Events

Writing with Willona is my collection of writing workshops and networking events. To be added to the mailing list, please email willonasloan@gmail.com.

writing workshop spark box5

Photo by Chrissy Poitras

Upcoming Events

Sip & Write at Capitol Cider House
Date: Tuesday, December 10, 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM
Location: Capitol Cider House, 3930 Georgia Avenue Northwest, Washington, DC 20011
Cost: $25
Register here.

Sip on cider and write! As we wind down 2019, we will use the crazy highs and lows of the past year as inspiration for short stories in this fiction-focused writing workshop. We will discuss techniques for creating characters, snappy dialogue and vivid scenes. You will walk away with three new pieces of writing and some new writing buddies. Open to writers of all levels! Your ticket also includes one pour of cider!

Past Events

Strike a Prose: Writing for Justice (nonfiction) – National Portrait Gallery

In this creative writing workshop inspired by “The Struggle for Justice”, you will explore themes of democracy, social justice and freedom as you build a blended essay. The exhibition features images of activists and leaders from American movements for social justice. Through reading, discussion and guided writing exercises you will reflect on what it means to fight for something you believe in.

Strike a Prose: Crafting Dialogue (fiction) – National Portrait Gallery

We will focus on writing dialogue by drawing inspiration from the special exhibition “In Mid-Sentence”, which features some of the most iconic conversations and speeches in 20th century American history. We will also practice composing subtext, diversions and misdirection as we explore how to write about things said and things left unsaid. This workshop will be highly collaborative and interactive.

Strike a Prose: Write from Your Soul (cross-genre) – National Portrait Gallery

We will view powerful images of the legendary opera singer and activist in the exhibition “One Life: Marian Anderson”. Anderson once said, “Everyone has a gift for something.” In this creative writing workshop, you will reflect on your special gifts, talents and dreams. We will also look at how Anderson fought for civil rights as a black woman and an artist and imagine how we can use art to change the world.

Life as Metaphor: Personal Essay Writing

Life is beautiful. It’s also messy. In this personal essay writing workshop, writers will use the messiness of real life for inspiration. Participants will practice drawing from experiences, asking hard questions, and diving in deep to reveal their true selves through their creative work. Hosted at The Writer’s Center.

Strike a Prose: Persistent Women

In this writing workshop series, we focused on writing strong female leads, using fiction and nonfiction writing prompts. The writing workshop will be held in connection with “Votes for Women: A Portrait of Persistence” at the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery.

Strike a Prose: Writing Self-Portraits 

Creative writing workshop series at National Portrait Gallery. In this writing workshop series inspired by Eye to I: Self-Portraits from 1900 to Today, we created writing that reflects on how we see ourselves and how we obscure how others see us.

Strike a Prose, Jr: Creative Writing for Families 

Workshop Inspired by Unseen: Our Past in a New Light, Ken Gonzales-Day and Titus Kaphar at Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery.

Strike a Prose, Jr: Creative Writing for Teens 

Workshop Inspired by Unseen: Our Past in a New Light, Ken Gonzales-Day and Titus Kaphar at Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery.

Strike a Prose: Creative Writing Inspired by Black Out: Silhouettes Then and Now

Workshop series held in conjunction with Black Out: Silhouettes Then and Now at Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery. Classes addressed complex themes such as race, history, family, and identity.

Strike a Prose: Creative Writing Inspired by “UnSeen”

In this series of creative writing workshops, we will draw inspiration from artwork in the exhibition UnSeen: Our Past in a New Light, Ken Gonzales Day and Titus Kaphar to develop new writing. Fiction, nonfiction, and poetry writing prompts will be provided. (April – May 2018)

Sweat of Their Face Writing Workshops

This series of writing workshops will be held in connection with the exhibition “The Sweat of Their Face: Portraying American Workers” at the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery. The exhibition combines art and social history with representations of American laborers across genres and centuries of art. (January 2018)

Sylvia Plath Inspired Writing Workshops

This series of writing workshops hosted by the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery, was held in conjunction with the exhibition “One Life: Sylvia Plath”. (October 2017)

In Solidarity: RAWI Creative Writing Workshop

RAWI (The Radius of Arab American Writers) is sponsoring a one-day workshop in Washington, DC. As part of a series of  workshops held in different cities, the In Solidarity: RAWI Creative Writing Workshop is designed for Arab-and Muslim-American writers, writers of color, and writers from any marginalized communities. (March 2017)

Bill Viola: The Moving Portrait

This series of writing workshops was hosted at the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery in conjunction with Bill Viola: The Moving Portrait. (March 2017)

Create Space for Creative Writing in Your Busy Life

Learn how to make time and space for creative writing in your life. In this workshop, we will explore the elements of creative writing and work through exercises designed to help you develop the habits of a successful writer. (May 2016)

Social Justice Writing Workshopsocial justice

In this workshop, we will discuss how to write for different audiences (supporters, critics and the uniformed); how to use data and research to build your content; and how to interview people. This class is open to writers of all levels interested in creating social change. (November 2015)

Twenty Minutes a Day  

Learn how to generate new writing, tackle revisions and even submit your work for publication, using the time you have. (October 2015)

Creative Writing Workshop

Reykjavík UNESCO City of Literature offers a creative writing workshop in connection with the Reykjavík International Literary Festival. (September 2015)

writedrinkreadreyk1_final

A Happy Writing Hour

The Reykjavík UNESCO City of Literature and the Reykjavík International Literature Festival offer a happy writing hour at the Iðnó Theatre festival bar.  (September 2015)

Write Your Own Adventure: Wine & Writing Class

Writing, wine and adventure. Join us for a celebration of the finer points in life in this fun Spanish wine and cheese tasting class and creative writing workshop. (July 2015)