Literary Arts Program
What’s your story?
We believe everyone has stories, and that in the context of a supportive and well-facilitated group, these stories can be explored and realized on the page. All of our writing classes, from poetry to memoir to fiction to mixed genre, offer students methods not just to get the words down, but the tools used to craft a compelling yarn. While exploring these techniques, students share stories, receive thoughtful and constructive feedback, and build community.
Most terms, the Multnomah Arts Center hosts a public reading for our students and faculty. These readings provide a perfect setting for listening and responding to work from across our writing program. Writing is hard work; we provide a public venue to celebrate our collective effort to tell important stories well.
Our faculty is comprised of experienced teachers who are also practicing writers. Most teachers build generative writing time into their class schedule as well as bringing in published works to illustrate techniques. Our instructors are here because they love teaching and find the energy of writing classes invigorating.
There are great benefits to being part of a community center that shares space with weavers, printmakers, dancers, musicians, painters, actors, sculptors, metalsmiths, photographers, and young artists. Multnomah Arts Center’s Literary Arts program collaborates with the Book Arts program, the Printmaking program, and the Theater program.
Some things people have said about Literary Arts classes:
The group was small and well-focused. The instructor was very inclusive, knowledgeable and well-honed in class. Donna had wonderful exercises and prompts.
-In regards to Reading and Writing Poetry, 2012
The feeling of community is very strong here. Lyssa is an excellent teacher. I’m a grad student in the Pacific MFA writing program and I’ve struggled with the program. Lyssa helped fill in the huge gaps in my MFA program and taught me some of the basics I didn’t know. Her background and her own MFA experience brought so much to the class. I loved the books she brought and shared with us as examples. Lyssa is nurturing and encouraging and an excellent writer and teacher.
-In regards to Memoir Writing, 2012
This class offered us great exposure to a variety of short stories and good discussions about how to dissect stories. I was forced to actually get my writing done.
-In regards to Writing Short Stories, 2012
This class is accessible to people at all skill levels. The teacher brings diverse perspectives and the class discussion is unusually thought-provoking for a non-professional class.
-In regards to Reading and Writing Poetry, 2011
Our teacher has such patience and caring for his students. He respects our individual styles and encourages our growth as writers. I feel privileged to have been enrolled for three terms with him.
-In regards to Memoir Writing, 2013