From Memories to the Page: The Gentle, Wild Art of Memoir Writing

The Gentle, Wild Art of Memoir Writing    –A Life Stories Writing Course

Write your stories, one by one.

This is a six to eight-week curriculum which brings together grown-ups, ages 55 and up, who have lived to tell. We meet for 2 hours each week to study the craft of writing and to write, write, write life stories.

The process?

Memories are jogged in unique and creative ways.

Resistance and procrastination issues are addressed.

Writing blocks are gently dissolved.

Important aspects of the craft of writing are taught.

Students learn how to give and receive positive feedback and encouragement, and to develop a personal writing practice that works.

This WRITE MEMOIR course was developed by Barbara Mayfield in 2014 and first offered at the Free Library of Philadelphia, Parkway Central Branch. Twenty men and women, ages 55 to 87,  wrote, read, and polished their stories. A few were professional writers, most were writing stories for the first time. It was magic.

Since then, 6-weeks sessions have been held at the Trails End Cafe,   Main Line Art Center, the Narberth Bookshop, and at Barbara’s studio in Norristown.

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UPCOMING CLASSES and Events for 2020:

Michelle's memoir essays, gathered together in a casual format.
Michelle’s memoir essays, gathered together in a casual forma

An 8-week session begins February 25, 2020. There are 3 spots left in this class.

Tuesday Mornings 10 a.m. – Noon, at  Trail’s End Cafe in Bala Cynwyd, PA.

(A class on Wednesday mornings, 10am-Noon, is forming. Contact Barbara for details.)

This eight-week curriculum brings together grown-ups of any age who have lived to tell. We meet for 2 hours each week to study the craft of writing and to write, write, write our life stories.

During the 8 weeks, memories are jogged in unique and creative ways, resistance and procrastination issues are addressed, writing blocks are dissolved, and important aspects of the craft of writing are taught.

Students learn how to give and receive positive feedback and encouragement, and to develop a writing practice that works for them. This course will benefit writers at any level of skill & experience. Beginners are welcome. We will have a reserved room at the cafe, which is located in the historic Bala Train Station building. Coffee and cafe fare can be purchased.

Contact Barbara directly with questions and to enroll.

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Barbara Mayfield’s The Gentle, Wild Art of Memoir Writing Workshop presents:

Prompted to Write —a salon-style reading of memoir essays at the Trail’s End Cafe

Trail's End Cafe, Bala Cynwyd
Trail’s End Cafe, Bala Cynwyd

Sunday, April 5, 2020 1pm til about 2

Come out for a lovely Sunday afternoon to the cafe and hear stories and essays from 5 writers from the Workshop.

Stories about a grandmother’s crystal necklace, a 48-hour dog, coffee and wine, an auntie’s cape, Barbie’s Dreamhouse, a mother-in-law named Faye, expensive shoes, hair-do’s, a Confirmation name, Julia and Margaret from Ireland, and a bout of scarlet fever.

Admission is free and open to the public.

Beverages, food and snacks are available for purchase at the cafe.

TheTrailsEndCafe.com   (484) 429-9514 In the Cynwyd Station, 375 Conshohocken State Rd, Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004

Contact Barbara at 505-231-4774 (mobile/text)

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Memoir essays in their binder. Janice rocked this part.
Memoir essays in their binder. Janice rocked this part.

“The range of voices in the class is amazing. The fact that everyone is writing so authentically is because of your safe container and gentle encouragement……you’ve got the special sauce!”—E.K. Villanova, PA

“The memoir course being given at the senior center (Free Library of Phila Senior Services) by Barbara Mayfield is the best program I have ever gone to at the library and I have gone to many wonderful ones at FLP since I was a small child. It is a miracle that for the first time, I am able to overcome writing blocks, to be able to both write and share aloud my writing.”—H.L., Philadelphia, PA

“I make my living as a storyteller, and I know my way around a narrative arc, character development, plot pacing, and creative blocks. But no artist every outgrows the need for structured learning situations and master teachers, like Barbara Mayfield…..Ms. Mayfield creates a safe structure where nothing is off limits, everybody is nudged toward the edge of their comfort zones, but nobody is pushed….”—Megan Hicks, Storyteller, Rose Valley, PA

Contact Barbara about enrolling in a course or to bring the course to your group.