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Writing Workshops at Powell's Books


Write Around Portland offers a unique generative workshop called Prompt designed for writers and aspiring writers in the greater Portland area who want to participate in a Write Around workshop and support the communities we traditionally serve who might not otherwise have access to writing and community.

Based on the acclaimed Write Around Portland model, this dynamic 10 week workshop incorporates our favorite writing exercises designed to inspire the writing life, including freewriting; work with writing elements; strength-building feedback and early-draft revision. The workshop caps off with a community broadside.

Proceeds help fund Write Around Portland programs, including our free workshops in hospitals, treatment centers, schools, senior centers, prisons, low income housing buildings and homeless shelters.

Pre-registration is required and is limited to 12 adults per workshop.

NOTE: Spaces fill quickly! Call us (503.796.9224) to confirm there is space, to register, and to discuss payment options.

Click here for information about our registration, payment options and refund policies.


        2016 Sessions at Powell's City of Books - Downtown

Session 1:
Ten Wednesdays, Jan 27 - Mar 30
Registration Closed
Session 2:
Ten Tuesdays, Mar 29 - May 31
Registration Open
Session 3:
Ten Wednesdays, May 11 - Jul 13
Registration Open
Session 4:
Ten weeks, week of Sep 26 – week of Dec 5, skip the week of Nov 21 (Day of the week TBD)
Registration Open

Time: 6:30 - 8:30pm

Location: Powell’s City of Books

1005 W. Burnside, downtown Portland

Cost: $300 - Payment plans available

Cost includes free parking, snacks and access to the “Bowels of Powell's.”

Workshop facilitators listed below.


NEW for 2016: Prompt at Powell’s at Cedar Hills Crossing

Come write in Powell’s Books at Cedar Hills Crossing. This workshop will take place in a small event space, with many opportunities to be inspired by and write with the thousands of books in the store. Pre-registration is required and is limited to 12 adults per workshop; call us at 503-796-9224 to register.

Dates: 10 Tuesdays, February 23 – April 26

Time: 10:30am-12:30pm

Cost: $300 - Payment plans available

Location: Powell’s Books at Cedar Hills Crossing,

3415 SW Cedar Hills Blvd. Beaverton, OR 97005 

Click here for information about our registration, payment options and refund policies.


2016 Prompt Workshop Facilitators

Session 1 at Powell's Downtown: Katie Borak is a reader, writer, and storyteller. She studied filmmaking at Penn State University with a concentration in screenwriting, and worked in film production in New York before moving to Portland. Katie began volunteering with Write Around Portland in 2013 and has facilitated writing workshops for adults in recovery and adults with physical and developmental disabilities.

Session 2 at Powell's Downtown: Armin Tolentino received his MFA at Rutgers University in Newark, NJ. His poetry has appeared, or is forthcoming, in Mason’s Road, Literary Laundry, The Bear Deluxe, Blue Earth Review, and New Millennium Writings. He's received awards from the Oregon Poetry Association and was a 2014 Oregon Literary Arts Fellowship recipient. Armin has been involved with Write Around Portland since 2011 and his favorite workshop snacks are Wheat Thins™.

Session 3 at Powell's Downtown: Gwen McNeir produced her first poetry chapbook in the third grade and never looked back. Besides writing poetry and creative nonfiction, she has worked as a technical writer and researcher, communications consultant, and grant writer. She received her MFA from Pacific University, where she studied with writer-mentors Marvin Bell, Ellen Bass, Joseph Millar, and Sandra Alcosser. Gwen has volunteered with Write Around Portland since 2005, and has facilitated workshops for people of all ages and backgrounds, from seniors living on a low income to fifth graders in an afterschool program.

Session 4 at Powell's Downtown: Kathryn Miller is a writer of things big and small. She works as a copywriter and editor for an interactive agency. She's volunteered with Write Around Portland since 2013, facilitating workshops for at-risk youth, and previously taught creative writing with Writers in Action. She received her MFA in creative nonfiction from the University of North Carolina, Wilmington, where she worked on the literary journal Ecotone, and has attended writing workshops at UCLA and The New School. She is a Ralph W. Brauer Fellowship recipient. Her work has appeared in Brevity and The Rumpus.

Sessions at Powell's Cedar Hills Crossing: Michele Sabatier has believed in the power of words since she wrote them on the walls in kindergarten. Convinced that writing is a key to tapping creativity, she continued to share that love of words and writing with others as an editor and designer in nonprofit journalism for twenty years, and as a K-12 language arts teacher in critical-needs schools for six years. Now happily retired and a Write Around Portland volunteer, Michele has facilitated workshops for low-income seniors and youth, and a Write Around drop-in series at Powell’s in Beaverton.



What Prompt participants are saying about their experience:

"Whether you’ve been writing for eons or have never shared your writing within a group, this experience is not to be missed."

"Prompt opened my writing in different ways. It pushed me past an extended period of writers' block into a new period of creativity."

"Prompt was fun and inspirational and a great place to meet other people who share the same passion."

"It's well worth the time, effort and money. You'll surprise yourself!"

"It was an amazing experience! I've always wanted to do something like this but was afraid to try until now."

"I felt exhilarated after each workshop. I'm inspired!"

"If you're in a rut, Prompt will get you out. If you're lacking confidence in your writing, it will build you up. And if you don't think you have a unique voice, it will prove you wrong!"

"I loved it! Prompt was everything I'd hoped for and more than I expected. Everyone should take it!"

"The facilitator was well-prepared, inclusive, supportive and an excellent writer."

"Prompt was like a door for me - it opened up my creative side again after a long time. I loved the non-pressure vibe."

"I loved the inclusive, community-building part of the workshop experience."

"This was an incredible experience. It's hard to express how much this has really impacted me and made me feel so much more confident about my writing."

"The facilitator was fabulous!"

"The sense of community was strong. It was a wonderfully diverse group of people that likely would not have otherwise met."

"It was great! Prompt helped me gain confidence and excitement about my writing."

"This is a great way to stretch yourself, deepen your experience of who you are as a person and a writer."

"I really enjoyed coming together with people from all walks of life and different age groups. It reminded me of what we share as humans - joys and sorrows."