WALPOLE, N.H. – Award-winning author Pam Bernard will hold her popular memoir workshops in-person at her home in Walpole. They will begin the week of Aug. 9 and continue through September. Days and times vary.
As well as nurturing yet rigorous group critique, crucial issues of craft are explored in these workshops, such as narrative stance and tone, while fresh work is generated each week from prompts. Participants from New Hampshire, Vermont, and Massachusetts are bringing experience to the page by harnessing memory and imagination, and learning to shape their writing into compelling narratives as a way to explore and ultimately honor their lives.
“One need not be working on a full-length memoir,” Bernard says. “We draft short narratives from prompts, which may be woven together as themes and patterns emerge. As material accumulates, we can better understand our past, which often comes to us unbidden – and make of it a story that conveys our deepest intentions.”
Writer Jeff Smull, from Alstead, explores this issue. “Pam Bernard revived the dormant writer in me. Shortly after I retired from a decades-long career at The Toadstool Bookshop, I felt the urge to record and reflect upon some of the more significant events in my life, on the good and the bad and, even, the ugly. I had done a lot of writing earlier in my life, but had let it go for years. I wasn’t sure I could still craft a compelling sentence. Turns out I can. That’s thanks to Pam. She is a gifted teacher, always supportive and encouraging, and has a deep understanding of the craft of memoir. Joining her workshop is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.”
Pam Bernard is author of four books, the most of recent a verse novel titled “Esther.” She is also a painter, editor, writing coach, and adjunct professor at Franklin Pierce University. She received her MFA in Creative Writing from Warren Wilson College and B.A. from Harvard University. Her awards include fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Massachusetts Cultural Council.