Beverly Donofrio | The Art of Crafting Your Memoir


Get ready to develop some writing. In Beverly Donofrio’s opinion, writing is rewriting. From prompts in class we will generate material then develop one of your pieces into a short personal story or essay. We will discuss craft tools, such as the elements of scene writing, how to establish a present moment from which you can smoothly transition to back story and/or flash forward, and offer reflection. We will discuss narrative summary, which, for example, you may use to sum up a whole life, interestingly, in a paragraph, by choosing the perfect telling details. In an exercise, we will use the senses both to stimulate your memory and to recreate on the page the experience you once lived, and in so doing, help the reader to experience it too.

Beverly Donofrio, called a Master Memoirist by The Daily Beast, has published three memoirs, her first, the bestselling Riding in Cars with Boys, was made into a popular movie, her second, Looking for Mary, was a Barnes and Noble “Discover” pick, and her latest, the critically acclaimed, Astonished, is still collecting accolades. She has published three children’s books, her latest, Where’s Mommy was named by The New York Times a best picture book of 2014, and her essays have appeared in many anthologies and periodicals, including The New York Times, The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, O, The Oprah Magazine, Cosmopolitan, Mademoiselle, Marie Claire, More, Allure, Spirituality and Health, The Village Voice, The Huffington Post and Slate. Her award-winning NPR documentaries can be heard through Sound Portraits. She gives workshops around the country and is currently on the faculty of the low-residency MFA program at Wilkes University. She is working on a collection of essays and life stories.

Just $250 per participant, your day includes lunch, Friday night’s Little Bites and Big Libations (appetizers, spirits and desserts) at a social evening with other participants, our instructors and panelists.

Treat yourself to The Whole Shebang for $450. Here’s what you’ll get:

Take in the Story Slam on Thursday night. Join the One Day Intensive of your choosing on Friday, in one of Woodstock’s beautiful private homes, complete with lunch. Then sail into the weekend: attending all the wonderful panels, breakfast, both Little Bites and Big Libations Cocktail Parties, and both evening events. And share the bounty from our always-stuffed goody bag.


Beverly Donofrio

Location TBA
Friday March 27, 2020
9AM – 5PM