College Courses for Adults

Dominican University of California’s Creative Writing MFA program (offers free public writing workshops via zoom)
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 and Resources

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.
Christine Walker’s Self-paced Online CourseYouTube Channel and Read to Write Books blog are devoted to writing fiction and creative process. Details below under Ongoing Workshops.
Sit Down and Write Poetry. Here’s how to do it (six tips) plus a list of additional online resources for writing poetry.

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.



Look for online workshops highlighted in red under Ongoing Workshops.


Writers Forum

Writers Forum hosts four Saturday afternoons of writing on the Zoom platform.
October 2, 9, 16, 23. 1 pm to 3 pm (PST)

Marlene Cullen will lead these free writing sessions.

Travel on a journey of exploration using inspirational prompts from The Write Spot to Jumpstart Your Writing: Discoveries. Registration is required for these free Zoom events. Register once for all four meetings.

Discoveries is on sale at Amazon for $6.99 for a limited time (

Details: Click on “Writers Forum”


Dominican University Writing Workshops

October 2, 12:00 p.m.-October 3, 6:00 p.m.
Writing for Health and Healing — FREE Online Retreat
Join Dominican University’s MFA in Creative Writing Program for a free virtual writing retreat. The focus of the retreat is to explore the ways that we can connect through writing across distances, languages, and experiences. Dean Rader will speak on the Poetics of Repair. Ashley McMullen will present audio narratives from the podcast series, Black Voices in Healthcare. There will be a range of writing workshops, including a session on Korean Sijo poetry. Registration is through Eventbrite, and the retreat will be held via Zoom.
Event page/registration:

October 23, 10:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
Small, Bright Things — Fiction Workshop with Kim Culburtson
Join Dominican University’s MFA in Creative Writing Program for a free virtual creative writing workshop centered around the 100-word story. Through this small, bright form, we can learn to be mindful of story and how we approach our own creative ideas. Registration is through Eventbrite, and the retreat will be held via Zoom.
Event page/registration:

November 10, 6:00-8:00 p.m.
Composition by Juxtaposition — Poetry Workshop with Caroline Goodwin
Join Dominican University’s MFA in Creative Writing Program for a free virtual poetry workshop. In this lively, hands-on class, participants will consider how differences in tones of voice, and associative leaps, can work together in poem-building. Registration is through Eventbrite, and the retreat will be held via Zoom.
Event page/registration:

Program website:


Story Structure with Nina Schuyler

Saturday, October 16, 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Online Class. $80.

Structure is the scaffolding for story. In this class, hosted by Book Passages, you will learn the structure that American readers are most familiar with and that populates the publishing world. While it’s important to understand the standard structure, we will consider other types of scaffolding which might be more fitting for your story. I’ll provide examples of such constructions as the episodic, the crot, thematic juxtaposition, imagistic juxtaposition, and the lyrical, to name a few. You’ll broadly outline structural possibilities for your story-in-progress. Details and registration:


The Narrator in Memoir with Connie Josefs

Presented by Book Passage via Zoom
This seminar offers an in-depth look at how memoir writers craft vivid and effective narrators.
Format includes advance readings, lecture, writing exercises and discussion.

Session I: Who’s Talking? – The Narrator’s Voice
Sunday, November 7, 2021, 1:00-3:30 p.m.
The narrator’s voice is central to the success of any memoir. It releases the story from the raw material of life and illuminates character, tone and theme.

Session II: How We See – Narrator as Character
Sunday, November 14, 1:00-3:30 p.m.
Description provides the details of scene, but it also reveals the one who is looking. Description reflects the persona of the narrator and how they see the world.

Fee: $125 for single session; $200 for both sessions.
Register here:

Connie Josefs is a writer, teacher and memoir coach. She leads workshops in memoir and fiction writing and has taught at UNM Albuquerque, Santa Monica College, Southwest Writers and The Taos Writers Conference. She holds an MFA in fiction from Antioch LA and has worked as a writer and story analyst for film and television.


MovingWriting: Embodied Expressive Writing workshops with Loretta Mijares

Sunday, November 14, and Sunday, December 12, 2:00-5:00 p.m.
At a private studio in Sebastopol. $75/Sunday or $135 for both Sundays.

Embodied Expressive Writing is an opportunity to connect with your authentic and creative self in the moment, through writing from embodied presence, in the company of a supportive circle that reflects and amplifies your own potency. We begin with conscious dance/movement to music, with specific movement inquiries offered to encourage a return home to our bodies. From that embodied place, we then write in response to an invitational prompt. The words that arise when we write from an embodied place are often different than our habitual writing patterns, and reveal more to ourselves about our deepest being. We then share our writing, if we choose, with the circle, to release our words into voiced existence and we hear back echoes of what has resonated in ripples throughout the circle. All this is in service to embodying and cultivating presence and being open to greater aliveness, creativity and connection.

Details and registration: or email:



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. Classes are being held via ZOOM.  Contact Margaret for details.


Sher Christian’s Workshops and Intuitive Coaching

Fridays, 11:30 am to 12:30 pm: Weekly online literary open mic via Zoom. Share a short story or poetry. By donation. Email for Zoom link. Hosted by Sher and John Christian 

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


Creative Writing Classes with Stacey Dennick

Held via Zoom through 2021

Santa Rosa Junior College offers no-fee, noncredit writing courses for older adults as part of its goal to provide lifelong learning.

Improve your writing, get inspired by your new friends, receive useful feedback, and learn about the craft of writing in Stacey Dennick’s fun Creative Writing classes. Open to all levels and all genres.

Available to all adults living in California. Anyone 18 or over may attend.
On-going, register any time.
No fee, no grades, no hassle.
Contact instructor for details:

View the entire schedule:


Flash Friday

Fridays, 2:00-3:30 p.m.
Instructor: Deb Carlen

a weekly walk-in, one-hour class with a different topic every week about writing. A quick way to gain in-depth information about the elements of writing, genres, marketing, publishing and more. At Sonoma Community Center, 276 East Napa, Sonoma. Drop-ins, $10; members, $9. Details at:


Jumpstart Writing Workshops

A safe place to write and explore, using a variety of prompts to kindle imagination and inspire writing. You are free to write whatever you want: truth, fiction, memoir. Freewrites are a way of letting words tumble and fall however they land with no concerns about the outcome. Prompts generate writing that goes deep, often resulting in transformational experiences. Jumpstart meets on the ZOOM platform.
Jumpstart facilitators: Marlene Cullen, Susan Bono, Lakin Khan
Mondays: 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm
Tuesdays 9:30 am to 11:30 am

Updated 9/28/2020


Susan Hagen’s Writing Circles and Retreats

Our Women’s Writing Community is a safe place for women to write, connect, heal, and grow. Whether you’re seeking tools for self-discovery, support for writing a book, or simply a place to connect with other women on a spiritual path, you’re sure to find something that’s right for you. Even if you don’t consider yourself a writer, you’ll benefit from the healing power of telling your stories and having them witnessed by others. There is no judgement here. We honor each voice as equal, and we write and speak from the heart. Beginning, experienced, and exploring writers are always welcome.

Virtual Writing Circles to Connect us During Coronavirus Isolation
Every Saturday morning via Zoom
(See website for fees and more information)
10:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m. Pacific  Time

One-Day Writing Workshops for Women
Susan offers monthly writing circles for women on alternating topics.
Visit for ongoing writing practice and upcoming events.

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


Clara Rosemarda offers on-going six-week writer’s workshops

WRITEMIND™ WORKSHOPS: Writing from the Core as well as Classes on the Enneagram of Personality, Private Coaching and Consultations. Clara can be reached to answer questions about her work or to sign up for classes and consultations at: 707-579-2081 or


Jordan Rosenfeld—Free classes, writing groups & editing

Live instruction via zoom, with Powerpoint slides and chat-based Q & A. Totally free to you! You’ll need to be able to access the Zoom app from either your computer or phone. Please test the link about 5 minutes before class officially begins (dates, times, and zoom links below). Once the class starts, Jordan will be unable to help with technical difficulties.

You can access video recordings of there three classes already taught: How to Write with Page Turning Tension, How to Write Killer Scenes, and How to Evoke Emotion in Every Scene at her Facebook Author page under the videos tab.

Email Jordan with questions: jordanwritelife (at) gmail (dot) com


Online Memoir Class with Suzanne Sherman

Learn the essentials and get a chance to practice them in my info-packed online memoir course. The course gives you structure for getting the writing done, a sense of accountability, and guidance as you create new material. By the end of the course you can have a book planned and a portion of your first draft written.

Week 1: Building the Foundation: Theme, Narrative Arc
Week 2: Convincing Characters
Week 3: Engaging Prose
Week 4: Writing Scenes
Week 5: Dialog
Week 6: Telling the Truth

Contact me to enroll:, or visit

Suzanne Sherman is a published author, book editor, and writing/publishing coach and consultant. She has taught memoir in the Bay Area and online since 1996.


Shut Up & Write!™ Wine Country: FREE writing sessions

Join us for an hour of writing! We’ve discovered that it’s strikingly helpful to write with other writers. See if it’s true for you. No one will see what you’ve written or give you unsolicited advice. Instead of just thinking about writing, come and get some real writing done.

Register at Meetup:
Updated 9/15/2020.


Christine Walker’s Online Writing Courses and YouTube Videos

Writing Fiction: 9 Ways to Mastery is a self-paced, online course designed for writers who read, readers who write, and book lovers who want to read like a writer. Produced by author and artist Christine Walker, MFA, MA, the course contains videos and writing activities. It features Christine’s useful framework, Master Craft Juggling, for gaining greater ability and agility with the elements of fiction. The course will help you: (1) Develop masterful skills by learning valuable lessons that authors give readers on the page. (2) Improve your writing practice for success with strategies and tools for setting goals, taking on challenges, and fulfilling your intentions. (3) Find ongoing inspiration for your writing and book projects, while deepening reading enjoyment. For a free trial visit the course site at

Christine Walker’s YouTube Channel features short “Moments of Mastery” videos to inspire and inform your writing practice for greater enjoyment, productivity, and success. All writers start with a blank page every time. No matter the previous success, we all find ourselves again on the way to mastery. The videos, designed for fiction writers, memoirists, and other creative writers, focus not only on the “how” of writing, but also the “why.” Christine has an MFA in Writing and Literature in Fiction, an MA in Creative Arts Interdisciplinary, and is a published author. She posts new videos every Friday. Visit the channel at

Read to Write Books blog: Christine Walker Explores Fiction Craft This blog distills “lessons” that masterful authors give us on the page. It supports Christine’s courses and is a useful resource for fiction writers, memoirists, books groups, and all writers who read, readers who write, and book lovers who want to read like a writer. She started the blog to supplement the workshops she taught at Copperfield’s several years ago and will be newly updating the blog to supplement her online course, Writing Fiction: 9 Ways to Mastery. Visit the blog at

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