seasonally based eight-week long writing semesters out of her Santa Rosa downtown office. Four different class times are offered each week; Monday at 2.00 p.m. and 6.00 p.m. and Tuesday at 9.15 a.m. and 6.00 p.m. Margaret uses poetry and meditation for inspiration and writers are encouraged to read their work in a supportive atmosphere. The memoir is a valuable form for dropping deeper into the self allowing memories to come forth. This process allows space for self-knowledge to occur. Margaret was born and raised in South Africa and her love of memoir comes from her African storytelling background. For more information or to receive a flyer call (707) 484-7437 or email Margaret at The website for Sonoma County Writing Practice is Margaret Caminsky-Shapiro and Sonoma County Writing Practice have published their 2nd Anthology, FOOT NOTES, which showcases the writing of 51 of Margaret’s students. Details on Sonoma County in Print (2014) page.


Sher Christian’s Workshops and Intuitive Coaching

Mini workshops for your group and family: The Power of Poetry and Writing to Connect with Joy, Wisdom, and Healing. Sher Lianne Christian, author of Star Kissed Shadows, Divining Poetry. Email for information.

Sher Christian offers intuitive coaching for writers, plus proofing, & editing. For books on audio: voiceover, recording, organ/accordion/keyboard tracks. Demos available. Sher Lianne Christian., Star Kissed Shadows and CD Sweet Tongue available at


Marlene Cullen: Jumpstart Writing Workshops

Jumpstart: a workshop where creative prompts inspire writing. Bring a notebook and a fast-moving pen. We will travel on a journey of exploration and deep writing through inspirational prompts. Details:

$15 per workshop

Mondays: 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Copperfield’s, Petaluma.
Tuesdays: 10:00 to 11:30 a.m. Copperfield’s Books, Petaluma

Need inspiration to write? Over 300 writing prompts on The Write Spot Blog:


Susan Hagen’s Writing Circles and Retreats

  • Learn simple techniques for effortless writing.
  • Challenge, explore, and deepen your craft.
  • Share your stories in a supportive circle.

Susan combines meditation and nature-based practices to help set aside the thinking mind and clear a path to the deeper writing life. Each gentle day of exploration includes  writing, reading aloud (if you wish), deep listening, and positive reflection in a small, safe, supportive circle of women. Beginning, experienced and exploring writers of all genres are welcome. Diversity of our women’s writing community and a growing pool of participants make each gathering distinctive and fresh. You’ll be amazed by what you write in circle and inspired by the gift of deep listening you’ll receive from others.

VIRTUAL Telephone Writing Circle for Women
Selected Saturday Mornings
(See website for dates and fees)
9:00–11:00 a.m. PST

Drop-In “Write to Heal” Fridays in Sebastopol
Friday mornings (see for dates)
11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
DROP-IN whenever you like; no reservations necessary
Suggested donation $20-$40
Sonoma County Healing Academy (SoCoHA)
6741 Sebastopol Ave, Suite 120
across the parking lot from Coffee Catz patio
Sponsored by Peace in Medicine

One-Day Writing Workshops for Women
Susan offers monthly writing workshops for women on alternating topics:

  • Women Writing through Transition and Change
  • Women Writing Around the Medicine Wheel
  • Help! I’ve Got a Book in Me and I Wanna Get it Out!
  • Writing Workshop for Heart-Centered Women

(See for dates and fees)

Susan Hagen is an award-winning nonfiction writer, Vision Quest guide, and co-author of Women at Ground Zero: Stories of Courage and Compassion. She is a former news reporter, organizational journalist, firefighter and emergency medical technician. Her writing programs are inspired by the vision quest, a personal journey into the wilderness that clarifies and informs her life and work.

Mobile: 707-888-0849
Office: 707-874-9223
PO Box 443, Graton, CA 95444


Lawrence Hart Poetry Seminar

The Lawrence Hart Seminar, the region’s longest-running intensive poetry workshop (with roots going back to the 1930s), meets monthly in San Rafael, second Saturdays, 1-4 (no meeting in August). All levels welcome; visitors encouraged (no obligation, but please contact first). $125 for five sessions thereafter. Contact John Hart,, 415-507-9230. Next meeting March 10.


Nancy Long: One-Person Shows

Dream of performing a one-person show of your writing or stories of your life?
Let experienced Bay Area Director and Producer, Nancy Long, edit, shape and produce that dream for you!

Services include:

  • Editing of script (which you can read or memorize for stage).
  • Four sessions of rehearsals with direction, props and music.
  • Actual performance (15-30 minutes in length) set-up with lights, wireless microphones and staging at Aqus Café in Petaluma (or venue of choice).
  • Publicity.

Fee: $250.00
Beginner and seasoned writers welcomed!

For more information and bio background:
Nancy Long, Producer of Petaluma Readers Theatre cell: 707-338-2489


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