The Heart-Work: Writing about Grief in Creative Nonfiction, a One-Day Free Generative Class with Vanessa Mártir

When: January 27th, 2021, 7-9pm EST

Where: Via Zoom

How much: Free/Donation-based

I’ve been writing about grief for as long as I can remember, but the topic took on a different urgency when I lost my beloved brother in 2013 and reeled into the darkest time of my life. I tried to write, but the writing was choppy and didn’t make sense. When I described it as “staccato or clave with no rhythm,” a friend said: “Maybe it’s not supposed to make sense… That’s why jazz fucked up the world—it was the grief of a people.” I turned to my journal and to literature. I needed to see how other writers have written about loss and devastation. How did they find words? 

I’ve since read thousands of essays, memoirs, novels and poems that center grief and loss. As with most of my classes, I didn’t know I was creating this class for years, and when I finally did, it was because I wish I’d had the guidance back then too.

In this class, we will cover:
– What is grief? 
– How can we write about about this complex, abstract emotion in nuanced ways? 
– How can we bring the reader into our stories?
– What can we learn from reading about this topic?
– How can we make our tear-soaked writings into literature?

To join us on January 27th, 7-9pm EST, send an email to with “Writing about Grief” in the subject line. I’ll see you then.

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