TLA Classes

We offer online classes to help you deepen your understanding of Transformative Language Arts, explore the craft of various genres and arts related to TLA, and develop your livelihood, community work, and service related to TLA.

Designed and taught by leading teachers, transformative language artists and activists, and master facilitators (want to be one of them?), these classes offer you ample opportunities to grow your art of words, your business and service, and your conversation with your life work.

The online nature of the classes allows you to participate from anywhere in the world (provided you have internet access) at any time of the day while, and at the same time, the intimate and welcoming atmosphere of the classes helps students find community, inspiration, and greater purpose.

While each class is unique to the teacher's style, all classes include hands-on activities (writing, storytelling, theater, spoken word, visual arts, music and/or other prompts), plus great resources, readings, and guidance. We use the online educational platform, Wet Ink for our classes. Our classes generally combine a combination of in-person meetings on Zoom and asynchronous gatherings via Wet Ink:

  • Our Community Online Classes have a set period of time, ranging from four to six weeks with a small cohort of 5 to 25 people. Every Wednesday a new weekly module opens for you to engage with on your own time, with forums and opportunities to share, interact, and receive feedback from peers and the teacher. If the teacher wants to schedule a live meeting, they will coordinate directly with enrolled participants. Classes remain open and available to enrolled participants for at least a week after the class end date.

Enrollment Cost

Classes are priced by the number of weeks they run, and members get a $20 discount. Early Bird rates end two weeks before the class start date, and registration increases by $40 thereafter.

Each registration is for one participant only, and all classes, unless arrangements are approved beforehand by the teacher and the TLA Network managing director, are for people age 16 and up.

NOTE: When there is a sale, the class page only displays the non-member discounted price. If you are a member, it will show the member discount once you start the registration process.

Cancellation & Refund Policy

Cancellations: A nonrefundable fee of 20% is included in each registration. No cancellations after the class begins. In the case of extenuating circumstances, please contact us.

Low Enrollment Cancellations: Classes that do not meet a minimum enrollment may be canceled a minimum of 3 days prior to the first class meeting with full refunds for all registrants.

Incomplete: Students seeking the certificate in TLA Foundations who cannot complete a class due to extenuating circumstances may be granted a discounted registration on the next available offering of that class. To be eligible for the discount students must communicate their circumstance to the teacher as soon as possible.

Community Online Classes

    • 20 April 2022
    • (EDT)
    • 01 June 2022
    • (EDT)
    • Online
    • 9


    In this creativity-generating workshop we’ll follow in the footsteps of genius eccentrics, outsiders and outlaws who've stepped beyond their perceived limitations, risking ridicule (and worse) to access their unique creative offerings — ultimately proving that what is outside the norm — and the academy — is often the most deliciously innovative and juicy. Together we’ll engage playful and boundary-pushing exercises to become co-conspirators in building a vibrant universe, soaked in the imagination’s brightest colors. Flexing our natural instinct for curiosity, we'll write beyond the world of convention, actively practicing how to find inspiration anywhere. A range of silly/light to inquisitive/profound themes tie together disparate artists of various mediums that we'll use as a diving board into short and extended creative exercises. We’ll ignite creative experiments in non-writing mediums (just for fun!) in order to aid our writing. We’re after a hands on, interactive experience aimed at shaking up and pushing the edges of the creative spirit. The ultimate hope is for the writer to surprise themselves.

    Week by Week

    Each week we’ll engage with a series of diverse artists in different mediums, as well as a packet of multiple poems, and other supplemental readings revolving around a central theme. In response, non-writing experiments, as well as short and long writing prompts will be given in service of generating new work. We’ll share encouraging feedback throughout the process — staying away from critique in this course, opting for questions, curiosities and other ways to push the imagination further.

    Writers we’ll read: Amiri Baraka, Tracy K. Smith, George Bradley, Nathalie Handal, Audre Lorde, Etheridge Knight, Zora Neal Hurston, Phillis Wheatley,  Maggie Nelson, Jane Hershfield, Danielle DeTiberus, Kim Addonizio, Yona Harvey, Pablo Neruda, Michael Waters, Joseph O. Legaspi, Mahogany L. Browne,  Safia Elhillo, Reg E Gaines, Eve Ewing, etc.

    Week One: Mashups, Remixes, Recycling: the Art of Re-appropriation

    Artist inspiration: Nancy Chunn, Noah Purifoy, Joseph Cornell, El Anatsui, erasure poems, centos, etc.

    Week Two: Diving into Sky, Calling in the Sea: Imagining the Beyond

    Artist inspiration: Sun Ra, Jason De Caires, science fiction illustration, Guo Fengyi, Octavia Butler, etc.

    Week Three: Unshackled Voices / The Rose that Bloomed From Concrete

    Artist inspiration: Etheridge Knight, Phyllis Wheatley, Anthony Papa, Bill Traylor, The Lady Lifers, etc.

    Week Four: Fracturing the Mirror: Redefining Self = Redefining the World

    Artist inspiration: Frida Kahlo, RiotGrrrl Manifesto, Cindy Sherman, Annegret Soltau, Afghani Women's Landays, etc.

    Week Five: I Love What I Love: Honoring the Obsessive Genius Itch

    Artist inspiration: Yayoi Kusama, Xenobia Bailey, Gregory Blackstock, Gee’s Bend Quilts, Adolf Wolfi, etc.

    Week Six: Ancient/Future Fly: The Art of Adornment

    Artist inspiration: David Wojnarowicz, Kalinga tattoo artists, the Omo people, Delphine Diallo, Alexander McQueen, etc.

    Take-away: Getting Messy: Hyper experimentation and the Glory of Imperfection

    Artist inspiration: Judith Scott, Cy Twombly, Doug Kearney, etc.

    Who Should Take This Class

    This generative workshop is for writers looking to combat writer’s block, begin a new collection, try something out of the ordinary and have some fun! It is a low pressure setting for new writers who are curious about entering the writing process, and a place for experienced writers to push their boundaries into new expressions and mediums. 

    Format

    This is an online class, hosted on the online teaching platform, Wet Ink. The Wet Ink platform allows students to log in on their own time to post comments and critiques directly to authors’ works. You can also view deadlines, track revisions, and watch video or listen to audio. At the end of the class, each student will receive an email that contains an archive of all their content and interactions. 

    The day before class begins, you’ll receive an invitation to join Wet Ink. There are no browser requirements, and Wet Ink is mobile-friendly. If you have any questions about the technical requirements, please email tlan.coordinator@gmail.com.

    Students should expect to spend 3 hours per week perusing resources and readings, engaging in several writing/creation prompts, and briefly responding to peers’ work. From our interactions, we sustain a welcoming and inspiring community together.


    About the Facilitator

    Caits Meissner is the author of the illustrated hybrid poetry book Let It Die Hungry (The Operating System, 2016), and The Letter All Your Friends Have Written You (Well&Often, 2012), co-written with poet Tishon Woolcock. The recipient of multiple artist residencies and fellowships, including the BOAAT Writers Retreat and The Pan-African Literary Forum, Caits is widely published in literary journals including The Literary Review, Narrative, Adroit, Drunken Boat and The Offing. She has taught, consulted and co-created extensively for over 15 years across a wide spectrum of communities, with a special focus on imprisoned people, women and youth. Caits holds a BFA in Communication Design from Pratt Institute, and an MFA in Creative Writing from the City College of New York. She currently serves as the Prison and Justice Writing Program Manager at PEN America.

    • 18 May 2022
    • (EDT)
    • 29 June 2022
    • (EDT)
    • Online
    • 2


    Sometimes our life stories might seem like a conspicuous puzzle we can’t put together, or perhaps a riddle we can’t solve. You might struggle with self-expression, feelings of low self-worth, and issues that impact your physical and mental well-being. You try so hard to put it all on the back burner but eventually you couldn’t because it’s too exhausting. Repression is exhausting. This workshop will help you use the medium of flash fiction and its different forms and techniques—stories fewer than 1000 words— to explore what lurks in the shadow of the subconscious. Transformation and healing may be generated by illuminating the conflicts hidden deep within our psyches through writing.

    We’ll also explore the subconscious elements of The Shadow and Polarity by looking into voice and point of view in a story. We’ll look into attachment issues and defense mechanisms from childhood which will help us develop authentic believable characters for our stories. We’ll discover the connection between colors in the Max Luscher Test and the four major pillars/ emotions/values required for both the survival and well-being of the human psyche, after which we’ll be able to use color as metaphor alluding to setting and plot. We’ll also explore dream symbols––the language of direct communication between us and the subconscious. We’ll experiment with Mosaic flash and Hermit crab flash forms to create a dream-like surreal setting.

    Week by Week

    Week One: What is Flash Fiction?

    You will be introduced to flash fiction and it’s different forms and techniques. You’ll find out ways to use flash fiction in particular to zoom in on a particular moment in time––a moment of loss, a moment of joy, or even a moment of revelation. Flash also offers the possibility of showcasing an entire lifetime in moments. Those moments are the world of your story. Flash fiction in particular is the one form that offers the most accessibility to delivering emotions. It’s a cross between the traditional short story and the poem, enjoying great flexibility and concision— however contradictory that might seem— that allows the writer to save time while still capitalizing on quality and depth of content.

    We’ll be looking into:

    1)        Traditionally narrated flash

    2)        Hermit Crab flash

    3)        Segmented/ Mosiac flash

    4)        Prose-poem flash

    5)        Flash in a moment 

    6)        A life-time in a flash

    7)        Polyphonic or braided flash 

    8)        Surreal flash fiction 

    Week Two: Polarity and the Shadow.  

    The block/fear/perception of not having any new stories to tell is quite strong, but what makes a story different than any other is the narrative voice and the character’s perception. In every story there’s a conflict, some sort of need and maybe a thwarted desire. 

    We’ll start exploring what’s truly hindering our characters from attaining their desires when discovering the concept of Polarity. We’ll discover what it is and how it shapes the perception of our characters and reflexes through voice and point of view. Polarity ultimately leads to the manifestation of The Shadow lurking deep within our subconscious. This Shadow represents all that is rejected and repressed by our characters and ourselves as well. What our characters reject can haunt and plague them in the form of obstacles, adversaries or even chronic physical and mental illness. We’ll have reading material that can inspire us to respond to the provided prompt.

    Week Three: (Character)

    Where it all starts.  Childhood Attachment Patterns. This week you’ll deep dive into what shapes the limited perspective of your characters. It all starts during childhood years. Attachment patterns result from the relationships your characters had with their care-taker/authority figures. Those relationships or attachment patterns can shape your characters’ personalities as adults, governing and accounting for their response to current relationships and stressors in the world of your story.

    Week Four: (Plot)

    How we survive. Defense and Coping Mechanisms. Plot is action or even a certain way of thought. After figuring out our characters’ attachment patterns which are expressed in the story through behaviors, attitudes and body language, we’ll start putting together how our characters cope with limitations and defend themselves in response to the induced obstacle/desire/ need they’re seeking in the story.

    Week Five: (Metaphor/Utilizing Strong Sensory Details)

    Colors. Colors! Colors?

    Attention to sensory details allows our stories to take a life of their own, capturing the reader’s attention. We’ll focus on bringing out emotional details through the use of color symbology. Our aim is to craft pieces that reflect the world of our ongoing story and to find the means to enable our characters to start resolving conflicts.

    Week Six: (The Unexpected Setting)

    Dreams. The setting of a story is by far more than just time and place. A character’s inner world can be reflected in the story through a dream-like sequence, a surreal setting that might be manifested into his/her everyday life. 

    Who Should Take This Class

    Creative writers, storytellers, teachers, healers, therapists, creative arts therapy students and practitioners, Writers planning memoirs, writers exploring Flash Fiction.

    Format

    This is an online class, hosted on the online teaching platform, Wet Ink, as well as Zoom. The Wet Ink platform allows students to log in on their own time to post comments and critiques directly to authors’ works. You can also view deadlines, track revisions, and watch video or listen to audio. At the end of the class, each student will receive an email that contains an archive of all their content and interactions. 

    The series will also include 3-4 Zoom meetings. The first Zoom meeting will take place in week three. We will continue to have a Zoom meeting each week till the end of the series. We do a final open mic Zoom meeting where participants read their finished piece , with the goal of building community and connection. 

    The day before class begins, you’ll receive an invitation to join Wet Ink. There are no browser requirements, and Wet Ink is mobile-friendly. If you have any questions about the technical requirements, please email tlan.coordinator@gmail.com.

    Students should expect to spend 3 hours per week perusing resources and readings, engaging in several writing/creation prompts, and briefly responding to peers’ work. From our interactions, we sustain a welcoming and inspiring community together.


    About the Facilitator

    Riham Adly is an award-winning flash fiction writer from Giza, Egypt. In 2013 her story “The Darker Side of the Moon” won the MAKAN award. She was short-listed several times for the Strand International Flash Fiction Contest. Riham is a Best of the NET and a Pushcart Prize nominee. Her work is included in the “Best Micro-fiction 2020” anthology. Her flash fiction has appeared in over fifty journals such as Litro Magazine, Lost Balloon, The Flash Flood, Bending Genres, The Citron Review, The Sunlight Press, Flash Fiction Magazine, Menacing Hedge, Flash Frontier, Flash Back, Ellipsis Zine, Okay Donkey, and New Flash Fiction Review among others.  Riham has worked as an assistant editor in 101 words magazine and as a first reader in Vestal Review magazine. Riham is the founder of the “Let’s Write Short Stories” and “ Let’s Write That Novel” in Egypt. She has taught creative writing all over Cairo for over five years with the goal of mentoring and empowering aspiring writers in her region.  Riham’s flash fiction collection “Love is Make-Believe” was  released and published in November 2021 by Clarendon House Publications in the UK.

    • 15 June 2022
    • (EDT)
    • 27 July 2022
    • (EDT)
    • Online
    • 12
    Register


    We all take, save, and inherit photographs of the people, places, and things that bring meaning, mystery, hope, and connection into our lives. These treasured personal archives will be the source of inspiration for writing as a means of restoring meaning, purpose, hope, and resilience during and after loss. Expressive writing prompted by personally chosen photos can help loved ones cope with what Pauline Boss calls the “ambiguous loss,” associated with dementia and Alzheimer’s. 

    Particularly, throughout this time of the pandemic, unexpected losses, without meaningful closure, have mounted for many people. In this course, we’ll use expressive writing, in poetry and prose, to help build resilience, restore meaning and purpose, and honor and celebrate relationships through legacy stories. TLA practitioners and writers at all levels of experience will imaginatively encounter personal photos sparked by questions that generate remarkable and uplifting writing experiences.

    Objectives & Goals

    1.  Participants will use personal photos as prompts for creative writing -  poetry, memoir, or stories that capture the personalities, relationships, rites of passage, cultural identity, and family history evoked by personal photos.  

    2.  Participants will recognize the healing aspects of storytelling from photos to build resilience and restore a sense of meaning, purpose, and value to life after loss.

    3.  Participants will use photos to probe and preserve memories, find purpose and meaning amidst loss and change, and express truth and beauty from relationships after loss.

    4.  Participants will explore the expressive benefits of writing from landscape and nature photos to connect with aspects of spirituality, safety, comfort, beauty, and transcendence.

    5.  TLA practitioners we will explore specific applications in your work with individuals and groups, such as coping with memory loss, Alzheimer’s, and dementia, and the healing power of telling end-of-life or legacy stories.

    Week by Week

    Week One: Entering the Three-Dimensional World of Photographs - Stimulate Meaning, Surprise, Delight, and Possibility 

    Week Two: Embracing The Imaginative Wonder - Exploring Role Reversal & Altered Point of View in Photos

    Week Three: Writing Truth & Beauty – Telling Relationship Histories, Exploring Significant Rites of Passages, and Recognizing Gifts that Keep On Giving

    Week Four: Exploring Nature, Landscape, & Favorite Places Photos - Stimulate Curiosity, Spirituality, Comfort, Relief, & Aesthetic Satisfaction & Transcendence

    Week Five: Crafting & Revision: Developing Your Raw Material - Exploring forms, including Portraits, Essays, Poems, Monologues, [Unsent] Letters, Dialogues, and Creative List-Making

    Week Six: Applications for TLA Artists, Writers, and Loved Ones – Ways to Share The Healing Power of Generating Legacy Stories from Photos

    Who Should Take This Class

    This course will serve writers and TLA practitioners at all levels of experience, as well as anyone interested in personal and artistic development.  Professionals and para-professionals who work with memory challenged seniors, as well as family members of those suffering from dementia and Alzheimer’s, and ambiguous loss, will find dynamic creative outlets for personal and professional development. Writers and artists with an interest in exploring the healing aspects of personal photos after loss may also be quite interested.

    Format

    This is an online class, hosted on the online teaching platform, Wet Ink, and on ZoomThe Wet Ink platform allows students to log in on their own time to post comments and critiques directly to students’ works. You can also view deadlines, track revisions, and watch video or listen to audio. At the end of the class, each student will receive an email that contains an archive of all their content and interactions. 

    The day before class begins, you’ll receive an invitation to join Wet Ink. There are no browser requirements, and Wet Ink is mobile-friendly. If you have any questions about the technical requirements, please email tlan.coordinator@gmail.com.

    This class includes weekly Wet Ink assignments, plus three bi-weekly webinars on Zoom (scheduled during the first week according to best availability of participants). Each week will consist of engaging content designed to spark personal reflection, discussion and dynamic writing to be shared in the group forum on Wet.Ink. Each week, participants will (1) upload at least one personal photo to share with others that they will use as the foundation of their weekly writing exploration; (2) read writing in progress of classmates and respond in discussion forum; (3) receive written comments on the writing and sharing from instructor; (4) share (optional) revisions of creative writing in Wet.Ink and (5) bring writing for discussion and sharing to three (recommended but optional) live Zoom webinars.

    Participants should expect to spend no more than 2 hours or so on the weekly writing prompt, revisions, reading and commenting on the work of others, viewing and participating in live discussion, and sharing works in progress live. We’ll create a safe and supportive environment, offering respectful support that inspires the development of every writer’s voice.


    About the Teacher

    Kelly DuMar, M.Ed. is a poet, playwright, and workshop leader who generates enlivening writing experiences for new and experienced writers. This is the fifth time Kelly has offered this monologue class for TLAN. Author of three poetry collections, girl in tree barkTree of the Apple, and All These Cures, Kelly is also author of Before You Forget— The Wisdom of Writing Diaries for Your Children. Kelly’s award winning plays have been produced around the US and Canada, and are published by dramatic publishers. She founded and produced the Our Voices Festival of Women Playwrights at Wellesley College for twelve years, and she is a past president of Playwright's Platform, Boston. For the past five years, Kelly has led the week-long Play Lab Intensive at the annual conference of the International Women's Writing Guild. Kelly is a certified psychodramatist, former psychotherapist, and Fellow in the American Society for Group Psychotherapy and Psychodrama. She founded Let’s Talk TLA, a bi-monthly tele-conference and poetry open mic for members of the Transformative Language Arts Association. Currently, Kelly serves on the board & faculty of The International Women’s Writing Guild. Kelly inspires readers of #NewThisDay - her daily photo-inspired blog - with her mindful reflections on a writing life. You can learn more about Kelly, at www.kellydumar.com.

    • 15 June 2022
    • (EDT)
    • 27 July 2022
    • (EDT)
    • Online
    • 11
    Register


    Explore how to use narrative-based models to strengthen your professional voice, better communicate who you are and what you do as a transformative language artist, and further shape the emerging field and practice of TLA.

    Artists, activists, facilitators, and scholars contribute toward the emerging field and profession of TLA practitioners. In this class, we'll hone our abilities and build tools for communicating our individual and community TLA work. Particularly relevant today is a call to action for a greater consciousness-raising in power and privilege, igniting movements such as #MeToo, Black Lives Matter, and Movement for Trans Lives. There is a greater demand for skilled TLA practitioners who can create space for truth-telling and healing for silenced voices in our culture. We are in the midst of a robust culture shift demanding processes for change.

    Yvette will use models and frameworks to showcase the story of your TLA practice, articulate your skills, and identify your targeted audience to market your work.

    If you imagine a way to effectively and passionately convey your whys, whos, and whats of your practice and to market yourself effectively, this is the course for you. In a nutshell, this course will guide participants to name succinctly: This is my body of work. This is who I am. This is with whom I work.


    Objectives & Goals

    Participants can expect to:

    • share experiences to expand further and deepen the context and content of your personal TLA practice and its connection to the profession;
    • design a TLA niche and target audience to support Right Livelihood; 
    • write a one-page business plan map for your TLA practice and, 
    • develop and apply a storytelling framework for marketing your TLA practice.

    Participants will reflect on and write a high-level overview of their TLA practice and its supporting theories to articulate the impact and advance TLA's reputation. The framework used to write their summary will support TLA research and practices. Using a storytelling template, participants will build a narrative for marketing and branding themselves and their target market profile.


    Week by Week

    Week One: Introduction to TLA Practice as Personal Story, Theory, and Goals

    This week, we'll explore who we are, what's our TLA practice, and what theories support our work. We will identify our goals for the class.

    Week Two: Who Am I?

    This week, we dive deeper into first-person storytelling on our histories, including the theories that have helped us gain a greater understanding of ourselves, identity, and personhood. We shall produce a few short personal essays and exchange supportive feedback.

    Week Three: With Whom Do I work?

    This week, we dive deeper through first-person storytelling on the people we are currently working within our TLA practice or the audience with whom we wish to work. We'll unpack the"why" to get at the core of our authentic connection to our desired population. We shall produce a few short personal essays on the needs and experiences of our audience.

    Week Four: What is Our Work?

    This week, we will examine the core and pathways of our TLA practice. We will brainstorm to expand our thinking of our work, and then reduce ideas to a focused and nuanced practice

    Week Five: One Page Business Plan Map

    We'll develop a one-page business plan that will put our TLA practice into practical and sustainable work.

    Week Six: Storytelling Our Work

    We'll wrap up class by using a branding framework to draft a story that speaks about our TLA practice. We'll identify ways we can use our story as a marketing tool to build our social arts practice.


    Who Should Take This Class

    This online class is for facilitators and practitioners (whether you're a writer, storyteller, performer, activist, educator, healer, or community leader). If you wish to document your work and your background creatively, this course is for you. If you want a high-level business plan that maps out how your practice operates, well, this course is for you! This online class works well for individuals wishing dedicated time to write about their storytelling, personal narrative, and narrative storytelling based facilitation practice. This course will help participants establish their "brand" and marketing through stories.


    Format

    This is an online class, hosted on the online teaching platform, Wet InkThe Wet Ink platform allows students to log in on their own time to post comments and critiques directly to students’ works. You can also view deadlines, track revisions, and watch video or listen to audio. At the end of the class, each student will receive an email that contains an archive of all their content and interactions. 

    The day before class begins, you’ll receive an invitation to join Wet Ink. There are no browser requirements, and Wet Ink is mobile-friendly. If you have any questions about the technical requirements, please email tlan.coordinator@gmail.com.


    About the Teacher

    Yvette Angelique Hyater-Adams, MA-TLA, is the Principal and Chief Storytelling Officer at Narratives for Change. Yvette Angelique is a poet, teaching artist, and proven culture change strategist. Yvette's recent artistic work includes: a digital poetry chapbook book, Something Old, New, Borrowed, and The Blues; a poetry chapbook, Shut Eyes See; and storytelling performances--See the Girl Monologues, and Europa: Zora Neale Hurston, Carlos Santana, and Me. Her poems appear in journals and anthologies, and her essays and book chapters contribute to the discourse on transformative language arts for personal and social change. Yvette teaches creative writing and storytelling to heal, create literary art, for consciousness-raising and advocacy. She is on the editorial board for the international publication Practising Social Change. She is Chair of the Board of Directors for Alternate Roots, a longtime organization for Southern artists and cultural workers.

    • 20 July 2022
    • (EDT)
    • 31 August 2022
    • (EDT)
    • Online
    • 15
    Register


    "Of course, it is all in the noticing, which is different than looking. It requires a more active, searching attention. A generosity, I would even call it.”

    ~Caits Meissner

    When you enter a new environment, what’s the first thing you notice? Sounds? Colors? Patterns of movement? Maybe a scent reminding you of something, or a taste that teases? We’re continually immersed in information our senses naturally gather, sort, and present to our conscious mind. When we pause to drink deeply from this information—to let it ripple through our bones—we are noticing deeply. 

    Noticing connects us with inspiration so we are moved to create. It connects us with wounded places in ourselves and our culture so we are moved to engage and catalyze change. Noticing our internal state helps us accompany ourselves with truth and kindness, witness the internal effects of our work and recognize if our cup is full or emptying. 

    In this six-session class, we will explore our own noticing patterns—the ways we notice and what we notice—through multi-sensory exercises and writing invitations. We will consider if we’d like to change established patterns or cultivate expanded noticing to deepen our well of resilience and engagement.

    A few of the voices we’ll encounter: Joy Harjo, Margaret J. Wheatley, David Abram, Terry Tempest Williams, Yo-Yo Ma, May Sarton, Rick Hanson, Louise DeSalvo, Camille T. Dungy, David G. Haskell, Mary Oliver, Tarn Wilson, Heather Durham, Ross Gay, Aimee Nezhukumatathil, Katie Holten, Henri Rousseau, Yayoi Kusama, Andrew Wyeth, Frida Kahlo, and Derrick Jensen.

    Week by Week

    Each week we will take our exploring, noticing selves on another adventure to discover more about what and how we notice and to cultivate a deeper connection to the seat of our noticing—our senses. 

    Weekly classes will invite participants to engage in an interplay of action and reflection activities culminating in writing invitations to explore and integrate insights. Most weeks will include an embodiment practice, such as a mudra or breathing exercise. Other weekly actions could be reading essays or book excerpts, watching videos, experiencing a guided meditation, listening to music, engaging with visual arts, self-guided movement, engaging with the natural world, developing a ceremony or ritual. 

    Class will be a hybrid of Wet Ink and weekly Zoom co-writing/Q&A meetings tentatively scheduled for Tuesday, July 26 at 7pm EDT (UTC -4); Sunday, August 14 at 3pm EDT (UTC -4); and Saturday, August 27 at 11am EDT (UTC -4).

    Participants should expect to spend 2 - 3 hours per week on the class activities. 

    Week 1 - Noticing Our Noticing

    Week 2 - Connecting with Our Senses

    Week 3 - Noticing Our Relationship to Words

    Week 4 - Noticing Inward

    Week 5 - Noticing Outward

    Week 6 - Noticing What’s Emerging

    Who Should Take This Class

    Whether we’re working to make change in our communities, or if we’re simply stretched-thin by life people exploring personal growth (or both!) the more we understand about what and how we notice, the more we will understand its effects on our creativity, our resilience, and our ability to stay engaged so we are expending our creating, working, exploring energy successfully and sustainably. The more closely we are connected with and listening to our senses, the more we have to draw on to feed both our creativity and our resilience.

    This class will benefit word artists of all kinds: facilitators, coaches, counselors, activists, educators, and explorers. It will serve anyone looking to connect more deeply with the source of their creativity and/or the source of their resilience. It will nourish people working to make change in their communities, who have been stretched thin by life, or who are at a crossroads in their personal growth explorations. 

    Listening with Our Bodies: Writing Toward Resilience is designed to support people willing to be curious and spelunk around their inner workings, excavating with words to illuminate the caverns. 

    (Sadly, class participants are limited to human beings, though only because we haven’t yet developed a way to video chat with trees or whales. Maybe next time?)

    Format

    This is an online class, hosted on the online teaching platform, Wet Ink, as well as Zoom. The Wet Ink platform allows students to log in on their own time to post comments and critiques directly to authors’ works. You can also view deadlines, track revisions, and watch video or listen to audio. At the end of the class, each student will receive an email that contains an archive of all their content and interactions. 

    The day before class begins, you’ll receive an invitation to join Wet Ink. There are no browser requirements, and Wet Ink is mobile-friendly. If you have any questions about the technical requirements, please email tlan.coordinator@gmail.com.

    Students should expect to spend 2-3 hours per week perusing resources and readings, engaging in several writing/creation prompts, and briefly responding to peers’ work. From our interactions, we sustain a welcoming and inspiring community together.

    About the Facilitator

    Tracie Nichols, M.A. writes poetry and facilitates writing groups from her small desk under the wide reach of two very old and very loved Sycamore trees in southeastern Pennsylvania. She’s a Transformative Language Artist in process, and is fascinated by the potential of language to heal and transform people and communities. Putting her master’s degree in Transformative Learning and Change to good use over the past two decades, Tracie has designed and facilitated many virtual and in-person lifelong learning experiences on a truly wide range of topics for small groups. She’s just beginning her foray into submitting poetry for publication and has already accumulated a healthy pile of rejections rejections to her few joyfully celebrated acceptances. Learn more at tracienichols.com.

    • 07 September 2022
    • (EDT)
    • 12 October 2022
    • (EDT)
    • Online
    • 13
    Register

    This six-week webinar includes six learning modules with writing prompts delivered to Wet.Ink, weekly comments by instructor & peers, and 3 LIVE Play Labs (TBD) via Zoom with actors to read scripts in progress. Additionally, the course culminates in a Showcase of works in process, performed by actors, via Zoom on Thursday, October 13, 2022, 6:30 p.m. ET

    There’s beauty and meaning to mine from your life story, and this workshop will help you artistically express what you’ve overcome and achieved, and creatively share your experience to benefit others through the medium of theatre. You’ll learn how to write successful dramatic monologues based on your life that are personally meaningful, emotionally satisfying, and relevant and engaging for an audience. In class, through thematic writing prompts and creative exploration, you’ll develop your ordinary and extraordinary life experiences into powerful, dramatic monologues that can be performed – by you or an actor – with universal appeal. In class meetings will present elements of dramatic structure and explore the artistic qualities necessary for an effective dramatic monologue.

    We’ll explore the role of conflict, plot, communicating subtext, voice, narrative, and the importance of set-up. New writing will be generated in and out of class, shared in class and aspects of revision will be presented and practiced.

    SPECIAL FEATURE: The course will culminate in an online SHOWCASE of works in progress generated by participants, featuring readings by actors, on Thursday, October 12, 2022.

    “Memoir as Monologue taught me the power of my own story. Kelly’s guidance on creating effective drama, her concrete feedback on improving my work, the nurturing environment she created for participants and the excellent resources she brought to the table opened a whole new world for me. This was one of the most effective online classes I’ve taken.”  Diane Glass, 2016 class member.

    Read an interview here with Kelly on this dynamic class. 

    Week by Week 

    Week One: Memoir vs. Monologue: How Dramatic Writing Makes the Leap from Page to Stage

    All kinds of expressive writing, from diary/journal writing to memoir to poetry, foster healing and personal growth. Writing for the stage offers a uniquely imaginative process for healing and transformation as well. We’ll explore how writing for the stage differs from writing a memoir or personal essay. You’ll learn tools for adapting personal story for dramatic writing as a theatrical experience that engages an audience. Elements of dramatic structure will be introduced.

    Week Two: The Art of Crafting Set-Up

    We’ll explore taking a short piece of memoir and shaping it theatrically, focusing on developing an effective dramatic set-up. Crafting an effective monologue  set up involves imagination and immediacy, a distinctive voice, cohesive narrative structure, meaningful theme, and cohesive plot. We’ll explore personal themes of life choices, mistakes, roads taken and not taken, encountering internal and external obstacles, new beginnings, thresholds, rites of passage as the source for crafting dramatic monologues.

    Week Three: Conflict – Experiencing Obstacles, Crafting Resilience

    Conflict is a universal experience, a fact of life, and a necessary element of dramatic writing. How we meet it, how we shape it, how we share it is the stuff of wise living and great storytelling. We’ll experiment and explore conflict as a personal encounter and literary device and as a necessary stage of any journey toward wholeness. This session will explore how to artistically construct compelling narratives from personal conflicts, shaping the experience of resilience to involve and inspire an audience.

    Week Four: Showing Versus Telling – Voice as a Vehicle for Dramatic Action

    The memoir writer uses written description and authorial narration to illustrate setting, character, internal thoughts, external actions, feelings, motivations, needs, conflicts and consequences. The dramatic writer of monologue must craft, from the voice of a single character/speaker, compelling speech and gesture to show, rather than tell a story. We’ll explore how monologue presents a speaker’s needs, motivation and conflict in a way that involves the audience by establishing a “willing suspension of disbelief.”


    Week Five: Creative Tools for Revising & Fine-Tuning

    Focus on how the process of revision moves from page to stage - and stage back to page; additional thematic writing prompts for use with writing already generated in class; discussing strategies for going deeper; dealing with creative blocks and putting it all together – theme, arc, voice, stagecraft.


    Week Six: The Art of Collaboration – Presenting Your Monologue

    Whether or not you plan on personally performing your dramatic monologue or putting it in the hands of an actor, your writing will take on additional dimension in the journey toward sharing it with an audience. We’ll explore aspects of collaborating with a director, an actor, a designer, producer or publisher in the process of reaching an audience as well as resources for finding potential collaborators.


    Whether or not you plan on personally performing your dramatic monologue or putting it in the hands of an actor, your writing will take on additional dimension in the journey toward sharing it with an audience. We’ll explore aspects of collaborating with a director, an actor, a designer, producer or publisher in the process of reaching an audience as well as resources for finding potential collaborators.


    Who Should Take This Class

    This class is ideal for people who do word arts–writing, storytelling, spoken word, theater, and other forms of TLA–and are ready to put themselves out there more in the world and in their work. Because of the innovate exercises and engaging discussions, this class would be very appropriate for both new and seasoned word artists who want to learn more, and find greater community together.


    This is an online class with weekly assignments in Wet Ink, including three, bi-weekly, webinars on Zoom (scheduled during the first week according to best availability of participants).


    PLEASE NOTE: THERE IS AN ADDITIONAL ONLINE SHOWCASE where works in progress will be presented as readings, and performed by trained actors, on October 13, 2022.


    PLAY LAB FEE: This Webinar charges a small additional fee for actor stipends. Guest actors are in attendance at the three Play Labs and final Showcase to perform works in process for the writers. 


    Format

    Each week will consist of engaging content designed to spark personal reflection, discussion and dynamic writing to be shared via the online teaching platform, Wet InkThe Wet Ink platform allows writers to log in on their own time to post comments and critiques directly to authors’ works. You can also view deadlines, track revisions, and watch video or listen to audio. At the end of the class, each student will receive an email that contains an archive of all their content and interactions. 

    The day before class begins, you’ll receive an invitation to join Wet Ink. There are no browser requirements, and Wet Ink is mobile-friendly. If you have any questions about the technical requirements, please email  tlan.coordinator@gmail.com.

    Each week will consist of engaging content designed to spark personal reflection, discussion and dynamic writing to be shared in Wet InkEach week will also include various texts to help us explore disability and creative modalities that can help us deal with and manage chronic illness and disability, and will include discussions of the readings and our personal experiences, as well as creative writing prompts. Students should plan to spend 3-4 hours per week on the class. However, because our spoons vary day to day, the class will be formatted in a way that is flexible for working when you can and resting when you need.


    Participants should expect to spend no more than 2 hours or so on the weekly writing prompt, revisions, reading and commenting on the work of others, viewing and participating in live discussion, and sharing works in progress live. We’ll create a safe and supportive environment, offering respectful support that inspires the development of every writer’s voice.


    About the Teacher

    Kelly DuMar, M.Ed. is a poet, playwright, and workshop leader who generates enlivening writing experiences for new and experienced writers. This is the fifth time Kelly has offered this monologue class for TLAN. Author of three poetry collections, girl in tree barkTree of the Apple, and All These Cures, Kelly is also author of Before You Forget— The Wisdom of Writing Diaries for Your Children. Kelly’s award winning plays have been produced around the US and Canada, and are published by dramatic publishers. She founded and produced the Our Voices Festival of Women Playwrights at Wellesley College for twelve years, and she is a past president of Playwright's Platform, Boston. For the past five years, Kelly has led the week-long Play Lab Intensive at the annual conference of the International Women's Writing Guild. Kelly is a certified psychodramatist, former psychotherapist, and Fellow in the American Society for Group Psychotherapy and Psychodrama. She founded Let’s Talk TLA, a bi-monthly tele-conference and poetry open mic for members of the Transformative Language Arts Association. Currently, Kelly serves on the board & faculty of The International Women’s Writing Guild. Kelly inspires readers of #NewThisDay - her daily photo-inspired blog - with her mindful reflections on a writing life. You can learn more about Kelly, at www.kellydumar.com.

    • 14 September 2022
    • (EDT)
    • 26 October 2022
    • (EDT)
    • Online
    • 13
    Register

    In this fun and interactive class, we’ll explore journey narratives that go beyond the traditional hero’s journey. Collaborative, inclusive paths that have been identified include the heroine’s journey, the journey of integrity, the seeker’s journey, and the healer’s journey, each encompassing their own narrative arc and distinct beats to their paths. These narratives tend to be more expansive, including the behavior and plight of the individual yet elevating the focus to another level, involving each person’s interaction with others and effects on society at large. For six lovely weeks, we’ll investigate and discuss each of these journeys through their appearance in literature, film, fairy tales from around the globe, and the lives of public figures, supplementing our study with stimulating poetry, videos, and podcasts. We’ll engage with creative and expressive writing prompts, SoulCollage®, metacognitive drawing (no artistic ability required), and other interactive exercises and activities designed to gain a deeper understanding of these journeys for use in our creative projects, with equal emphasis given to how aspects of these narratives exist within our own lives. Our premise will be that as we discover where we are in our own journey, we can best help ourselves and offer our gifts both to those closest to us and to efforts for social change that are calling our names. Join us for the journey!

    Week by Week

    Each week will include readings, thoughtful discussions, writing prompts, journaling exercises, and other imaginative activities related to the designated journey, via the Wet Ink platform. Relevant videos and podcasts will be shared for further reflection. By focusing on the specified narrative arc in literature, film, and the lives of public figures, participants will be encouraged to explore how aspects of these journeys exist within their own lives and how the gifts of the journey can be effectively used to manifest social change in their own environments. The three 90-minute zoom meetings will offer additional opportunities for creative interaction and playful activities in real time for further investigation into each journey’s pathway. Readings will be made available online and will include stories, essays, poetry, and excerpts from work by Mary Oliver, Elizabeth Lesser, Gail Carriger, Albert Murray, Christopher Vogler, Toko-pa Turner, Carol S. Pearson, and Maria Tatar, amongst others. Conversation and the giving of feedback to written work will be honored and guided by principles of Amherst Writers and Artists and The Circle Way.

    Week 1: We’ll begin by giving attention to the well-known hero’s journey, as a foundation and start-point for our exploration of more inclusive and collaborative journey narratives. We’ll also look at the journey of the creative who is working towards change, giving participants the opportunity to think about the material on a more personal level.

    Zoom #1: Our first meeting will include an introductory activity, followed by a review of the hero’s journey and a discussion of the need for other journey narratives. Through poetry reading, free-writing to various prompts, and mind-mapping, we’ll generate excitement and chart our path for the weeks ahead.

    Week 2: This week continues with a focus on the heroine’s journey, as developed by Maureen Murdock and Victoria Lynn Schmidt, as well as the corresponding journeys of people from marginalized and oppressed groups.

    Week 3: We’ll focus on the healing journey this week, described as “a physical and mental/emotional/spiritual paradigm shift that enables protagonists to accept their circumstances and view themselves with compassion.”

    Zoom #2: For our second meeting, we’ll hear from guest speaker Lisa Marchiano—a writer and narrative medicine expert who focuses on the heroine’s journey—to conclude our discussion of the journeys studied in weeks two and three. Following her talk, we’ll engage with writing prompts along with a fun and enlightening metacognitive drawing exercise.

    Week 4: This week’s focus will be the journey of integrity, identified by Nancer Ballard, in which “the protagonist makes a deliberate decision to speak out or take action based on the needs or plight of others,” even though the decision “may have irreparable adverse personal impacts that are beyond the protagonist’s control.” Martin Luther King, Jr. is thought to have dealt with the conflicts of this journey, balancing his call to public service with his love for and duty to his immediate family. 

    Week 5: The seeker’s journey will be the focus of this week, as developed by Savannah Jackson, who has stated “to adjust what you are doing and to seek out something new that works better for you is to take care of yourself. It is how we can live consciously and creatively in an evolving world.” In this context, we’ll discuss Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs and the offerings of other spiritual seekers as part of our exploration.

    Zoom#3: For our last meeting, we’ll discuss the most recent journeys studied, then use journaling prompts involving favorite films and literature, as well as SoulCollage®, to discover or revisit the themes and journeys that have brought each of us to this current moment and that can serve as guideposts to light our path ahead.

    Week 6: For our final week, participants will contemplate and map out their own individual journeys, e.g. the journey to belonging, which may differ from those surveyed in this class. We’ll also play with the idea of the changing journey, whose path develops based on choices, circumstances, and synchronicity. We’ll conclude on a note of optimism, taking delight in the possibilities that exist for ourselves and the world as a result of renewed commitment to both self-compassion and social change.

    Who Should Take This Class

    This class welcomes creatives in any medium, from all levels of experience, who seek to delve into journey narratives for purposes of self-awareness and self-discovery, by way of compelling readings, interactive exercises, and imaginative prompts and activities. Participants looking to then take that knowledge and apply it—by mapping out their individual narrative arcs up to the present and meditating on next steps in their personal lives and efforts for social change—will benefit from this exploration.

    Format

    This is an online class, hosted on the online teaching platform, Wet Ink, as well as Zoom. The Wet Ink platform allows students to log in on their own time to post comments and critiques directly to authors’ works. You can also view deadlines, track revisions, and watch video or listen to audio. At the end of the class, each student will receive an email that contains an archive of all their content and interactions. 

    The day before class begins, you’ll receive an invitation to join Wet Ink. There are no browser requirements, and Wet Ink is mobile-friendly. If you have any questions about the technical requirements, please email tlan.coordinator@gmail.com.

    Students should expect to spend 2-3 hours per week perusing resources and readings, engaging in several writing/creation prompts, and briefly responding to peers’ work. From our interactions, we sustain a welcoming and inspiring community together.

    Zoom Meetings

    #1 - Saturday, September 17, 2022, 8-9:30 am Pacific Time 

    #2 - Wednesday, October 5, 2022, 4-5:30pm Pacific Time

    #3 - Sunday, October 23, 2022, 8-9:30 am Pacific Time 


    About the Facilitator

    Kimberly Lee left the practice of law some years ago to focus on motherhood, community work, and creative pursuits. A graduate of Stanford University and UC Davis School of Law, she is certified as a facilitator by Amherst Writers and Artists, Journal to the Self®, and SoulCollage®. Kimberly has served on the staffs of F(r)iction and Carve Magazines and is currently an editor and contributor at Literary Mama. She has facilitated workshops at conferences and retreats and is a teaching artist with Hugo House, Loft Literary, and San Diego Writers Ink. Her work has appeared in Fresh Ink, Words and Whispers, Toyon, Minerva Rising, The Ekphrastic Review, LA Parent, I Am Woman: Expressions of Black Womanhood in America, and elsewhere. Kimberly trusts in the magic of miracles and synchronicity and believes that everyone possesses creative genius and has unique gifts to share. She lives in Southern California with her husband and three children.

    • 13 October 2022
    • (EDT)
    • 16 October 2022
    • (EDT)
    • Online
    Register


    Our 2022 conference - The Power of Words: Hope is a Discipline - will feature three keynote presentations, more than 30 workshops, panel discussions, performances, constituency groups, celebrations, and more. The conference brings together writers, poets, artists, storytellers, performers, songwriters, community leaders, activists, healers, therapists, educators, health professionals, facilitators, and more, as we turn our collective energies to cultivating the Power of Words in all people, with the goal of transforming our world for the better. 

    This year, as transformative language artists, our work is aimed at inspiring, building unity and connection, sharing perspectives, and moving us collectively towards transitioning in the 21st century from Climate Emergency to Climate Emergence—the emergence of a more balanced, harmonious human relationship with all life on our beloved planet.

    The conference, founded in 2003, features workshops in six tracks: narrative medicine; social change; right livelihood (and making a living through the arts); ecological literacy, engaged spirituality, and performance/writing craft.

    Due to the continuing impact on our community of the pandemic, we will meet online, via Zoom. As always, we prioritize the health, safety, and economic well-being of our community, and look forward to gathering in person as soon as it makes sense to do so.

    Friday's Pre-Conference is open to all Conference attendees for an additional fee. The Pre-Conference will feature workshops and a panel discussion with the keynotes. 

    Pre-Conference 

    Friday, October 14, 10 - 5:30 PM EST

    The Pre-Conference will feature workshops with each of the keynotes. Don't miss the chance to spend the day in an intimate setting, learning from and with these three incredible transformative language artists. 


    The Pre-Conference is available for an additional fee of $130 and is open to all who are registered for the full weekend conference. Registration for the Pre-Conference opens up once you register for the full Power of Words Conference. 

    Power of Words Conference

    Friday, October 14, 6:30 - 8 PM EST

    Saturday, October 15, 10 AM - 8 PM EST

    Sunday, October 16, 10 AM - 4 PM EST

      Includes more than 30 workshops, panel discussions, performances, celebrations, and keynotes presentations. 



      2022 Keynotes

      Pádraig Ó Tuama

      Irish poet and theologian Pádraig Ó Tuama’s work centers around themes of language, power, conflict and religion. He is the author of four books of poetry and prose: Daily Prayer with the Corrymeela Community, In the Shelter, Sorry for your Troubles, and Readings from the Books of Exile. He presents the podcast Poetry Unbound with On Being Studios, where he also has responsibilities in bringing art and theology into public and civic life. From 2014-2019 he was the leader of the Corrymeela Community, Ireland’s oldest peace and reconciliation community. He is based in Ireland.


      Camille Dungy

      Camille T. Dungy is the author of four collections of poetry, most recently Trophic Cascade (Wesleyan UP, 2017), winner of the Colorado Book Award, and the essay collection Guidebook to Relative Strangers: Journeys into Race, Motherhood and History (W.W. Norton, 2017), a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. Dungy has also edited anthologies including Black Nature: Four Centuries of African American Nature Poetry and From the Fishouse: An Anthology of Poems that Sing, Rhyme, Resound, Syncopate, Alliterate, and Just Plain Sound Great. A 2019 Guggenheim Fellow, her honors include NEA Fellowships in poetry (2003) and prose (2018), an American Book Award, two NAACP Image Award nominations, and two Hurston/Wright Legacy Award nominations. Dungy’s poems have been published in Best American Poetry, The 100 Best African American Poems, the Pushcart Anthology, Best American Travel Writing, and over thirty other anthologies. She is University Distinguished Professor at Colorado State University.


      Kathleen Adams

      Kathleen (Kay) Adams is one of the most prominent and established voices in the field of therapeutic writing. She is an author, psychotherapist, registered poetry/journal therapist (PTR) and master mentor/supervisor (MM/S) whose gift and life mission is sharing the power of writing with all who desire self-directed change. Kay is the author/editor of 12 books on the power of writing, including the best-selling Journal to the Self. In 1985, at the beginning of her graduate training, Kay taught her first journal workshop. Three years later, at graduation, she founded the Center for Journal Therapy. It has grown into an international training and consulting company offering workshops, on-line classes, certification training, retreats, intensives and individual consultations on the use of writing in therapy, health and wellness, coaching, and spiritual direction. She has worked as a journal therapist in private practice, in-patient, and intensive out-patient psychiatric programs. Kay is adjunct faculty in the Professional and Creative Writing Master’s program at University College at the University of Denver, where she teaches Writing & Healing.

      • 26 October 2022
      • (EDT)
      • 07 December 2022
      • (EST)
      • Online
      • 19
      Register


      This 6-week introduction to Transformative Language Arts (TLA) looks at how TLA can be practiced and facilitated through writing, storytelling, performance, song, and collaborative, expressive and integrated arts. 

      Each week includes short readings and/or videos, written and verbal discussion (via Zoom) regarding the different types of TLA, the ethics surrounding its practice, right livelihood, and your own self-care, as well as writing prompts to inspire and help you articulate your TLA callings.

      This class is one of the requirements for the TLA Foundations Certificate.

      Week by Week

      Week One: TLA History, Fields, and Traditions

      An overview of theory and practice, including genres, arts and community practices, ethics, and your own values informing your TLA. Explore TLA in many forms–from poetry therapy to social change theater to healing storytelling–and share what ignites your soul and work.

      Week Two: TLA in Service: Health, Healing, Spirituality, and Personal Growth.

      We’re explore how TLA can help people find their way home through health or emotional crises or wounds, spiritual callings, and many manner of personal growth. Starting with the personal, and recognizing how the personal is political, we look at ways in which TLA can foster health, healing, and homecoming, and also some of our cultural biases and blindnesses about such directions.

      Week Three: TLA as Catalyst: Community, Culture, History, and Social Change.

      We’ll look at TLA in relation to community-building, culture-shifting, history-revisioning, and social change, and particularly explore what it means and can mean to be part of various communities.

      Week Four:  TLA & Right Livelihood: Ways to Make a Living and a Life.

      What are our callings for how we make a living and how we live a life? We’ll dive into how TLA intersects with our life’s work (whether that work relates to a paycheck, volunteering, or other aspects of our life), and develop plans for where we’re led to go.

      Week Five: TLA in Action: Facilitation, Consulting, Collaboration, Coaching, and More.

      Looking at the ethics of our work, art, and community involvement, we’ll discuss and write about the specific forms of TLA we do and want to do.

      Week Six: TLA and You: Plans, Visions, and Maps.

      Deepening our plans for the work, art, and community-making ahead, we’ll clarify what’s right for us to pursue next, what support and tools we need along the way, and the future envision.


      Who Should Take This Class

      This class is ideal for a wide variety of people, including professionals who want to infuse TLA into their teaching, counseling, pastoral work, arts collaboration, and community work, as well as writers, storytellers, performers and other artists who want to develop their facilitation of writing, songwriting, expressive arts, drama therapy and community theater, collaborative arts, storytelling, or integrated arts.

      Format

      This is primarily an asynchronous, online class, which also includes weekly Zoom meetings. (Zoom is an online videoconferencing application that allows people with internet access to gather online from anywhere in the world). The bulks of the class work will occur via the online platform, Wet.Ink.

      Additionally, students are expected to attend at least five out of the seven weekly Zoom meetings (see schedule below). The Zoom meetings allow us to network and connect, and to learn from each other in real time discussion.

      From our interactions, we sustain a welcoming and inspiring community together.


      Zoom Meetings:

      All Zoom classes meet from 3-5 PM, EDT.

      Wednesday, October 26
      Wednesday, November 2
      Wednesday, November 9
      Wednesday, November 16
      Wednesday, November 30

      Optional Text: The Power of Words: A Transformative Language Arts Reader, edited by Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg and Janet Tallman. You can purchase the text on Amazon.


      About the Teacher

      Joanna Tebbs Young is a freelance writer and historian and author of an award-winning biography of Vermont historian, Lilian Baker Carlisle. She writes a history column for two local papers and is currently revising a memoir and personal essay collection. Joanna holds an MA in Transformative Language Arts with a focus on Women's Studies & Spirituality, and an MFA in Creative Nonfiction, both from Goddard College. A writing coach since 2009 and trained through the Center for Journal Therapy, Joanna is also a facilitator for Vermont Humanities Council and teaches online for the Transformative Language Arts Network. Links to her historical writing can be found here. 

    Past Classes

    09 April 2022 What Is Your Poem Begging to Look Like? Finding the Best Form Through Revision: How to Take Your Expressive Writing to the Next Level // with Fleda Brown
    16 February 2022 Not Enough Spoons: Writing About Disability & Chronic Illness // with Angie Ebba
    14 January 2022 The Quest of Purposeful Memoir: Exploring the Past, Creating the Future // with Jennifer Browdy, PhD
    12 January 2022 Grief Pages: Moving Through Change and Loss with a Creative Notebook Practice // with Lisa Chu
    17 November 2021 Pathways to Wholeness: Mindful Writing Toward Momentous Leaps of Meaning // with Marianela Medrano
    10 November 2021 Kissing the Muse: A Messy, Magical, Art-Making Adventure // with Robbyn Layne McGill
    28 October 2021 Monologue Showcase: Voices of Healing & Transformation
    28 October 2021 2021 Power of Words Conference
    15 September 2021 Your Memoir as Monologue with Showcase: Writing Monologues for Healing and Transformation // with Kelly DuMar
    30 August 2021 For the Love of it: A Mindful Moment of Rejuvenation for Educators // with Joanna Tebbs Young
    21 July 2021 Changing the World with Words: TLA Foundations // with Joanna Tebbs Young
    07 July 2021 Future Casting: Writing Towards a Just World Vision // with Caits Meissner
    02 June 2021 The Art of Facilitation: Facilitating for Change & Community // with Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg & Joy Roulier Sawyer
    17 May 2021 Tools for Teachers: Creating a Strong TLA Course Curriculum // with Liz Burke, EdD
    26 April 2021 Tools for Teachers: Marketing Your TLA Class // with Liz Burke, EdD
    18 April 2021 Monologue Showcase: Voices of Change
    05 April 2021 Tools for Teachers: Creating a Strong TLA Course Proposal // with Liz Burke, EdD
    24 March 2021 Tools for Teachers: Creating a Strong TLA Course Curriculum // with Liz Burke, EdD
    24 February 2021 Tools for Teachers: Marketing Your TLA Class // with Liz Burke, EdD
    03 February 2021 Tools for Teachers: Creating a Strong TLA Course Proposal // with Liz Burke, EdD
    03 February 2021 Your Memoir as Monologue: Writing Monologues for Healing and Transformation // with Kelly DuMar
    20 January 2021 Fantastic Folktales & Visionary Angles to Transform Our Stories // with Lyn Ford
    06 January 2021 Kissing the Muse: (Another) Messy, Magical, Art-Making Adventure // with Robbyn Layne McGill
    09 December 2020 TLA in Action: Connection, Collaboration, & Community
    05 December 2020 Fireside Tales: A Virtual Camp In // with Lyn Ford
    04 December 2020 A Virtual Greenhouse: Cultivating, Nurturing, and Sustaining Creative Growth through Literary Friendship
    04 November 2020 Leverage Your Expertise as a Social Arts Practice, for Community Engagement, and Radical Livelihood // with Yvette Angelique Hyater-Adams
    28 October 2020 The Art of Facilitation: Roots and Blossoms of Facilitation // with Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg & Joy Roulier Sawyer
    18 October 2020 Writing to this Moment: Taking Uncertainty to the Page // with Joanna Tebbs Young, MA-TLA
    14 October 2020 Kissing the Muse: A Messy, Magical, Art-Making Adventure // with Robbyn Layne McGill
    23 September 2020 How Pictures Heal: Expressive Writing from Personal Photos // with Kelly DuMar
    05 August 2020 Pathways to Wholeness: Mindful Writing Toward Momentous Leaps of Meaning // with Marianela Medrano
    24 June 2020 The Art of Facilitation: Facilitating for Change & Community // with Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg & Joy Roulier Sawyer
    24 June 2020 & They Call Us Crazy: Outsider Writing to Cross the Borders of Human Imagination // with Caits Meissner
    25 March 2020 Changing the World with Words: TLA Foundations // with Joanna Tebbs-Young
    25 March 2020 The Elemental Journey of Purposeful Memoir // with Jennifer Browdy, PhD
    15 January 2020 Your Memoir as Monologue: Writing Monologues for Healing and Transformation // with Kelly DuMar
    15 January 2020 The Art of Facilitation: Roots and Blossoms of Facilitation // with Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg & Joy Roulier Sawyer
    23 October 2019 15 Poets to Change Your Life & Spark Your Writing // with Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg
    23 October 2019 Poems As Prayers: Writing Towards a Just World // with Caits Meissner
    04 September 2019 Speaking Your Truth: Creative Writing in Political Times // with Angie Ebba
    26 June 2019 15 Poets to Change Your Life & Spark Your Writing // with Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg
    24 April 2019 Changing the World with Words: TLA Foundations // with Joanna Tebbs-Young
    06 March 2019 Fantastic Folktales & Visionary Angles to Transform Our Stories // with Lyn Ford
    16 January 2019 How Pictures Heal: Honoring Memory & Loss through Expressive Writing from Personal Photos // with Kelly DuMar
    24 October 2018 Coming Home to Body, Earth, and Time: Writing From Where We Live // with Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg
    24 October 2018 Leverage Your TLA Expertise for Publication, Community, Business, and Livelihood // with Yvette Hyater-Adams
    05 September 2018 Cultivating Our Voices: Writing Life Stories for Change // with Dr. Liz Burke-Cravens
    05 September 2018 The Five Senses and Four Elements: Connecting With the Body and Nature Through Poetry // with Angie Ebba
    27 June 2018 Wound Dwelling: Writing the Survivor Body(ies) // with Jennye Patterson
    27 June 2018 Changing the World with Words: TLA Foundations // with Joanna Tebbs-Young
    27 June 2018 & They Call Us Crazy: Outsider Writing to Cross the Borders of Human Imagination // with Caits Meissner
    16 May 2018 Values of the Future Through Transformative Language Arts // with Doug Lipman
    04 April 2018 Stories with Spirit: Creativity as a Spiritual Practice // with Regi Carpenter
    14 March 2018 Writing for Social Change: Redream a Just World // with Anya Achtenberg
    21 February 2018 Funding Transformation: Grant Writing for Storytellers, Writers, Artists, Educators, & Activists // with Diane Silver
    10 January 2018 Fantastic Folktales & Visionary Angles to Transform Our Stories // with Lyn Ford
    18 October 2017 Writing Our Lives: The Poetic Self & Transformation // with Dr. Liz Burke-Cravens
    18 October 2017 Changing the World with Words: TLA Foundations // with Joanna Tebbs-Young
    06 September 2017 Your Memoir as Monologue: How to Create Dynamic Dramatic Monologues About Healing and Transformation for Performance // with Kelly DuMar
    06 September 2017 Wound Dwelling: Writing the Survivor Body(ies) // with Jennifer Patterson
    14 June 2017 The Five Senses and Four Elements: Connecting with the Body and Nature Through Poetry // with Angie River
    14 June 2017 The Poetics of Witness: Writing Beyond the Self // with Caits Meissner
    19 April 2017 Diving and Emerging: Finding Your Voice and Identity in Personal Stories // with Regi Carpenter
    01 March 2017 Changing the World with Words: TLA Foundations // with Joanna Tebbs-Young
    01 March 2017 How Pictures Heal: Honoring Memory & Loss through Expressive Writing from Personal Photos // with Kelly DuMar
    11 January 2017 Values of the Future Through Transformative Language Arts // with Doug Lipman
    11 January 2017 Writing from the Root & Through the Body // with Marianela Medrano
    11 January 2017 Your Callings, Your Livelihood, Your Life // With Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg
    26 October 2016 Leverage Your TLA Expertise for Publication, Community, Business, and Livelihood // with Yvette Angelique Hyater-Adams
    26 October 2016 Not Enough Spoons: Writing About Disability & Chronic Illness // with Angie River
    14 September 2016 Wound Dwelling: Writing the Survivor Body(ies) // with Jennifer Patterson
    14 September 2016 Creating a Sustainable Story: Self-Care, Meaningful Work, and the Business of Creativity // with Laura Packer
    29 June 2016 Coming Home to Body, Earth, and Time: Writing From Where We Live // with Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg
    29 June 2016 Making the Leap into Work You Love // with Scott Youmans
    18 May 2016 Saturated Selfies: Intentional and Intense Photography and Writing
    18 May 2016 Changing the World with Words: TLA Foundations // with Joanna Tebbs Young
    28 March 2016 Gathering Courage: Still-Doing, Big Journaling, and Other (Not So Scary) Ways to Begin Accommodating the Soul
    15 February 2016 Living Out Loud: Healing Through Storytelling and Writing
    15 February 2016 Soulful Songwriting: How To Begin, Collaborate, And Finish Your Song
    04 January 2016 The Five Senses and the Four Elements: Connecting with the Body and Nature Through Poetry
    04 January 2016 Your Memoir as Monologue: How to Create Dynamic Dramatic Monologues About Healing and Transformation for Performance

    "The Transformative Language Arts Network" is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. P.O. Box 873 Lansdowne, PA 19050 USA

    Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software